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“Over sold”

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Caribou Highlands Lodge
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Lutsen
Paynesville, Minnesota
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Over sold”
Reviewed 10 June 2014 via mobile

We have been to this resort a total of 3 times. Twice in the winter a few years ago, and most recently , beginning of June. The website advertises 2 hot tubs and 2 pools. All 3 times we have been there both hot tubs have not worked or have been "waiting for parts." I'm not sure they were ever fixed and working properly. It was disappointing to know that after a long day of skiing, we would not be able to relax in a hot tub. And on the most recent trip, we hiked, and still no working hot tub to enjoy. The room we had was nice. The walls were thin, and could hear the neighbors walking around up stairs, but they were gone the next day, so it was quiet. For the price that we paid, we would have enjoyed a few more working amenities. I realize this. is a ski resort, however I do believe that if they are going to be open and services available during their off season, they should put just as much effort into making their customers stay as enjoyable as in the winter.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
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    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank brockner75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kimberly N, Manager at Caribou Highlands Lodge, responded to this review, 21 June 2014
Thank-you for reviewing our property! I am happy to inform you that we have done some renovations in our Pool area recently, and will complete the renovation in the Town-home Spa in the next couple weeks. Please give me a call so that we may discuss how you may enjoy these new updates. I am so sorry that you were unable to enjoy these amenities during your stay.
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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (101)
Date | Rating
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English first
Saint Cloud, Minnesota
1 review
Reviewed 2 June 2014

Caribou is an annual tradition, each year at check in I question why. Staff is efficient enough but over friendliness is lacking, strain to get them to acknowledge your presence upon arrival. Grounds need some sprucing up, in our room the water spout ( fire ) had rust running down the wall. Must have had some problems, as in the pool area the blue paint was streaked down the wall from fire spouts also, the wood on windows all peeling... We arrived the weekend after Labor Day, assume the property in top shape for summer season, still limited hours for Gondola rides and store. The sauna and hot tub were not operating in our building. Do not order the Magherita Pizza, canned tomatoes, overall pizza tasted like fish.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SanJMoh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kimberly N, Manager at Caribou Highlands Lodge, responded to this review, 21 June 2014
On the North Shore, during May it is considered quiet time for businesses and resorts. During this time rates are reduced at resorts to encourage bookings with limited hours and for those properties that do maintenance work as well. This year we had additional challenges as our ski season was extended and we were not able to accomplish all that we had hoped before your arrival. We had missed the mark with your expectations, and would love to make it right with you! Please give me a call, so we may discuss this. Thank-you, and again I apologize.
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Level 6 Contributor
121 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 April 2014

Upon arrival and getting to our room we noticed there was no soap/shampoo. The toilet was dirty and the toilet paper roll had poop on the side of it. The front desk was less than concerned with this when brought to their attention. Housekeeping was not done at 5pm when leaving for dinner the first night. Mind you we informed the front desk 4 times this day. We caught the crew as they were leaving for the day. The housekeeping lady was the only apologetic one during our stay. Day 2 again no housekeeping service. We finally got some with major attitude. I was told that they don't offer daily maid service unless we are staying a week. How many of you travelers have stayed at a chain hotel such as even a Super 8? Seriously if they can provide daily housekeeping you would think that the luxurious slopeside Caribou Highlands could do the same with a smile and without attitude. Didn't realize this was such a big problem for the resort to make their guests feel welcome.

The room heater/ac unit was not working properly. The heat would not shut off no matter what the temp knob was set at. Either freezing cold or a sauna. Maintenance was made aware and came to look at it immediately but said there was nothing they could do.

The dining room however was a nice change of pace from the front desk. Food was fresh and tasted great. The server was very friendly.

Disappointed that this was supposed to be a fun trip with my kids and the last time their Grandpa would be able to ever ski again. Not the memories we were hoping for.

Room Tip: Level 2 is street level. There are no elevators.
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank John R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jennifer G, Manager at Caribou Highlands Lodge, responded to this review, 8 May 2014
Thank you for reviewing your past stay with us. We value your feedback and I want to reassure you these issues have all been brought to the attention of department managers for correction. I sincerely apologize for the experience you had during your stay and I hope you will give us a chance to make it up to you. As the Assistant General Manager I encourage you to contact me directly at Jennifer@caribouhighlands.com. Again, thank you for your time and we look forward to speaking with you soon.
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Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 April 2014

We spent seven days in a Nordic slopeside studio unit over spring break. It was great to have a full kitchen for meals and the scenery was beautiful. We also had a fantastic massage at the studio on the premises. However, there were a number of issues with our stay that we could not overlook. First, the walls are so thin that you can hear everything going on in the units above you and next to you. You can hear conversations, music and walking. We were woken up multiple nights by noise in the unit above us. Caribou Highlands does not staff the front desk at night, so there was no help with monitoring the noise. We took it upon ourselves to call the unit above us to ask for them to please it hold down. Second, although the units are assigned a parking spot, we repeatedly had other vehicles parking in our spot. Third, the condos are not provided any service during the week. We had to call every few days for towels and basic things like coffee filters are not provided. Fourth, the wi-fi service is terrible. Getting a connection is hit or miss, and you cannot do anything on the internet except basic email, which can also be challenging at times. Fifth, the fitness facility is not well-maintained. There were no towels there (although the sign says to not take the towels back to your room), there were no wipes to clean the machines after use, there was no source of water and the facility was not cleaned on a daily basis. For the price and advertising of this "resort," we were very disappointed in the service and the facility itself. Caribou Highlands has some work to do to compete with other resorts in the area.

