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“A run down, dilapidated, over-priced disappointment.” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Quarterdeck Resort & Restaurant

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Quarterdeck Resort & Restaurant
9820 Birch Bay Drive S.W., Cty. Rd. 77, Nisswa, MN 56468   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #6 of 7 hotels in Nisswa
Minneapolis, Minnesota
1 review
“A run down, dilapidated, over-priced disappointment.”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2010

There's a difference between rustic and old, and unkempt and neglected. The Quarterdeck's owners, however, are oblivious to that distinction. The cabins are old, with peeling paint, dingy and cramped bathrooms, old, broken appliances and ridiculous furniture. Think 1970s revival. The cabins are set on a bluff above the lake. However, they are very close to the edge of the bluff, which causes problems. First, we discovered that the other guests at the resort walk along the edge of the bluff instead of behind the cabins, so we constantly had other people walking through "our space". Lest you think I'm oversensitive, that literally meant having other people walking within 2-4 feet from me as they tramped by for much of our stay (for almost $1000 for four days, we thought we could expect a small amount of privacy and consideration - the resort does nothing to discourage this practice). Second, the area where our cabin was located was very uneaven, so the chairs, picnic table, etc. all ended up being on a slope. The resort did nothing to situate the picnic table in a flat area, and it was very heavy.

The beach is only sand to the water's edge, where the rocks take over. By the way, the beach itself is set on a steep hill, so be prepared to lounge at about a 30% grade. The tennis courts are cracked and have not been maintained; the playground is in the same condition. All resort vacations have a certain amount of dirt and sand involved, but this problem is magnified at the Quarterdeck, where most of the paths are unmaintained dirt.

The restaurant was repeatedly bragged about by the owner as "a three diamond restaurant". I'm not sure how many diamonds are on the scale, but in this case it meant food that was not made from scratch (Kraft macaroni and cheese for the kids, boxed gravy, boxed pancakes etc.) and steaks and walleye that were o.k. but not memorable. There are other restaurants in the area where you will get a better meal.

Like most resorts, you get nickel and dimed, however, we thought renting grills separately from the cabins rather than providing one with the cabin, or at least upon request at no cost, was chintzy. Especially when the multi-unit buildings on the property have park-style grills installed next to them. By the way, none of the cabins have fire rings, so you can forget any romantic notions of sitting around the fire as the loons call to one another (o.k., there's one fire pit set well away from the lake for group get togethers with all those other resorters you get to know and love during the week; we couldn't take advantage of that opportunity because it would have meant leaving our small children sleeping in the cabin by themselves - a firepit outside, or at least closer to, the cabin would have been nice).

The staff may try hard, but these are not hospitality professionals (despite the owner's professed 32 years of resort ownership). They are helpful to a point, but don't expect them to go to great lengths to accommodate you. The childrend's program is a joke - when the number of kids fell due to check-outs, the girl who administrated the program as much as told us that if it was all the same to us, she'd rather not waste her time - oh, and it was her boyfriend's birthday, so apparently she had big plans for that, which required her to leave early...

The Quarterdeck's web site is a masterful work of fiction - don't take the pictures at full value because they really do not represent what you find when you arrive (even the rates aren't accurate). Overall, you can do better.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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24 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    2.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Ecuador
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2010

We booked a family reunion at Quarterdeck. We were very pleased! We stayed at the Lakeside Vacation Homes. These accommodations are simple, clean, and are an "up north" kind of place. The setup was ideal for our group. We had our meals together on the picnic tables, the water is right there, with stunning views. The water is shallow there, meaning the grownups could sit back and the kids could be in the water all day. We ate in the restaurant one night and that was excellent as well. The walleye was especially outstanding. The staff was friendly and we had a great time. Thanks Quarterdeck!

  • Stayed June 2010, 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
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Minneapolis, Minnesota
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2010

OK, this is not a fancy pants resort. There is no championship golf course. There isn't an expensive restaurant on property. There isn't a spa. The tubs and toilets in the Birchwood villas are 1960's tan. But holy crow! This place was nice!

