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“Gateway to Denali” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Denali Bluffs Hotel

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Denali Bluffs Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Mile 238.4 George Parks Hwy, Denali National Park and Preserve, AK 99755   |  
Hotel amenities
Melbourne, Australia
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Gateway to Denali”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2013

We booked this hotel online for 3 nights as a base to spend some time in Denali National Park and it served its purpose well. The rooms were basic but adequate although the hand basin was located in the bedroom and not the bathroom. A shuttle service provided by this and a sister hotel provided easy transport to downtown Denali and the national park. Nothing very exciting about breakfast and the dinner we had at the sister hotel with its commanding views over the valley was a great disappointment.
When we returned one day from a trip into the park we were surprised to note that the cleaners(?) had left the room unlocked and one sliding door open.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michelle G, Director of Sales at Denali Bluffs Hotel, responded to this review, March 20, 2013
Thank you for your review. I'm not sure if you are aware of this, but the Denali Bluffs Hotel and our sister property the Grande Denali Lodge are Alaska native owned by Old Harbor Native Corporation. We are excited to announce that they have brought operations in-house and we are now under new management. Another exciting change is that the Mountaineer Restaurant at the Bluffs is revamping to serve the only BBQ available in Denali National Park.

Reviews like yours on TripAdvisor are a great help to us when making decisions to improve our guest experience at our properties. Our management team carefully looks over each review in order to plan and ready our staff for the 2013 season.

I hope that if you return to Denali you come back and see us!

Michelle Gruber
Sales Manager
mgruber@oldharbor.org
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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212 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (56)
Date | Rating
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English first
Dublin, Ireland
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2013

We stayed here for two nights on a package tour which included breakfast. There were three of us travelling together and two of us had to share a double bed. The hand basin was in the main room, not the bathroom - but we found that this arrangement was common in Alaska.
There were coffee and tea making equipment in the room, and you can get ice from a machine below the restaurant.
We had room 1722 - the top layer of two levels of chalets. The view with the autumn colours was magnificent from our balcony.
The shops and restaurants are about ten minutes walk down a steepish hill, but there is a shuttle bus if you want it.
You can have a nice walk across the road and up to the park entrance, and over to the Post Office through the trees - watch out for bears!! (I doubt if they would come that near).
The Grill was not open at lunchtime when we were there, so had a snack down the road. We used the Grill for an evening meal and it was O.K.
Breakast was included in our package and a good variety - perfectly adequate.
Denali Park was for me the highlight of our trip to Alaska.

Room Tip: Ours 1722 on the top level of two chalets gave a great view - some on the lower level may have no vi...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michelle G, Director of Sales at Denali Bluffs Hotel, responded to this review, March 15, 2013
There is nothing better than to see a review where you can tell that the guest got out and enjoyed what coming to Alaska and the Denali Bluffs is all about, Nature!

Describing us as, Alaskan, is right on. We are positioned for beautiful views and a true Alaskan experience. The one thing we want everyone to know is that we are proudly Alaska native owned and now operated. Our new management team is dedicated to making a great property even better, and our plans for the restaurant are very exciting as well.

I hope that if your adventurous spirit brings you back to Denali you come stay with us again, at the Denali Bluffs Hotel!
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California
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2013

I booked this hotel through a online travel site along w/ my hotel in Fairbanks. However, the site was very slow and messed up the date for Fairbanks. When I canceled the wrong Fairbanks reservation, it indeed canceled my reservation of Bluffs! I tried to book it through the website again, it could not! I was in a panic since it was hard to find a hotel for August! I called the hotel and explained the situation. The staff did find my old reservation. After talked to the manager, they agreed to keep it for me w/ the same price, which is very reasonable during the peak season! I really really appreciated the staff! They even sent me an email to confirm it even the online travel site screwed it up! Given my later disaster experiences w/ Priceline.com for my reservation in Fairbanks, the staffs were super!
The hotel is in a very good location, close to Denali Natl Park <5min driving, walking distance to the restaurants and shopping. The reception area is big, comfortable and clean! There is Wi-Fi there, though no WI-FI in the room. The room is not big, but very clean. The view is great from our room to see the mountains in the Natl Park! Did not try the restaurant for breakfast, though. In all, we like this place and had a great time!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michelle G, Director of Sales at Denali Bluffs Hotel, responded to this review, February 19, 2013
We appreciate your review and are so glad you enjoyed your stay at our hotel. If your future travels bring you back to Denali, we hope to have you stay with us again, at the Denali Bluffs Hotel.
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Houston, Texas
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013

I know in real estate that it is all about location, location, location; however, not even the beautiful scenery of Alaska could overcome the service and attitude of the staff.

