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El Tovar Hotel

    El Tovar Hotel
 in Grand Canyon


TripAdvisor Traveler Rating:
3210 Reviews
Latest TripAdvisor Reviews

  • Perfect Location

    by rachl143 on 2018-06-21 09:31 am

    This is a double edge review. We loved the hotel but the staff & maintenance was subpar. I gave the hotel 4 stars because of the location and I assume that our experience was singular.
    This is THE place to be when you are going to stay in the Grand Canyon. With all the research I did the maps of how the National Park is spread out things is a bit deceiving. So due to the location of the amenities inside the park, we could not have been happier with our choice of accommodations. The room was spacious and the hotel has a full restaurant and bar at your fingertips, it was perfect.
    So to the negative. I knew this was a historic hotel when we booked and were so excited about that but the second day we came back to our room midday and it was warm. I requested for the AC to be checked out. They sent two people at separate times and they worked on the AC. By the time they were finished, it was dinner time. So we left and ate and explored and watched the sunset. The Grand Canyon is what we were there for but then we returned for the night to find the AC has broken again. It was a miserable and hot night. We checked out first thing the next morning and the staff could not have cared that we had a bad night. Then they proceeded to use my credit card for another rooms hotel charges, in addition to the payment and hold when I checked in three days before. Of course, my bill still had to be paid and I was told the original payment wasn't really a payment and I argued because I could & did pull up my cc statement from 3 days prior and the $600 was taken. They insisted it had to be run again. So I am very lucky I had a large cc balance available because I was charged for my room twice (including an incidental hold) and someone else's room. It was extremely unprofessional and unpleasant to know that almost 1k dollars was going to have to be put back on my card. Especially when you are in the middle of a trip. There were no apologies for the AC or the screw-ups with billing.
    So the hotel location can't be beaten but the front desk staff leaves a lot to be desired.

  • Perfect

    by Lisa R on 2018-06-20 12:21 am

    Our stay here was perfect! Clean rooms, comfortable bed, knowledgeable staff, friendly. Shuttle buses to take you around the Village. Beautiful view and a nice trail rim to walk to different restaurants or to just take in the beauty of this magical land. The trail is also black night lighted for an evening stroll or star gazing. Well run!

  • Definitely over-rated

    by bennett2006 on 2018-06-19 08:19 pm

    1. Reputation
    2. Leads right out to a lovely view - but that's the view everyone who visits there gets to see; nothing exclusive about that.
    3. Generous with coffee/tea

    1. No dedicated carpark
    2. Extremely small room and small bed (Ours was a standard room)
    3. No plates or utensils

    Their reputation precedes them. That's about it. Looks nice and looks are deceiving. We were so excited to be staying there after booking more than 6 months ago. First shock - no dedicated carpark. We have to use the very small public carpark in front of it. Waited a long while before a space was available. The car was left there till we departed. It was too risky to wander out and return to find no parking lot. The view was nice but it's not an exclusive view. Everyone who walks there will see the same view - and how long can you look at the same scenery? The reason why we go to GC is to appreciate the views from different points, so seriously folks, accommodaton at GC is just to rest and sleep in my view.

    Next, check-in is at 4pm and check-out is at 11am. They're very strict about check-outs - ok, we understand - but are the heavy penalties really necessary? Then we got into our small little room in the basement level, and was rewarded with the view of the footpath. Sigh ... we accept that; ours is just a standard room. OK, so we understand the rooms are small; but the beds, the beds are really very small even for an Asian couple like us, what more for bigger Americans? We had brought some bread and ham and wanted to make some sandwiches. There were no plates, no spoons, no forks, no knives ... so we made do with spreading a large tissue on the tiny table and making our sandwiches with our hands.

