We stayed here for a timeshare presentation trip from 28 February to 4 March. The Festival of Lights runs through the end of February, and this is a must see. The whole town is lit up like Christmas. The staff was very friendly and welcoming, and the resort was conveniently located. Just a few minutes of walking took you down to Parkway, which is the main strip through town.
The employees at all of the restaurants and attractions we went to were also very friendly. Several places offered a military discount, up to half off at the Ripley's attractions. Ripley's Aquarium was phenomenal, and the Odditorium was interesting. There are multiple rooms of interactive learning experiences for kids.
There were several places on the strip that offered free samples, everything from fudge to moonshine! The taffy at Ole' Smokey candy factory was definitely the best. The food at Park Grill was amazing, including the largest crème brûlée we have ever seen--a full soup bowl--and made with whiskey. The service was excellent. The garlic knots at The Best Italian were incredible and free. The peach crepes at Log Cabin Pancake House were super yummy, and Bones BBQ was a nice, clean place with great brisket and ribs.
Because it was the off-season in TN, not everything was open; but we enjoyed much smaller crowds than are apparently seen in the summertime. A short trip up the road to Cades Cove reveals a scenic drive that lands you at a pioneer settlement with lots of wildlife, as well as many historic buildings that make for great, rustic, family-Christmas-card-worthy photo opportunities. Pigeon Forge is also a short trip away and offers lots of activities.
The timeshare presentation was probably the best one we have had, and we have been to several. Gary was outstanding, very friendly and knowledgeable, never pushy. He worked hard to get our business but never became curt or rude at any point in the presentation, always maintaining a good sense of humor.
I would love to visit this area again in the summertime and see a show, visit Sevierville and do more of the outdoor attractions. Being there about three weeks later would have given us access to Dollywood as well.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located steps from downtown Gatlinburg and nestled below the breathtaking views of Smoky Mountain National Park, Smoky Mountain Resort is in the heart of it all! This popular and easygoing family resort offers the perfect location as well as an array of on-site amenities such as indoor & outdoor pools, hot tubs, fitness center, billiard room, an activity center and more. When you're ready for sites, you need only walk through the gates of the resort and you're in downtown Gatlinburg, where you can enjoy the area's best dining & shopping. If you are looking for fun adventures for the family, you've come to the right place. From mountain hiking, to white water rafting, to 1,300 feet aerial rides above the city, Gatlinburg has something for everyone! And don't forget the large variety of attractions available for the family to enjoy. After a busy day, return to Smoky Mountain Resort to rejuvenate in your spacious one or two-bedroom villa. All villas feature fully equipped kitchens, a separate living room & dining room area, a queen-size pullout sofa sleeper, an over sized spa tub and separate shower, a fireplace, a private screened porch, washer and dryer, plus televisions and a DVD/VCR player for those evenings in. Imagine having all the room you need to enjoy the things you love most about a great vacation! * Please note that the resort does not offer daily housekeeping services. Housekeeping services are available at the property for a fee. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Club Vacations Gatlinburg-Smoky Mountain Hotel Gatlinburg