When we we first arrived the parking space at the main office level is very limited. We had to park some 150+ yards away down the hill. There was staff watching us trying to unload our luggage. They were too busy smoking and chatting at the bus stop shed. When we arrived at the hotel check-in there was no staff there. We had to wait nearly 10 minutes before anyone came to the front desk.

After trying to check-in the first person could not help us. Another 15 minutes past by before the manager on shift came in to help us. We final received our room assignment. Entering into the room they gave us 1 double bed, not 2 queens.

Going back up to the front desk we received another room. This time it was 2 full beds, but again not 2 queens. We head back to the front desk for a 3rd time. This time we are told that there are no 2 queen bed rooms. They said this was a mistake in the marketing material.

So we head back to the room only to find missing towels and the bathroom had not been cleaned or restocked. I had to back to the front desk and pick up supplies.

After complaining to the management on-site we were told sorry but they could not offer us any discount despite our complaints.

Our book for the hotel through a book website said two queens; however, after coming back home and calling the management company, they told us the same thing. It was a mistake in marketing materials and offered no discount.

The web booking company said they could not help us because that was materials given to them.

The bottom line was simple. VERY POOR CUSTOMER SERVICE! The room was not prepared or cleaned up.

Lesson learned is for us to call the hotel directly and not trust the web booking company. This company is one of the big three in terms of bookings and dollar amounts.

On a side note, the on-site restaurant was mediocre and much of the food was not fresh. I would recommend The Great Alaska Fish & Chip Company down the road.

Room Tip: The best hotels I think are the ones owned by the cruise ship companies. Unfortunately, you can'...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michelle G, Director of Sales at Denali Bluffs Hotel, responded to this review, February 19, 2013
I want to apologize for your less than enjoyable experience with our staff and service at the Denali Bluffs Hotel. I do want to share that we have changed management and are excited about the coming season which will bring improvements both cosmetically and to the customer service at our property. We have hired a highly experienced team of managers that not only have a passion for our properties but also a passion for providing a truly exceptional experience to our guests.

If you have any further comments, questions, or concerns I would be happy to address them personally. Please email me directly (mgruber@oldharbor.org).

I hope you are having a great day!
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Travelers are raving about these Denali National Park and Preserve hotels

Adelaide
Top Contributor
151 reviews 151 reviews
108 hotel reviews
Reviews in 106 cities Reviews in 106 cities
92 helpful votes 92 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2012

We stayed at Denali Bluffs hotel for two night (7th and 8th Sep) as part of a package through Alaska Tour and Travel. Quiet, clean,friendly staff, comfortable beds and a 10 minute walk on a reasonable uphill/downhill road to a wide range of eateries. A nice base for our Denali trip to Kantishna. The view from our room's balcony (Rm 225) was stunning.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michelle G, Director of Sales at Denali Bluffs Hotel, responded to this review, March 15, 2013
So glad to hear you had a pleasing experience at our property. And you are correct, the views are breathtaking!

Please come visit us again soon.
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Perth, Western Australia
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2012

We used the Alaska Toursaver to get our 3rd night free at Denali Bluffs, so this review is based on the fact that the hotel became more reasonably priced at $152/night for 4 people. Once we arrived at the train station, we were immediately directed to the hotel shuttle. We didn't have to worry about our luggage since they were tagged for transfer to the hotel and staff would deliver them straight to our room. This is a very good service, although we did have to wait a long time for our luggage to be delivered- long enough for us to worry that maybe they were lost in transit. The room itself was very clean and a decent size, with good coffee/tea-making facilities, small TV, free toiletries, a small balcony, good room heating, and great daily housekeeping. The bathroom was small, but functional. It was a bit strange to see the wash basin and mirror outside of the bathroom, next to the beds, though. The sliding door to our balcony was damaged - there was a wooden block provided to keep it "locked", which we had to manually lift out of the way to slide the door open.. not that big a deal. We did experience a blocked toilet which we reported early morning, but was still not attended to when we returned at 6pm from our excursion. The second time we reported it to lobby staff, it was fixed within 10min, so that was good.

