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“Ok if you're passing through, not for a week long stay” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Blue Jay Lodge

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Blue Jay Lodge
2.0 of 5 Motel   |   4133 Cedar Avenue, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #51 of 70 Hotels in South Lake Tahoe
Aurora, Colorado
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Ok if you're passing through, not for a week long stay”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2014

My husband and I recently took a 10 day roadtrip around Northern(ish) California in late June/early July of 2014. I used Trip Advisor extensively in selecting hotels for this adventure. This review is part of that vacation. This was the first night of our 10 day road trip. Lake Tahoe was going to be a brief stop on our trip and I wanted somewhere OK but didn't want to spend a lot on it because we were not going to be there that long. The room appeared to have been renovated recently but it was a somewhat sloppy job. The bathroom had a nice sink but no counter space. The bed was ok but nothing special. One of the biggest problems for me was the door. It had a decorative fan window which allows the light from the outside porch lights to come through. Had to cover it with some pillowcases. The parking was tight, at least where were in the main building near the office. I think we only paid $59 for the night so it was OK for that price just passing through. If you're staying longer than that, I'd look elsewhere I think.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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90 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
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English first
Santa Rosa, California
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2014

My son had an ice hockey camp in SLT so we needed a place to stay Sunday through Friday. The Blue Jay seemed to fit the bill at only $44/night which was to include free WiFi, parking and breakfast. With just the two of us traveling, we didn't need anything fancy, just a clean place to sleep. This place is far from fancy, but is definitely clean. I'm not one that likes my room cleaned each day but they checked in with me each day to make sure I had what I needed (T.P., clean towels, etc.) One day I forgot to put the Do Not Disturb sign out in the afternoon and they cleaned, made the bed, refreshed the towels, etc. It is very close to Lakeside Beach, 5 minute walk at most and they give you free access as a guest. If you opt to take loads of stuff and need to drive, parking is $1 per half hour, maximum $10 per day. Lodge has a pool, but it was drained during our stay. I didn't inquire about it because we had no interest in swimming (very small pool too). The lodge is very nicely located at State Line, you can walk to all casinos (Harvey's is across the street) and to the Heavenly shops and gondola. We stayed 5 nights and were quite happy. We had a small fridge/freezer and a microwave, The fridge was perfect so I could pack my son a lunch each day instead of eating crap at the ice arena and I was able to keep ice packs in the freezer. The room did not have a dresser to unpack your items, which didn't bother me. I rarely unpack at a hotel anyway. The toilet & shower were in one room, sink in another and a separate closet with safe, hangers and luggage rack. There was no outlet near the table and chairs so I had to use my laptop on the bed to be able to plug it in, a little inconvenient. The door has a half moon with frosted glass but the light at nigh still pours in which was a little annoying. Overall, I'm very pleased with our stay especially for the price. I would stay here again.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Sacramento
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2014

Took our family to see the fireworks at Lakeside Beach on the 4th of July in South Lake Tahoe. Rooms are very hard to come by but the price of $347 for two queen beds was ridiculous although normal price dfor a Friday night appears to be just a little less! Old hotel, no sound-proofing in the walls or ceilings (we could hear everyone around us and I am sure that they could hear us!), no black out drapes so we were awakened at the crack of dawn by the glaring sun light. Only contact with staff was at the front desk and she was very pleasant. Beds were reasonably comfortable. For the price, I would pay a little more and stay at a casino!

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

Pros:
Comfy bed (3 beds in the room!! Imagine 6 adults for $80! Bargain!) Clean sheets and towels. Low price. Close to restaurants etc. We walked down to the lake (10-15mins) and watched the sunset.

Cons:
Not many parking spots where our room was (back of hotel). Dated decor and bedding pattern but who cares!

Overall:
Had no major issues! Perfect if you just want a cheap, clean place to stop overnight.

Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
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Sacramento, CA
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
76 helpful votes 76 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2014

Booked the Blue Jay Lodge for one night for a quick trip to Tahoe enroute to Reno. After much difficulty deciding whether or not to stay there due to some of the reviews, we "gambled" and booked with the Blue Jay Lodge online through a company called Global Hotel Exchange. We got the room for $33 for the night. We were checked in quickly and with no problems. We stayed in a room downstairs. Parking was right in front of our room, so unloading our car was a breeze. The Lodge is in an excellent location, a small, short walk to the back entrance of Harvey's. The room was quite large which was a pleasant surprise. We booked for one queen bed, but were given two queens - nice.. We noticed more than a few tube TV's waiting to be picked up in front of the lodge, and we were pleased to see a nice LG flat screen tv in our room, with complimentary cable. Walking into the room, there was a small table and two chairs against the wall, followed by a mini fridge/freezer combo - very nice to have - and a microwave. There was also a coffee maker. Next to that was a small armoir which housed the flat screen TV, and a couple of drawers underneath it, followed by a cabinet with ample storage - perfect for a long-term stay if you were to have food/snacks to prepare in the microwave. The bathroom was small, and lacking any decor - it was I guess what you would call "clinical" - white counter, mirror, sink, floor - no color - but clean. The shower was tile with a shower curtain - and ours was a walk-in. We did not use the shower that evening as we showered before arriving, and did not use it in the morning because we checked out and went swimming at the lake (showered later at another hotel), so I don't know about water, etc, but it was an well-used shower. The tile has not worn well with use, and it's clean, for sure, but not inviting. It would be nice to have shower mats. There is a light/fan switch and it's pretty loud, but since it is a small bathroom, a good fan is required. Shampoo/conditioner/lotion came in small packets in the bathroom instead of small bottles we are usually accustomed to, but I like the cost-saving idea.
the closet area is well hidden around a corner of the back wall, and that was kind of neat, and there were two luggage stands and ample space between the bed and the wall to set them up, and an outlet. The room itself is well appointed in color and wall decor, and the beds were very comfortable as well as the pillows. The carpet is old, but fairly clean. The carpet leading up to the bathroom is badly frayed, but who cares - I didn't. Between 7am - 9am there is complimentary coffee, as well as a box of safeway danishes, and three different types of cereal, milk and orange juice. Didn't need to use the coffeemaker because we just walked a few feet to the Lodge reception area to access these treats. Thank you for offering it! We had a quiet night - no loud tenants, decent looking folks staying there - and we would definitely stay again. They offer complimentary access to the beach down the street - however, they charge $2.00/hour for parking. You could walk, but plan to bring something to cart your beach items there. We just opted to go to the public beach at the end of Lakeview Drive - down the street from El Dorado Beach. Free parking, water access, a park, snack bar and bathrooms. We know about that little secret because we've stayed in a condo on that street before. Quite a little gem, as parking most places now is no longer free, and residential parking now requires a permit.

CRITICISMS:
Minor ones - but really just some advice:
1) The doors to the room are really cute. They have the fanned out window on top like a door on a private home - nice decorative touch and feel; except at night, the outside lights poured in through that little window which made it difficult to sleep without putting covers or a pillow over my head. I need a dark room to sleep in. If you stay here - bring some tape and cover the window at night with a newspaper to block out the light. At least that happened in room 116.

2) The ceiling light and the bedside light are on the same circuit. You can turn the bedside light on/off manually, but the ceiling light stays on. If you turn the ceiling light off by the wall switch, the bedside lamp won't work. We only wanted the bedside lamp on, and not the ceiling light. We just unplugged the bedside lamp and moved it to the table and plugged it in there and were able to have that soft light without the bright ceiling light on. If the owner can figure out how to correct that, all will be good. Of course, that left us without a reading lamp, but we just didn't read.

