Stayed here for three nights in January. The hotel is on the rim of the Grand Canyon but you don’t see much of it from the actual property. The rooms are small and a bit tired. The hotel is a historic landmark and as such is a magnet for day trippers so you need restaurant reservations in advance. The restaurant claims to do fine dining but could do with enlisting the services of Chef Ramsay as the food is average at best and the service patchy. All in all what we paid didn’t feel like good value for money even with the location.
Worth the stay. Would come back. You smell and feel charm of the materials used to build this place. Try the hot chocolate in the restaurant! Had to pinch myself the Canyon view was SO close. Our room was the writers/artists room (which we were surprisingly upgraded to - such a treat!). The night holds incredible dark views of the Milky way (I believe the El Tovar is located near or IS a registered "darkest area" in the US - having no light pollution at night... don't forget your head lamp!), and you'll definitely be visited by a few elk (moose?) while you're here. They wander the grounds freely, as they should. There is a very cool time capsule trail you can take with stones depicting many years, and feels like an interesting walk in time. I HIGHLHY RECOMMEND waking up early to watch the sunrise - this is a treat in and of itself!! The whole experience, having this incredibly close access to the canyon, is one I'll not soon forget. I would rank it among the top trips of my life. The rooms are spendy, but worth it if you can save up and stay 2-3 nights. This time allows you to really take in your surroundings and catapulted me back to the 30's when explorers and president Roosevelt was smitten with the place. It makes you consider our very short time on this planet, compared to the beautiful colored ribbons of history the canyon has so beautifully preserved for us to read. Every time I descended the front steps of the El Tovar and turned the corner to take it in, it felt so awe inspiring - like a hug. The restaurant breakfast was among my favorite experiences. We had the waffles with berries and cream (delicious) and it was worth getting up early to get a table. The wait staff is friendly and quite knowledgeable about the park. As you sit and dine, you can take in partial views and marvel at the glorious place you'll get to spend your day. …
You just remember this property is over 100 years old. It is not as big, bright and accommodating as the newer modern hotels. That being said, the hotel is a great way to experience being next to the canyon with very quiet, dark nights. The food is better quality than the surrounding lodges and also a little pricier. This place has a lot of history and the location can’t be beat!
Not worth the price. Reserved months in advance to book-end a hike down to Phantom Ranch. Arrived in the off-season after a snowfall. Parking was very difficult as the lot did not appear to have been plowed. The lobby fireplace was only a few embers and at around 8:30pm, a guest tried to add wood. A woman on staff rudely stopped the guest, yet refused to stoke the fire since they were “low on wood until tomorrow.” Rooms are small. Save your money by staying at one of the less expensive hotels and pop in to visit the lobby or tiny bar area if your curiosity about old El Tovar must be satisfied. As an overnight guest, I’m underwhelmed.
Skip this over priced and honestly creepy hotel and book one of the cheaper option Bright Angel cabins. The cabins are half the price and have much better views of the canyon because they are right on the rim. Most rooms at El Tovar face the parking lot. Rooms are very small and have the same amenities and level of housekeeping as the cabins. You aren't getting any higher level treatment here than being in the cabins. Also, the restaurant food is not good. The pancakes at breakfast were so dry, it was unappetizing. I had better meals and more enjoyable staff service at Fred Harvey Burger for much less money.
Stopped for lunch while on the self driving tour of the canyon. Extensive menu, quick polite service and taste to write home about. Highly recommended even as the place to stay if visiting the canyon. Being inside the park, it saves commuting time. Besides being v pretty
The hotel sits on the rim of the Grand Canyon. It’s all about the location and its history. It is dated and expensive but a short walk to the Bright Angel trail head, beautiful rim walks, a small art gallery and shops. Buses are readily available to take u to the visitors center and other trail heads This is our fifth year here. Don’t expect the 5 star amenities or service you would get in a big city. We had three rooms there for 5 nights this 2023 new year week and didn't get our rooms serviced once. The front desk staff is very indifferent. It offers a central location to the Canyon and that is priceless.
Clean room but not very private. We could hear families in room around us talking in their rooms. It was 1 of a few options to stay at the Cranston. I would still recommend it because there are very few places to stay and the Grand Canyon is literally steps away from the room.
First, when you stay in any of the hotels in a national park you are paying for the location and views. Generally, the hotels are OK to fair. El Tovar has a great location and views of the Grand Canyon. It's a great base from which to explore the GC. We stayed here 12/1-12/2/22 in room 6426. The room is on the lobby floor of the hotel to the right of the check in desk. The GC was fairly deserted when we visited so we did not have any issues with crowds, reservations or parking. In busier times, parking close to the hotel will be an issue. The hotel is located in GC village and faces the canyon. It's located on a hill above the train depot so there is some train noise during the day. The nearest parking is about 100 to 200 yards from the front door. During busy times I'd suggest leaving your car in a spot if you find one. You can pull up in front of the hotel to load and unload. The lobby is very well decorated and when we were there had the bonus of Christmas decorations. All of the staff members we can in contact with were very good to excellent at their jobs. Room 6426 connects to the rooms on both sides, we found the connecting doors were thin and you could here anyone in the other room if you were near them. If you need three connecting rooms these are perfect. The room was small and faced the rear employee/delivery parking lot. There were early (5 /6 am) deliveries that did wake us up. The rooms has one queen bed which was comfortable, a TV, fridge with freezer, coffee maker and two chairs and a table near the entry door. The main door has a deadbolt but no chain lock. The closet is small and off the hallway to the bathroom. It has no door just a curtain and no light in it. The light in the hall is turned on by a switch between the closet and the connecting door. The internet was OK, we could get and send emails. The room was clean. The bathroom is large (there is a 3 in. step up into the bathroom) but had little counter or storage space, a bath tub /shower combo with the soap and shampoo in dispensers on the shower wall. The water pressure was fine. There is an on site restaurant which was very good, two gift shops and two lovely porches to sit on. Overall, we enjoyed our stay and would recommend the hotel to anyone looking to stay in the park and at a historic hotel. We would not recommend room 6426, if you are a light sleeper or bothered by noise unless you need connecting rooms.…
The lodge itself was built in 1905 so don’t expect a 5 star experience. The room was dated but very comfy. Some Art Deco lamps and a retro bathroom gave it charm. You are literally balancing on the side of the Grand Canyon so tough to beat the experience. The 1st dinner at the restaurant was really good. The 2nd was not. We suggest ordering one of the entrees and staying clear of the apps and salads. The lamb shank dinner was very good. The service is very good. Have the Huevos for breakfast and you will be set until dinner. An easy walk to catch the shuttle and to just walk along the ridge. Really hard to beat.