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“Whole family loved this motel!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hills Inn

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Hills Inn
640 South Sixth Street, Hot Springs, SD 57747   |  
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Hotel amenities
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Ranked #2 of 9 hotels in Hot Springs
Kansas City, Missouri
1 review
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Whole family loved this motel!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2012

The cluster of motels around the "Mount Rushmore Service Area," as I like to call it, is daunting at best. They're all around the same price, within $10-20, and most of them are less than an hour away. Which is fine, because the scenery on the way more than makes up for it. This little motel, run by Wally and his wife, is a GREAT little motel, and the whole family agreed that we would definitely be return visitors.

First of all, it IS a budget hotel. Anyone looking for that should not be expecting room service or a four-star restaurant or a fitness center to rival Gold's Gym. What it does have is clean rooms with a microwave and fridge at no extra charge, tv, table with an extra power strip for charging various gizmos (very important with 4 cell phones, a couple laptops, a Kindle, and a partridge in a pear tree), a large closet/storage area and a shower with nice water pressure and plenty of hot water. What it does NOT have, however, is a hairdryer in the room. This was a very minor gripe, though, and if you find yourself without one, the only place in town you can get one is at Ace Hardware. Trust me.

Secondly, breakfast is complimentary, but minimal. Bagels, some donuts, a couple kinds of cereal. Fine for us, since we like to hit the grocery store a couple blocks away and stock up for the week, but if you're looking for a hot breakfast, head downtown to the Fall River Bakery. The place is usually packed with tourists AND locals, but you will NOT be disappointed. It's worth it, however, to nibble on a bagel and just talk to Wally for a few minutes in the morning. Not only is he helpful with anywhere you need/want to go, he's also hilarious, and you can pass much more time than you meant to just chatting.

There is a pool that looks really nice, but unfortunately it had just been closed for the season shortly before we arrived. There is a tiny mini-golf course next door, also owned by Wally, that is an amusing way to pass a couple hours - half price for guests.

If, like us, you are mainly looking for a place to fall into bed at night and leave your stuff so you don't have to schlep it around with you, this is a GREAT place. It's not luxury accommodations, but who wants to spend an entire vacation to the Black Hills in a motel room anyway? We came in with moderate expectations of cleanliness and comfort and were more than pleasantly surprised.

A tip about the Black Hills in general - it will take you at least an hour or so more than the time you allot to get to any particular place. Sometimes more. The roads through Wind Cave Park and Custer State Park are winding and slow, and you will be tempted time and again to slow or stop and photograph the scenery/abundant wildlife. Or the people in front of you will be. Be prepared. Needles highway is ESPECIALLY slow and the cars can back up at the tunnel points during the busy tourist season. Keep that in mind when planning daily activities, because chances are you will arrive a couple hours late to wherever you planned to be and have to cut the next place short out of necessity.

Mount Rushmore - 40-ish miles: This WILL take about an hour and a half.
Crazy Horse - see M.R.
Needles Highway - plan at LEAST an hour to drive the 16 miles.
Lead/Deadwood - 90-ish miles: Plan 3 hours just to drive there.
Devil's Tower, WY - 150-is miles: Do plan 3-4 hours just to get there, depending on your route.
Spearfish Canyon - loop around North on your return from Devil's Tower to see this. it is WELL worth it, especially in the fall.

Room Tip: Two queen rooms are small but adequate. The east-facing building is the most up-to-date and has a ni...
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  • Stayed September 2012, 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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82 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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    3
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
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  • German first
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English first
Kihei, Hawaii, United States
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2012

I was pleasantly surprised to find such clean & comfortable accommodations for such a low price. Beds are new and super-comfortable. The A/C worked well, fridge and micro were handy, cable tv good. Wi-fi a little spotty in my room. Pool was refreshing (and clean) and washer/dryer was convenient. Wally was a great host and Hot Springs was a really cute town to visit.

Room Tip: Ask in advance about wi-fi coverage; you don't have to climb stairs if you stay on ground floor...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Louisville, Colorado
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2012

The owner was really helpful and she did everything possible to make me welcome. But the place is definitely a budget place. Hard bed, small space, minimal breakfast. Location is great. Really close to Custer park.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Charleston, TN
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2012

We stayed here on our way to South Dakota and what a pleasant evening we had. This is a friendly, family owned establishment. The owners also own a mini-golf course on the property that is one of the most challenging I've ever played. The hotel is also very close to the Freedom Trail Walkway which is a great walking trail to downtown Hot Springs. We would definately recommend this Budget Host Inn as a great place to stay if you are on your way to the Black Hills or Mt. Rushmore. We did not use the swimming pool but if looked like a very nice pool.

  • Stayed August 2012, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boulder, CO
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2012

I stayed here for the weekend to run the LeanHorse 50km and to help a friend running the LeanHorse 100miler. The rooms were spotlessly clean, the AC worked great on a hot stuffy weekend, the owner, Wally, is friendly and concerned with the quality of your stay. I'd stay here again in a heartbeat. The refrigerator and microwave allowed for easy cooking/storing of meals. The pool was refreshing for a soak.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marcellus, New York
Top Contributor
136 reviews 136 reviews
43 hotel reviews
Reviews in 78 cities Reviews in 78 cities
99 helpful votes 99 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2012 via mobile

We were in town to visit the Mammoth Site, and needed a place to stay. I went by reviews an Tripadvisor and chose this place. I really wish I'd waited until I saw the place before committing. While the owner was very nice and helpful, I felt the the motel room itself was pretty run-down.

We booked a room with two queen beds, which had a back door we were able to unload our stuff at. That entrance was a bit sketchy, at best. There were prickly cactus in the gravel-and-grass "parking area", and the back door also didn't seal well, which was disconcerting given the big dead black bugs we saw outside! I really didn't feel comfortable leaving our car outside that entrance at all - after unloading, we moved it back into the main lot. Towels were meh. Kind of old looking and low quality.

On the upside, our kids enjoyed the pool and the beds were quite comfortable. All in all, okay but I'd spring for something nicer next time.

  • Stayed July 2012
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Bowie, Maryland, United States
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2012

When we first arrived, I was concerned because I thought I would get more for the price I was going to pay (more than other hotels on our trip, but I discovered it's just the going rate for this town during tourist season), but everything was fine. I had made a mistake and reserved the wrong night, but Wally took care of everything for us and even gave us the online rate we had reserved. The room was of average size and had all the amenities. The free breakfast was sparse, but adequate. The internet worked fine. The best part was the pool! It was small, but the cleanest we had seen on the trip and the kids had a great time. I would stay here again. There is a DQ right across the street - perfect for a late night, summer snack.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Hills Inn

Address: 640 South Sixth Street, Hot Springs, SD 57747
Phone Number:
Location: United States > South Dakota > Hot Springs
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 9 hotels in Hot Springs
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Budget Host Hills Hotel

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