We realized we left something in the room two days later, and I called and left a message on the answering machine, but I have not received a call back. Stuff is probably gone, and can be replaced at some cost to us, but it would have been nice to get a call back.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Concord, California
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 8, 2014

I booked this on priceline, as non-refundable, as I was planning a motorcycle trip to the area. The trip didn't work out, so I scheduled some work in the area. The motel is older, but they appear to be gradually upgrading it. The room was clean, bed was softer than normal, but it was ok, there was a flat screen tv, microwave, refrigerator, coffee maker and hair dryer in the room. The carpet was clean and so were the linens. I feel I got a good deal at $42/night total with tax, but I see some people got rooms for $28, they may have not included the tax. All of the electrical outlets and lamps worked. The heater/ac unit appeared to be fairly new. The coffee and end tables were older and worn, which didn't really bother me, but that could easily be remedied by lighting sanding and applying a finish, that would still give it the rustic look. Some of the edges were almost ready to splinter. The porcelin sink was cracked. Everything worked and the place was clean. There was one weird thing where the doors were open at the top for light to come in, a type of door that you would see in your residential home. Either they got a good price on these doors or maybe they thought they would bring light in. Due to the parking lot lights left on, there was a glare of light that went directly into my eyes while I was sleeping. The parking lot was worn and cracked, but I guess that is typical for Tahoe due to the snow and cold of winter and heat in the summer. This room was fine for me, I just need a place to stay that is clean and safe and to sleep. The price was very reasonable. I would book if you can get it for $40 or so a night with tax and fees included. They had a continental breakfast, cereal, coffee, and pastries. I did not have the continental breakfast, but the coffee was good. I gave it 4 stars, cause it had a lot of amenities and the price was good. I think it is above average, but would not say excellent.

Room Tip: talk to the front desk about the lights going into the room, maybe they can adjust the floodlights i...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bethel Island, California
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 11, 2014

After reading review after review I was feeling hesitant! I booked this hotel through Priceline 2 months in advance at $28 a night, an unbelievable deal! I'm actually sitting here in the room as I am typing this as I am wrapping up a weekend stay here. I really don't understand these other reviewers AT ALL! They are ridiculous! We stayed in room #120, our room was really big with 2 queen beds, fridge, microwave and coffee maker. The bathroom is older, I guess....the toilet was not loud as indicated by other reviewers. The TV is an older tube type, not sure of channels since the only channel that we watched was the Disney Channel, I mean WHO comes here to watch TV?

The motel is located one block away from Harrah's and Harvey's and a short walk to Heavenly Village. Our room was located in the front on Cedar St. but after reading all the negative reviews about the rooms located on Manzanita, I decided to do a little investigating and I didn't see anything wrong with that area! This is a highly concentrated area of small motels-they are everywhere-there is nothing "safer" about being on Cedar as opposed to Manzanita because right across on Manzanita is more motels-it is very wooded so it is a little darker, not much direct sun.

Nothing seemed any dirtier or smellier than any other motel I've ever stayed at, if you are a snob, do yourself and everyone a favor and stay at one of the resorts on Lake Tahoe Blvd. so you will not slander these struggling motels! Either way the parking lot was pretty full so regardless of the negative reviews, this place still seems to be thriving....

The continental breakfast consisted of cereals, juice, fruits, coffee and donuts/pastries in Safeway boxes, which my family didn't have any problem with! If you are wanting a resort, staying here would be a waste of time, but if you are looking for a nice place to lay your head between your adventures, this motel is more than adequate! And if you are as fortunate as I was to book at great price than you should have absolutely NOTHING negative to say!

Reading other reviews stating that this is the worst experience in South Lake Tahoe is laughable and comparing this motel to motels in very poor countries is completely slanderous! One of my absolute favorite things to do is go to a motel that receives poor reviews and debunk all of the lies and this visit did not disappoint me at all! I would be more than happy to stay here again!

Budget travelers BOOK WITH CONFIDENCE because budget travelers aren't expecting resort amenities! Bring food for the fridge and microwave, especially if you are not a fan of donuts LOL!

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
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Additional Information about Blue Jay Lodge

Address: 4133 Cedar Avenue, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150
Location: United States > California > Lake Tahoe (California) > South Lake Tahoe
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #51 of 70 Hotels in South Lake Tahoe
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Blue Jay Lodge 2*
Number of rooms: 64
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Blue Jay Hotel South Lake Tahoe
Blue Jay Motel

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