• A guest watches three kayakers approaching the resort from chairs on the point

Is Cabana Desolation Eco Resort For You?

The only resort or accommodation in Desolation Sound, British Columbia

Cabana Desolation is a truly unique experience & its intimate, off-grid nature sets it apart from any other west coast British Columbia accommodation


World Cuisine with a Modern West Coast Twist

Those who value creative dishes made from fresh, local ingredients, with both local and foreign influences, created from scratch and prepared lovingly before your own eyes, will be impressed with the variety, quality and diversity of the food created in the context of our remote island kitchen. 

However, the remote and off-grid nature of our resort makes it impossible to offer the unlimited menu choices available at traditional resorts and restaurants. All perishable food and ingredients are required to be boated in twice a week from civilization. 

Because of this, we operate from a set menu. This menu has been developed and refined to allow maximum flexibility based on our guests’ food preferences, allergies and intolerances. It also maximizes the use of local ingredients and flavours to allow our visitors to fully immerse themselves in this unique west coast environment. Think locally caught wild salmon, homemade preserves, freshly baked desserts, and oysters harvested from the beach right before your eyes.

It is wonderful to continually hear and see the amazement of our guests walking away from meals with the same reaction: “How on earth did they do that?!”

In truth, while we do have some limitations as to the amount and kind of ingredients we can stock, our talented cooks still work with most of the comforts of a modern commercial kitchen. Our stove and refrigerator are propane-powered, and we even have limited solar-powered electricity to assist in all the blending, grinding and chopping we need to create incredible meals day after day.

A creative appetizer of ahi tuna, cucumber, avocado & sesame aioli at our off-grid eco resort


Authentic Interactions with Local People

What is great service?

We passionately believe that great service is closely related with authenticity, real people, and all the little details that make a great experience one that is truly memorable. Fresh coffee delivered to your cabana each morning, oysters smoked over the campfire, freshly baked cookies waiting for your return from a day of adventure. These are the moments that stick in our guests’ minds long after they have returned home.

Are there black tied waiters at Cabana Desolation? A concierge service? No, but if you are excited by the opportunity to meet, learn from, and spend time with dedicated people that love the beautiful area where they live, work, and play, you will love the unique and relaxed atmosphere of Cabana Desolation.

Cabana Desolation is an exclusive, off-grid experience. We have a maximum occupancy of just 10 guests at a time. Perhaps 200 guests have the opportunity to experience Desolation Sound in these unique comforts each season. This exclusivity means that guests at Cabana have more time not just to immerse themselves in the area’s natural beauty and the resort’s uniquely warm ambiance, but also to get to know the people – i.e. the staff – that live and work here year round and work tirelessly to provide you with all you need to enjoy your time in their corner of the world.

The work ethic of our staff is impressive. In a remote location like Cabana Desolation, multiple skills are necessary to provide for our guests needs. Our guides double as sous chefs, our managers moonlight as janitors, and our cooks are not just nameless and faceless individuals locked away behind closed doors, and more often than not are the ones delivering coffee to your Cabana first thing in the morning with a friendly smile. 

Our staff are passionate about the coast and the Desolation Sound area. They have endless stories about the history, geography, wildlife and daily contemporary life here in coastal British Columbia. Cabana Desolation is not a sterile resort with manufactured luxuries; it is a real slice of west coast life that employs real people and personalities from the local area, and brings its guests into contact with the stories, sights, sounds and character of this beautiful part of the world. 

Due to this exclusivity, many guests are pleasantly surprised with the congenial and friendly atmosphere that surrounds Cabana Desolation, and they feel that they leave here not simply refreshed and rejuvenated, but with new stories, new adventures, and new friends.

Our cook serving fresh oysters at the Cabana Cafe at the off-grid eco resort


Sustainable Power in an Off-Grid Environment

As a true eco-resort, and based on an uninhabited island, Cabana Desolation is off-grid in every way. We don’t get Netflix out here! Our kitchen is powered mostly by propane, as are the hot water showers at every cabana. Our basic lighting needs in the Cabana Cafe are provided by a handful of LED lights and two solar panels harnessing the sun’s natural energy.

Those, however, who relish the thought of waking in the morning and having the opportunity to appreciate life’s true luxuries – the sound of forest birds calling through the canopy, the gentle lapping of the waves at the ocean’s shore, the smell of freshly brewed coffee delivered to their room – will find that Cabana Desolation is connected in all the right ways.

