This is about the Inn. It's a love letter to Death Valley and a warning to wayfarers. We have been coming to Death Valley over the past 46 years before our wedding. We've stayed in tents, the Ranch, and countless times the Furnace Creek Inn. It has always been on the high end of affordability--rooms are now pushing $500 with taxes--but we stretch ourselves annually because we love Death Valley with its eternal hiking and the Inn has an unmatched pool, huge and hot-springs fed and kept at a constant 84 degrees. Of course the property is old, but adequately maintained; if it's luxe, it is certainly not luxury at the contemporary standard. But the rooms are spaceous, moderately quiet, and have good beds. If it weren't for the kitchen/dining room experience, the Inn would be worth its cost.
The dining at the Inn changes over the years--apparently with regeimes of chefs. It's always been expensive, but the physical room is pleasant and the service is typically very attentive. They had a pretty good chef for the last two years--Chef Mike. She oversaw meals that had a flair, even though I felt she tended to be too partial to salt and fats/oils. Chef Mike is gone this season and in her place is a named Chef who should be nameless: This was the worst food in recent memory at Funace Creek Inn. We had dinner there three nights in a row, and basically, nothing was particularly good (FrenchToast in the morning and Flat Bread Pizza at noon made the grade). Indulge my rant a tad more, while I give you the low down: the menu itself is uninspiring; but the worst is that the food is served as if the kitchen staff doesn't care and/or is untrained. I was shocked that vegetables and rice sides were almost room temperature by the time they were served (one night the rice was lumpy as well, see unappetizing picture, attached). I could go on with my complaints, but let me make my point with a shocker: order a glass of wine each, and dinner for two--not much better than a good coffee shop--will cost you over $125. And this happens to be the first year they have eliminated the traditional date bread from the dinner bread plate. Quelle dommage!
To close on the positive side: Go take a hike. Glorious! Today we did the loop from Golden Canyon up towards Zabrinski Point, and out Gower Gulch. It took exactly 3 hours and was strenuous at a low intensity. Out of this world!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.