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“Loved it....but just not sure” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Sonnenalp

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Sonnenalp
4.5 of 5 Resort   |   20 Vail Road, Vail, CO 81657   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 35 Hotels in Vail
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Maryland
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Loved it....but just not sure”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2013

I spent a lot of time choosing a hotel for a weekend getaway. I wanted to be in the lap of luxury but didn't want to spend over $850-$900/night. I settled on the Sonnenalp because of the reviews of the service.

The good: Indeed the service was stellar. From the moment I made the reservation, the concierge was in contact with me to ensure all of our needs were taken care of (bed choice, dinner reservations, ski rental, spa appointments, directions, etc). Every employee wanted to help you. Every question was answered politely. Every need was catered to. The maid service actually cleaned the room. Bathrooms are beautiful with GREAT towels. The breakfast buffet was delicious and the dining room was beautiful (especially with snow). Water, ice and cookies delivered everyday. I've heard wonderful things about the spa but we didn't have time to try it out.

So, why not 5 stars? Well... The rooms aren't glamourous. Honestly, it might be time for a remodeling. Or maybe it's just a matter of taste. The Sonnenalp is more of a European feel than an American Four Seasons. So think stark white, plastered walls and basic pine furniture with solid fabrics. While the rooms were large and it was awesome to have a fireplace, the decor is basic and sparse. I got really, really tired of the print carpeting all over the entire hotel. Also, they upgraded our suite which was nice, but the suite they gave us was on 2 floors. Again, a plus and a minus. Nice to have extra space but climbing downstairs in the middle of the nights after a few drinks was rough. Plus, the upstairs was so tiny, I felt like I was sleeping in my grandma's attic.

On a very personal note, I really didn't like the help's uniforms. I found the peasant style dresses embarrassing.

Last, this property is not ski-in, ski-out. You have to walk about 3 blocks to their "club" which is in the basement of a ski shop. There you store your shoes and things while you ski and at night you store your skies. The hotel is central to the restaurants and shopping, just not to skiing. Not many hotels in Vail are slopeside.

In conclusion, I probably wouldn't stay there again because I personally enjoy a more modern hotel but I would suggest it to others based on the incredible service and nice bathrooms.

Room Tip: They appear to have lots of room styles. I would call to make the reservation if you have special n...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jfaessler, Owner at Sonnenalp, responded to this review, February 22, 2013
Thank you for your stay and comments.
We strive for an authentic european look and feel at the Sonnenalp. Purposefully distinct from many modern and trendy hotels.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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523 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (116)
Date | Rating
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English first
Doncaster, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
68 helpful votes 68 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2013

Stayed at the Sonnenalp for 10 days in February 2013 (ski-ing trip with my wife). Very hard to find fault with the place - check in was swift and friendly (thanks for the room upgrade), then escorted to our room and the heating / appliances etc were explained. A nice touch was the humidifier which isn't always supplied in hotel rooms in Vail but is desperately needed. We had booked a basic room but were upgraded to a mini suite which was really lovely - comfy chairs and a fireplace. We also had a small balcony which was useful for chilling wine. There is a walk-in wardrobe; the special feature of the rooms is the bathroom - huge, underfloor heating, double vanities, separate shower and large tub.
Breakfast is taken in Ludwig's, the a la carte restaurant. There is a wide selection of hot & cold dishes with a particularly good fruit selection. But the best feature of breakfast is the service - OK it's a buffet, but the servers are all very attentive and will bring you coffee, juice etc. We never had to search for a server to bring a coffee refill - it was always done before you even thought of it.
There are 2 on site evening restaurants - Ludwigs which is a fine dining fish speciality: unfortunately we didn't eat there this time. The alternative is the Bully Ranch - pub style, very american, good solid food but beware of portion size: it would be wise to order appetisers first and then see if you have the stomach for a main course. If you want apres ski, there is a pianist in the bar in the afternoon and usually a singing act in the evening.
The Sonnenalp is a 5-10minute walk to the ski slopes. You could take the in town (free) bus to the Vail Village stop although you would still need to walk a little to the slopes from here. Most guests are happy to walk from the hotel as skis and boots are stored at the Bridge Haus just 50 metres from the snow front. The Bridge Haus is a full service ski concierge which really makes the holiday - the guys there are just fantastic. Your skis and boots appear by magic in the morning (boots are stored on driers) and they always have a friendly word. The best ski concierge we have had in 30 years of skiing.
There is a spa complex with indoor/outdoor pool, hot tubs, steam room, sauna and gym. My wife and I both had a massage - very professional, effective, relaxing; unfortunately, the price reflects that you're in a five star hotel.
Vail has many new swish five star hotels but I don't think that many could match the Sonnenalp for service, facilities and old world charm (and price). Can't wait to return.

