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“Comfortable and Convenient”

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Grand Canyon Railway Hotel
Ranked #4 of 30 Hotels in Williams
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 23 May 2011

We stayed at this hotel for 3 nights while on a trip to the Grand Canyon. The staff was very helpful, and our first floor room was very clean and comfortable. Since it is only steps away from the Grand Canyon Railway Depot and the Cafe, this is where to stay if you are visiting the Canyon by train. We traveled by Amtrak to Williams Junction, and the hotel shuttle was waiting for us as we got off the train. The next morning we boarded the Grand Canyon Railway train to Grand Canyon National Park.

We enjoyed the food at the Cafe directly across from the Hotel. The buffet breakfasts and dinners were very good, and featured a wide choice of items.

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank tealassie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,840 - 1,846 of 2,180 reviews

Reviewed 14 May 2011

The hotel is quite common and offers little charm. However, it is clean and rooms are relatively nice so it is quite ok when you have planned to take the train to the Grand Canyon.
The Breakfast was quite good value for money but we did not try the restaurant for any other meals.
Staff was very friendly and helpful and we did get a free upgrade to a better room because we were missing a fridge to put our infant's food.

Room Tip: Good for the railway experience
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  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank jeffou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 May 2011

Our stay here was wonderful, but for reasons you might not expect. The room was an elegant style, but very simple. They checked us in 4 hrs early which thrilled us to no end, and we saw them cleaning carpets in the rooms which also impressed us. The hotel staff was top notch. A soap and shampoo dispenser in the shower was a great as well and the bathroom also had a hair dryer. The other amenities were ironing board and iron and coffee maker with coffee. The bed was super comfy and elegantly made. Even though everything appeared elegant cost cutting measures were apparent. We could see the train tracks. We ate in Williams because of cost and quality of food. The best part of our trip was the train station and the city of Williams and of course the Grand Canyon. We happened to be here when they brought in a steam engine and that was AMAZING especially for my husband. Also, the town of Williams is a 100+ year old town which needs help, but all the old signs are impressive and re-purposed buildings are great. It's the real deal. It's also a route 66 town, which scores big with vintage car enthusiasts as well (my husband). Real cowboys are found here which was interesting. Also, we came across two restaurants which we loved. The only downer on the trip was the train ride to the Grand Canyon. The trip by train was great, we rode in the dome, but the entertainment was terrible. The Grand Canyon is so spectacular that we felt we were taken advantage of tremendously by the "entertainment". They could have a entertainment car separate from the rest of the train. There also was not much history given by our car attendant Mark. He was very helpful for guidance on where to go when we got to the Grand Canyon, but pretty drab overall. The worst part was the woman who took everyones pictures on the train on the way there and tried to sell them to you on the way back, I didn't realize how horrible expensive could be!

Room Tip: Travel at a less busy time and schedule in advance
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  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank learnedtraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 May 2011

After reading mixed reviews, I was trying to be open minded about this experience.
We arrived in Williams for 1 night stay at the GC Railway Hotel from our previous nights in Phoenix with our 2 kids ages 5 and 8. The town of Williams has NOTHING in it. It's very boring and very barren. be forewarned.
The hotel itself was nice and was certainly adequate for 1 night. They had an indoor pool that was nice for the kids but we had to actually walk outside to get to it and since it was COLD, it wasn't appealing. (keep in mind, we were there May 1)
The train to the GC was not fun. The Wild West show was terrible. Even my kids were not amused. I would recommend to skip that all together.

The train ride TO the GC was slow moving and the "scenery" was nothing to write home about- lots of fields to see. The "entertainment" was pathetic and torturous to deal with. Every train car has a "narrator" of sorts and ours was just not interesting. We could hardly hear him speak thru the "microphone" and he talked about boring stories that neither the kids or my husband or I found amusing.

Once we arrived at the GC, it was fine. Except...DO NOT pay for the bus tour! Waste of money and the park has FREE buses. Repeat: do not pay for the overpriced bus tour.

The train ride back to the hotel seemed longer than before. The "entertainment" was worse than before and the "stories told" were far more boring. The mock train robbery was so cheesy and even my kids weren't that amused. We couldn't wait to get off the train! The train could speed up so it gets to the destinations faster.

So....proceed with caution......I would NOT do the train again. It is nice to say we experienced it (I think) but I certainly would not do it again....even if it was free.

The hotel was fine and I would stay there again however.

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank Boston0312
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 April 2011

We wanted to visit the Grand Canyon and I researched all the options and found that going to the national park was the best way to see the Canyon then I came accross the train. My 3yr old loves trains so I was impressed by the ease with which I could book the accommodation and train on the internet so Ibooked. I was expecting a small hotel associated with the railway. Small is not what it was. The hotel was obviously recently been refurbished and some parts still being finished. Our room was everything we needed for the 1 night stay.
I found all of the staff to be friendly from check in to the buffet to the gift shop. The gift shop staff were still helpful and friendly eventhough we were shopping after closing time (I noticed the closing time when I was leaving the store).
The Buffet was good and convenient. There was something for everyone in my family which is good since the kids are a little fussy.
I was impressed with Xanterras eco friendly policies and practices.
We had an excellent time at Williams and the Grand Canyon. I only wish we could come for their Polar Express train at Christmas time but it is too far from Australia to come.

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled with family
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Thank McTed
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Xanterra, Guest Relations Manager at Grand Canyon Railway Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 4 May 2011

Thanks for sharing your trip review and for visiting us all the way from Australia! Staying at the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel makes it convenient to hop on the train and visit the Grand Canyon for a day trip. We're pleased you enjoyed your accommodations and that you found our staff to be helpful and friendly.

-Dianne R.
Guest Relations Manager / Grand Canyon Railway Hotel

Report response as inappropriate
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Reviewed 18 April 2011

Stay at the hotel and take the railway to the south rim of the Grand Canyon. Surprisingly good hotel- rooms have recently been re-done. The buffet dinner is ok- nothing special, but is convenient. The railway is a great experience and provides some excellent sightseeing along the way.

Room Tip: Ask at the desk. Staff is very helpful
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  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank Walter53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 April 2011

We only stayed one night before taking the train to/from the south rim of the Grand Canyon - nice place and buffet dinner and breakfast adequate too.

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled with family
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Thank gvbesouw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Grand Canyon Railway Hotel

Address: 233 N Grand Canyon Blvd, Williams, AZ 86046-2563
Region: United States > Arizona > Williams
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Williams
#3 Family Hotel in Williams
#4 Business Hotel in Williams
#5 Romantic Hotel in Williams
Price Range: £54 - £176 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Grand Canyon Railway Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 298
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience the luxury of a bygone era at Grand Canyon Railway Hotel. Designed to resemble the century-old train depot that housed the original Fray Marcos Hotel, our hotel is a relaxing retreat in a picturesque Western setting. The 298-room hotel is just a block away from downtown Williams and historic Route 66. Combined with a variety of amenities such as complimentary wi-fi, an indoor pool and hot tub, delicious dining options at Grand Depot Cafe and Spenser's Pub, The Grand Canyon Railway Hotel is the perfect place to stay before embarking on your grandest of journeys! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Canyon Railway Williams
Fray Marcos Hotel
Hotel Grand Canyon Railway

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