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“Bring yourself back in time....”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Palmer House Hotel

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Palmer House Hotel
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Sauk Centre
Saint Paul, Minnesota
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Bring yourself back in time....”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 September 2013

I have stayed at the Palmer House Hotel on three occasions over the past few years. I have always had wonderful service and food/beverages in the restaurant and bar. The hotel owner, Kelley, is a busy woman, but if you are fortunate enough to get the chance to speak with her, she is a fascinating person and has many interesting stories about the hotel to share. My purpose for going to the Palmer House Hotel is for both the enjoyment of the historic aspect of it as well as because of the well known fact it is haunted. It takes a lot to scare me and I have had many paranormal experiences, but nothing that created fear in me. I know many other people are easily frightened, and perhaps this isn't the hotel for them. But, for those wanting to get a taste of a wonderful historic hotel and/or a chance to experience something paranormal, I highly recommend the Palmer House. I have taken many beautiful pictures of the historical beauty of the hotel such as the woodwork and furniture, but lost it when my computer died.

Room Tip: When booking your room, call the hotel and ask for what type of room you would like - one that often...
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  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Lady_Maverick70
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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70 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    8
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    5
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (25)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
White Bear Lake, Minnesota
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 September 2013

We decided to stay here because of the history of the building and because it was featured on "Ghost Adventures" (Travel Channel).
We rented room 11, and were told check in time was 3PM. We arrived at 1:30 and entered the hotel. We started browsing the lobby since there wasn't anyone around. We rang the bell several times and still nobody came out. There was a female with shorter blonde hair and glasses that passed us multiple times without acknowledging us. She seemed busy and looked angry. When she seemed less hurried, we asked her, after she passed us again, if we could check into our room now.
She checked us in (later during checkout we were told that she actually forgot to check us into the computer). I should've asked more about the history of our room, what the hotel offers, and where the room was. She never made eye contact and was rushed the whole time. When she handed us our keys, she did explain those to us, but then walked away. We looked at eachother with an expression of "ooookay...is that it?"
We decided to eat dinner at the Cafe located inside the hotel. There isn't anybody hosting or directing you where to sit. It's a smaller cafe so we picked a corner table. Derrick (I think that's his name) was the Bartender, Busser, Server, and hotel clerk. There was a young girl also working in the cafe, along with an older waitress. We ordered pretty much right away, but it took 35 minutes to get our salad. Our main course came at the one hour mark. Prime Rib was amazing! The Teriyaki Stir Fry was Soy Sauce Soup with salty vegetables in it. It was inedble and over priced.
Other things that were a little odd about the hotel was that one person had to do the job five. I've worked in 10 hotels, and have never seen a place ran so chaotically. There is a room labelled "Private Apartment", with an incredible stench of cigar or cigarette smoke, although none of the other rooms allow smoking. Cleanliness was an issue too. Around the windows in the hotel, were cob webs with dead bugs in them. Housekeeping closets were left wide open, exposing cleaning supplies, toiletry items, etc. An open invitation for people to steal. Also, the Front Desk has a table set up for souveiners. Well, nobody is at the Front Desk, and there aren't any cameras, so it's very easy for ANYONE to walk in off the street and not only take your entire computer, your souveniers, but they can also walk right up the steps into the lodging area, and take or do anything. Security was a HUGE issue!
All in all, I would stay here again, but ONLY in hopes of experiencing something paranormal. Was it worth the price paid? No.

Room Tip: Rooms 11, 22, 13 and 17 are supposedly the ones with most activity. It's rumored that the Baseme...
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank HotelJunkie_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Minneapolis MN
Level Contributor
52 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 August 2013

I would have loved to give this beautiful old hotel a better rating but the service was so helter-skelter and unorganized -when you have to run in the kitchen to find a person to serve you in the bar area because there is no-one working in the bar. My friends and I stayed there as it was All-School Reunion that weekend. When the restaurant was closed and we were sent into the bar area for drinks and lunch, we would sit and wait and wait and wait for service. Guess what?? No service. You had to run to the back of the bar through a long hallway and yell into the kitchen for "Could we get some service here?" When checking in and checking out of the hotel, we had to run into the kitchen again and ask for someone to please come and check us out. They were totally unorganized with it appearing no manager on duty at the check-out desk or anywhere for that matter.

The hotel itself is a very old building and appears to be haunted as in the middle of the night you can here people walking up and down the hallway on floor two. No apparations appeared to any of us that weekend, but there was just a lot of noise from the trucks going by on Main Street in the middle of the night and other unexplained noises. This is not the hotel to get a good night's sleep in but fun if you are into hauntings.

