Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.04mi
  2. Distance: 4.18mi
  3. Distance: 5.59mi
  4. Distance: 5.69mi
  1. Distance: 0.04mi
  2. Distance: 4.18mi
  3. Distance: 5.59mi
  4. Distance: 5.69mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.04mi
  2. Distance: 4.18mi
  3. Distance: 5.59mi
  4. Distance: 5.69mi
  1. Distance: 0.04mi
  2. Distance: 4.18mi
  3. Distance: 5.59mi
  4. Distance: 5.69mi

About The Lifesaving Station - Sanderling Resort

Located in the original Caffey’s Inlet Life Saving Station No. 5, the Lifesaving Station is Sanderling’s casual, three-meal-a-day restaurant celebrating southern coastal cuisine. After the winter renovations, the second level now offers sweeping views of the Currituck Sound and available for large parties with an expansive kid’s menu.

The menu changes seasonally, and specials feature the freshest of the day’s catch. This season’s highlights are Shrimp and Grits, Crab Stuffed Flounder or Pan Seared Duck Breast. Since the restaurant's inception in 1985, the Sanderling Blue Crab Chowder has been a favorite.

The Lifesaving Station maintains an impressive wine list. At the newly renovated No 5 Bar now located on the first level, local North Carolina breweries are featured on tap while specialty cocktails include “Keeper’s Watch” . A new No 5 bar food menu is available all day.

1461 Duck Rd
Duck, NC 27949
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
American, Contemporary Southern, Comfort Food

Hours of Operation:
Breakfast Daily: 7:00am - 11:30am; Lunch Monday-Saturday: 12:00pm - 3:00pm; Dinner Off Season 5:00pm - 9:00pm, In Season 5:00-10:00pm

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(252) 449-6654

Website:
http://www.sanderling-resort.com/restaurants-and-bars/life-saving-station

Executive Chef:
Executive Sous- John Botkin

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Beer, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, View, Wine

The Lifesaving Station - Sanderling Resort Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

3.9

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

3.8

service

3.7

ambience

3.9

value

3.5

Noise

Quiet

72% would recommend it to a friend

Casual (8)
Scenic View (7)
Worth the Drive (6)
See All
Kid-friendly (5)
Great for Lunch (5)
Good for a Date (4)
Special Occasion (4)
Great for Brunch (3)
Good for Anniversaries (3)
Good for Groups (3)
Local Ingredients (3)
Seasonal (3)
Waterfront (3)
Creative Cuisine (3)
Business Meals (2)
Fit for Foodies (2)
Great for Outdoor Dining (2)
Healthy (1)
Authentic (1)
Good for Birthdays (1)
Cozy (1)
Disabled Access (1)
Great Beer (1)
Bar Seating (1)
Neighborhood Gem (1)
Romantic (1)
Sunday Lunch (1)
Good Vegetarian Options (1)
Vibrant Bar Scene (1)
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343 reviews
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 (Washington DC)·Dined on October 2, 2017

We have enjoyed dining here the past several years when on vacation. This year however they weren’t seating in the upper level and the service was subpar for the prices paid; our waitress did not seem very knowledgable nor accommodating. The scallop entree was very tasty. Disappointing.

Tags: Great for Brunch
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food4
ambience3
service3
value3

 
·Dined on September 29, 2017

We have eaten breakfast and dinner here. Delicious food and an ample amount.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Creative Cuisine, Worth the Drive, Good for Groups, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Cleveland)·Dined on September 13, 2017

The lights in the main dining room are WAY too bright for nighttime dining. You could land a plane in the place. Love the new decor, except for that.

Tags: Casual
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food5
ambience3
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on September 6, 2017

**Fast forward a day and a half and we discovered that despite tendering 3 credit cards and receiving 3 credit card slips that were filled out that only 2 cards were run. The restaurant's solution - tack another 1/6 of the bill on to each of the credit cards despite having no authorization to do so. The manager alleged this was done so someone would call and resolve the issue. To me it's credit card fraud. Very shady. The manager says the amounts will be corrected Monday; I'm hoping she's more competent than the other people we have interacted with at this restaurant.

The food was hit or miss; the calamari was awful but the goat cheese hushpuppies were good. The chips were overloaded with old bay and the crab cake was fried in oil that seemed like it needed to be changed. Service was slow, forgetful, and barely competent. The space was attractive and airy but warmer than ideal and the ceiling fans that dotted the ceiling were covered in cobwebs such that even if the waitress knew how to turn them on the dirt and grime that would come off them would have been worse than the stagnant warm air.

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food2
ambience2
service1
value1

 
·Dined on August 31, 2017

We used to love this place. The quality of the food and service has slipped dramatically over the last few years.

Last night they got the order wrong, the pork chop was dry as vintage leather, the fried chicken died in vain, and the other dishes were equally poor.

