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Gatlinburg Town Square Resort By Exploria Resorts
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Reviews (2,529)
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All reviewsunderground parkingbasketball courtping pongindoor poolbedroom unitfull kitchenwasher and dryerwithin walking distanceclose to downtownfamily vacationenjoyed our staygreat place to stayhot tubthe main streetconvention centerlocation is greatpigeon forge
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Reviewed 20 September 2012

We own a time share and traded our week for Sept. 7 - 14, 2012. Had a BEAUTIFUL 2 bedroom lockout unit on the fifth floor in Phase II B in the back overlooking the creek. Could not have been better. Even saw a bear! The unit had 2 jacuzzi tubs and 2 fireplaces. New everything and well appointed. Loved, loved, loved it!!!!!!

Room Tip: If possible, request to be put into Phase II B which is in the back of the resort overlooking the creek. We didn't have a view of the mountains but there are rocking chairs on each level if you'd like to sit and have a cocktail and see the mountains.
  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank HHHB10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 August 2012

I am an owner at GTS in Phase 2. I have a two-bedroom lockout, and for the first time this year, decided to split the unit and use two weeks back to back. Last week, I stayed in the the "A" side, which is a one bedroom with living room, full kitchen, etc. and I am about half way through the second week in the "B" side which is a studie (hotel room with sleeper sofa, mini-kitchen and fireplace).

As always, the staff has been great. As stated in the most recent review (bsingh1029), little problems crop up from time to time (this is an older property, although well-maintained), but when they do, I have never stayed anywhere that the staff are as reponsive and quick to solve the problem as they are here.

I was a bit perplexed by the last review and the comments about lack of wifi. The resort does provide free wifi, in fact I am writing this review using the free wifi in the Phase 2b building. I have found in Gatlinburg, the wifi is sometimes very fast and sometimes painfully slow (don't know if the mountains have anything to do with that). Tonight, it is humming along.

I was really pleased to see that the resort has added the option of taking a guided tour of Cades Cove with a local company. I have driven there several times, but I often hear families asking if there is a bus tour of the National Park they can take. Cades Cove is only part of the park, but perhaps your best chance to see bear and other wildlife and to see part of the heritage of the region. This is a stress free way to do it.

Of course, every year, I have not had to go much further than the pool or the parking garage to see black bear. Every year at least one evening, a bear comes down from the mountain to the resort looking for food. This year was no exception. My first night, one came around the pool/playground area early evening, and last night one was roaming the parking garage. Watch from a distance, and remember these are wild animals. Not a petting zoo.

If you are looking for a place to stay that is clean, has an excellent staff more responsive to guests' needs, and is right in the middle of everything you want to see in G'burg, give the GTS a try. You won't be dissapointed.

Room Tip: If you have a family, book either a 2 bedroom or and "A" side one bedroom. The amount of space difference is signifcant. I like the Phase 2 buildings the best.
  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled solo
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4  Thank RUtraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 August 2012

We have just returned from a six-night stay at this resort. Its location could not be better. Just up the hill from light 8, it is ideally located for both the Great Smoky National Park and the Roaring Motor Drive as well as for the town's numerous shops and restaurants. We had a one-bedroom suite and the accommodation was quite luxurious, with a beautiful and well appointed sitting room, a very comfortable bedroom, a dining area, and a large and fully equipped kitchen. A teddy bear gifted by the activities director was a nice surprise. Another nice and unexpected touch was the presence of a washing machine and dryer. The machine worked fine. Unfortunately our clothes came out no more dry at the end of three cycles than they were when we put them in. We complained to the front desk, and they were willing to send a technician over right away to fix the problem, but we were leaving the next morning and told them to postpone repairs till after our departure.
There were other little problems and drawbacks. The kettle leaked; a call to the front desk produced an immediate replacement. There were no hangers in the closet when we checked in; they were immediately sent up. Indeed, we found that though some of the furnishings and fittings in the suite left something to be desired, a call to the front desk was all it took to have problems attended to with great efficiency, courtesy and dispatch. We cannot praise the staff enough on this score.
The resort has an indoor pool which we didn't use, so we cannot comment on it save to say that everyone there seemed to be having a great time. We did, however, use the rather basic fitness center which had a good treadmill, a stationary bike, and a weight machine. Some reviewers have complained of the parking, but we found the underground parking area quite satisfactory. Our small car had no difficulty getting in and out, and we always found a place near the elevator. The elevator itself was rather slow, but that is understandable given that some users may need more time than others.
One of the surprising drawbacks of the place was the bathroom. It was spacious, but would have benefited from towel racks. The bedroom had a very nice jacuzzi, but the shower itself was poor. A tiny little plastic space the size of a small closet, it seems to have been an afterthought. The curtain was a cheap one such as can be had at a 99 cent store. The shower head was pathetic and allowed hardly a stream of water to pass through. We complained, and the head was promptly replaced, which made the shower more acceptable though hardly satisfactory. There wasn't even place for the soap except a cheap metal rack hanging from the shower. Indeed, the shower did not do any justice to the luxurious nature of the furnishings elsewhere in the suite, and the management should seriously consider re-modeling it.
While re-modeling the bathroom, they might also consider adding shelf space to the closet which at present has only a rod on which to place hangers. Being big enough, it could accommodate drawers which would add to the storage space.
The biggest and most surprising drawback we found was that the suite does not have free wifi. In this day and age such an omission is unpardonable when even a McDonald's will provide you with wifi for free.
Given the quality of the living room, bedroom and kitchen, and especially the helpfulness of the staff, we should have been happy to rate this property five stars. But the drawbacks pointed out above cause it to merit not more than three or three and a half, which I am raising to four because of the staff. To get a rating of five, the property has to remodel and improve its shower, add better quality furnishings to the bathroom, and above all, to provide free wifi.