What really saves this place from being a total disaster is the food in the hotel's restaurant. It is top drawer and I would rate it a five out of five stars. I had the chicken wild rice salad which is excellent along with the huge homemade cinnamon rolls for breakfast. They also do a good Eggs Benedict for breakfast in the morning. We had them do our class dinner for 30 people and there were no complaints whatsoever --served was a choice of a chicken cordon blu which was different with a pasta on the bottom and a sauce of ham and chicken on the top. Everyone raved about it. Also a Sirloin was served or a special salad they make that is quite popular with blueberries, strawberries, almonds, lettuce and ect. It was very very good. Their desserts are also good with my favorites being the pecan pie, bread pudding and key lime pie. The prices are a little above normal for a small town but the prices make up for it with the excellent food being served.

The hotel rooms are nicely decorated although the windows could use a good washing and the curtains were starting to look a little run down. The staff furnished plenty of towels except as an old historic building the water running into the bathroom sink took quite a while to get hot. Some of our group who stayed overnight complained of the water in the bathroom sink never really getting hot, but warm. The rooms were clean and appeared to be taken care of well considering how old the building is. The hallways and area downstairs was beautifully decorated and clean.

I doubt if I would ever stay here again as in three nights it was hard to sleep with all the noise outside the building from the truck traffic on highway 71 going through town and the ghostly noises outside the room. But if you want an unusual hotel experience, I would definitely recommend this place for its ghost reputation. As I have said previously, the Food in the Restaurant saved the day.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
6 Thank mrsgilly8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Carver, Minnesota
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 May 2013

We booked a night at the hotel to celebrate my birthday. 2 months before the arrival date I emailed Kelly about the "Haunted Tour", as the site asked that no calls be made regarding this. After 2 weeks of not hearing back I sent another, then a week later a third. She did not have the courtesy to return ANY of my emails, A few days prior to my arrival I called to confirm the reservation, check in time, and such. I was told by the person that took my call that she would pass my name to Kelly and get it resolved. When we arrived we were told there were no tours that day. I asked why I did not just get and email to tell me that so I could change my plans, she went up to talk to Kelly, who would not even come and explain herself, and just told me she was sorry there was nothing they could do. In addition to this, the building is run down. On the 3rd floor there is plain plywood covering holes in the ceiling, and a huge whole in the ceiling in the main lobby. Not worth the drive or the money.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
6 Thank Helen K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Coon Rapids, Minnesota, United States
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 May 2013

My husband and I stayed at the palmer house on May 18th, First of all the staff was so awesome honestly you felt at home, the food was amazing and Kelly the owner is so nice I cant say enough, we are going back in two weeks! once I walked in the door my phone started to play music I could not shut it off so I went outside then it stopped, we took the basement tour and let me tell you I am afraid of my own basement but for some reason being in the basement at the palmer house was very calming even though it was black as night you cannot see your own hand in front of your face I had white smoke in front of my face that I could see also took a lot of pictures one after another in the same location with big and small white circles appearing in them, my advise if you are skeptic give it a try if nothing else its a great small town and a nice way to spend a weekend away!

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Kevin O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Woodbury, Minnesota
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 May 2013

I stayed in Room 11 alone on 5-4-13. From approximately one a.m. through about four I heard lots of chatter from a child and an adult male in the hall right outside my room, with an occasional door slamming. No one was ever there when I looked. At three a.m. directly above me (Room 22) a child was yelling and stomping his/her feet for over a minute. I came to learn the next morning there were no children in the hotel at all that night. Excellent! I will be back. I'll bring my wife next time.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
8 Thank Christopher H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 April 2013

My husband and I stayed over night with 2 other couples recently. First off, the staff is incredible!! Service outstanding, it isn't a place to be in a hurry. Just relax, you may wait a minute or two but its well worth it. Its a sweet, charming place, a little worn but clean and comfortable. We stayed in room 17 with no signs of anyone else there with us. Basement tour was fun but we didn't hear or see anything. Although did get a interesting photo. We were hoping to witness some paranormal activity but unfortunately there was nothing out of the ordinary. I will definitely spend more time at the Palmer House.

Room Tip: Some rooms have curtains instead of bathroom door...
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Chris K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Palmer House Hotel

Property: Palmer House Hotel
Address: 500 Sinclair Lewis Avenue, Sauk Centre, MN 56378
Region: United States > Minnesota > Sauk Centre
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Sauk Centre
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel where author Sinclair Lewis worked for a short time. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Palmer Hotel Sauk Centre
Palmer House Hotel Sauk Centre, Minnesota

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