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John Muir Lodge
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Reviews (575)
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Reviewed 25 August 2014

The lodge has a 1970s motel vibe to it. And I don't mean that in a good way. The walls and doors are so dirty. Everything is badly dated. For the price, you'd expect much much better.

The Internet works well in the lobby only. Don't know why they can't cover the rooms - the place isn't that big.

The worst though is the restaurant. Service was terrible and the food not any better. We ate there once and then ate whatever snacks/groceries we could find instead. Avoid eating there like the plague. The pre-made sandwiches in the market aren't great, but a huge step up.

It looks to me that DNC doesn't care about the property and is just milking it dry.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with friends
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank idontknow123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PropertyExecutive, Manager at John Muir Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 18 February 2015

Thank you for your review and your comments. We apologize and are sorry that your stay was not better. We hope we will have a chance to see you again and will do better next time and want to let you know some of the things we are doing to make that possible.

When we took over in late 2013, the property was in a state of long-term neglect. We immediately began planning and identifying funding for improvements, but it is most definitely true that it took us until after our first season to really start putting things in place. We have since made substantial investments and significant improvements are beginning to show.

Since taking over, we redecorated all of the rooms at John Muir Lodge with new soft goods, furniture, coffee makers and so forth. This winter we are also building a new registration area in the Lodge itself to make it more convenient for guests.

We have also remodeled a significant number of the Grant Grove Cabins, adding interior paneling and insulation to make them more weatherproof than the traditional cabins of Kings Canyon and Sequoia. All the cabins have updated soft goods.

As for the restaurant, soon after winning the contract we engaged an architectural firm with a background in green building to design a multi-million dollar restaurant that would be beautiful, functional and ecological to be built on the location of the present restaurant. The designs are complete and the current plan is to break ground in September of 2015 for a projected opening for the summer of 2016.

In the meantime, we are doing everything we can to improve the food service within the confines of the current restaurant. We are confident that we will be able to improve the dining experience in the short term and that in the long term we will have a stunning restaurant with great ambiance and excellent food.

Again, we are truly sorry that your experience was so negative, but we do want you to know that we are putting both significant effort and large investments into the Grant Grove area. We will have the contract for another 15 years and we are committed to making it better every year.

We hope that you will, in spite of your experience this time, return in the future and find a hotel and restaurant that has changed noticeably for the better.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 August 2014

John Muir lodge is really a pretty lodge in a great location. I am giving it a 4 star because no AC and it was warm in August. For $225 a night I would have expected AC. Also the restaurant doesnt open at 6 am at least for coffee. I think there should be a coffee shop open at 6am someplace in the lodge area.

All that aside this is still a great little lodge in a beautiful area.

  • Stayed: August 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Chris M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Renee R, General Manager at John Muir Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 4 September 2014

Good day -
You have a good point about offering coffee earlier. We have an espresso cart here and did not do a good job with keeping it open 7 days a week this season. I can assure you that is a top priority for next season to have that staffed accordingly. Just so you know for future visits we are staffed 24 hours a day at the front desk and any one of our associates would be happy to get you a cup of coffee any time of the day.
Thank you for your comments about the AC - typically are temperatures are in the high 70’s since we are at 6,500 feet here – but we had some high temperatures this August for sure. We do have a limited amount of fans that you can request at the front desk and we will have it in your room upon your arrival.

All my best -

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 August 2014

If you want a clean comfortable, clean spacious room in the heart of the National Park this is for you. You can walk(or drive 4 mins) to giant Sequoais after the crowds leave. Easy drive to other locations. If you do not want to camp, but want to be in the park and close to the sights, this is it. Great store within an easy walk. Breakfast was amazing. Yes you need to walk to the restaurant,its not in the lodge, but hey, you are in a National park. The rooms are not cheap, but unless you camp, you will not get a nicer location. We camped 2 nights then went there to regroup. If you want a 5 star hotel with all the bells and whistles, then don't go to a national park, try Disney or stay outside the park and drive an hour or so. You wake up and you there. Peace and quiet. Several porches with rocking chairs look over the woods. Get wine or beer (great choices at the store) and enjoy the forest. From there you must drive into Kings Canyon, stop at a little store along the way for ice cream, see amazing canyon views and more Also, after the park take 180 west to Sanger for a wonderful B & B in a winery.

Room Tip: No elevator, so ask for a ground level room if you need one
  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Seth Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 August 2014

To see all the sights of the 2 National Parks here, you have to stay in the park! The lodge is a nice choice! Check in was a bit confusing because we had to check in across from the visitor's center, not in the hotel. The employee who checked us in was really nice and told us when things closed in the area. There is 1 restaurant and a couple little gift shops/markets. She gave us our keys then we just had a little drive up the road to the hotel. The outside looked like what you would expect in a national park! Cute and rustic.The lobby area had plenty of tables and chairs. We saw a few families just hanging out. Our room was nice and clean. Nice big bed and plenty of space. It had a table and chairs, a sofa, a fridge, and a Kuerig coffee pot with a few selection of coffee k-cups. The rooms do not have air conditioning or a fan at all. We ordered a pizza back at the restaurant to eat in our room because the dining room down the road was so busy. It took over an hour for 1 cheese pizza! It didn't look to good, but it was our only option to eat and tasted ok. We had no phone service. Zero. Could not call or text anyone. I guess that is to be expected in the middle of nature! We did enjoy our stay. On a side note, some of the roads in the park and getting to the park were a little scary to drive on. Going up hill and down hill and sharp corners.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank oftheseas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 August 2014

Yes, I am decreasing the rating because of no elevator. We saw a bus load of elderly and handicapped people who struggled getting their possessions and themselves up the stairs. We, too, struggled carrying our belongings.
The room was okay. Spacious, but very dated. It is not that it was "rustic" but more worn out. For example, tears on the sofa, no pictures on the walls.
Wifi was iffy in the main gathering room only, not the room. It was available at no charge "down the road a piece" at registration across from the visitor center.

Room Tip: First floor.
  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank jbwhitehouse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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