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“Needs Updating!” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Solbakken Resort

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Solbakken Resort
4874 W Hwy 61, Lutsen, MN 55612   |  
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Hotel amenities
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Alpine Packages Available
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Needs Updating!”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2012

We spent 4 nights at Solbakken in one of the Villas, attached to the lodge. Our villa had 2 bedrooms, a small kitchen and a fireplace The setting was very nice, near the lakeshore, with windows and a deck overlooking the other cabins closer to the shore.
The unit seemed to be clean but very dated and needs lots of fixing and updates. The furniture was quite worn, the smoke detector was hanging from the ceiling by its wires, the towels were very old and ragged and the heat would not shut off in one of the bedrooms. The handy man looked at the problem and said "I think someone else complained about this. I can't shut it off. You can just open the window when it gets too hot." (We did but it was December so it was very cold!) He also tucked the smoke detector up into the ceiling tiles and said he'd bring a new one later. It was still broken when we left 4 days later!
The employees were friendly and helped us when we asked questions. Too bad they are letting the place get so run down. It could be a very nice resort with some repairs and updates.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Margie D, Front Office Manager at Solbakken Resort, responded to this review, March 12, 2014
Note to anyone reading these old reviews. As of June 2013, we have new owners and management, who are working hard to update the property. Some of the changes are new mattresses, bedding, kitchen towels and TV's. We are now using a linen service for sheets and bathroom towels. Landscaping is being done while still keeping the natural North Shore look. Repairs are being made promptly and we have a schedule for upgrades. Old carpeting is slowly being removed and furniture replaced as the budget allows. There is lots to be done, but long time guests are noticing the improvements and making positive comments. We really care about our guests and want everyone to have a great time!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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57 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    31
    18
    4
    2
    2
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19
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4
Business
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
New Ulm, Minnesota
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2011

We just spent three nights in cabin #4. It is a newly undated 2 bedroom cabin right on the lake. It was so relaxing to hear the sounds of the waves crashing against the shore line. We took our two boys whom had a great timing climbing and playing on the rocky shore line. It was a perfect location for us. We were close to all the parks and great hiking trails. We did not spend much time in the main lodge area but it looked very nice and relaxing. The cabin was small but we all felt cozy and very comfortable in it. We went late in October and needed the heat on which felt great in the cabin. Made it feel like a true north woods cabin. it was great to come back to the cabin and relax at night, play games and enjoy the peace and serenity of the big lake! We would absolutely stay there again!

Room Tip: The cabins were great, never saw the rooms in the lodge. The motel looked a bit rough.
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 30, 2011

We've been coming to The North Shore for 20some years and this was the first place we ever stayed. We don't come back every year, but when we want some quiet down-time it is the perfect spot. It is a throwback in time with teeny cabins and the soothing sounds of the pounding Lake Superior waves. Great rock hounding and reflective time on the smooth rock shore. It is close enough to stores, but you still feel like you are away from it all. The rooms are well kept for their age and if you don't want anything fancy, you'll love it here. Book early though!

  • Stayed October 2010, 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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MN
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2011

Our daughter introduced us to this family-owned resort with 3 distinct types of lodging on the grounds - motel rooms, cabins & suites in the main lodge. It is all very rustic, with homey furnishings. Our 3 room suite sleeps up to six, had a working fireplace (wood provided) with a full kitchen including oven & compact dishwasher. While we could hear Highway 61 traffic, the sound of the lake was louder. Our windows looked out on the woods & the lake below, with a deck & grill. The sauna & hot tub were right upstairs, as was the lodge living room with games, books & wi-fi access.

Room Tip: Try to stay on the back side of the lodge or in one of the lake front cabins to minimize traffic noi...
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 15, 2011

I enjoyed my stay in Lutsen. The Solbakken has some definite pros, but more cons.

Pros:
-Real wood fireplace in the suite
-Decent beds
-Bedrooms were clean
-Nice space for a 2-bedroom suite (kitchenette, dining area and living room all in one. Definitely big enough for the 4 of us comfortably)
-Kitchen had enough to get by

Cons:
-No hot water in the showers
-Coffee pot leaked horribly
-Heat in the rooms were difficult to work. It was either too hot or you had to have them off all together. The heaters also made an awful noise.
-Kitchen pots/pans, dishes, etc were a bit rough

Again. I enjoyed my stay at the Solbakken, you just have to go with an understanding of the rustic-ness of the resort.

Room Tip: The 2 bedroom suite in the main building was perfect for 2 couples.
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  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
WI
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2011

We stayed in cottage 2, right on the shore of Lake Superior. The cottage has 2 bedrooms, one bathroom and a fully equipped kitchen/living area. The cottage was very clean and the beds were comfortable. The kitchen includes full-sized appliances and a dishwasher. The deck if right above the rocks of the shoreline. There is a fire pit and chopped wood available for use. We enjoyed sitting on the deck, reading and relaxing. The area has a lot of activities available.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Overland Park, Kansas
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2011

We stayed in one of the fireplace suites with our two children (13 & 15). It was a large suite with two bedrooms (both with queen beds) and a fold-out couch in the living area. The kitchen & shower were a bit outdated, but functional. There are four cabins that are near the water that appeared private and romantic. The "lodge" is further from the water, but you can walk down to the shore. Unfortunately, the shore is rocky and the shoreline drops off steeply, so it's really not a place to spend much time. Attached to the lodge are motel rooms that looked a bit dingy. Inside the lodge, the gathering area was warm and inviting.

We stayed here because we wanted to rent a cabin on the shoreline. I would stay here again if we could stay in one of the cabins where you can hear the waves. Otherwise, I would try to find a place closer to shops and restaurants that was more up to date. The suites in the lodge are roomy and functional, but not quite what I was looking for in a cabin stay. When I saw the motel rooms from the outside, I was glad that we did not rent one of those.

Overall, our stay was pleasant. The price was reasonable. The facility was very clean. The owners were accommodating. We were a bit disappointed in the access to the lake and the shoreline. It was a good place to stay as a base camp for visiting other sites, but not a destination in itself.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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 Solbakken Resort

Address: 4874 W Hwy 61, Lutsen, MN 55612
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Minnesota > Lutsen
Amenities:
Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Specialty Lodging in Lutsen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our property includes cabins on Lake Superior's beautiful shore, 3 bedroom Jonas house (also on the lake), kitchenette motels with lake facing deck, and 3 suites in our historic Sawbill lodge. Beautiful log guest house overlooking Caribou Lake is also available. Relax in the main lodge in front of the stone fireplace in living room or the hot tub and sauna. In the summer, rent a pontoon or canoe or book a guided fishing trip. Great place in the winter for skiing with direct access to XC ski trails and daily ski hill shuttles for alpine skiing. Come experience the North Shore! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Solbakken Hotel Lutsen

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