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“Montecito Sequoia Family Camp is changing......” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Montecito Sequoia Lodge

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Montecito Sequoia Lodge
2.5 of 5 Hotel   |   63410 General's Hwy, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, CA 93633   |  
Hotel amenities
Los Angeles
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Montecito Sequoia Family Camp is changing......”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 28, 2008

Sad to say, M-S is changing and, in my opinion, not for the better. The KILT program has been changed from 3 weeks to 2 (and the price went up) so several, if not many, old KILTS won't be returning. Also, the staff has undergone many changes. There won't be so many familiar faces next summer in the counselor department. Whether the camp so many of us have come to know and love survives as we have known it remains to be seen.

There have been positive changes. There has been an enormous improvement in the facility itself, no question about it (its reflected in the increased prices for next summer.) But, again, just my opinion, nobody went back to camp year after year for the accomodations. The experienced, dedicated counselors and staff created a uniquely special environment, which the new counselors came to know and share each summer. Without a core group of experienced workers who loved camp as much as the families who went there year after year, I just don't see how Montecito Sequoia will be the same.

  • Stayed August 2008, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
_JBD_2008, Owner at Montecito Sequoia Lodge, responded to this review, December 2, 2008
1. Many experienced counselors will be returning for next year's family camp.

2. The price for family camp for a family of four will be around $1,000 per person in 2009, about the same as in 2004, five years ago. Compared with other family camps we offer a more comprehensive program at a much lower cost.

3. Yes, we did increase the rate for the KILT program, however, comparable programs at other camps charge from double to triple the rate we are charging.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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361 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
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English first
San Ramon, CA
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2008

The wife and I enjoyed our two nights here on an unusually warm December. We took advantage of the low off-season weekday rates, which put us in a room for $69.

The room was basic, but clean and comfortable. No worse than an older Super 8. The rooms don't have TVs, but that was fine as we enjoyed spending the evenings by the fireplace in the lodge.

The food is "buffet" in that you help yourself from a steam table. And the food was very good. The wife was very happy with the food, and she's a picky eater. The tables are big, so you may end up sitting with other folk. Once our shyness was gone, we enjoyed this as well.

There were no activities going on, but that was okay as we spent the day sightseeing in the two national parks. They even packed sack lunches for us as we weren't going to be at the lodge for lunch.

I look forward

  • Stayed December 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Exeter
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2008

We booked Montecito as part of a two week road trip and it was the only place where we stayed for 2 nights. We were led to expect and all-inclusive resort that included many activities. What we got was a dirty, run down place with no activities on offer for guests who weren't part of a school trip and school dinners for meals.

Their website needs a major overhaul to accurately describe what guests should expect and we weren't the only ones who got a big shock on arrival. Our room was realy filthy and I'm sure the sheets weren't clean. There was no guest information in the rooms and when I asked at reception what was on offer all I was told was that we could take a canoe out on the lake (it's a pond) if we wanted. There are NO facilities in the rooms, so once dinner is over at 7pm, there's a very long quiet evening ahead.

My boyfriend said it reminded him of a kibbutz he stayed on and it reminded me of living in a co-op but without the work! This is a kids camp, not a hotel or resort. Expect very basic (and unclean) accommodation and school dinners and you won't be shocked, but for the price and what the website said, we were very shocked.

  • Liked — Leaving
  • Disliked — All of it
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Great Mills, MD
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2008

The Lodge is rustic and no-nonsense, yes, but I found it to be clean, inviting and very comfortable. The staff was incredibly pleasant and extremely helpful when I had any questions and/or requests. The food was yummy, and there was plenty of it. The grounds were in need of a bit of up-keep, but it didn't stop me from enjoying myself. I liked the idea of the heated pool and Jacuzzi. It was great to view the stars while I was soaking in the hot tub. And, the bonfires at night were a great touch. I could see why couples would not want to visit during the summer when family camp is in full swing, but staying there during the off season is a no-brainer!

