We've been to Durango many times over the past 30 years. Stayed several places there from camping to motels and hotels in downtown Durango. The WORST was The General Palmer! The BEST was our last two stays at the Strater. Great! Some folks don't understand what to expect from a historic hotel. It won't be the Park Plaza or even a HI-Express. IT IS OLD. And that's the charm. The Starter folks seem to have tried to update the hotel commensurate with the original charm. Not so at the General Palmer.
We are going to Durango again in October and look forward to staying at the Strater. Not going to ride the train again - been there and done that three times - but I can walk out down the street from the Strater and see that big 'ole steam engine belching smoke as it pulls out for Silverton.
I grill a pretty mean steak, but one of the best I have ever had was at the Mahogany Grill. The pear and walnut salad is no slouch.
Depends on what you expect from a historic hotel how you'll react to your stay. Martha and I have stayed at many historic hotels across the country and the Strater is one of the best. (Only The Grand Hotel on Macinac Is. is superior - so to speak!)