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“Location - Location - Location” 4 of 5 stars
Review of South Pier Inn on the Canal

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South Pier Inn on the Canal
701 South Lake Ave, Duluth, MN 55802   |  
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Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 32 hotels in Duluth
Apple Valley, Minnesota
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Location - Location - Location”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2013

This hotel is located right on Lake Superior and is a stones throw from the Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge. We booked our room using TripAdvisor and Priceline. We were told when we checked in that the room I requested was not available. While the hotel upgraded us to a larger room, I was disappointed that we didn't get the room I'd asked for.

Everything about this hotel is simple. It is configured into town house style rooms that can be adjoined to allow for different combinations of spaces. All have outside entries and balcony's or patios lakeside. Our room faced the shipping harbor and was literally 10 feet from the shore. The common spaces were efficiently furnished. Coffee service was available all day. Just enough parking for everyone.

Our room was furnished for someone on vacation. No business traveler need apply. Couch, a couple of chairs, coffee table and console furnished the main room. A DVD player was on the mantle of the gas fireplace. The kitchen had a microwave, sink and fridge. The whirlpool was in the main room and was clean and inviting. The huge windows offered lots of light and a beautiful view of the lake. The separate bedroom was simply furnished and faced the parking lot.

I spent a lot of time on the little patio outside our room. It was very private, peaceful and offered the best view of the ships entering the harbor.

While we could hear the bridge bells and some walking around from those staying above us, the room was quiet overall.

Breakfast was good. Pastries, fruit, cereal, yogurt, juice and coffee.

I would look forward to staying at this hotel again. It has been a long time since I have stayed in a hotel that reminded me to take it easy, unplug, and enjoy the simplicity of a clean, comfortable room. The lake was a bonus.

  • Stayed July 2013, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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221 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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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
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (72)
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Missouri
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
39 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

This was a great choice for us, because I was absolutely fascinated by the Aerial Lift Bridge. The room was very comfortable, we stayed in a Queen Bed Waterfront Suite (which wasn't really a suite, but as comfortable as one) and it was good size. We loved the tub in the room, and the balcony, and the windows overlooking the harbor. Oh, and it was nice having the mini-fridge, and the coffee (in-room and with continental breakfast) was great!

We stayed three nights. The hotel was easy walking distance to restaurants in Canal Park, and walking to the places we ate downtown was feasible, but we chose to drive (a little chilly). I really rate this as one of the best places I've stayed in terms of suiting our tastes and being wonderfully relaxing.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Andover, Massachusetts
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

My husband & I stayed here for 3 nights and were very lucky.
I selected it based on price and location to the beach.
The rooms were large, spotless and had very comfortable beds & pillows.
The front desk staff is very friendly and knowledgeable about the area.
They asked each day what our plans were and made recommendations that added to seeing the area.

(THIS IS WHERE IT GETS LONG)
The highlight for me, being a garden lover, was 2 houses that faced the bay. One of the home owners was sitting on her deck with her husband. I went closer to tell her how beautiful her garden was. She immediately came over and started telling me about the garden she and her neighbor shared across from the bay. They hauled in some tremendous rocks and lots of hand picked smaller rocks. Together they planted fruit trees, perennials and annuals timed perfectly for staggered blooming.
The last night of my stay I went to say good bye, but she was not out.
The next morning when I went into the breakfast area there she was sitting at a table talking to someone. I sat at the next table. I heard a few things that made me curious. I had to ask, if she owned the Inn to which she replied yes.
She had no idea when we met, I was a guest at the inn. She was so lovely and proud of her gardens. That is how her staff is trained and that is how her inn is kept.
I would recommend to anyone going to Deluth to stay here.

Room Tip: Any room with a balcony facing the water.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013

We had the panoramic suite for our first two nights in Duluth and it was heavenly! Hot tub, fireplace, balcony facing the canal to watch the big ships go in and out. Room was very nice, bed comfortable and staff fantastic. Only drawback there isn't much for a breakfast-just coffee and a donut-but it is within walking distance of restaurants. And the view more than makes up for anything!

  • Stayed May 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.
Twin Cities, MN
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2013

We stayed in the "Grand Panoramic Corner Suite – Upper" (corner unit). Fortunately we had good weather, and were able to take full advantage of the balcony. Unit is very nice and spacious, with great views. In addition to binoculars, we had a telescope in our room, as well as books about the area, ships, birds, etc. We liked that the hotel is off of Canal Park, though just a short walk across the lift bridge. It is surprisingly quiet, despite being so close to the bridge. The ships' horns in the middle of the night did wake us up a couple of times, but that's to be expected, I guess. The only thing missing was stemware and a plate or two to enjoy our in-room picnic that we brought with us.
We don't typically spend this kind of money on hotels, but this splurge was worth every penny.

Room Tip: Room 602 is the upper corner unit.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 4 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.
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2013

Very nice , clean, friendly staff, rooms are large very nice layout separate bedroom from rest of room, great view of bay, the only negative is the side windows, not sure what architect was thinking when they designed, it takes a little privacy away, but you know close your door shade and you' ll be fine. A bit pricey booking last minute on a Saturday but I guess that's to be expected.

Room Tip: We had 801 and it was very nice
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  • Stayed June 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
    • 4 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.
Albertville
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2013

We celebrated our 25th anniversary here. The room was very clean which is important to me.
We had a 2nd floor room by the lift bridge. I was surprised to see binoculars by the window which my husband liked. Including robes is a nice touch. The bed was very comfortable and the 2 person jacuzzi was great. Having a balcony was nice also to see the lift bridge operate and all the boats that were out on Sunday. The only thing I could think of to improve on would be the breakfast. Most hotels now offer a hot breakfast. We will definitely stay here again.

Room Tip: Rooms on the 2nd floor with a harbor view or canal view. The view is great!!
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.

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Additional Information about South Pier Inn on the Canal

Address: 701 South Lake Ave, Duluth, MN 55802
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Minnesota > Duluth
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Ski-In / Ski-Out Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Duluth
#2 Best Value Hotel in Duluth
#4 Family Hotel in Duluth
#15 Business Hotel in Duluth
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located at the foot of the Aerial Lift Bridge adjacent to Canal Park, South Pier Inn is Duluth's premier shipwatching hotel. Our 20 waterfront suites each feature a whirlpool, fireplace and private balcony, offering breathtaking views of the Duluth harbor or ship canal. This family-owned property offers the amenities you'd expect in a much larger hotel, yet provides the level of service and attention to detail you'd only find in a smaller establishment. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
South Pier Inn On The Canal Hotel Duluth
South Pier Duluth
South Pier Inn Duluth

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