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“A 50's style motel, clean and friendly”

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Gale River Motel and Cottages
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Franconia
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed 16 July 2011

When we drove up to this motel, we thought uh-oh. The driveway/parking was in bad shape and the overall appearance was plain and while recently painted, it still looked dingy and run down. Despite the initial appearance, the room we had was clean, freshly painted, relatively new carpet, refrigerator, comfortable beds, and the owner was VERY friendly and helpful. While a 50's style motel has a small bathroom, and the sleeping area tends to be smaller than newer motels, we were pleased with our 2 night stay. It was totally sufficient for the price. I rated this a "3", mostly because of the outside appearance and because it is hard to rate a 50's style motel more than that. I would rate the cleanliness a "4" and the friendliness/helpfulness a "5".

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with family
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2  Thank jibbajibba
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GaleRiverMotel, Owner at Gale River Motel and Cottages, responded to this reviewResponded 21 July 2011

Thank you for taking the time to comment on your stay at the Gale River Motel and I am pleased that you rated the Value, Sleep Quality, Cleanliness, and Service as FOUR or FIVE stars.

I have on several instances considered resurfacing the driveway of the motel and decided against it. A smoothly paved black top would invite some guests to accelerate the length of the parking lot as they were leaving the motel, the natural bumps that have formed as the result of our New England winters serve as speed bumps to help keep speeds in the parking lot to a minimum. Because we are a very family oriented motel and the swimming pool is located across the parking lot from the motel building, the current parking lot condition keeps cars at a safe speed for children playing and crossing the driveway to access the lawn or pool. I will opt for safety over a perfectly paved driveway any day.

I'm sorry that you consider the appearance of the motel as "dingy". This is the first time that anyone has described the GRM in that manner. The handcrafted wooden Adirondack chairs in front of the rooms, the large picture windows looking out onto the front lawn and the mountains in the distance, and the newly installed and painted Energystar doors on all the rooms have been amenities that have been appreciated by many guests over the years and most recently. The motel is scheduled to have a new coat of paint in 2012 and, while showing some wear on the exterior paint, is far from dingy (I hope) in its appearance.

Would love to welcome you back in 2012 after the paint job, but you will have to put up with the bumps in the driveway. Plan your visit for early July, and the front gardens will be in full bloom, the planters at the entrance to the office will be bursting with color, and the cherry tomatoes in the containers on the front porch will be heavy with (still green) tomatoes.

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145 - 151 of 270 reviews

Reviewed 12 July 2011

We stayed at the Gale River Motel this past weekend. For a family of 4 that needed a clean and friendly place to crash in the middle of a 2 day hiking trip, this place was perfect. The rooms were spacious and clean, the location was very convenient, the pool and hot tub were just fine, and the views were excellent (watched the sun set in the hot tub while starring off at Lafayette and Cannon). Also, the ownership was great! Very personable and friendly. I wouldn't advertise this as the Ritz Carlton but for the money, it's everything you need. I particularly respected the fact that they provided a lot of little stuff that they could have easily skipped. Free Wi-fi in the room. Home-made cookies in the office. Bagels and muffins in the morning. Separate towel service at the pool. etc etc. If you are comfortable at a motel setting, definitely give them a shot. Franconia Notch is beautiful and they will take good care of you.

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank jalexandernh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 July 2011

Drove up to the Gale River Motel with my wife for the 4th of July. Stayed 2 nights, and had a WONDERFUL time. We had our two dogs with us as some rooms are pet friendly, and they also had a wonderful time. Mr Johnson was very helpful and knowledgable about the area and his motel is right about at the entrance of some of the most beautiful areas of the White Mountains, including Franconia Notch and the Kancamangus highway. For scenic driving, which I love to do, this place was a 10 for being so well situated to some of the finest driving in the Northeast.
The room itself is a motel room like any other motel room, except for one thing: its extremely clean. I have been in high priced 4 star Hotels in Boston that werent kept as clean as our room was at the Gale River. In addition, although the Motel was full on our weekend, the place was still very quiet and relaxing. The pool area was wonderful and my wife took advantage of it. The chairs in front of our room gave us a beautiful view of the mountains, and made me (a bit of a hermit) comfortable enough to engage in some conversation with both my neighbors. The price couldnt be beat (just over $100 bucks a night including the dogs), and Mr Johnson has a very family oriented Motel. We will definitely be staying at the Gale River in the future, especially when we need to "get away from it all".