Our mantra at Cabana Desolation is the importance of ‘disconnecting’ from the stress and hassle of our everyday lives. Yet we also understand and appreciate the conveniences of civilization. Therefore we have developed ways to harness just enough of these comforts without impacting our enjoyment and appreciation of the natural landscape of our island base.

While summer sunlight can stick around until 10pm during parts of the season, gentle LED lighting illuminates our Cabana Cafe when the sun goes down, and our solar panels provide enough power for such relative luxuries as freshly ground coffee in the morning and an off-grid ‘charging station’ to keep your personal devices with enough juice to take pictures of the natural surroundings (and maybe share some of your more memorable moments with jealous family and friends!)

In the cabanas themselves, candle lanterns are provided to help create a warm and relaxing environment amongst the natural cedar accommodations.

For those guests that need to keep in touch with the outside world while you are away for work, we totally understand. There is very strong and clear 3G cellular service all through Desolation Sound. While we do not have Wifi at the resort, this network is easily sufficient for data use on cell phones and even setting up a mobile hotspot for the use of laptops and tablets.

Our off-grid eco resort illuminated at night by LED lights


Simple Comforts in a Natural Setting

At Cabana Desolation we are primarily concerned with connecting our guests with the natural environment. This is not limited to the visual setting, and can sometimes include the invigorating sensation of a cool wind on bare skin! It is impossible in these off-grid circumstances to control every aspect of the environment with the flick of a switch. That said, we value comfort above most things, and we take great steps to ensure the contentment of our guests in all environmental conditions without compromising our natural setting.

During the summer months, the temperature at Cabana Desolation is comfortably warm, even during the evenings in our open-air Cabana Cafe. However, at any time of year, the climate of coastal British Columbia can be fickle, and our guests should be prepared for the potential of cooler, wetter, windier weather systems. Guests may spend one evening lazing around after dinner in shorts and t-shirts, and then rise in the morning and appear for breakfast in wool sweaters, long pants and wool caps. Such is the nature of life in this temperate rainforest!

We have many ways to help our guests feel warm at Cabana Desolation no matter the ambient temperature. Plush wool blankets, for example, are available in all common areas. In cooler situations our propane fireplace can be turned on to keep guests warm while they relax over a glass of wine or hot tea. 

While our cabana accommodations are not insulated, they provide ample protection against the elements during the summer and shoulder seasons. Warm blankets, candles, hot water bottles and heavy curtains keeping the warmth in while maintaining a strong connection to the sights, sounds and smells of the environment in which we are located.

Imagine yourself snuggled warmly under the covers at night, hot water bottle at your feet, a candle gently illuminating the room as you listen peacefully to the sound of the waves crashing into the shore and the rain gently pattering against the roof above. Who would honestly want to be anywhere else?!

The handcrafted Cabana Cafe at night with solar powered LED lights


Our Most Precious Resource

The biggest challenge creating an off-grid eco-resort on an uninhabited island in Desolation Sound is water. There is no question that Cabana Desolation could not exist the way it does without it. Everything from the preparation of our mouth watering meals, to the luxurious showers, to the disposal of waste is contingent of a fresh and reliable source of water.

Luckily, Cabana Desolation is serviced by a natural, deep, nearby fresh water spring. This spring flows with enough abundance to provide us, and our guests, with all the water we need to supply comforts to our resort that would otherwise be impossible to achieve.

If you can appreciate the absolute luxury of returning from a day of exploration in a remote and beautiful location – whether you are kayaking in Desolation Sound, hiking around Kinghorn Island or simply exploring the tide-pools and rock formations of the varied coastline – and having the opportunity to wash your hands, feet, body, and yes, even your hair, in your very own, private, on-demand hot water shower … well Cabana Desolation is definitely the place for you!

In addition to the hot water showers mentioned above, our guests also get to experience another relative luxury that is all too often taken for granted in the civilized world: flush toilets! If any one reading this has experienced one of our – or another company’s – remote camping kayak tours, they will know just how luxurious this is in an off-grid environment! Although each cabana does not have it’s own personal toilet, it is only a short stroll down the cedar boardwalk from your cabana to access one of our two comfortable, clean, airy bathrooms.

Despite the relatively abundant nature of the water from our spring, we still need to be mindful of  the conservation of this most precious of resources in our unique environment. Conserving the amount of water we use day to day is crucial to preserve the natural setting in which we operate. Thus our flush toilets are designed to use a mere 1 pint of water per flush, and our low-flow shower heads provide a comfortable flow and pressure to reinvigorate our guests while limiting the amount of water that flows down the drain! 

The Cabana Cafe bar at night at our off-grid eco resort