  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled with family
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7  Thank bsingh1029
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 August 2012

We stayed a week in a 2 bdrm and this resort had a great location , you could walk down to gatlinburg right by the chair lift , Bubba gump , Ripleys etc. they supplied us with free wifi and the rooms were plenty big enough for our party of 5 . check in is about a half a block up the street . the only negative had to be the underground parking and the tight spaces , other than that we really enjoyed our stay here . the rooms was in very good shape as was the property . we didn't check into any resort activities as we had 26 family members scattered thru out the area and had plenty to do with them.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with family
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4  Thank beanie1099
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 August 2012

I hate to write such a terrible review of this place because there were two employees here who were really helpful, seemed genuinely concerned and who did everything they could to make our stay better but this property has So Many problems that one or two people CANNOT fix them alone. This place is a dump...

A few weeks before our vacation was going to start I got a letter in the mail from David the exchange coordinator .  I emailed him to express my concerns on some of the things I'd read about the resort and explained our desire to get into one of the newer buildings.  He assured me he would note my requests and do what he could to get us the "Creekside" room I wanted. I knew already to avoid the Phase 1 rooms based on the horrible reviews and to make sure I got into one of the newer Phase 2 buildings. 

We arrived optimistically on a Friday evening for checkin.  The two women at the counter were unfriendly and very "matter of fact" in explaining that the two bedroom lockout I'd booked wasn't available but they were "upgrading" me to a two bedroom deluxe instead.  I asked about the location and of course it was in Phase 1.  I expressed my concerns and she assured me that the rooms were newly renovated and were in good shape. 

As soon as I walked into my room (309) I was overwhelmed by the smell of mildew.  My allergies went into overdrive immediately...  I sucked down some Zyrtec, Sudafed and another H2 blocker and we walked a few blocks to downtown Gatlinburg to find dinner.  We returned around 11pm and began getting ready for bed.  The towel racks in one bathroom fell down on my kids as they tried to hang their towels.  I noticed old banged up cabinetry everywhere, peeling wallpaper, botched paint, doors with holes and dings in them intermingled with new furniture, obviously some hardware upgrades, and a few other miscellaneous upgrades. I resolved to make it through the night and get it fixed first thing in the morning.   As I started to unpack I began to notice that the drawers, shower and toilet were all covered in someone else's long strawberry blond hair.  I'd brought along Lysol wipes, aerosol spray and a spray bottle of cleaner...  I wiped it all down myself but I got to the tub and I noticed that inside of the jacuzzi jets were all black with mold & mildew...  Then we looked at the shower curtain.  Mold and/or mildew went up and down it.  I was pretty pissed at this point.  It was clear to me how bad the cleaning crew sucked.  A moldy shower curtain is such an easy thing to fix!  To top it all off the master toilet ran on and off every 60 seconds or so.  I got absolutely no sleep that night.  I had trouble breathing by the time I got outta there at 9am the next morning to walk up the street to the front desk to complain and get switched.  

Poor Joe was working the front desk and I felt sorry for the guy...  I overheard him talking about the volume of complaints he'd had already for the day.  I explained my mold problem and requested a new room in the new building I presumed would have less problems.  He was genuinely concerned and very kind.  He got us moved into a phase 2 room (still not Creekside) that would be free of environmental hazards.   He went through a copious list of notes and special requests left by David.   Apparently the ladies who checked me in the previous day never read them at all or they just pretended they didn't. 

We got our keys to room 516 just before noon and we moved all of our things over.  I was relieved to open the front door and find that the musty smell of mold & mildew was not here too.  Again, someone else's hair was all over the place.  I called the front desk to let them know that we had completed our move and that the person who had cleaned my room an hour ago completely missed the toilets, shower stall, and most of the countertops.  They offered to have someone else come and clean again but I opted to just do it myself so that I knew it was clean and whoevers pubic hairs were no longer all over the toilet I had to use this week.  I was still kinda upset but oh well...  We were stuck 6 more nights here.  When we walked in there were a couple of gnats flying around the kitchen...  Not a big deal initially, but an hour or so later we noticed black dots all over the wall in one spot.  Dozens of them to be exact... There was a bug problem in this room.  Rather than have them come in and spray pesticides everywhere we set out several cups of juice with a few drops of dish soap in them and we left for the lumberjack feud show.  When we returned, most of the bugs had thankfully drowned themselves in the juice.  Lysol spray actually took care of the rest but again, this is another problem that just shouldn't be.

Other than the bugs, the cobwebs in the corners, the thin layer of dust covering EVERYTHING and the hair all over the bathroom, this room was livable.  Very strangely put together but livable after cleaning it.  I could see the caulk all over the bathroom bubbling up in lots of places and in the beginning stages of mildewing.  Who in their right mind puts wallpaper in a shower???  I don't care if it is above the cheap shower liner...  Just another mold trap.  This could have been a nice room but the combination of poor construction workmanship and the cleaning staff that doesn't care this place is going to be in a state of disrepair soon.  The really old scratched up cabinets and bedroom furniture made these brand new rooms look old, dated and worn down.  It reminds me of a project that went way over budget in the beginning and they balanced it out with used cabinetry and furniture from a flea market or something.  Very Very disappointing...

Best things : My kids loved the free brown bear stuffed animals, the location was great, Joe was great, and David was helpful.

  • Stayed: August 2012
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10  Thank Jocee_Joce
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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