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“A Wonderful Lodge on the Rim”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of El Tovar Hotel

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El Tovar Hotel
York, ME
Level Contributor
367 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 100 helpful votes
“A Wonderful Lodge on the Rim”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 December 2013

We stayed there in early December, and the lodge was decorated beautifully for the holidays. The weather was cold at the rim - 20 deg F, but the upsides were that there were not a lot of tourists, and the lodge seemed all that much more cozy. Opened in 1905, it harks back to that time in a wonderful way. The lodge is beautiful, the staff competent and friendly, and accomodating. We arrived early, and our room wasn't ready. They said they'd call us when it was, and surprisingly - they were quite busy - they called us within an hour, well before the published check in time. We booked a deluxe king, which was nicer than the photo on their site. Our room had a balcony (shared with one other room), one of not many in the lodge. Cold when we were there, but the balcony had a nice view of the canyon, and was nice for coffee in the morning (coffee is free in the lobby, and our room had a small pot). The restaurant was very good (who would have thought in a park?), if not cheap. The only bad thing was the bathroom. It took forever to get hot water, the shower leaked no matter what you did to prevent it, and there was very little space to put toiletries. These were small problems; the overall experience was excellent, and, importantly, unique. We highly recommend it.

Room Tip: See above. Our deluxe king had a shared balcony with a view of the canyon. A very nice room.
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Al-Sue-Maine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,836 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
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Flagstaff, Arizona
Level Contributor
17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 December 2013

Walk out your door and there it is, more than you van take in without walking around most of the day. The hotel is old dark and woodsy, just like it should be. The rooms are outdated,( but they should be!) They are also very large, as are the bathroom in old black and white tile with excellent timed extra heaters if you are there in winter as we were. The dining room has two parts, one with views of the Canyon , one with two fireplaces. We stayed two days and the breakfast is superb for a great price, ditto for the lunches. The dinners were good, but strangely not as exceptional as the earlier meals, and still great prices with nice wines. The staff is very accommodating, letting us borrow wines glasses and champagne glasses for our own wines for champagne on the terrace and game time on the second floor game area. The only let down was that there was no BIG fireplace in the lobby as you would expect of an old lodge, just a regular one in off to the side. Still, a unique experience. I have been to the Grand Canyon 4-5 times, but staying there and spending the time hiking around all day is a totally different experience.

Room Tip: book a year in advance or last minute for possible cancellations. They will be renovating some room...
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank barbara w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Victoria, BC
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 December 2013

My husband and I were at the Grand Canyon last month and it was one of the best trips we've had. It's about a four and a half hour drive from Vegas, and well worth the drive. As well as the best location, the El Tovar provided probably the best customer service ever. This includes, checking in, the dining room, the concierge, the gift shop, the lounge and housekeeping. We highly recommend the Grand Canyon (south rim) and stay at the El Tovar.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Fred_Carol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
XanterraCorporate, Director of Sales at El Tovar Hotel, responded to this review, 27 December 2013
Thank youi for your positive comments on out El Tovar. It is customer service that makes the difference between a god stay and a memorable one. Thank you.
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Clearwater, Florida
Level Contributor
38 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 December 2013

Stayed at the El Tovar for 2 nights in a "deluxe King" and loved every minute of it. The hotel is simply beautiful and was festively decorated for Xmas. Staff was attentive, the room was quiet and absolutely clean...location obviously can't be beat, right at the rim of the Grand Canyon.

Had 3 meals in the dining room (will post reviews of the dining room separately). The dining room is also beautiful, food was excellent, service was perfect.

Loved our stay and already planning another for next year. Highly recommended.

Room Tip: I'd sleep in the lobby just to be in this location.
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Steve S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kansas City, Missouri
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 December 2013

I have stayed at El Tovar the last five years and have no complaints whatsoever. If you want the Hilton then stay at the Hilton. Yes some of the rooms are cramped but so what. Last year, due to a booked up El Tovar, I stayed at the Kachina Lodge and it was very nice. If you aren't happy here you wont be happy anywhere. Great place. The restaurant is very pleasant as well.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank edwfitzgeralsd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maryland
Level Contributor
22 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 December 2013

This was my third trip to the south rim and my third stay at El Tovar. As always, the staff was friendly and helpful, the room was clean and livable, and the views are absolutely stunning. It's a bit more pricy than some of the other hotels in the park, but I've always thought it was worth it.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MDGirl666
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
21 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 December 2013

- Avoid the "standard double" room. It was all we could get and it was incredibly small. Very difficult for more than one person to navigate around the room.
- The double bed had a bottom sheet that was too small to tuck in at both ends. They tried to replace it twice and failed.
- The TV only gets a few of the advertized stations. But given the location, who cares...
- The WiFi ONLY WORKS FOR ONE DEVICE AT A TIME!! and times out very quickly. I had to reboot my computer every time, like continuously. Same issues on tablets and different phones
They don't mention any of these short comings when you book, so be advised.
I looked at another room that had double queens and it was fine..
- The maid service skipped our room one day, even though when we left, they were right across the hall.
- The mattress had a hump in the middle. It was the worst of our trip and we stayed in some small motels in tiny towns.
- It is run by Xanterra and they appear to extract as much money as possible while providing as little as possible.
+ The hotel is beautiful and the employees are very nice.
+ The location is as good as it gets.
If this hotel was anywhere else it would be out of business because you do not get what you pay for, by any means. I have stayed at hundreds of hotels and resorts and this one does not live up to the hype or standard that is advertised.
My wife pointed out that the first two things she touched ( the faucet and coffee maker) both fell apart and we had to fix them. Seriously. That set the tone.

Room Tip: Don't get the "standard double" room. If that is all that is available, go to a differ...
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank gregoNkate
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
XanterraCorporate, Director of Sales at El Tovar Hotel, responded to this review, 27 December 2013
I am disappointed to read that you did not enjoy your stay at El Tovar. The standard double rooms are indeed small. They are also the least expensive rooms we offer. When the hotel was renovated many years ago to include private baths some of the rooms had to be resized. If you reserved directly with our Central Reservations they should advise that these rooms are small.

I apologize that the bed was not comfortable, and that you had a couple items that did not function properly. I hope you advised housekeeping and that they could resolve the issues quickly. I will share your comments with the hotel staff. It was not long ago that we did not have any wi-fi at the canyon, then we added access in the lobby, then the guest rooms. We use an outside provider and I will advise the hotel staff of the timing issues. The room rates, and almost all rates, are approved by the National Park Service annually and reflect rates charged by comparable hotels in the region.

I am pleased to hear that the employees were nice and complented your stay at the Grand Canyon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about El Tovar Hotel

Property: El Tovar Hotel
Address: Apache Street and Center Road, South Rim, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ 86023
Region: United States > Arizona > Grand Canyon National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Grand Canyon National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:2.5 star — El Tovar Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 78
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
El Tovar Hotel Grand Canyon
El Tovar Grand Canyon
Hotel El Tovar
El Grand Canyon
Grand Canyon El Tovar
El Tovar Lodge

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