We travelled to Sunshine Mountain Lodge this February for a family trip. Have visited this ski resort before but stayed in nearby Banff and made use of a rental car.
This time round, we decided to try out the onsite lodge. Located at 7000 feet, the start of your journey is dropping off your luggage and skis at the desk located at the base of the resort. It will take between 2-3 hours before those bags make it up to the lodge, so plan accordingly. Unless it is Friday, the gondola only runs until 530 PM so once up, you must make use of the restaurants (good but on the pricey side for a family), or onsite facilities (whirlpool, sauna, family movie room, coin-operated games, fitness centre), or your room (kettle can be requested). As we arrived on Friday, we trekked back to Banff. Travelling by gondola in pitch blackness is an adventure in itself!
To be able to ski within steps of your hotel room is the drawing card! While the gondola begins to run very early, the chairlifts start between 830 and 900AM. We made close to first tracks each morning. This is particularly AWESOME on Goat's Eye Mountain, and, on the Continental Divide run.
The room we had was very close to the Mt. Standish chairlift but the windows are well insulated so it was very quiet. Having the balcony provided a "fridge" for a few snacks we had brought along, as well as a quick way to leave the hotel room. Note though that one of your party must lock the door from the inside and then join you outside. The room itself was tiny - although it was stated it was for four. Murphy and queen bed provided but not much room for storing clothing (and there are bulky pieces considering you are skiing)! Shower great but lukewarm water only.
For a larger family, you would definitely need the loft rooms which are a great deal more expensive.
We enjoyed the breakfast buffet offered - wonderful food and not greasy! A real treat actually. Service was wonderful both on the hills and in the restaurant. Front desk staff at hotel also helpful. Down at base - could use a bit more training for when guests first arrive. We expected more information to be provided, and, a warmer welcome.
Overall, we'd go back in a second. Being there for the first run and skiing right to the end was fantastic. Also, being able to stretch out those limbs following intense skiing over lunch was great too.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The best kept secret in the Canadian Rockies is located at 7,200 feet in Canada’s oldest and most famous National Park, Banff National Park. The Sunshine Mountain Lodge offers incredible comfort, luxury and convenience. Experience the anticipation of fresh tracks as you catch the first chairlift after waking just steps from the only ski-in, ski-out accommodations in Alberta. Sunshine Village’s professional and friendly staff take care of all the details allowing you to do what you do best; whether it’s skiing Sunshine’s world famous snow, relaxing in the hot pool and spa or dining at one of the Lodge’s casual or elegant venues. When you are done enjoying your “best day ever!” relax by immersing yourself in the peacefulness and tranquility of undisturbed nature of our village. Afterwards, delight in the accommodations of the enhanced West Wing suites that offer heated floors, jetted tubs, floor-to-ceiling windows and fireplaces offering cozy entertainment to send you to sleep. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sunshine Mountain Hotel Banff
- Sunshine Mountain Resort
- Sunshine Village Inn