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“An overall great stay on the mountain” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Sunshine Mountain Lodge

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Sunshine Mountain Lodge
3.5 of 5 Resort   |   One Sunshine Access Road, Banff, Banff National Park, Alberta T1L 1J5, Canada (Formerly Sunshine Village Resort)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #9 of 33 Hotels in Banff
Canada
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“An overall great stay on the mountain”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2014

We had an excellent stay here. It was fantastic to be able to ski in and out, and the property itself is very comfortable. The different food options were good and reasonably priced and there are different events organised like movies, bingo etc. The hot tub was great as well - although the size means that there might be large, rowdy groups of people there, detracting somewhat from the idyllic setting. The service was generally excellent - the front desk staff and concierge were super, we had a bunch of different luggage issues that were handled very well.

The "could be better" bits:
The website is not up to date - some "policies" appeared to have changed. Good: The wireless is free. Bad: there is no ski "valet" service.

As others have mentioned, the rooms are small (we had a "deluxe" room but it felt pretty standard) and the internet is very slow. There is not much storage space so if you are staying there for more than two or three days I think it would feel very cramped. Also, there seems to be minimal sound proofing, so you can hear everything happening in the hallway from your room - in our case, this included a group with five small children who enjoyed racing up and down the hall.

On the other hand, you are staying on a mountain in the middle of a beautiful national park, so this setting is hard to beat.

Breakfast in Chimney Lounge: All the staff from the check-in at the gondola base through to staff in the sports bar were really friendly and helpful with one notable exception. On our last morning, we checked out around 8.15 am, and were looking forward to a big breakfast before hitting the slopes for one last, full day. We went to the Lounge, where we had had an enjoyable dinner the previous evening. It was quite quiet, and we were waved in to sit wherever we wanted. We then waited about 10 minutes with no service - I even got up to grab menus for us. A number of servers went past our table and made eye contact without bothering to actually stop. Instead, they seemed more interested in joining the other 3/4 servers chatting behind the bar. I was really surprised, it was real contrast to the excellent service over dinner. After being studiously ignored, we went downstairs to the Java cafe where it is much busier, and the servers still manage to be more professional and friendly. This was our last (attempted) meal at the lodge so it unfortunately left a sour note on our stay.

Games room: We liked the amenities in the games room but it seemed like an afterthought and could definitely be made more welcoming and comfortable. There's a pool table, table hockey and a Wii (I think - we didn't try it), which are great - but they've been placed arbitrarily in a soul-less room with office lighting and mismatched bits of orphaned furniture and, when we were there, a random microwave sitting in the middle of the floor. The room seemed poorly thought out given the attention that has been paid to other parts of the hotel.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mark B, Manager at Sunshine Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, January 20, 2014
Hello Bearcare,

I wanted to thank you for taking the time to review our hotel. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us.

The hot tub is definitely a favourite of ours as well.

I'm happy to hear that you enjoyed the food. We appreciate the feedback about the Chimney Corner and we will be sure to pass this feedback on to our food & beverage team.

Thanks again for sharing all of your views about the hotel and we look forward to inviting you back again soon!

All the best,

Mark Bell, Manager, Sunshine Mountain Lodge
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118 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (36)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Canmore, Canada
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2014

I've been skiing for 40 years and coming to this area for the same number. I've skied around the globe but this year we tried New Years Eve on the hill. It was a bit uneven at times, but overall an excellent experience.
First, one must remember this Lodge operates in a National Park, which creates unique challenges for its owner/operators/managers. The Lodge is under continuous scrutiny for its business model and its ecological impact must be managed with this in mind.This is not Verbier, Tahoe or even Whistler for that matter. It's a bit austere - don't expect a long hot shower! However, the rooms are comfortable, warm, and clean. Ski storage in the provided lockers and a boot drying area are well conceived. Logistics are very well managed and all the staff are well trained, informed and empowered to be helpful.
The mountain atmosphere in the main lodge is anchored by a huge stone wall with two gorgeous fireplaces. Ample seating, a varied menu of top quality food at good prices provides couples, singles and families alike with plenty of choices.
For our special evening, apres ski was fireside and we thoroughly enjoyed the live musician, Shane Phillip who is tremendously vesatile and talented. For dinner we took a late sitting for the fixed price offering in The Eagle's Nest dining room. It was heavily subscribed and perhaps slightly understaffed but the food was worth waiting for. Overall, we were very pleased - especially as one of our party didn't eat meat/fish and our waitress accomodated a menu selection from the a la carte menu from the adjacent restaurant. This is the kind of gracious flexibility that wins!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Mark B, Manager at Sunshine Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, January 13, 2014
Good morning windsandandstars,

