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“A real gem”
Review of Ma Johnson's Hotel

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Ma Johnson's Hotel
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Belgium
Level 6 Contributor
136 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
“A real gem”
Reviewed 6 August 2014

This is such a lovely place! We enjoyed every second of our stay. It was so much more than I expected it to be.
We arrived at 10 am and could leave our luggage in the lobby so we could already start exploring.
I travelled with my 18 year old son, he didn't miss tv or internet at all. It was like staying in a museum, nice furniture, lots of books to read or browse through.
The rooms were very clean and have really good beds. There are no outlets in the rooms but there are plenty in the living room. The shared bathrooms (with outlet) worked out fine.
In the evening you can sit in the lobby/living room or on the porch and share your adventures with other visitors or with the staff.
By the way, the staff is so great. Patty and Chris are warm, friendly, caring, very nice women who make you feel right at home. They're always in for a little chat.
We experienced 3 of the best days of our lives here.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Ingrid D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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236 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 (50)
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English first
Edinburgh, Scotland
Level 6 Contributor
422 reviews
68 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 159 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 August 2014

One of the best places we have EVER stayed at. It really is a living museum. You just feel as if some gunslinger wearing spurs is going to come into town and stay. The whole building is full of character. There are shared bathrooms and no sockets in the rooms but that's how it was. The rooms are tiny and again, that's how they were. Nothing has been sacrificed in order to try and retain the authenticity. Everyone in the whole "town" (if you can call it that !) was incredibly friendly not just the hotel staff. If it was not so far away we would come and stay again and again. Don't stay here is you want Hilton facilities, in fact don't go to McCarthy at all.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ali921
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Anchorage, Alaska
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2014 via mobile

Ma Johnson's rooms are quaint, the hotel is like a little museum, and it's impeccably clean! McCarthy is a great historic town and a tour of the Kennecott mine is a must. Then be sure to finish an evening with a phenomenal gourmet dinner at McCarthy Lodge. You can't find better tasting food at this price anywhere in Anchorage! It's amazing that there is this culinary delight in such a small town so far away!

Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank adkinak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Peregian Beach, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
162 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 August 2014

I had low expectations because apparently in the past people had complained about thin walls and having no power outlets in the rooms. Who cares!! This place is wonderful, exactly what I was looking for in a tiny little town in the middle of nowhere, Alaska! The rooms were very cosy and comfortable and if you are desperate to charge anything, you can do so downstairs. There are a couple of bathrooms on each floor, so no dramas there. I just loved the feel of this place, so authentic, with a little basin in the room... I loved the reception area with lots of books and I hung out on the porch a bit, just because I could! Loved it!

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MickeyBinOz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wexford, Pennsylvania
Level 6 Contributor
127 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 July 2014

During a recent visit to McCarthy, Alaska, based on customer evaluations, I decided to stay at Ma Johnson's. It is a quaint, very clean, comfortable period hotel in the center of McCarthy!

The only aspect that keeps me from rating this hotel "excellent" was an unfortunate initial experience. Visitors to McCarthy are dropped off at the pedestrian bridge which crosses a major stream by the town's parking lot. When I made my reservation at Ma Johnson's, they told me to call the hotel and they would pick me up at the McCarthy side of the bridge. When I called, they said they would pick me up in about 15-20 minutes. I waited 20-25 and no one came. Since I was scheduled to meet a hiking guide within 75 minutes of my arrival, I walked the nearly level half mile walk to the hotel. By the time I arrived, I was extremely sweaty and found that my room was not ready! The manager was very apologetic and explained that they were waiting for a guest to checkout so they could make one 3-4 minute trip to the bridge instead of two!

My advice to travelers considering the Ma Johnson's .... it is a very nice place to stay... but make sure you confirm when you will be met met when you call from the bridge. If you are uncertain, it might be better to pay the shuttle van which makes the rounds of McCarthy and Kennicott to transport you.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled solo
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Tracy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AK400400, Owner at Ma Johnson's Hotel, responded to this review, 23 July 2014
We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay at Ma Johnson's Hotel!!

We try to accommodate early check ins whenever possible. When our small hotel is sold out, as is frequently the case in July (peak season), we are unable to offer an 8 am check in for those guests taking the 8:30 am glacier hike.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, CA
Level 5 Contributor
68 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 July 2014

It's a throwback to earlier days: rooms with beds, sink, and night table, shared bathrooms down the hall, sitting room packed with period furniture and LOTS of cell phones being recharged. The beds are exceedingly comfortable, the rooms are very clean, the bookcase in the sitting room is piled with good reads, and...you're in the middle of McCarthy, one of the wackiest places I've ever visited. And Pattie, who maintains the place, is a delight with much to say about the town, about its people, and about wintering over in a town 60 miles from a paved road. Breakfast is off-property, but the $10 continental breakfast across the (dirt) road has plenty to offer to fill you up for a day on the glaciers. Just don't expect your morning coffee before 7:30.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Rough-it
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NYC
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 July 2014

McCarthy itself is such a great place to visit, but staying at Ma Johnson's was amazing. It was so much fun to learn the history of the property. Staying in rooms with no bathroom attached was like we were all living together for a few days. Shared bathrooms were never an issue. Everything was clean and the staff was so amazing. I would def recommend to friends and will be back in the future!!

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Kelsey B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Additional Information about Ma Johnson's Hotel

Property: Ma Johnson's Hotel
Address: 101 Kennicott Avenue, P.O. Box MXY, McCarthy, Wrangell-St Elias National Park and Preserve, AK 99588
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Alaska > Wrangell-St Elias National Park and Preserve > McCarthy
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 7 Speciality Lodging in McCarthy
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Beautiful Scenery, Fine Cuisine, and True Alaskan History all rolled into one – Perfect for a weekend gateway!Our accommodations and restaurants are in the very center of the largest protected wilderness on earth. McCarthy is surrounded by more mountains and glaciers than anywhere else in Alaska! Experience the unexpected; unique tasting menus with casual style at McCarthy Lodge. The Golden Saloon offers a hearty menu of family favorites. Our greenhouses provide fresh produce for our restaurants, our Copper River Red Salmon is wild-caught by locals. Best of all, the fully restored Ma Johnson’s Hotel is the only authentic historic hotel in the park. Spend a few minutes in the Golden Saloon and make friends instantly. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Ma Johnson's Hotel McCarthy, Alaska

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