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“ok for the price for an overnight stay”

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Polynesian Resort Hotel
Ranked #58 of 74 Hotels in Wisconsin Dells
Reviewed 2 March 2009

We booked a room as an overnight stay on a trip form Minnesota to Ohio. I remembered staying here about 14 years ago, so when they quoted $59 for the night, it seemed perfect. We were one of 6 booked rooms for the night, so my daughter had the pool pretty much to herself. That part was great. The waterpark was closed; that is why we had such a low rate.

The hotel was clean but VERY dated and worn. They BADLY need a renovation. The beds dip in the middle. Not sure I really want to think about how old they are. Even the wood case furniture and TV zapper are worn out.

If you want a clean place, stay here. If you want new and modern, I would try a competitor.

  • Stayed: February 2009, travelled with family
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1  Thank ChloesMomBetsey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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519 - 525 of 653 reviews

Reviewed 14 January 2009

My husband and I wanted to take our son on a mini-vacation over a long weekend. So after searching the web for all the indoor waterpark hotels, and seeing that the nicest resorts would be $700 for a weekend, we booked the Polynesian. It was just OK. Not the worst place I've stayed in the Dells over my 25 years of going. Would only stay here if in a pinch or really, really wanted a vacation of some sort.

We were "upgraded" to a suite per my phone call with the front desk. Check the website for deals on rooms, you will have to call to get the special. We paid $89 a night, compared to the rate online which was $115.

We arrived at 3 and they had our room available even though check-in was at 4. All rooms have to be entered thru a main cooridor on the outside, sort of like an apartment building. Find your coordinating door and park as close as you can get.

We were given a "suite" which left me standing in the doorway. I didn't even want to go in. It was a 1 bedroom with a tv room and a jack and jill bathroom. The furniture was terribly old and really beat up. The bed was the newest thing in the room. Plus, it was outside the lounge, where a football game was blaring, a small pool, and next to the front desk entrance for employees. All bedroom suites are in the first hall area near the lounge and first pool.

Bring your own pack-n-play if you can. They were super old and a little dirty. I wiped ours down with wipies. They are at least from the late 90s judging by the colors. I always bring a sheet just in case. This was one of those cases. The crib was smaller than the pack-n-play, so don't bother with that either. Bring a white noise machine if your kids are light sleepers. Or run the bathroom fan. The pool was open until 10 and there is a lot of hallway noise until then. Quiet after that.

Our second room was in the high 100s on the 1st floor and was better not only in location to both pools, but it was quiter and cleaner. The furniture was newer and overall a newer room. Bathroom was fine, and housekeeping did a good job. The phone didn't work, so my husband went for a walk to the front desk. He explained the phone didn't even have a dial tone and she was surprised. She then said, why didn't you just call instead of coming all the way down here. Hmmm....

On the way to our game room, we checked out the kids indoor play area which was a joke. Although it would be nice to play there if the kids were tired of the pool, be prepared for a disaster area. There were toys everywhere and the scent of a poopy diaper was wafting under the door. I literally opened it and looked in and pulled the door shut. Would not let my kids play in there if you paid me.

I would just book a regular room, which we moved to immediately, and avoid being trapped in the front of the hotel away from the "water park". At least if you are going in the winter. The hotel is shaped like a giant U. So, imagine the front desk being at the top left and the water park at the top right. The outdoor water park is in the middle. All rooms on the 1st floor would be close to the outdoor park if going during the summer.

The "water park" leaves much to the imagination. Let's say that the photographer working that day must have been the best in the area. The park would be good for maybe 10 and under. My 1 year old was too little to play in the bigger part because the water was too deep. The slides are for bigger kids and are covered, so no adult could ride with the little kids. The water slides (2) were fun for my husband, I did not partake because I was 4 months pregnant at the time, and lots of little kids seemed to enjoy it as well. No one over 10 playing in the splash part of the "water park". One older kid said it was lame because of all the "babies". They all migrated to the slides and lazy river instead. The oldest in the play area was 5 or 6. The water was chilly at best, even though the pool area itself was nice and warm.

Wristbands have to be worn while in the pool areas. There is a new color for each day. If you lose your wristband, you must pay an additional $20! If it gets loose or won't stick, take it to the front and they will replace it. My son wore his on the tie on his suit because he kept pulling it off his wrist. One family was asked to get out and get new wristbands because there were wearing the day before's color. The lifeguard was a little rude about it, and he was grumpy. Not sure if he was tired or just not putting up with little kids anymore. He was probably over 50 and didn't smile once when my son waved at him. Grouchy!