Thanks for sharing your experience at the Sunshine Mountain Lodge with us. We are so glad you enjoyed the closeness to the slopes and your New Year's Eve dinner at the Eagle's Nest Restaurant.

I'm glad you felt the staff was helpful as this is something we consistently strive towards.

Thanks again for choosing our resort to ring in the new year and all the best in 2014!

Cheers,

Mark Bell, Manager, Sunshine Mountain Lodge
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Rio de Janeiro-Brazil
Top Contributor
155 reviews 155 reviews
74 hotel reviews
Reviews in 77 cities Reviews in 77 cities
130 helpful votes 130 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2014

I believe we were some of the first to book for the holidays period, back in August. We were very excited and had high expectations about everything - they were all far exceed!
We had an amazing suite (I mean, amazing - it took us some good 20 minutes to believe we had that room and that view!). Room was very big, with a super king-size bed and small living room+gas fireplace. We had a nice size balcony and two sets of windows almost floor to ceilling - you couldn't believe the views!
The bathroom was also large, not huge, and had a nice jacuzzi, good pressure shower, good amenities, heated floor and good hairdryer. The bath robes were of excellent quality and you could take them to the EXCELLENT, big outdoor heated pool they have for all guests.
Food - we had the continantal breakfast every day (CAD14/Person) which had pretty much all you can imagine. We always had lunch at the coffee near front desk, serving very nice crepes and sandwiches (around CAD 7 each). At night we had dinner at their finest restaurant on Christmas eve (The Eagle's Nest) and food/service was very good - we paid CAD 120 for a 3 course meal+bottle of wine+tips. The rest of the days we had dinner at Chimney Corner, also nice food at very reasonable prices (pizzas at around CAD 15). Service was always good with very polite and friendly people from around the world.
Skiing - they have a locker room and each room is given a locker key - enough to store all gear of a small family. From there is not more than 20 steps to the snow. Leaving the lodge you are some 15 meters (50 feet) from the first lift! Skiing in Sunshine is amazing and will be review of=n a different post.
Check-in and check-out were very effective - when arriving you leave your heavy stuff on the base and it will be taken to your room within 3-4 hours. Your skiing gear will be stored directly to your locker.
The atmosphere around the lodge was always friendly and family - we don't have kids, but loved to watch them having the time of their lives there. The hotel has some night activities like snowshoe and tobogganing (Thank you Kristin for the wonderful time we had!) - all managed by very lively people!
My especial thanks for all staff who provided us with such an unforgatable experience, everyone: the check-in ladies, the spot-on house-keeping, all mountain staff and guys at the restaurants - thank you! I hope to see you all again in the future!

Room Tip: If you can, go for the suites - I saw the deluxe rooms and they are also quite nice!
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
Mark B, Manager at Sunshine Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, January 10, 2014
Hi Chris,

Thanks so much for your review. It's so great to have visitors like you from around the world visiting our resort.

We are so glad you enjoyed your stay-- we can't get over the views either and we live here!

I am also happy to hear that you enjoyed the food and beverage facilities, your dinner at the Eagle's Nest restaurant on Christmas Eve sounds great!

The ski-in, ski-out option is something we hold near and dear to our heart's and we're so glad you had the opportunity to take advantage of our handy ski lockers and our closeness to the chairlifts.

Thanks again for your feedback and maybe we'll see you back this way again soon!

