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“Magical and relaxing!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Diamond John's Riverside Retreat

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Diamond John's Riverside Retreat
81 Roy Road, Murfreesboro, AR 71958   |  
Hotel amenities
Fort Smith, Arkansas
1 review
“Magical and relaxing!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 15, 2012

We have traveled the world and this past week we decided to once again take a vacation in our home state. We wanted to take our 5 year old son digging for diamonds and chose to stay at Diamond Jim's-----what a gem! We stayed in a tee-pee right on the river and each night a pony would visit with us and our dog at the camp site. We were also visited by peacocks and geese. There were goats, cats, kittens, and a very friendly dog. It was like a free-range zoo and my son was thrilled and tickled with the interactions. There were several boats available and we went fishing on the river the first night. The last morning we saw a bald eagle on the river. There was air hockey, ping pong, a hot tub, an aquarium, plenty of available firewood, new grills at each site, and two full baths for persons staying in the tee-pees. Claire and John were friendly, laid-back hosts. John went above and beyond by taking our son for a 9pm flashlit seach for gemstones. This was a great family stay and we are planning on going back and including our 6 year old niece!

Room Tip: There is a tree house that looks inviting and we would like to stay there next time. We also peeked...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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155 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 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 (21)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Florence, Missouri, United States
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2012

I have stayed at Diamond John's twice now. Both times where a blast. The teepees are a fun experience. I would recommend the teepee for a family with children...they will never forget it. I liked the experience even though my kids are grown and I went with friends. The animals are great. I have never seen a peacock that will come right up to you and almost let you touch it. They are very noisy but it didn't seem to bother my sleep. You can hear everything in the teepee but that made the experience that much more memorable. The first time I was there two of the the cats seems to fall in love with me and were always waiting on me when I went outside to sit. They loved being petted. The second time I had a goose and peacock that followed me. The goose will peck a you but he doesn't peck hard and John told me he was trying to protect me. The mornings by the river gave me some great pictures and the animals would come right up to you. I have several pictures of the peacock. I have stayed in both the teepee and the cabin. The teepee is not for someone who expects the ritz while on vacation. However if you expect to rough it some then you will not be disappointed with a vacation at Diamond John's. The cabin I was in is the perfect size for one or two people. There are not alot of amenities but I was not looking for that. I was looking for a memorable vacation and that is what I got. I would recommend anyone try it at least once.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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
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Walnut Ridge, Arkansas
2 reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2012

Terrible doesn't begin to describe it! The teepee's smelled like moldy cat urine that someone had tried to cover up with a cheap spray. Our beds where soaking wet because the teepee had holes in it at the top and bottom. The kayak and conoe that I had promised my son I would teach him how to do was no where in site. Well I wouldn't call standing in one spot behind the caretakers house and everytime you get on you have to go ask for the password which she puts into your computer wifi. The free mining supplies that they offer was a broken bucket and shovel! Oh and I can't forget the fact that the bathroom door didn't have a lock If everything I have said it's bad enough then you have to deal with someone that's rude and honestly doesn't want to talk to yoj so she usually doesn't answer the door.

Room Tip: !" Go somewhere else"
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oklahoma City
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2011

SERIOUS FUN! 3 Adults and 4 kids ages 4-11, stayed in the BIG Teepee for 2 nights, over Thanksgiving weekend and had a blast. This is the type of get-a-way that your children will always remember. My kids loved all the animals, canoeing and the night time gem hunt. Diamond John is a genuinely nice man who will give you a tour of the property and the low- down on digging for diamonds.
The property is well kept, and bathrooms were clean.
We will be back!

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Katy, Texas
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2011

My family and I stayed here on Thanksgiving and the day after. We had a wonderful time from the start. The owners took the time to give us a tour and show us everything that is included in our stay. We rented the tree house and loved it. We had plenty of privacy and room.

My kids loved the canoe, and kayak. The many various animals on the property kept us pleasant company. We had our first camp fire Thanksgiving dinner and it was great! We enjoyed the next day searching for diamonds. Each night Diamond John does a night search for gems with the kids, taking the time to explain many different things to the children. John and his wife are down to earth good people. We will be back again for sure.

  • Stayed November 2011, 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
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Rogers, Arkansas
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2011

Pampered camping at it's best! We stayed in a wonderful cabin, next we want to stay in a teepee, then the tree-house cabin - maybe even the bed & breakfast :) We had such a great time, enjoyed the grounds, the cabin, kayaking, canoeing, the animals, and the couple who own this place are so warm, friendly, and really nice - couldn't ask for better. A special big thank you to Miss Shirley - you're the best!!

Room Tip: Book early!! This is a great place! Got any Cub Scouts? Girl Scouts? This is an excellent place fo...
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, TX
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2011

Let me start by saying that the grounds/location are nice, it's a pretty spot. But it's too bad that the accomodations are less than nice. Cabins and tents were moldy, cabins were basically storage sheds with room air conditioners, bathrooms were disgusting.

Everyone who comments that this is camping, well, the rates are not camping rates. The rates are those of a standard hotel/motel chain, and with the hotels you get comfy beds, clean linens, amenities, maybe a continental breakfast. At Diamond John's you get none of that. You get an uncomfortable night's sleep (mattresses were lumpy and pillows were very thin) in a grubby location and not much else.

This part of Arkansas is pretty and we will be back, but we will be steering clear of this place.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Diamond John's Riverside Retreat

Address: 81 Roy Road, Murfreesboro, AR 71958
Location: United States > Arkansas > Murfreesboro
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 6 Specialty Lodging in Murfreesboro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Camping and other lodging next to Diamonds State Park. Lodging options include B&B in a log home, cabins, tipis. Activities include fishing, paddleboats, kayaks, petting zoo, water slide, picnicking, and horseshoes. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Diamond John`s Riverside Retreat Hotel Murfreesboro

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