I cannot imagine why anyone would complain about this establishment. If you are looking for a five star resort, this, of course, is not the place for you. Me, I would definitely stay again, in fact, I want to go back during the winter months.

  • Liked — Good deal for the price; excellent staff; nice that meals were included
  • Disliked — Grounds needed work
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 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.
Santa Barbara County, California
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2008

This family camp is in a beautiful setting. It is very family friendly. It is not a five star resort, rather two to three star, yet the ammenities are excellent. The food is EXCELLENT, the activities are great, the setting is beautiful and the staff is friendly. I don't know why people write bad reviews of this place, we really enjoyed our experience.

  • Liked — The food
  • Stayed September 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Florida City, Florida
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2008

This "lodge" is so poorly managed and maintained, I can't believe the Park Service keeps a contract with this company. Everything is run-down and dirty. When we visited our room in the lodge, I felt like I was entering some really cheap motel where you expected to see junkies and the like passed out in the hallway or on the stairs

An example of how poorly maintained this place is......the fence around the pool is held together by zip ties!! I promise this is the truth!

The one positive is that the food is OK. I would never stay at this "lodge" again or any other lodge or hotel operated by this company.

  • Liked — the food
  • Disliked — everything else
  • Stayed September 2008, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Carmel, California
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2008

I stayed at the Montecito Lodge Resort with my 9 years old son on winter, spring and summer. All of them are different experiences, and all of them were wonderful.

The summer week long camp is the most fun for the children. They group them by age and assign a counselor, team leader to them. They all bound with each other and with the young and enthusiastic counselors. At the end of the week they have a closing show, where children and counselors sing and dance together. The whole show is magical.
There are a lot of activities morning and afternoon that gives free time for the parents.
They have more activities on summer than winter, but on winter the snow tubing is a day-long activity. Organized or not, it is always there.
The rooms are well heated in winter.

Rooms have no phones and TV, but last time I visited, they had WiFi internet connection from my room. Also, there is a cabin with a TV and computers.

First time I stayed was in the Spring of 07. The place was quite a bit old and neglected. I was surprised to see the change almost a year later. The dining area, the large room and as I heard most of the rooms were fixed up. The place looks much more organized and clean, than before. The room I stayed, had new and very comfortable bed, nice pillows and linen. The bathroom got new tubs and tiles.

The food is plenty and delicious. They serve fresh fruits and veggies every day and they have soup and freshly baked cookies all day long. The coffee is from Starbucks, and they have a huge selection of tea.
I read the previous comment, who complained about dirty dishes. During my four visits, I have NEVER noticed any dirty dishes, cups or silverware at all.
The place is full with children all the time, - children are messy - and despite that fact, the dining area is very clean. I cannot keep my house that clean, and I have only one kid.

I agree, if you are accustomed to 5 star hotels, concierge and porter services, don't visit Montecito Lodge. It is a laid back, absolutely not formal, but extremely friendly atmosphere, where "kids can be a kid", and parents don't have to constantly apologize for the behavior of their children.
The lodge is an old rustic cabin like structure that suits perfectly in the woods. It has a lot of history, entertaining children for more, than half of the century. I highly recommend this place for all families with children.

  • Liked — location, location, location, bed, pillows, FOOD, desserts, hot tub,
  • Disliked — the hallway to the lodge rooms is old, with worn carpet
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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 Montecito Sequoia Lodge

Address: 63410 General's Hwy, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, CA 93633
Location: United States > California > Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Montecito Sequoia Lodge 2.5*
Number of rooms: 39
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Rustic Mountain Lodge & Summer Family Camp located in Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks, California. Spectacular view of the Great Western Divide of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Buffet Meals and seasonal activities included in room rate. All Lodge Rooms have private bath. Cabins have shared bathhouse. Open year-round. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Montecito Sequoia Hotel Sequoia And Kings Canyon National Park

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