Take care,

Mark Bell, Manager, Sunshine Mountain Lodge
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Calgary, Canada
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2013 via mobile

We were fortunate to be invited to a wedding at Sunshine Mountain Lodge and the setting was spectacular. Although we are not skiers, from the moment we arrived we were made to feel comfortable. The staff from top to bottom were incredibly professional and courteous and we enjoyed speaking with many of them. The wedding and reception were very well organized by the planners and the setting of course was breathtaking! Koodos to you all for a very pleasant weekend!

The best tip I received was to bring a blanket for the gondola!

Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
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Mark B, Manager at Sunshine Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, December 30, 2013
Hello Sydney414,

Thanks for your feedback about our hotel. We agree that the views are stunning and we're glad to hear the staff helped make your stay memorable. It's great to hear that non-skiers enjoy the mountain too.

Congrats to the newlyweds and we hope to see you again soon!

Best,

Mark Bell, Manager, Sunshine Mountain Lodge
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USA
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2013

We stayed for the week for our anniversary. Upon the arrival to the base we were allowed to park in the closer VIP lot. We were able to check right in and opted to take our luggage with us up the gondola to the lodge. We were offered the option to have our luggage brought up for us. Dress for the gondola ride cause it can be cold.
The room was nice and clean. The humidifier was a necessity. The bed and pillows were comfortable. There aren't any refrigerators in the room but you can bring dry goods to snack on during your stay.
There are several restaurants up on the hill but the dinner food selection was fairly limited which is understandable since everything has to be brought up via gondola or Sunshine Suzy.
There are more selections available for food during breakfast and lunch.
The food is reasonably priced especially for being up on hill all week. The food portions were big and we even had to split several meals.
Each guest who stays at lodge gets a complimentary locker for gear.
The ski area is truely ski in and ski out. There are several flat spots on the mountain but after going down the runs one time, you figure out where they are and adjust accordingly. The skiing area was large enough that we never waited in line for a chair lift and weren't bored after skiing the same resort for four days. The views were awesome. Taking the continental divide chairlift is a must even if you aren't a excellent skiier.
The large outdoor hot tub and indoor sauna were a big hit after long cold days skiing.
I can't say enough about how friendly the entire staff was. From the time we arrived until the time we departed, they were phenomenal. We always felt as though the staff were going out of their way to make sure everything was taken care of. The day of our departure it was too cold for the gondola to run in the morning. Since we had a flight to catch, they were more than willing to give us a ride down the mountain in Sunshine Suzy.
Thanks for a great week, wish we lived closer.

Room Tip: Watefall rooms don't have much of a view but if you're skiing all day, who needs a view. You...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Mark B, Manager at Sunshine Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, December 23, 2013
Hello CJpoolsillinois,

I want to thank you for your feedback on our hotel and ski resort.

We're so glad you enjoyed the ski runs, the views and the hot tub (nothing beats a soak after a day on the slopes)!

Thanks again for taking the time to write to us.

We'd love to welcome you back again soon!

Best,

Mark Bell, Manager, Sunshine Mountain Lodge
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Edmonton, Canada
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2013

First time we stayed on the mountain for skiing. What a wonderful concept. To be able to get up in the morning and not have to rush to get up the hill for a good parking spot and for first chair/tracks.

We stayed in the main lodge with a view towards the ski hill. That was a lot of fun. We were able to watch the people skiing during the day and the groomers during the night. To see the lights going almost straight up the hill was great.

The rooms are a bit small so don't expect anything big unless you stay in the new West Wing. The TVs could be bigger than the 20" but really, are you there to watch TV? But it would have been nice to have a larger TV.

The Staff at the base as well as the actual hotel were really good. It was almost like they bent backwards to get what you wanted. We didn't have a coffee maker in our room. Within 30 minutes of asking for one, we had one in our room. The bed was turned down every night (cool thing) and towels changed out at that time if you needed.

Restaurant staff were good and again, you didn't lack for anything.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mark B, Manager at Sunshine Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, December 20, 2013
Good morning Markushnir,

Thanks for sharing your experience with us!