Recent staff changes have exacerbaited the fall in quality

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food1
ambience5
service3
value2

 
·Dined on August 30, 2017

The steak option on the kids meal was not prepared well. It was not cooked to order and had no flavor. So we ordered another meal (chicken tenders) for my daughter and the chicken tenders that came out smelled like fish.
Ordered a salad with no anchovies and it arrived with two anchovies spread across the salad. The waiter did not seem apologetic and instead offered to have them removed. Being a vegetarian, this was not an appropriate solution. He then offered to redo the salad and then removed it from our bill.
Overall, We were very disappointed in our dining experience and will only return to this restaurant for the breakfast. We had a wonderful waitress and a wonderful breakfast meal the day before.

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food1
ambience4
service2
value4

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on August 28, 2017

As with all the restaurants within the Sanderling Resort area the food was below average and overpriced. I can't help but think they fake these 5 star ratings. Do yourself a favor and save yourself a trip to what is obviously a bunch of resort restaurants pretending to be fine dining. The shrimp and grits special the waitress assured us was fantastic was cold and greasy with old frozen shrimp. The crab cakes were not fresh, and the burgers were nothing to write home about. The icing on the cake will be your face when you see the bill.

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food1
ambience1
service1
value1

 
·Dined on August 23, 2017

The food was great, I had the surf and turf as an entree and the filet was like butter, so delicious! The Mussels, which I normally don't like, were delicious! Our server Travis was polite, friendly and attentative. Thank you!

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on August 17, 2017

Incredible food and amazing views of the sound. Must try the mussels absolutely delicious.

Tags: Good for a Date, Scenic View
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on August 11, 2017

Solid 4-star experience; 5 stars would require a less rushed service, losing the pasty sauce on the crab-stuffed flounder, and informing us of the dessert special, which I overheard from another waiter. Also, not being out of the Dow 20-year tawny port. Highlights were the crab chowder and the steamed mussels. The grilled mahi was also good.

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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on August 10, 2017

We stayed at the resort and had a wonderful lunch at the life station. We thought we would try dinner our last night and were truly disappointed with all three of the meals. The waiter recommended scallops and the fish stuffed with crab. The fish was over cooked and the scallops dish did not taste good. Our son had steak and frittes with too much worchershire sauce he could not eat it. Dessert and drinks were the highlights. Service was just ok (great at lunch). Would not recommend for dinner.

Tags: Great for Lunch
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food2
ambience2
service2
value1

 
 (Wilmington)·Dined on August 8, 2017

Life Saving Station Restaurant is an excellent dining option. The food, service, ambiance and view was terrific. Put it on your list to try when visiting the OBX. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. The relocated bar is very comfortable. If there is a slight wait for a table. One of our favorites!

Tags: Great for Brunch, Good for Anniversaries, Great for Lunch, Worth the Drive, Scenic View
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on August 7, 2017

My husband and I and our children were celebrating our 21st wedding anniversary. We had just arrived in the Obx and were so pleased to stay at The Sanderling, Since it was our 1st day, we deceided to have dinner on-site. When we arrived at the restaurant the friendly host asked where would like to sit and seated us in the best spot overlooking the sound. The reviews on line were great so I was excited to have dinner here. I had high expectations for dinner, the crab chowder and crab cakes were good. However, the fisherman's platter left a lot to be desired. The fritter was over cooked, the hollandaise sauce was a crust instead of a sauce. For $40, I got 1 shrimp, 1 crab fritter, and a small piece of beef , which was ok. My husband ordered steak frites- it was salty and over cooked. One would think that the restaurant was packed, but we were there early( 5:15pm ) and there were very few guests, so I can't understand the reason for the poorly prepared food.

Tags: Creative Cuisine
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food2
ambience4
service4
value2

 
·Dined on August 5, 2017

It was a little disorganized when we first arrived. We had a reservation, and they greeted us right away and gave us the impression that we would be seated right away, but then we ended up waiting for 15 minutes while 4 different people came by telling us that someone would get us seated in just a moment. After we were seated, our waiter was attentive and responsive. Our meals were delicious. I had Mahi and my husband had pasta. The waiter allowed me to select a complimentary dessert for my husband's birthday and even included a birthday candle. We liked the beachy decor and atmosphere. They even had a children's menu. We would dine there again.

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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Charleston)·Dined on August 5, 2017

Made a reservation but didn't specify for upstairs. We were offered the main dining room, too brightly lit and managed instead to get a table on the deck. Appetizers were great, entrees not so much. Had the buttermilk fried chicken, nothing like it was 5 years ago. This time it tasted like chicken from a frozen TV dinner. My wife had the flounder stuffed with lump crabmeat, which was 2 pieces of dry fish with a small crab cake (not lump) in between. Service was friendly but Rey spotty. We had a cocktail at Kimball's Kitchen across the street before eating at the Lifesaving Station, should've stayed @ KK for dinner.