While looking online at their photos, the lazy river looked like fun. I sent my husband in first to see how long it would take. About 15 seconds later he popped out the otherside. It was really short! Looks a lot more fun online! The second pool area is really for water basketball and then a little kids splash pool. We spent 90% of our time in there. The splash area has a frog slide, which is in need of a new coat of paint and a new landing pad that is safer, a little log that shoots water, and 3 buckets that fill and dump water. The pool starts at 1 inch and goes to about 12 inches. My son loved it, but then again he would have been happy at the Holiday Inn at half the cost.

Overall, I would rate this hotel as a 6 or 7. We went to see the other hotels in the area, which of course were triple the cost, and they were SO much nicer. Big surprise, right? Their pools are also private, so no chance on swimming there for the day. Hotel Rome was nice looking, but way overrated and pricey. We swam there about 6-7 years ago and paid about $22 each. The cost this time was $39.95 for a day pass, so we just toured what of downtown was open and went back to our own pool.

I would say if you are looking for a no surprise weekend for young kids (under 10 for sure) and don't want to spend tons of money then check this place out. Clean beds, clean bathroom, and overall just OK. I would not stay here for longer than a weekend or so.

  • Stayed: December 2008, travelled with family
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3  Thank VacationMomFor2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 September 2008

While the Polynesian wasn't the fanciest place, it was a great place for our family to use as a "home base" for our Dells trip. The rooms were average, but adequately equipped and clean (and they're remodeling in Fall of 08). Very easy to find, and good access to everything. Since we were there to "do the Dells", having an all-inclusive resort wasn't necessary for us.

However, the onsite waterpark was fun, endearingly kitschy, and surprisingly large. Loved the outdoor tiki bar and cookouts. And even though we took them to the "big time" waterparks that week, my 8 and 12 year olds had a good time expending their excess energy in both the indoor and outdoor facilities after we got back to the hotel (although it would have been nice for the management to have the indoor part open a little earlier than 4PM - the sun can get pretty intense out there).

As far as value goes, the Polynesian ranks comfortably in the middle - a little more "to it" than the small mom-n-pop roadside motels, but much more fiscally approachable than the oh-my-god rates at the big megaresorts.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled with family
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Thank NoRoadTripTooFar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 August 2008

My family and I were in Chicago for a funeral and stayed at a place that was a little better than dodgy. We vowed never to do that again.

We really didn't want to drive the full 6 hours back to MPLS, so we figured we'd reward the kids for their great behavior during our trip with a stopover in the Dells.

We weren't going to be there all that long. We'd be rolling into the Dells around 6PM and leaving the next day by noon. So we didn't have much time to see "all of the Dells". We just wouldn't have time for the BIG waterparks. At least not to justify the cost.

So we wanted a place with a waterpark of its own for the kids so they could play for a few hours in the evening, then again in the morning.

This was a Monday night, in the last week before Labor Day and most all quotes I was getting was $180-$200 plus a LOT of tax. Yikes.

After a suggestion from my wife's aunt, I called the Polynesian. $109 which included the water park. Wow.

Check-in was easy. The room was excellent. It was a suite with a king-bed in it's own room. We had a fridge and a microwave with a TV in the LR and bedroom. Fold-out couch for the kids. Nice.

The water park is right there. It has two buildings with indoor parks with warm enough water, then a lot of attractions in the rather large outdoor park.

This place isn't Rome/Mt. Olympus big, but the park is quite big for a hotel waterpark. The kids absolutely loved it. And on a Monday night/Tuesday morning, hardly anyone was there.

Needless to say, I was quite impressed with the Polynesian. They are redoing the hotel starting this fall and will have a new look next spring I guess.

The ONLY complaint I would have with this hotel is the outdoor parks water isn't heated. If you get a cool/cold evening like we had, it just isn't usable. If it was 80+ degrees outside, it'd be wonderful. Just be mindful that if you get there on a cool night/day, you and your kids will only be using the indoor parks.

A Perkins was within walking distance. As was a Burger King. Paul Bunyan's Eatery was a short drive, or a medium walk away. The hotel is right off the highway. Very, very convenient. They also have food on-site.

