Tenaya Lodge is an outstanding lodge. We chose to stay in the 'lodge' quarters of the hotel for a relaxing experience. We were there throughout the christmas break of 2011 and were unlucky as there was no snow which is atypical of Fish Camp at that time of year. Check the snow reports if you plan on going during snow season.
From the moment your drive your car through the lodge you are greeted with friendly valet/bell boys only too happy to help you and your luggage to your front desk. From there we were quickly checked-in and escorted to our room. The bell boy gave us a quick orientation to the room and the services on the study desk. He opened the windows to reveal the most spectacular views of the forrest.
Being one of our honeymoon stops the hotel delivered a welcome gift of bubblies which was a pleasant surprise. We were able to swap it for apple cider on the spot given we do not drink :)
The hotel room was well maintained, bed was comfortable, bathroom and accessories were just as you expect from a quality hotel. There was also a drip coffee machine in the room with decaf options too. The cupboard space was good and there was an iron in there too along with extra pillows and blankets. The TV had a plethora of cable channels to choose from too.
This hotel is a self-contained hotel with all amenities, including its own convenience store. We were able to purchase snacks for a picnic lunch at Yosemite National Park which was an hours drive away. Our half-day trip allowed us to see the main sights such as El Captain, Half Dome and the majestic Sequoia tress in Mariposa as well as the various lakes in the area. We rented our own Jeep from SF to give us the flexibility to explore at our own pace which is something I would recommend in the area. I am glad we stayed at fish camp because the main park at yosemite was dull and lifeless with limited food options.
Things to do:
We were able to book a day hiking trip through the concierge which I would highly recommend to get in touch with nature. This was approximately 2 hrs and customised to our needs. We also booked spa treatments at ASCENT Spa which were extremely relaxing. I had the best french manicure by far and to date I still wish I could go back for more!
We also booked our ice skating tickets here in the hotel's very own ice-skating rink. This was a very cosy rink that was a popular favourite for all ages.
There is an indoor pool that is large and heated that adjoins to an entertainment quarter with lots of games machines and a pool table. This was a popular, yet not crowded, area.
The restaurant choices within the hotel are only steps away from the reception and under the same roof. We reserved a romantic dinner at Embers through the concierge which was a very memorable experience. Try make a reservation early so you could get a spot near the fireplace. The food and service was impeccable. Do not pass the lobster bisque if it is on the menu!
Buffet breakfast was plentiful at Sierra restaurant and hearty with a mix of hot and cold options. Waiters are attentive and frequently refill your cup with freshly brewed coffee.
Timberloft Pizzeria makes amazing gourmet pizzas and some great salads too. My husband ordered over the phone for pick up only to realise it was a small walk away from the hotel. One of the bell boys offered to give him a lift to the pizzeria to pick up the food and dropped him off at the hotel again.
In the lobby they had complimentary hot chocolate with marshmallows which we found very comforting to drink beside the fireplace.
They have a small convenience store and a gift shop with lots of souvenirs that are reasonably priced. We purchased a few unframed photographs that were absolutely spectacular. The store also has various clothes such as hats, mittens, scarves etc.
Overall the experience was a very memorable one and I cannot recommend it enough. If you want a place to relax, unwind with great food and a variety of leisure activities then this is certainly the place for you. I am planning a second trip here over the next few weeks and hopefully there will be snow this time :)