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food2
ambience2
service2
value1

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on August 4, 2017

Terrible service and awful food, tables were not clear for a long time ... waitress not properly trained and manager was distracted

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food1
ambience4
service1
value2

 
·Dined on August 4, 2017

Enjoyed our meal, however service was slow. Perhaps a bit more training for the wait staff.

Tags: Casual, Good for Groups, Great for Lunch
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food4
ambience4
service2
value4

 
·Dined on July 29, 2017

We had an early lunch on a busy Saturday in July. Known for their breakfast, we were probably the first lunch orders. The calamari and our other items ( lunch salad, burgers, crab cake and shrimp wraps) were just okay. The waitress disappeared for long periods of time probably because of the shift from breakfast to lunch. When she was interacting with us, she was less than enthused. Other people who we vacationed with raved about this restaurant so we will try it again at a better time.

Tags: Casual, Waterfront, Scenic View
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food2
ambience4
service2
value3

 
·Dined on July 26, 2017

We were on vacation and the experience was horrible. We had the crab cakes which were advertised as lump crab, they were not. The mussels were old, tough and without flavor. Waitress was an amateur. Main course came when we just started our appetizers.

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food1
ambience2
service1
value1

 
 (Pittsburgh)·Dined on July 26, 2017

Took a trip to Duck from Corolla on our recent Beach Trip. The Life Saving Station was very good - given a limited number of options. The grilled Mahi was tasty - loved the pickled cucumber relish that topped the dish. Friends had the Flounder stuffed with crab and raved about it!

Tags: Kid-friendly, Gluten Free Options
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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (Louisville)·Dined on July 26, 2017

The location alone is enough reason to book lunch. The fare is always interesting, with fresh seafood prepared in novel ways to pique the palate. This is one of the only OBX restaurants that is consistently exceptional. Service is great. The new bar location on the first floor was a tenuous move. Located between the sound and the ocean, this neighborhood gem is a find.

Tags: Casual, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Birthdays, Neighborhood Gem, Great for Lunch
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on July 23, 2017

What used to be a great dining experience and location now seems to be a place that just wants to crank diners in and out. Food is no longer prepared to order. Our food was served in about 5 minutes after ordering - one dish clearly a pre-prepared pasta that was microwaved to an overly hot temp and one that was a pre-prepared crab cake (cold in the center) and overly cooked but cold green beans. Server was barely interested in us. Didn't ask if we wanted drinks while we decided our order and was shocked when I asked for a glass of wine while looking at the menu. Then after the entree, she brought us the check before asking if we wanted dessert or coffee. I used to love this place and the resort where it's located, but this was one of the worst overall dining experiences I've had in recent history.

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food2
ambience2
service2
value2

 
 (Nashville)·Dined on July 19, 2017

This was our most expensive meal out during our week in OBX but unfortunately it was the least pleasant. The food was OK but not nearly worth the price we paid. The rating we found was very high & the menu looked good on paper but it turned out to not live up to our expectations. There are many other spots to try over this one.

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food2
ambience2
service3
value1

 
 (Wilmington)·Dined on July 19, 2017

Life Saving Station is our go to restaurant. It never disappoints. The ambiance, the food and the service is top notch. We recommend it to all who visit Duck.

Tags: Afternoon Tea, Good for a Date, Local Ingredients, Sunday Lunch, Creative Cuisine, Happy Hour
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Wilmington)·Dined on July 19, 2017

Our server was attentive. No one mentioned our anniversary even though I had noted it when making our reservation. My husband really enjoyed his meal.

Tags: Seasonal
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food4
ambience3
service5
value3

 
 (Columbus)·Dined on July 15, 2017

Our meal was fantastic. Local ingredients were used throughout the menu. Our waiter, Travis, was very personable and did a great job. Great view of the sunset looking across to the bay. We ate in the upstairs room which was a little noisy because there were three large groups dining there at the same time. But the historic atmosphere of the building made it worth any noise level

Tags: Scenic View, Casual, Fun, Fit for Foodies, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on July 14, 2017

Decent food/service. Expensive for what it is. A lot of families were there with small kids so the ambience and noise level were on par with that. Overall, it wasn't amazing but it wasn't awful either. Not sure it was worth $100 dinner for two people as this is more of a casual dining experience rather than fine dining.