The family and staff made us feel welcomed and wanted. The owner is an absolute hoot. I am in hotels about 30 nights per year--mostly Hilton and Marriott--and have never felt so comfortable.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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California
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2009

Dinner in the semi-private dining area was just what our family of 19 (3 generations) was looking for!. Kevin had arranged one large rectangular table, fully set for dinner and decorated with candles and flowers. The extensive menu allowed everyone--whether 8 or 76 years of age--a nice selection of fish, pasta or meat dishes. Many of us went for the walleye. Whether broiled, panfried or breaded, the walleye was a hit. Children's dishes ( The Junior Skippers Menu) for the under 10 crew was varied and enjoyed by our three. The wine menu was not extensive, but we managed to find a nice white and red. The manager was helpful and personable. We had only one server; so she was kept busy, but did a nice job getting the assorted beverages and dishes to the table in good order. The rice pilaf, as noted by a prior reviewer, although not cold was not hot. In contrast, the vegetable of the day was cooked exactly as we llike it and arrived piping hot. This is not a "dress up" or "gourmet" place (hence we rate it four stars and not five), but a good dinner at a reasonable price for an casual or informal outing.

Stayed August 2009, traveled with family
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Minnesota
1 review
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2008

Did not stay at the hotel, but went to the restaurant for dinner on July 5th. We had a large group of 13, but had made reservations almost a month in advance. After waiting 15 minutes for our drinks (and the majority of us ordered either wine or soda), we finally received water. We still hadn't been brought any menus so my husband went up and asked the host for some. When we placed our dinner order the restaurant was only 1/3 full, yet after an hour and 10 minutes we had no food. Plates slowly began coming out, although 3 of us didn't get our food until everyone else had almost finished eating (almost 25 minutes later)!! And to top it off 4 of the rice pilafs were ice cold!?!? Absolutely ridiculous!!! At this point we asked to speak with a manager, as we work in the industry and were beyond appalled by the experience thus far. 25 minutes later when we asked again, he finally made his way over making excuse after excuse, and being incredibly rude. All in all, the only bright spot was our server who did a great job under the circumstances. We regulary go to the Boathouse whenever the entire family is in town, but definitely will not be going to back. We will also be making a call into the owner about the manager's behaivor.

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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St. Paul, MN
Top Contributor
168 reviews 168 reviews
46 hotel reviews
Reviews in 75 cities Reviews in 75 cities
205 helpful votes 205 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 25, 2007

We spent the weekend here in the villa rooms. The room was large and decorated nicely. We had a king size sleigh bed, gas fireplace, small kitchenette and a balcony looking out over the lake. The ceilings are vaulted so the room appears very large. It was quiet and very private the weekend we were there. They have packages available that give you meals with your room but there is no breakfast available unless you go to the restaurant. It does not even open for breakfast until 9:00 so that is very inconvenient if you have plans for your day. It would be a long drive to go somewhere else. The people that work there are great and very helpful and friendly. It is pricey to rent a boat so it would be better to go to another resort and do that. It is not cheap to stay here but it is nice. In the area there are lots of places to choose from that have the same amenities and cost less. But this one has a certain charm.

  • Liked — the beautiful view of the lake
  • Disliked — breakfast is too late and it is pricey
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2006

What a disappointment! Cabins are old and the AC does not work. Grounds are in disrepair. The rec room is a run down building with old beat up couches and a few games and puzzles. The restaurant was okay, but not recommended for more than one meal.

We found two other resorts that were clean and had manicured grounds next door. Don't waste your money!

  • Stayed May 2006
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Quarterdeck Resort & Restaurant

Address: 9820 Birch Bay Drive S.W., Cty. Rd. 77, Nisswa, MN 56468
Location: United States > Minnesota > Nisswa
Amenities:
Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 7 hotels in Nisswa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Also Known As:
Quarterdeck Resort And Restaurant
Quarterdeck Resort & Restaurant Hotel Nisswa
Quarterdeck Resort Nisswa

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