Is Fisher Island From 'Maid' a Real Place?

The show was filmed a little further north than its Washington State setting.

maid l to r margaret qualley as alex, rylea nevaeh whittet as maddy, and nick robinson as sean in episode 104 of maid cr ricardo hubbsnetflix © 2021

Netflix's hit show Maid, one of the best dramas of the year, has a beautiful and haunting location to match the heart-wrenching story of Alex (Margaret Qualley), a young mother building a new life for her two-year-old daughter Maddy, away from her abusive ex. Based on Stephanie Land's memoir Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother's Will to Survive, the show takes place in a fictionalized version of Land's hometown in Washington State.

Throughout the show, Alex moves between shelters and low-income housing in Port Hampstead (based on real-life town Port Townsend) and travels to wealthier areas, such as the town Fisher Island, to clean her clients' houses. Though the show's depiction is true to areas of the Pacific Northwest, the show was actually filmed in Vancouver Island, Canada, with several areas in the Victoria region standing in for Washington. The production was able to find locations for their fictional settings, including the luxurious Fisher Island.

Where was Maid filmed?

Vancouver Island is a popular filming location, with films including the X-Men films and The Twilight Saga (featuring Maid star Billy Burke playing Bella's dad), per Condé Nast Traveller. Creator Molly Smith Metzler told the local paper Times Colonist that the show was filmed entirely on location in the Victoria region, using 160 different sites, from budget supermarkets to oceanfront mansions.

"We didn’t have sets, we were a location shoot. That comes through. Victoria is such a character on the show," Metzler said.

For fans who want to walk in Alex's shoes, there are several options in nearby towns. Downtown Victoria has many of the local restaurants where scenes were filmed, including The Guild on Wharf Street, which was the stand-in for Sean's bar The Swan. Cadboro Bay, part of the Saanich District, is home to both Regina's oceanfront mansion, in the Ten Mile Point neighborhood and the Cadboro-Gyro Park where Alex and Maddy have a playdate with Nate and his son. (Prince Harry and Meghan Markle also stayed in North Saanich in January 2020, if you want to imagine the royals in a house like Regina's.)

this january 20, 2020 photo shows a view from the beach near the temporary north saanich home of prince harry and his wife meghan in vancouver island, british columbia prince harry was spending the first full day of his new life in canada on january 21, 2020 after jetting in from britain to join his wife meghan following their shock exit from their royal roles harry, 35, landed at vancouver international airport on a british airways flight from london heathrow shortly after 700 pm on monday 0300 gmt tuesdayhe then took a connecting flight to victoria on vancouver island, where he and meghan have temporarily set up a home from home, having spent six weeks on the pacific west coast over christmas with their baby son archie photo by alia dharssi afp photo by alia dharssiafp via getty images

(Image credit: ALIA DHARSSI)

As for the many ferry scenes, the one where Alex and Maddy sleep at the terminal was filmed at the Swartz Bay Ferry Terminal, in the town of Sidney on the northern tip of Victoria Island. There's even a chance to stay in one of Alex's apartments; the gorgeous oceanview cabin where Alex throws Maddy's birthday party in Episode 6 is available on AirBnb, gazebo and all.

maid l to r zolan arneja as brady, raymond ablack as nate, nick robinson as sean, jessie liang as frankie, and andie macdowell as paula in episode 106 of maid cr ricardo hubbsnetflix © 2021


Where is Fisher Island meant to be?

The wealthy town, home to both Regina's mansion and Alex's preferred daycare for Maddy, seems to be a fictionalized stand-in for the wealthier communities near Alex's hometown. There is a real-life Fisher Island in Washington State, but it's further south on the Columbia River, instead of the show's location near Seattle.

Maid's two main settings, Port Hampstead and Fisher Island, show the real-life income disparities between wealthy and poverty-stricken towns in the Pacific Northwest, mirroring similar conditions across the country. Alex's dependence on Fisher Island, both as the location of several cleaning clients and the best daycare, subtly enhances the show's overall theme, watching Alex build a life for herself and Maddy without the resources that she needs.


maid l to r margaret qualley as alex in episode 101 of maid cr ricardo hubbsnetflix © 2021


maid l to r rylea nevaeh whittet as maddy and margaret qualley as alex in episode 101 of maid cr ricardo hubbsnetflix © 2021

Contributing Culture Editor

Quinci is a Contributing Culture Editor who writes pieces and helps to strategize editorial content across TV, movies, music, theater, and pop culture. She contributes interviews with talent, as well as SEO content, features, and trend stories. She fell in love with storytelling at a young age, and eventually discovered her love for cultural criticism and amplifying awareness for underrepresented storytellers across the arts. She previously served as a weekend editor for Harper’s Bazaar, where she covered breaking news and live events for the brand’s website, and helped run the brand’s social media platforms, including Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Her freelance writing has also appeared in outlets including HuffPost, The A.V. Club, Elle, Vulture, Salon, Teen Vogue, and others. Quinci earned her degree in English and Psychology from The University of New Mexico. She was a 2021 Eugene O’Neill Critics Institute fellow, and she is a member of the Television Critics Association. She is currently based in her hometown of Los Angeles. When she isn't writing or checking Twitter way too often, you can find her studying Korean while watching the latest K-drama, recommending her favorite shows and films to family and friends, or giving a concert performance while sitting in L.A. traffic.