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank Mikeith28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 July 2011

there was great service, good sized rooms , and the best view of the mountains in new hampshire! All year i wait until july comes because i know were going back to the gale river. There is a great pool, and hot tub, plus the in-keeper puts little muffins and bagels out in the morning. They give you a cookie when you check in and you can go to the front office and theres a place were you can make yourself tea. Overall, i love my stay at the gale river every year!!!

  • Stayed: July 2011
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Thank taytay884
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 June 2011

Found the Gale River Motel using TripAdvisor and wasn't disappointed. It's inexpensive compared to others in the area and delivers tremendous value. On check-in fresh chocolate chip cookies and a selection of tea and cocoa greeted us, along with Kevin and his very friendly puppy. The beds were comfortable and used very nice linen (unusual in a very touristy town) and the room was clean and cozy.

Starving when we arrived, we asked for a recommendation for lunch (after a quick snack on a cookie during check-in - yum!) and Kevin directed us to an excellent cafe just up the road. Anything we needed or wanted he was able to provide - personally.

Will definitely stay there again, when in the area.

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank DawnZimmerer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2011

With two kids, we stayed four days in the two bedroom cottage and enjoyed it thoroughly. We would totally return for another summer trip - it's a great respite from city life.

The location is right off 93 yet remains quiet, is walkable to the entire village, convenient to Littleton's restaurants movie theaters and retail, and features an awesome mountain view. The property has a tremendous "yard" which is flat - allowing for great grass kid play space or a friendly game of frisbee.

The cottage featured a patio, a petite living room with loveseat, flatscreen tv, chairs, and dining table, two corner bedrooms (offering cross breezes!), a kitchen and bath. The patio really extends the living space - it's a great place to drink coffee/booze, read, chill, etc. A picnic table next to the cottage would have been great if we'd used it with its accompanying barbecue grill.

The owners do well to accomodate guests' needs as only a live-in owner can do. Uh, hello chocolate chip cookies at the front desk...bunny rabbit to pet... There's a fire pit just screaming for a s'more party...we forgot to ask for it! The pool is well-maintained and featured toys for the kids. The hot tub was, well ,hot! A sandbox,the swingset and toys were SUPER appreciated by our family.

The interior walls of our cottage were beautiful wood. Carpets are industrial and functional. The bathroom ,basic and functional; we found the shower stall - no tub - tiny. A change in showerhead could make a big difference. Nice amenity basket was left for us...a shower soap and shampoo dispenser was helpful. The towels offered on the property were much nicer than your typical motel.

The exterior was a bit worn paint-wise ,but I've come to learn that their north country weather beats up all structures..... AND, the owner was working on his property the whole time - in fact painting, so maybe the cottage is next!

There was no maid service in the cottages so I used the very cool "antique" vacuum. Love the vac-hated vacuuming. We generated a lot of trash (diapers, swim diapers, drinks, leftovers...making the eco-friendly property cringe no doubt) and it was mysteriously picked up when we left it on the front step. Thank you for that!

Great spot for a summer getaway. Look forward to coming back!

Room Tip: Go for a cottage for privacy from your kids!
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  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled with family
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2  Thank StephFromSacto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 May 2011

Over memorial day weekend my fiance and I stayed at the Gale River Motel and it was wonderful! The owner is so friendly and funny, and gives great advice as to where to eat and where not to eat. Everything was very clean and nice. The view is amazing, the pool is fun. We even grilled there one night; you can rent everything you need to grill form the owner for $1!
I would highly recommend this place, and i hope to return!

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank swood33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Gale River Motel and Cottages

Address: 1 Main St, Exit 38 of I-93 to Rte 18 North 1/2 mile, Franconia, NH 03580-4801
Region: United States > New Hampshire > White Mountains > Franconia
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Franconia
Price Range: £36 - £158 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Breathtaking mountain views from every room. #1 Eco-Friendly Motel in New Hampshire. Recognized as an Environmental Champion by NH Sustainable Lodging Program. Spacious rooms with two full-sized beds, refrigerator, coffee-maker, A/C, and Complimentary Wi-Fi access in all rooms. Heated outdoor pool, indoor and outdoor hot tubs, playground, picnic area with grill. Cottages sleep up to six guests with full kitchen facilities. Pet-Friendly. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Gale River Motel And Cottages Hotel Franconia
Gale River Hotel
Gale River Motel And Cottages Franconia, NH - White Mountains

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