Room Tip: Do not stay in the Nordic condos. Very noisy.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Terri L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jennifer G, Manager at Caribou Highlands Lodge, responded to this review, 8 May 2014
Thank you for reviewing your recent stay with us here at Caribou Highlands. We sincerely apologize for the complications you endured during your stay. We highly value your feedback and I want to reassure you these issues have been brought to the attention of department managers for correction. We are working with the local provider to improve our Wi-Fi and will see a huge improvement in the speed/bandwidth in the coming months. I hope you will give us a chance to make it up to you. As the Assistant General Manager I encourage you to contact me directly at Jennifer@caribouhighlands.com. Thank you for your review and I look forward to speaking with you soon.
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Minocqua, Wisconsin
1 review
Reviewed 3 April 2014

It was a pleasant place to stay that was pet friendly. The location was nice for a ski in/ ski out. For the price yes I would stay again. The restaurant had very good food and the prices were reasonable.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Lich123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jennifer G, Manager at Caribou Highlands Lodge, responded to this review, 5 April 2014
Thank you for taking the time to review your stay with us. We are pleased you found our location, price, restaurant, and our other amenities we have to offer to meet your expectations. We look forward to your return in the future. Thank you for being our guest.
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Silver Bay, Minnesota
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 April 2014

Our family- grandparents, parents, and 3 young children had a terrific time at Caribou Highlands Resort in Lutsen, MN. Although not everyone stayed all night in our Villager Unit, we were able to enjoy meals, skiing, and swimming together. Everyone at the resort was friendly and we had all the amenities that we needed. We are eager to try this fun family adventure again!

Room Tip: Get a view of Moose Mountain!
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank miama-mn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jennifer G, Manager at Caribou Highlands Lodge, responded to this review, 5 April 2014
Thank you for taking the time to review your recent family vacation with us here at Caribou Highlands. We are ecstatic that you and your family enjoyed all that we have to offer here at our resort and we hope the memories will last you a life time! We look forward to welcoming your family back in the future. We would be honored to be a part of your family’s adventure tradition! Thank you for being our guest.
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Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 April 2014

We came up for a family spring break ski trip and did not have a good experience. We stayed in one of the Alpine condos. The unit was nice on the surface, but when you actually try to use anything, it quickly disappoints. Little things like burned out lightbulbs and flies in the room, to actual safety issues like a broken bunk bed ladder add up to an unsatisfactory stay. The furniture was decent - clean and comfortable, but the bunk bed was so wobbly I was afraid my daughter would get squashed in the lower bunk.

We tried to light a fire on the first night, but there is no kindling in the unit or outside by the wood pile. Ever try to light a log with newspaper? They shouldn't have a fireplace if there is no way to start a fire.
Finally, our refrigerator stopped working on our final day. I put our stuff in a cooler on the patio, but it all froze overnight and was unusable for breakfast. I called down the morning of checkout to see if they would give us a voucher for breakfast in the restaurant, but was rebuffed. Apparently I needed to call the night before to see if they could repair it - while we were watching a movie in our room.

The proximity to the ski hill is nice, but really doesn't get you anything. I'd look elsewhere, especially for the money they are charging here.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SquidStorm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jennifer G, Manager at Caribou Highlands Lodge, responded to this review, 5 April 2014
Thank you for taking the time to review your recent stay with us. I apologize for the experience you had while staying with us at Caribou Highlands. I want to assure you that the issues mentioned above have been directed to their appropriate department managers for correction. We do appreciate all feedback, good and bad, as it provides us with the opportunity to improve our facility and the experience we provide our guests. We appreciate your business and as the Assistant General Manager, I encourage you to please contact me directly at Jennifer@caribouhighlands.com if there is anything further I can assist you with. Again thank you for taking the time to review your stay and we hope to see you again in the future.
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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 Caribou Highlands Lodge

Property: Caribou Highlands Lodge
Address: 371 Ski Hill Road, PO Box 99, Lutsen, MN 55612
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Minnesota > Lutsen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Ski-In / Ski-Out Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Lutsen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Caribou Highlands Lodge 2.5*
Number of rooms: 149
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Caribou Highlands Lodge on Lutsen Mountains, Minnesota's and the Midwest's largest ski destination located at the tallest mountain in the Midwest. Caribou Highlands is Minnesota's favorite ski resort. Our location nestled in amongst the Sawtooth Mountains just one mile inland from Lake Superior's North Shore, offers great views and a unique ski experience. Where else can you get big skiing and enjoy the unbroken Lake Superior horizon at the same time.The mountain views as enjoyed from our lodge rooms, condos, townhomes and spacious four-bedroom Poplar Ridge log homes are magnificent. Take the mountain gondola to the top of Moose Mountain and enjoy the breathtaking vistas of wide open water of Lake Superior.A Minnesota Family Ski ResortOnce you arrive at Caribou Highlands family ski resort in Lutsen, you'll find so much to do that there's no need to drive further. We have many resort activities that are offered as complimentary guest services, and are included in the very popular Explore! program. One of our most popular activities is the Mountain Kids Camp where kids are entertained with games and activities that are both challenging and fun. With so many choices of activities, it's nice to know there are also many ways to relax. There are three spa areas at the resort and an indoor pool. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Caribou Highlands Hotel Lutsen
Caribou Highlands Resort

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