In the cozy lobby area, there is free wifi, but the 2 guest PCs provided there have dodgy internet connections... I was told that it happens may be when too many users are connected via wifi. The view is nice from the lobby balcony. The gift shop there have expensive snacks. Unfortunately, I can't recommend the food at the nearby Mountaineer Grill and Bar either. The food we received did not seem fresh and dishes were pricier at ~$14 each. The better option is to take the very convenient hotel shuttle down the hill to the Tesoro gas station (no more than a 2 min drive), which is just a short walk away from all the souvenir and food shops, particularly Subway, which sells yummy 6 inch rolls for just $6.25. This is also the best option for a packed lunch to take into Denali Park, we feel. However, coffee and nice snacks can also be bought once at the Wilderness Access Center (WAC). The hotel shuttles don't stop at WAC unless asked to (only Tesoro and the Visitor Center), so once done with excursions there, you need to call for pickup. I don't remember seeing a phone booth there, but we had a mobile anyway. We missed the first pickup because we waited where the shuttle had dropped us off the first time, which was right in front of WAC... after waiting awhile, we called again for pickup and this time, the shuttle driver came looking for us. Turns out the pickup point was around the corner, to the back.

Overall, it was a nice stay in a very clean hotel with a convenient complimentary shuttle service. Denali Park is beautiful in the fall!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michelle G, Director of Sales at Denali Bluffs Hotel, responded to this review, April 8, 2013
Thank you for the kind review, and I am so glad that you enjoyed your stay. I wanted to share with you that we are under new management and we are switching things up a bit at the Mountaineer Restaurant. We are proudly serving the only BBQ in Denali, and it's going to be delicious! We are excited about this improvement and hope our guests will be as well.

Have a wonderful day and I hope that if you decided to come visit us again in Denali you will stay at the Bluffs.

Michelle Gruber
Sales Manager
mgruber@oldharbor.org
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Riverton, Utah
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2012

Their rooms are four or five to a building, kind of the open concept. You can see off down into the valley, very pretty in the fall with all the colors. The room had two large beds so we used one for your suitcase rack. They are not huge rooms but adequate. Our room was clean and neat. Everything worked as it should. Would stay here again and the staff although getting ready to shut down for the season were very helpful with resturant suggestions and where to meet for tours etc. very nice staff!

Room Tip: Get a room as close to the edge of the hill, that way there are no buildings to spoil your veiw.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Denali Bluffs Hotel

Also Known As:
Hotel Denali Bluffs
Denali Bluff Hotel
Address: Mile 238.4 George Parks Hwy, Denali National Park and Preserve, AK 99755
Location: United States > Alaska > Denali National Park and Preserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 6 hotels in Denali National Park and Preserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Denali Bluffs Hotel 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nothing brings out your adventurous spirit like a mini-vacation in our Sugarloaf Mountain hideaway at the Denali Bluffs Hotel! Alaska native owned and operated, we not only have commanding views but the Bluff's design allows our guests to feel "at-one" with nature while still providing a comfortable stay with 112 cozy guest rooms perfectly equipped with all the conveniences of home, such as private baths, cable TV, and much more!Enjoy hearty, home-style Alaskan fare when you dine at the Mountaineer Grill & Bar. Savor your appetite on our patio with a cold local brew, while taking in a beautiful view of Mt Healy. You’ll also find a variety of specialty coffee and beverages, pastries and other delicious food items in the Perky Moose Espresso. Our main lodge features a log-beamed great room, with authentic Alaskan art, a gift shop, and a tour desk at which our staff will be happy to assist you in choosing from a wide variety of optional tours available in Denali National Park. Adventure is just steps away at the Denali Bluffs Hotel! ... more   less 
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