Rhapsody on Lake Delton - condo rental
I highly recommend a stay in one of the rental condos at Rhapsody on Lake Delton above all else. The condo's are incredible with balconys and lake views (must request). Really ike a little bit of New England in Wisconsin. They are easily accessible, impeccibly clean, and nicely furnished. Hubby and I went with another couple and we were both equally impressed with the quality of our stay. There's also a spa. Excellent.
The Dells has a wildly eclectic kid-friendly selection of restaurants as far as the eye can see (not to mention what is in those waterpark resort hotels). You have no idea what to expect from any restaurant, so do your research. We ate at Mexicali Rose, Ginza of Tokyo, Carvelli's and a couple others. All quite good and one even excellent: Carvelli's.
Carvelli's is a place that I have to say tops most every Italian restaurant I have ever been too in the U.S., including Chicago, and that's saying a lot. Absolutely fabulous. In retrospect, I would have liked to gone to the House of Embers, but didn't. Oh well.
The Wisconsin Dells is not what I had originally anticipated. I suppose I was expecting a sort of quaint town with cheese shops, nicer bars, antiques and a variety of restaurants and other interesting points of interest outside of the town. I couldn't have been more wrong.
The Wisconsin Dells is an actual wealth of delightful natural rock formations and lovely lakes and then the river created by massive flooding back way long ago.
But "The Dells" is a train wreck of what was a premier tourist destination as early as the 1920's (if I recall correctly).
Oh, the times they are a changin'.
Now, if you vacation with small children and need a place to escape where you can wear the kiddies out and then hit the bars, the Dells may be the place for you. The Dells was not my cup 'o tea...here's why (note: we weren't travelling with kids, but neither were a lot of other people):
There is absolutely no rhyme-or-reason whatsoever to the concept of "The Dells". What was once a nature retreat for travellers is now a bizarre and unintelligible amalgamation of old wooden roller coaster parks, gigantic 100-hole putt-putt type theme parks (you know...big plastic dinosaurs), and then the water parks and other hokey tourist traps (haunted houses, something called "Top Secret" - which is the White House after a tornado turned it upside down. ) And so on and so forth.
The downtown drag (Broadway) is a both a sad and frenetic shopping experience of junk shops (tomahawks made in China and the like), old-timey portrait studios and t-shirt shops. And they all sell the exact same thing. Over and over and over.
It is as if the Dells city council have given up on a cohesive concept of what it should mean to experience The Dells. Despite the hard economic times of today, does it make sense to have two old-timey portrait studios only one shop apart from each other? Does one-half mile of store after store after store really need FOUR old-timey portrait shops? Where is the originality? Is it really working for downtown Dells?
It could be so charming, but no. I'm telling you, it's the freakiest mish-mosh of planning I have ever experienced in a tourist destination that was planned to bring people in to the middle of nowhere. I think they just gave up on planning and protocols for bringing in new tourists with more than a "t-shirt and ice cream" interest.
The only two stores I personally liked were the bookstore and the cheese shop. One Wisconsin cheese shop, in the Wisconsin Dells! Four old-timey portrait studios within a stone's throw of each other. Twenty t-shirt shops. Why?
Our favorite place was - ironically - on Broadway in a space that occupied a former bank. It was a bar that shall remain nameless because the name is hard to wrap your mind around (supposed to be somebody's name - whatever). They poured heavy and inexpensively and the Bloody Mary's were to die for. It was an amazing mix of hardcore bikers (yep, a couple of gangs), preppy local old guys and the usual tourists (the tourists who weren't immediately scared away). Everybody mixed wonderfully and the jukebox played everything from Skynard to rap.
And boy, was there a lot of hugging and mixing and mingling. My head spins to think about this weird place. Wild and fun. Glad we didn't chicken out.
So, if your goal is to stay at a Super 8 with a plastic facade (seriously) so you can pretend you are in Rome, or Hawaii, or Jamacia, or Polynesia, or the Ozarks (!!!), or wherever with a massive amount of water slides....enjoy!
If you are looking for nature and peace and quiet, find somewhere else. Or don't leave your condo at Lake Delton except to eat at Carvelli's.
On a final note, the mammoth rock formations and beautiful natural scenic wonders are still there. I challenge any visitor to go into any shop on Broadway and find out how to get to them. I asked four times and people who lived there for over 20 years had no clue.
I'm telling you...bizarre.
- Also Known As:
- Rhapsody Resort On Lake Delton Hotel
- Rhapsody Resort On Lake Delton Hotel Wisconsin Dells
- Rhapsody On Lake Delton Hotel
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Delton Grand Resort & Spa is a 60+ unit condominium resort located on the shores of beautiful Lake Delton in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin. Just a few blocks from all attractions, the resort features 1, 2, 3 and 4 bedroom luxury condominiums from 900 to 3700 square feet. Each villa is professionally decorated and furnished. Amenities include indoor and outdoor heated pools, whirlpool, sauna, beaches, piers, boat slips, outdoor grills, firepits and more. Professionally managed and impeccably maintained, the resort enjoys top ranking at Trip Advisor. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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