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“Diamond in the rough” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Blue Spruce Lodge

Blue Spruce Lodge
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Blue Spruce Lodge
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1119 E. 66 Ave, Gallup, NM   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #19 of 28 Hotels in Gallup
Tulsa, OK
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Diamond in the rough”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2006

The Blue Spruce Lodge is a little run down around the heels, but my husband and I stayed there during a Route 66 trip to California last fall and found it clean and comfortable.

The furniture is old but serviceable, and the neon sign out front is absolutely gorgeous. The owners were very nice, although we wound up having to pay cash for the room because their credit-card machine was down the evening we were there. No big deal; that's why God made ATM cards, and I'm sure they got the problem fixed as soon as they could.

Our only complaint was with the neighbors. Like many motels of its age and type, the Blue Spruce has had to resort to renting a certain number of rooms by the week to make ends meet. Of course this practice sometimes results in less-than-ideal clientele; the night we were there, our next-door neighbors were spraying lacquer on cedar art projects in the parking lot, which we found amusing. Even funnier was their salespitch; they were eager to show us their creations and explain how they were all handmade and not mass-produced like the stuff we'd seen in curio shops along the way. Had we not been traveling in a Honda Insight, which leaves little room for large souvenir acquisitions, we probably would have bought something from them just to help them out. I'm still kicking myself for passing up the opportunity to add another hopelessly tacky item to my Route 66 collection.

We love moments like that, when we run into real people who are rough around the edges but generally harmless; those sorts of encounters are balanced on the cusp between poignant and funny, and I'm always left feeling a bit off-kilter but grateful for the chance to see something real instead of the cookie-cutter sameness of the interstates and their predictable chains.

Less amusing was the woman who joined their party later. She had obviously had waaaaay too much to drink, and she was begging us to go down to the liquor store and buy her a 12-pack, because they wouldn't sell her one. We declined. She wasn't combative, but the desperate tone in her voice when she repeated her request still rings in my ears, and I wish I could have done something to pull her out of her obvious addiction and put her back on her feet.

The encounter didn't scare me, but it made me sad, and some travelers might find such an exchange unnerving or irritating. But maybe moments like that are the point of a road trip -- to see this country in all its beauty and harshness, and to find out who your fellow citizens are and what they're up against.

With a little TLC and a little more supervision of the full-time tenants, I think the Blue Spruce could be a real gem. It's not for everybody, but I would stay there again and would recommend it to travelers who are out to learn something about this country and their fellow man instead of demanding a sanitized, censored adaptation of American culture.

  • Stayed September 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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3 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Rooms
    2 of 5 stars
  • Service
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    2.5 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2004

Frommer's Guide made this place sound tolerable, and I'm not a tough individual to please, but do not stay at this lodge. To begin, I went into the waiting room and had to put a deposit down on my key and the remote for the TV. (I guess they have a problem with keeping keys and remotes.) The physical hotel is quite shabby with suspicious individuals lurking around the parking lot, which makes it shabbier. When I walked out of my room to get something to eat, I definitely saw a drug deal, no joke. (I'm young and know what one looks like.) If you are extremely strapped for cash and don't want to sleep in your car, this may be your place to stay.

On a positive note, the family who owns the hotel seems to be a nice family. They were welcoming to me when I got there. Also, I was pleased to see a chain, deadbolt, and lock on my door. The bathroom was clean and a little dated.

Luckily I asked for a refund before 30 mins had expired. This is their posted refund policy, "30 minutes or less."

Overall, choose someplace else.

  • Stayed November 2004
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Blue Spruce Lodge

Address: 1119 E. 66 Ave, Gallup, NM
Location: United States > New Mexico > Gallup
Hotel Style:
Ranked #19 of 28 Hotels in Gallup
Number of rooms: 20

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