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“Absolutely Lovely!” 5 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
Connecticut
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Absolutely Lovely!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2009

Speaking from a teen's perspective, I absolutely loved staying at Montecito! Overall- it's a fantastic place, the location is breathtaking, the staff is incredibly friendly, and there's always so much to do- I'm never bored while I explore and try new activities (and make lots of friends along the way!) I've been going there for the past two summers with my mother and 13-year-old brother. I remember the first time we headed up there- as we drove up a winding mountain path I was in awe at the natural beauty of the Sierra Nevada Mountains and Sequoia National Forest- coming from New England it was pretty much like nothing I've ever seen before! Right away I was whisked away into a group of kids my age and I immediately bonded with them through the fun group activities that our counselors led. One of my fondest memories was a camp out with my group- we played capture the flag in the forest and it was very fun and intense! Then we had a campfire and made s'mores and exchanged stories and sang songs while the counselor played the guitar. I have so many great memories- I'd probably run out of space writing about them all. So I'll just conclude this review by saying that I highly highly recommend Montecito- I can tell that everyone who works there tries their hardest to make sure the guests are having an enjoyable time. People of all ages will fall in love with Montecito- it really is one of my favorite places in the world!

  • Stayed August 2008, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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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
Princeton, NJ
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2009

I'd only recently heard of family camps -- vacations where kids participate in camp activities, under the guidance of counselors, while parents can enjoy activities knowing the kids are well looked after -- when one of my siblings suggested a family vacation at Montecito. We spent a week there, 10 months ago, and my 6 year old daughter is still talking about it and asking to return (which we absolutely will). My nieces and nephews (ranging in age from 2 to 11) also had a great time. The array of activities for both children and adults astonished me, and -- even with four activity periods each day -- I was unable to try everything that I would have liked! The camp philosophy is all about challenging yourself and exploring things that you've never attempted before, in a safe and supportive atmosphere. It's a wonderful life lesson for kids (and adults!). However, if you'd prefer to hang by the mountaintop pool or the fantastic outdoor hot tub, that's OK too. The staff are well-trained in both safety and child-management, and I had no compunction in turning over my 6 year old each morning to her counselors. Both my daughter and I initially suffered from altitude sickness, and the on-site doctor was attentive and sought us out frequently to follow up and to make sure that we were taking advantage of the beverages and fruit that were available round the clock. The food was terrific -- far better than I'd expected, given the rustic atmosphere -- and the chefs were very responsive to special requests (when my daughter was sick, she was able to keep down only white rice, so the chefs made a special serving for her for three meals in a row, until she recovered!) The only negative about our stay was the new dust-settler that had been sprayed just prior to our arrival -- it actually turned all of the dirt pathways to mud, which was carried into all of the buildings (thus my less than maximal rating on cleanliness -- everything else was fine). Despite the management doubling or possibly tripling the cleaning schedule, the mud did put a bit of a damper on things -- but I was told that this dust-settler would NOT be used in future. And I appreciated their responsiveness in trying to keep up with the mud. All in all, we had a fantastic time, delicious food, exciting activities, and comfortable accommodations -- all for a great price -- and we will absolutely be returning to Montecito.

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Il
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2009

Our trip was amazing! The staff was so friendly and outgoing. They made us feel like we were truly special. The counselors were great with the kids. I enjoyed yoga every morning outdoors with the majestic scenery as a backdrop. My kids call it the best vacation they've ever had. We'll definitely be back.

  • Stayed June 2008, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Colorado
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2009

