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“Avoid at your peril”
Review of Deer Lodge

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Deer Lodge
Ranked #5 of 5 Hotels in Lake Louise
Reviewed 22 September 2013

My wife and I and brother and sister-in - law stayed at the Deer Lodge for two nights in September 2013. We had stayed there on two previous occasions over 25 years earlier with our children and had fond memories of our stays there.

It was for this reason that we had suggested the Deer Lodge to our travelling companions who were visiting Canada for the first time.

Oh what a mistake we made!! Upon arrival we were allocated what can only be described as box rooms on the third floor that were so small we hardly had enough room for our luggage and there was only room for one bedside table beside the small double bed. Moreover the hotel and the bedroom were cold. We later discovered that this was because the heating system had malfunctioned although this was not disclosed to us at check in nor that a portable heater was available, if required, something we discovered later quite by accident.

Breakfast on the first day was extremely disappointing. Both the full or continental buffets were both expensive and uninspiring and we waited at least ten minutes to be seated. In fact other hotel guests in front of us in the queue literally had to go into the kitchen to drag a member of the hotel staff out of the kitchen so that we could all sit down. The service was very slow and very disorganised with no evidence that anyone was in charge. Due to this I deliberately did not leave a tip and wrote a footnote on the bill that this was because of poor service. Needless to say nobody at the hotel followed up this comment with us during our stay.

On returning to our rooms in the early afternoon of our first day we discovered that our rooms had not been made up or cleaned. We subsequently submitted a formal complaint about this and the size and condition of our rooms and were put through to the Manager, Gavin. He assured us that a member of the housekeeping staff would be with us within ten minutes but after at least an hour and a half we were still waiting!!

The hotel literature advised that complimentary tea and coffee was available in the Agnes Room from 7.00am to 11.00am. We attempted to partake of this at around 8.00am only to find that the coffee was lukewarm and basically undrinkable. To our knowledge no attempt was made by the hotel staff to replenish what was there that morning.

In the main lounge tables were not cleared of plates, cups, glasses etc left by guests who had chosen to eat there and some glasses used by one guest at lunchtime were still there after 7.00pm that evening.

These are just a few examples demonstrating the lack of attention to detail and what we considered to be very poor management of the hotel generally. Needless to say after the initial discussion with the lacklustre Gavin he was never visible within the hotel whilst we were there nor did he make any subsequent attempt to contact us after our initial complaint.

The Deer Lodge enjoys an enviable location within the Lake Louise area being only a short walk to the lake. Moreover other than the Chateau Lake Louise it has little in the way of competition ( and the Deer Lodge probably caters to a different client set) as any hotels of comparable size are located in the Village some 4kms away.

It is because of this lack of competition we believe that the management of the hotel have become more than a little complacent - the hotel was showing no vacancies whilst we were there. Nonetheless it is very expensive for what you get and definitely does not offer value for money. My advice to the senior management of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Resorts, who own the hotel would be to make a few unannounced visits which I am sure they would find very eye opening.

One comment made to us whilst we were there is that because it is a National Heritage Building there was little they could do to change it. Structurally maybe but that does not stop the hotel management ensuring that it is properly decorated, carpets are not threadbare and rooms are comfortable and inviting and in full working order.

During our more than two weeks in the BC and Alberta areas we have stayed at a good mix of hotels and it is no exaggeration to say that this was undoubtably our worst experience.

Thus if you are planning to stay in the Lake Louise area steer well clear of this one otherwise you will be disappointed

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank 77RobinS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CRMRManagment, General Manager at Deer Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 7 October 2013

Thank you for providing us with your comments in regards to your experience at Deer Lodge. We do take any experience such as this seriously, and your comments are important to us. Please feel free contact me directly if you would like to speak about any of the above issues.
Deer Lodge Manager - dlmanager@crmr.com

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1,088 - 1,094 of 1,765 reviews

Reviewed 21 September 2013

We stayed at the Deer Lodge for two days while in the Lake Louise area of Banff National Park. Our room was lovely, clean and we had a very nice view from our room. The staff was friendly and helpful. If we were to return to Lake Louise we would likely stay at the Deer Lodge again because it was the only "lodge choice" and the alternative was a large expensive hotel not at all our choice for a vacation in the mountains. We also ate in the dinning room and had an excellent meal which is the case with all Canadian Rocky Mountain Resorts.
That said. Everything else in the Deer Lodge was old, in need of repair and difficult to get to. We paid extra for our room but got a look at some of the less expensive rooms and were surprised at the difference in accommodations. I would give our room, in the remodeled section, 4 stars and the other rooms 1 star. I would really like to see CRMR put some money into bringing this vast difference to somewhere in the middle.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a balcony and a good view.
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled on business
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Thank On_the_G0_68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 September 2013

We must belong among those who had a very positive experience.Our ground floor heritage room was perfect; large, comfortable, well lit, good shower and bathroom...in fact, we had no complains whatsoever. The staff were particularly helpful. We really enjoyed our dinner there. The location was perfect, easy walk to the Lake. We also like the quieter, more peaceful and less crowded setting compared to the other more "famous establishment". Taking into account the other negative reviews, I think the solution is to be precise as to which room you book; do check beforehand and pay extra for the heritage room.

