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“This place has Character!”
Review of The Aurora Express

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The Aurora Express
Ranked #6 of 40 Fairbanks B&B and Inns
Stamford, CT
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“This place has Character!”
Reviewed 15 September 2006

If you are looking for a great place with character and a little fun, this is your place. From the funky train car rooms to the excellent Breakfast, you won't be disappointed. I'm only sorry we couldn't have stayed longer!

  • Liked — The physical attributes
  • Stayed August 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank K_English
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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73 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (16)
Date | Rating
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English first
brooklyn, new york
Level Contributor
20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 August 2006

I recently spent four nights at the Aurora Express and Forget Me Not Lodge in Fairbanks, Alaska which is a bed and breakfast run by Mike and Sue Wilson. They bought a bunch of authentic Alasak Railroad pullman cars and converted them into rooms. Oh my God! They have some outrageous rooms. The one my family stayed in was decorated in Thomas the Tank Engine and my son loved it. The Dining car reminded me of a brothel (But I like Parisian brothels!). The ceiling in the dining car is incredible with the Aurora Borealis and soaring eagles, it is phenomenal. The cars are also located on the side of a mountain and you have a breathtaking view overlooking Fairbanks and some lakes. I wish I had the kind of creative panache that Sue had in creating these themed rooms. Sue also makes the best banana french toast and bacon stuffed mushrooms. Mike's no slouch either, he makes a mean twice baked potato. The only drawback is that you have to wake up early for the 8:00 breakfast, but it is soooo worth it. The atmosphere is so welcoming and that's part of the charm because everyone eats together and you get to know the hosts and the other people. A great part of what makes this the most unique B&B experience is Mike and Sue. They are so down to earth and normal and make you feel like family. They share so much of themselves with you that you feel like you've known them forever. I'd definitely recommend this to anyone. I feel like I've made some friends for life.

Helpful?
9 Thank brooklynjeanne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ridgefield
Level Contributor
59 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 June 2006

Staying at the Aurora Express is a must do if you will be anywhere near Fairbanks. It is a destination of its own. Sleeping in the spacious, luxury rail cars was soooo comfortable and soooo fun. They had recently had a wedding party there. What a great idea! The food, scenery, and visits with our hosts and other guests were also incredible! Our only regret is that we couldn't stay longer. The exquisite dining car is set up for a relaxing place to visit, read, watch TV, etc. We felt like we were in a mini-resort and we were VIP--except it was a budget price! We plan to go back just to stay there again.

Stayed June 2006
Helpful?
3 Thank vsheadel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 5 February 2006

You definitely won't forget an experience at the Aurora Express. Hosts Mike ans Susan were the greatest and really make you feel right at home. Although somewhat out of the ordinary, the accomodations couldn't be nicer. No way is this a "cookie cutter" motel or B and B experience. This is definitely a must stay if there will be kids along. Don't miss breakfast (as if they would let you get away with missing their breakfast). My only regret is that I'm not going back this year.

  • Stayed July 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 June 2005

This is a group of renovated Pulman Cars decorated in themes. My son was thrilled about staying here. The hosts are Suan and Mike and they are fabulous! I could have stayed there the entire week. Susan is a wonderful cook and we were tripping over each other every morning looking forward to her breakfasts. They threw my son a birthday surprise party and even had a gift for him!
There are screened areas to enjoy the lovely landscape and river down below. I rate this place as better than excellent. There is no where else like this and with such gracious hosts.

Helpful?
10 Thank VoyagerMom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 28 February 2005

I wish I could give this place a 10. While our entire Alaskan experience was incredible I have to say the segment we spent at the Aurora Express stands out. Our wonderful hosts, Mike and Sue, greeted us as we drove up, gave us a tour of the train cars, and when my mom unexpectedly showed up, invited her to breakfast, too! Smoke was thick in the air from the wildfires and we had some major trouble with our rental car in Fairbanks, and had we not had such wonderful hosts we might have written off the town and moved on, but they provided us with everything we needed to get us back up and running - even volunteered to take us to pick up the new rental car. We had the most delicious food, heard some fascinating stories, and spent our nights in a beautifully decorated train car soundly asleep. I would definately visit again and strongly encourage anyone and everyone to give it a try. I can't imagine a better experience.

Helpful?
4 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 11 August 2004

Forget the hotel chains and get on the rails. We have stayed at many B&Bs and this was our best experience yet. Susan's dream of a train on her property came true and so did ours. She and her family are most gracious and do all they can to make their guests comfortable. The food is great, too. If you are really lucky Susan will put on a show for you after your meal so make sure you don't have to eat and run. And if you are really nice she'll give you a tour of all the rooms that are each decorated with a different theme relating to Gold Rush days. This and Mt. McKinley were the highlights of our 2 week trip to Alaska and we saw a lot of fabulous sights. So make a reservation, select a room and get ready for a terrific ride.

  • Stayed August 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Aurora Express

Property: The Aurora Express
Address: 1550 Chena Ridge Rd, P.O. Box 80128, Fairbanks, AK 99709-2609 (Formerly Forget-Me-Not Lodge)
Region: United States > Alaska > Fairbanks
Amenities:
Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 40 B&Bs / Inns in Fairbanks
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Aurora Express is a bed and breakfast nestled amongst towering spruce in the western hills of Fairbanks, Alaska. Overlooking the mighty Tanana River and the Alaska Range, this unique property has a panoramic view of the city and its surroundings. Sleep in authenic Alaska Railroad trains that have been renovated to reflect the gold rush era of the north. Join hosts Susan and Michael Wilson for Copper River smoked salmon, wild alaskan blueberry jam, fresh fruit, hot coffee and eggs every morning while you hear their stories about life in territorial Alaska and working the pipeline. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Forget-Me-Not Lodge And The Aurora Express Hotel Fairbanks
The Aurora Express Fairbanks, Alaska

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