we visited the lodge which is set between 2 nat'l parks, kings canyon and sequoia last July. we took only part of a day to visit the parks because there was so much to do at the camp! it is semi-rustic along with updated amenities. you have a choice according to your budget. even the more rustic rooms had updated bathrooms and were clean. we were a large group of 16 so i got to see a variety of lodging. we stayed in a renovated condo like suite that when we were inside we forgot we were at a camp. it was like a luxury suite! beautiful tile, comfortable cushy beds with quality bedding and very clean. this camp was like a paradise for us, as parents of 3 young children. they have wonderful counselors, who helped my needy and shy children transition into their groups. thye have activity periods for all ages of children and you get a schedule so all day you kow where your kids are. you can also sed them for partial periods and then take 1 of your kids for a special date with mom or dad to do craft or sailig, canoing, archery, rock clinbing. this i loved because i have 3 kids so it allowed for me to have one on one time while the others were being cared for and having fun!! and they always found me if necessary. my son got ill on the mountain and they quickly sent the bandi (on site medic) who treated him and stayed in touch to track his health. that was a comfort to me as we were in unfamiliar territory. every night they have a family theme. my favorite was the variety show. i laughed so much and enjoyed some good old fashioned family fun! being away from the tv, although they did have wireless access because we cant be totally disconnected, was so rewarding and forced the kids (and my hubby) to come out and they were so glad they did. we had an awesome fourth of July celebration where each family created a boat out of bark and candles to float out on the lake after dark. we all added stuff for our family boats and worked as a family team. i met many families that return every year and thye got all into those activites that are repeated like the boats and the variety show, which was open for anyone to perform. we did get closer as a family and as husband and wife and the conveniences of this camp fostered that. did i mention the food? you won't believe the dining! there is a chef, not a cook but a chef. you can meet him! he made things like herb crusted rosemary lamb chops! no, im not kidding! the food was fantastic and there is 24 hour stuff available too. starbucks coffee 24/7. milk- juice, cereal, pb and j, bagels and bread all available 24/7. and when we were doing all day hikes you just order a sandwich and they packed us a lunch. there was so much to write about! on wed, midway thru the camp they will take your dirty laundry and wash it. this was great and worth the small fee, but i did wish they had coin machines because you get dirty and i wanted to wash my stufff before i packed it up again. not much of a complaint but that was something i submitted on my comment card. we were asked about our opinions on the camp and the staff seemed interested to be improving and expanding according to feedback. all in all, we LOVED this camp. this is a camp designed around good old fashioned fun! i would highly recommend this for a family, even your family reunion! we will be return visitors!

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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los angeles
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2009

We have stayed twice at Montecito before last summer. The camp changed ownership and our vaction last summer really suffered.

1. During the evening mountain hike, people were left behind at a rest point. These people waited for over an hour in the dark alone. The hike was poorly staffed, with only one guide, and numerous people got lost on the way back in the dark. This could have ended in disastrous consequences.


2. A group of families on a horseback ride just outside the camp were attacked by a group of wasps. There was no reconnaissance of this area, although it was no more than a few hundred yards beyond the camp. The participants were instructed to do an emergency dismount. This is clearly unacceptable and negligent instruction. There were horses running wild and a number of the children were trampled, including my son Ari.


3. The water-ski boat remained broken for the entire week of our stay, despite the fact that one of the main attractions advertised on the website and at the camp, was waterskiing. Despite repeats inquiries, no meaningful attempt was made to fix the boat. What’s more, the boat had broken down several weeks earlier; however, no replacement boat had been brought to the camp for the week we were there. .


4. No overnight activity was offered to the children. Many of us look forward to this experience for our children. We were not notified until after we had paid that this opportunity would not be available.


5. At least two serious accidents occurred at the archery range, which could have been prevented by properly testing the equipment. On two separate occasions, a guest pulled back to shoot and the arrow shattered. In one instance, the guest suffered shrapnel wounds in his hand. Another guest performed field surgery on his hand in a room the patient and she were directed to that had inadequate lighting. The patient is left with a large scar. This incident should have resulted in the most careful equipment testing. However, it did not and a few days later, another arrow shattered during a guest’s use. Shrapnel nearly flew into the shooter’s eye.


6. Excessive additional fees were charged for a variety of other activities, including children’s jewelry making in the arts and crafts building.


The sink in our bathroom in our room never worked properly despite repeated attempts to try to get it fixed.


These are just a few of the items that made for our worst week at camp in all our years there.

  • Stayed August 2008, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
ckron79
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2009

Really liked the camp-feeling of the lodge - smaller no-frill rooms [who wants to stay in there at a National Park anyway?], family-style meals, lots of games to play in the evenings. Enjoyed the beer selection at the tiny bar. Went with Dad and 2 sisters - all in our 20s. We didn't need tons of entertainment - the point is to enjoy each other, right? Jacuzzi was great on a cold March night. Food was fantastic!

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Santa Barbara
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2009

We went in to use the restroom, but when we saw that lunch was being put out, decided to eat then got so comfortabe by the fire in the lodge we voted to stay. Plenty to do. Great food. Friendly and welcoming.

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
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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