Just by staying at the Polynesian, they give you a discount card for 25% off most of the "big" attractions in the Dells if you are into those touristy things.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled with family
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Thank JSmails
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 August 2008

We ended up booking our hotel through expedia.com and paid a hefty 174.00 price for the most average hotel room taxes included.To tell you the least, we were dissapointed, the room hasnt been updated in probably 20 years,the bed was absolutely horrible we felt like we were laying on bare hard springs, the pillow felt like lumpy rocks the only nice thing i can say about our room that it was clean and the complementary toiletries were a nice addition.Now the water park was the biggest dissapointment,considering that we paid almost two hundred dollars for the most average room we expected at least a nice water park.I visited their web site before we booked just to compare our choices,well apparently to me personally they made their water park look huge comparing to the real thing,when we got there we were shocked as to how tiny it was all it had was a very small lazy river,two tube rides, a decent kiddie area, a few jacuzzis and a pretty small pool considering the amount of people in it,it felt like people soup,not a pool,we got out after a few minutes it just didnt feel right being brushed up by other people in the pool.I just dont thing this hotel should be considering itself as a resort hotel with a water park as their biggest attraction.Its ok and its about 4 or 5 out of ten,ten being the best.,but i wouldnt bring my family or book there as a couples get away,theres better hotels out there for the price,personally we will not be returning to the Polynesian, i hope this helps...

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank PillowMintTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2008

We stayed at the Polynesian for 3 nights in August and had a great time. The hotel is not fancy by any means, but it is adequate for a family with young children (my grandchildren are 2-4-6). We had a 2-bedroom suite (gramma and grampa had a room to ourselves) and daughter and grandchildren had 2nd bedroom with a private vanity and sink. We were appreciative to have a courtesy crib delivered promptly - complete with sheets and blanket, for our 2 year old.

We liked:

-The size of the hotel. Not overwhelming, yet with enough water attractions to keep our little ones more than occupied.
-The size of our room. It allowed for privacy for all.
- Lifeguards were plentiful and seemed to be quite observant.
- Not overly crowded - does not appear hotel is open to the public.
- Full size frig in our room - big plus.
- Bath and Body Works products.
- Location to other attractions is great! Walking distance to Paul Bunyun's restaurant, McD's, Starbucks, Walgreens.
- Straight shot to downtown Dells and other major water parks.
- Price was reasonable compared to the other resorts.

We did not like:

- No fitted sheets on bed. Always awakened to sleeping on the mattress.
- Housekeeping did not wash tub. Ring around tub remained.
- The furniture was definately worn, but not a big deal. I think the hotel caters to little ones.

We will probably continue to go to the Polynesian until our little ones get into the double digits. All in all, we had a great time and highly recommend to families with little ones.

By the way, if you have little ones, don't miss going to "Storybook Gardens" (5 minute drive max) and Riverview Park for the go-carts and rides.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled with family
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2  Thank windycitybunny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2008

We went to Wisconsin Dells on August 8 through August 10, and we had a double queen with a sofa sleeper. The room was very clean and very nice on the third level. The hotel itself was very clean and everyone was very friendly. The food was good also. We had room service for Pizza and the Pizza was delicious. The pool area inside and out was very well kept and everyone seemed to be having a lot of fun. My only concern and only probelm I have with the Polynesian is that when you book reservations for a first floor suite facing the waterpark and you get a confirmation number, then when you arrive you have a different suite that is not on the first floor but on the third floor and it is facing a field. This is not acceptable and I feel when you get a confirmation number with a guarantee for one thing that is what you should get. You should not get to a place and then they tell you they gave your suite you paid for with a reservation away to someone else and it is not available. This is poor customer service and the individual who took my reservation should be fired. Since, I did not make a fuss over it we took the third floor room reluctantly, but I should have gotten a discount rate since I did not get what I originally made reservations for. Overall, the stay was very nice and my family enjoyed it so that was important. But in the future since this was our second time at the Polynesian, don't say and confirm one thing and then change it when you arrive before 4:00 p.m. check in time. That is very bad and very poor customer service and not good for consumers, so that is my only complaint. I requested a first floor suite facing the pool area and it was available and then when I arrived I am put on the third floor. Not good.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled with family
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Thank LadyLaw13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Polynesian Resort Hotel

Address: 857 N. Frontage Rd., Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965-9604
Region: United States > Wisconsin > Wisconsin Dells
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #58 of 74 Hotels in Wisconsin Dells
Price Range: £35 - £151 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Polynesian Resort Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 195
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Polynesian offers a variety of room styles to choose from - King rooms, Queen Rooms, Two Bedroom Suites, & Luxury Suites - one is sure to accommodate your family's stay in Wisconsin Dells. IMPORTANT INFORMATION: The resort is undergoing improvements during 2015 and select areas will be restricted due to these improvements. We make every effort to offer alternatives but will occasionally be unable to do so. Thank you for your understanding. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Polynesian Hotel Wisconsin Dells
Polynesian Resort Wisconsin Dells

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