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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on July 9, 2017

My wife, adult daughter, and I ate an early dinner here on a Monday night. The place was not full, so we got a great table overlooking the sound; it was a beautiful view. The waiter was friendly, knowledgeable and reasonably attentive. The Pinot Noir wine I selected was superb. All the food orders for our family were really outstanding. I had the seafood puttanesca, which was truly wonderful. Overall it was an outstanding and enjoyable experience.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Scenic View, Waterfront
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Wilmington)·Dined on July 6, 2017

We live on the Outer Banks and know the restaurant scene well. We were celebrating our 45th wedding anniversary and wanted a dining experience equal to the special occasion. When making the reservation I included a note to let the restaurant know that it was our anniversary. Three weeks earlier we ate dinner at Kimball's Kitchen for our parents anniversary and had a wonderful evening. The staff there acknowledged the special occasion. Such was not the case at Lifesaving Station restaurant. We were seated by a host who was sloppily dressed and waited 15 minutes before I had to go get someone to wait on us. The restaurant was only half full. We waited almost 35 minutes after placing our order to get served. The food was good but I was expecting more from a four-star resort. Apparently so were other guests as two tables near us had issues with service and food. We've eaten at the Lifesaving Station several times over the years and had been satisfied with past experiences but on this occasion it was not their finest hour.

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food3
ambience2
service1
value2

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on July 5, 2017

The soup...fantastic!!!! Made my night.

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food4
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Wilmington)·Dined on July 2, 2017

This was my 4th visit. The food is always excellent, especially the appetizers. Jimmy, our waiter, was also excellent, knowledgeable, friendly, and gave us excellent service. I have recommended your restaurant to many people. The only negative is fighting the traffic on weekends!!!

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Bar Seating, Romantic, Business Meals, Good for a Date, Sunday Lunch, Happy Hour, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Greensboro)·Dined on July 1, 2017

Food not great for price paid. Probably won't go back

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food1
ambience3
service3
value1

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on June 30, 2017

Loved decor upstairs-great view with a table by the windows- service attentive-food presentation & taste excellent

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Waterfront, Seasonal, Scenic View, Neighborhood Gem
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Miami)·Dined on June 30, 2017

We visit The Life Saving Station for dinner every summer while in the Outerbanks. This year the food was a disappointment. Wonderful nautical decor and views of the sound.

Tags: Waterfront
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food2
ambience4
service2
value3

 
 (Pittsburgh)·Dined on June 30, 2017

Excellent food, service and atmosphere! Best meal of our trip to OBX!!

Tags: Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Great for Lunch, Gluten Free Options, Special Occasion, Comfort Food, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Birthdays, Great Beer, Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 23, 2017

The appetizers were great, I had a wonderful salad with grilled peaches, goat cheese and cashews. Dinner I had the Mahi with cucumber relish, rice and grilled tomatoes. The portion was much smaller than the other dinner portions served but overall tasted good. The Tuna was a poor presentation and tasted like a bottle of soy sauce was poured over the whole dish. My dad had the pork chop and loved it!!! Drinks were very watery, for whatever reason. Ambiance was outstanding, the sunset was beautiful from our table.

Tags: Good for a Date, Organic, Special Occasion
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food3
ambience5
service2
value2

vip
 (Charleston)·Dined on June 20, 2017

The service, from beginning to end, was subpar. No one knew what they were doing, One person took our wine order. After we got our drinks, a waiter came over to tell us about their wine special - which included my husband's favorite wine. Too late! We had already been served wine, and the person who took our wine order never mentioned today's wine special. I was told I was ordering an "oaky" wine, not true. Suffice it to say, the staff knows nothing about wine.

Our appetizers - blue crab soup and tomato burrata salad - were good, but skimpy. Our entree order was taken after we had finished out appetizers. Our waiter seemed to know very little about the menu items. My husband & I both ordered the "Surf & Turf." The waiter did not know the size of the filet. No one mentioned that there was only ONE shrimp. My husband asked if he could substitute "duck fries" for the fingerlings and was told yes. We were charged extra for the "duck fries" which we found out were frozen fries (I guess thawed in Duck, NC). My filet was MW - W (I asked for medium). Would have mentioned this to the waiter, but never saw him until he came to ask if we wanted dessert. Used a butter knife to cut our steaks; luckily, they were not tough.

Many young couples dining tonight, but not a "romantic" setting. Babies, toddlers running amok - which is okay, if that's what you expected. For what we paid, we'll never come back. To top it off, I was counted as a "no show" on Open Table! Nobody in charge.......

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food3
ambience2
service2
value2

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on June 19, 2017

Went here for birthday celebration. Pleasantly surprised. The food was fantastic and the staff was super attentive. Definitely a required spot for dinner when staying at Sanderling

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays, Casual, Sunday Lunch, Fit for Foodies, Great Beer, Local Ingredients, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on June 14, 2017

Delicious dinner, had a nice tim

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food4
ambience4
service4

 
 (Wilmington)·Dined on June 12, 2017

Fun and casual. Service was excellent!

Tags: Casual, Great for Lunch, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

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