Room Tip: Pay extra for the heritage room
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank hajijohn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 September 2013

This was the worst hotel we stayed in during our 3 week trip to Canada. Reviews on TA seem to come in 2 categories:-
Those who stayed in a Heritage room (A normal, standard hotel room) and write good reviews.
Those who stayed in a basic (what we would call a sub-standard room) and don’t write good reviews.
We were the latter.
Our room was awful. It was tiny with a very small uncomfortable bed jammed up beside the door. There was absolutely nowhere to put our things. We had to keep our suitcases in the car, bring up our hand luggage, take out the essentials and put the hand luggage back in the car as we would have tripped over it if we had left it on the floor. There wasn’t even anywhere to put our toothbrushes in the “bathroom”.
No ac, no fan, no hairdryer, no coffee making facilities (but precious space was taken up with an ice bucket!), no ventilation in bathroom, no plug for the sink, cracked window, dirty blinds, and mis-matched bathroom, no chair, no drawers . I could go on.
Scald warning if cold tap or toilet flushed while shower on- they call this charm I call it dangerous.
Their excuse is it’s a “Heritage” building 100 years old. We have stayed in many country house hotels in UK up to 200 years old, some of which are protected, which have been sympathetically updated. Deer Lodge should update the basics such as heating/AC and plumbing to provide guests with what they need.
There is no choice re meals ,as village 3km and has little to offer. So we ate in the restaurant. Dinner meal just ok and expensive. They had run out of draft beer so had to pay twice the price for bottled. Breakfast poor and staff’s aprons filthy.
Did not stay in lounge, not enough seating, so went to Fairmont. Sat in beautiful,comfortable Lakeview Lounge had a pint and glass of wine, which was only 3$ more than DL. Fabulous view of L Louise.
We made a big mistake staying at Deer Lodge. Wished we had stayed an extra night at our hotel in Banff where our standard room was very spacious, bright, with ample storage and a view of the mountains. We could easily have visited Lake Louise from there.

Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
Thank Dickey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CRMRManagment, General Manager at Deer Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 7 October 2013

Thank you for your feedback on your recent stay at Deer Lodge. I do apologize for the inconveniences that occurred during your stay, I can assure you we are continually working on upgrading our guest rooms. Guests are welcome to speak with us during the course of their stay, so issues raised may be rectified and hopefully change their experience. Hope to welcome you back again in the future.

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Reviewed 19 September 2013

Just back from Deer Lodge which has an excellent situation close to Lake Louise. Having looked at the other reviews they are either great or poor. I think this may possibly be to do with whether your room was in the old main building (ours was and was very dim, had an odd smell and very "distressed" furniture) or in the extension. I was not in those rooms but would assume they were newer and therefore better. The restaurant and staff were very nice, but as has been said in other reviews there is no lift, although a staff member hauled our cases up the stairs. Hope this helps when you are deciding on your trip....enjoy.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank evelyn m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 September 2013

Paid 275$ for a room with 2 twin beds. The room wasn't even big enough to lay our luggage on the floor. No TV. Lamp didn't work and the beds uncomfortable. The jets on the roof top hot tub weren't working. The location was the only good thing about this lodge.

  • Stayed: September 2013
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Thank AdawnR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 September 2013 via mobile

I need to start by saying that in 21 years of travelling I've never felt strongly enough to write a bad review until now. I'm no hotel snob either. This place may have charm being it was built over 100 years ago so if that's what you like then you'll probably love this place. If you want a room that's wider than 6ft (like I do) then this place won't be for you. Our room was so small and dismal I wanted to cry when we walked in. It was damp, the place was in a bad state of disrepair with rotting wooden windows and even the restaurant window had a huge crack across the glass. Why would you not replace that? Everything in this place creaks - we heard everyone walk past the room, everyone who climbed the stairs and the 1 inch gap beneath the door meant we heard everyone's conversations also. There is no TV which didn't worry me but being that there is nothing to do in this place it was a problem. Lake Louise town is 3km away. The hot tub was so hot I couldn't get in and the jets weren't working. There's no lift and no tea/coffee facilities in the room also no hair dryer. The bath was a half size one so you had to sit knees up to bathe. The toilet door hit the toilet as it opened as there was no space. The rooms were more suited to a youth hostel than the prices this place charged. Seriously people.. Go elsewhere. Thank god we only here one night. 11am checkout.. We were gone by 8!

  • Stayed: September 2013
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1  Thank Kelly R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CRMRManagment, General Manager at Deer Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 7 October 2013

Thank you for providing us with your comments in regards to your experience at Buffalo Mountain Lodge. We do take any experience such as this seriously, and your comments are important to us. Please feel free contact me directly if you would like to speak about any of the above issues.

Deer Lodge Manager - dlmanager@crmr.com

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Deer Lodge

Address: 109 Lake Louise Drive, Lake Louise, Banff National Park, Alberta T0L 1E0, Canada
Phone Number:
Region: Canada > Alberta > Canadian Rockies > Banff National Park > Lake Louise
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 5 Hotels in Lake Louise
Price Range: £70 - £231 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Deer Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 73
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Deer Hotel Lake Louise
Deer Lodge Lake Louise
Lake Louise Deer Lodge

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