We're happy to hear that you enjoyed your stay at our hotel and that you felt the staff went above and beyond.

We love that staying at the Sunshine Mountain Lodge means that you can grab first chair too!

We hope we can welcome you back again soon.

Best,

Mark Bell, Manager, Sunshine Mountain Lodge
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Sydney
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2013 via mobile

There are a few things you should know before booking this lodge. The rooms are very very small. This is ok if all you are doing is sleeping in the room, but they did feel a little claustrophobic. The phone number and email address on the hotel website relate to an external entity - Skibanff, so when we were trying to call after hours because our flight had been delayed and we were needing to be picked up after the gondola had closed, we could only get through to an answering machine and there was no direct phone number to the lodge anywhere on their website. We eventually got onto them through a third party on the mountain who called them for us, and after that they were very obliging in picking us up from the base station at 11:30 at night - in that respect they were very very good. But surely they should have a direct number on the website? On the plus side they did not charge us for the pickup from the base after hours because it was not our fault our flight was delayed by 8 hours. I thought that was a really lovely touch, and am very grateful. Although the staff are all very friendly it is clearly a very transient population. They are all backpackers, and while they try to be helpful, no one really knows what to do or how to deal with issues. There doesn't seem to be a managerial presence. Upon checkout, I was presented with a bill that charged me for my stay, even though I had prepaid with an external booking. The counter assistant said not to worry about it and that it would be fixed up. I did not receive an adjusted receipt for my stay. My credit card has been provisionally charged with the extra charges. I have emailed the lodge to request a copy of my final bill and have not received any response after one week. If the charges do end up going through I am going to be very unhappy. The wireless internet is not great - the signal is quite weak everywhere in the hotel. The building itself is quite old and the elevator is very slow so taking the stairs is preferable.
On the upside, the hot tub was fantastic after a hard days skiing. The chimney corner bar/cafe served really fantastic food! We were well impressed as we expected all the food options on the mountain to be quite dire. We had dinner and breakfast there and in both cases the food was exceptional and the price was reasonable.
We probably would stay here again despite the issues we had because the location is super. It truly is ski in ski out, but don't have too high expectations of this place.

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mark B, Manager at Sunshine Mountain Lodge, responded to this review, December 9, 2013
Hi Erika C,

Thanks for your feedback about your stay at our hotel and for letting us where we can improve.

We are glad you enjoyed your apres-ski soak in our hot tub and the food at the Chimney Corner.

We appreciate any opportunity to improve our guest experience, so please feel free to email me directly at mark.bell@skibanff.com, so we can discuss your stay in more detail.

Best,

Mark Bell, Manager, Sunshine Mountain Lodge
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Additional Information about Sunshine Mountain Lodge

Address: One Sunshine Access Road, Banff, Banff National Park, Alberta T1L 1J5, Canada (Formerly Sunshine Village Resort)
Location: Canada > Alberta > Canadian Rockies > Banff National Park > Banff
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Banff
#12 Romantic Hotel in Banff
#14 Family Hotel in Banff
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Sunshine Mountain Lodge 3.5*
Number of rooms: 84
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled high in the Canadian Rockies in Canada’s oldest and most famous national park, this eco-boutique hotel delivers extraordinary luxury surrounded by breathtaking scenery. It is place unlike anything you have ever experienced.World-famous dining. Opulent rooms . Friendly, courteous staff. Outside, a sky so full of stars you won’t believe your eyes. And some of the best skiing you’ll ever find, just footsteps from your room. The Sunshine Mountain Lodge is the ONLY ski-in, ski-out hotel in the Mountain National Parks. It offers casual and fine dining, the area’s largest hot tub, spa services and family friendly activities. Our new West Wing offers rooms with in-floor heating, jetted tubs, large-screen LCD TVs, all in a rustic mountain theme.It’s the vacation you and your family will never forget. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sunshine Mountain Hotel Banff
Sunshine Mountain Resort
Sunshine Village Inn

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