Room Tip: Go for a mini suite, especially if staying more than a weekend
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Colorado
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
59 helpful votes 59 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013

This is the second time we have stayed at Sonnenalp and it continues to be the real gem of Colorado ski areas. This is boutique luxury, not to be confused with the huge, overly expensive assembly line hotels, Four Seasons, Ritz! A very comfortable physical plant is complimented by a beautifully trained staff that is always helpful, friendly and just plain pleasant! The Sonnenalp has a ski valet service wherein their elves take all of your ski equipment to an affiliate at the base of the ski lift where they will be waiting for you the next morning. After one of Sonnenalp’s beautiful buffet breakfasts you can take a walk of about three blocks to the life where you will find your ski equipment in a nice, warm ski shop with the coffee ready for you to enjoy while you put on your boots. Now, you can walk the fifty feet to the ski lift and you are off for the day. When you are done skiing, you leave all of your equipment at the same place and it will be there the next day if you ski, if not, the elves will return you stuff to Sonnenalp where it will be ready for check-out. If skiing got any easier than this, you would have to do it without getting out of bed! Did I mention the bathroom floors are heated, or the wonderful outdoor hot tub and indoor and outdoor combo swimming pool? Sonnenalp continues to be a real Colorado gem. Enjoy!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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.
Virginia
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2013 via mobile

Went on a girls ski weekend and had a great time at Sonnenalp! The service was wonderful- everyone is so helpful and friendly. The hotel is so beautiful and comfortable- drinks in the lounge, Ludwigs where breakfast is served, the ski valet at the base of the mountain and the amazing spa. We all had several spa services- best ever! The spa is a great place to hang out, enjoy the hot tubs, pool an lounge area. Can't think of anything I'd change about our Sonnenalp experience.

Stayed January 2013
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Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2013

Service is the key to success at this multi-generational hotel in Vail Village. From the check-in experience forward, the Sonnenalp delivers. spa, restaurants, concierge,Bellmen and bar make this hotel a charm. I would definitely return!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 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.
Florida
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2013

This was our fouirth stay and it is the best hotel I have stayed in, including many good ones in NYC and San Francisco.

The owner is everywhere making sure all is perfect. The staff are well trained. The view from the breakfast buffet overlooks Gore Creek and the beauty of the hotel. Food is superb, and somewhat pricey but in line with top of the class. Dinner can be casual or formal,and the property is kid friendly.

Room Tip: views Creekside are best
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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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Jakarta, Indonesia
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2013

We stayed at the residence that is owned by the Sonnenalp and had an excellent stay! The concierge was very helpful considering that this is our first trip to Vail.

The property itself is actually a time-share/fractional but it is run by the Sonnenalp. Location is paramount as it's located right in the center of everything. All the restaurants and movie theater (the best one I've been too in the US and most probably the most expensive food sold in movie theaters) is less than a 2 minute walk.

The decor of the apartments have a very American cabin feel to it but it's super new. Everything from light switches to TV to fireplace is controlled using an iPad looking thing. Everything is brand new... and super clean. The only complain I would have is that the bed is a tad too soft for my taste. We went to see other places but it didn't have the same feel as "One Willow" did....

I'm so glad I chose this place and I would highly recommend it to anyone staying in Vail. I would definitely go back when I visit Vail....

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sonnenalp

Address: 20 Vail Road, Vail, CO 81657
Location: United States > Colorado > Vail
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Vail
#2 Luxury Hotel in Vail
#3 Business Hotel in Vail
#3 Family Hotel in Vail
#4 Romantic Hotel in Vail
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Sonnenalp 4.5*
Number of rooms: 127
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sonnenalp is a unique hotel in Vail, Colorado renowned for personal service and genuine, family-run hospitality. Enjoy world-class amenities and conveniences in the heart of Vail Village. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sonnenalp Resort Of Vail Hotel Vail
Sonnenalp Hotel Vail
Sonnenalp Resort Vail

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