    We walked around the hotel - its old and historic but nothing impressive. In the end, it was just another place to stay. By the way, please note it's far from the Grand Canyon Visitor Center - if you want to walk, it's a good 45min to an hour's walk according to their reception. Taking the bus is also pretty long. There's the Verkamp Visitor Center next to it but it's just a small little place. To see the sunrise, you have to walk all the way to Lookout Studio - in that sense, Bright Angel Lodge is actually a better place to stay and if I'm not mistaken, you have your own parking next to your lodge.

    One tip : Wake up early for the sunrise - you need to allow walking time to Lookout Studio - best view from there. Then take the bus to the GC Visitor Center and walk back along the Rim Trail from there. Give yourself 2 hours or more to truly enjoy the sights from different points. And it's great because you start right before the crowds come in. We had some lookout points all to ourselves at times and took some great photos. Now imagine taking photos with a few hundred tourists at the same place a few hours later!

    While waiting to check out, we overheard a man asking if they had Christmas discounts. The reply? We don't need such promotions, we're always packed. Well, that just about wrap up our one night stay there. If we were to visit again, it will definitely never be El Tovar for our acommodation.

  • Great for the view and thatâs pretty much it.

    by ShellyG7676 on 2018-06-19 05:53 am

    Recently stayed here for a short trip to the Grand Canyon. Of the hotels in the GC village it seemed that this or kachina would be most comfortable and less rustic. Based on my experience, here are the pros and cons:

    Pros: 1) great view! Really one of the best as far as I can tell and it was so amazing to be just steps from the all of the beauty of the canyon.

    2) convenient - it's a short walk to the shuttle buses and if you arrive early in the morning or late in the evening, there is parking available right behind the hotel or behind the verkamp visitor center.

    3) room was clean except for one thing noted below.

    Cons: sadly more cons than pros! Really the best thing about the hotel was the view. Here are the cons or things the hotel could improve on IMO:

    1) staff - half we encountered were very friendly. The other half just seemed annoyed whenever you asked questions or made a request. Also, other than the front desk, don't expect any hellos from any other staff during your stay.

    Additionally, I could not get a straight answer about whether our reserved room was a requested quiet room. When we checked in, I asked the staff member to confirm it was a quiet room. She wouldn't answer whether it was or wasn't. All she kept repeating was it's on the second floor. Yes I know it's on the second floor but the question was - is it quiet? For example on the wing we were located in, there's a lounge area near the guest room. Obviously rooms near where guests are playing cards or talking in the lounge would not be quiet!

    2) check in process- they ask for a photo ID. Moreover they ask for your id twice if your room isn't ready when you check in and need to stop by for the key later. Why isn't the doc given to you by the first hotel staff member when you checked in sufficient?

    3) our room furniture looked old and dilapidated. We had a room with a king bed and it came with two wood chairs with leather seats - both of which showed signs of wear on the leather. Our screen sliding door leading to a patio also didn't work well. It did not slide back and forth easily and you had to lift the handle to open and close the screen.

    4) our bathroom had a towel that was used or wasn't cleaned properly. The washcloth had an obvious foundation stain on it. It made me question whether other towels had been properly cleaned.

    5) no central air in our room. It had one of those horrid room vents that roar on and off. There's a thermostats but I didn't find it helpful to have a thermostat when you have this type of vent. Really makes no difference. Fortunately we didn't need ac in the evening.

    6) no chain lock and the dead bolt is a push button. Rather than a turn dead bolt there was a button you push to really lock the door. You hope that after pushing it your room is secure but it's hard to tell. Given that the hotel has several entrances and exits that seem to remain unlocked 24 hours so that anyone in the park can walk into the hotel whenever, better locks IMO are kind of important.

    7) water pressure: nonexistent and it takes forever to shampoo your hair.

    8) hardly any counter space in our bathroom. There's one very small high end table but that's it. It would have been nice to have larger counter space to put down toiletries, makeup bags etc.

  • great place ...Just to crowded

    by Tax I on 2018-06-18 02:09 pm

    The South rim GC is an awesome place . However there are Way too Many foreign Tour buses in the summer. Very hard to get around the park roads. It would be nice if the NP could restrict the hundreds of Tour buses.

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