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McKinley Chalet Resort
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Reviews (1,115)
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All reviewsholland americamckinley chaletthe main lodgethe riveracross the streetsitting roomgift shopdenali national parkmain lobbyseparate bedroomshuttle buslarge propertyshuttle servicecruise packagetwo nightssteep hillbreakfast buffet
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Reviewed June 20, 2014 via mobile

This place was a lot of fun, and I got to meet some great people, the new rooms are beautiful with a great bed and the new landscaping is great. For the short time they've had to spruce it up, it was really nice. (You can't work outside in AK in the winter!)I wasn't expecting mints on my pillow, so like I said, the amenities were just fine. The excursions were fun, and on time! Oh, and the fish w the Portuguese sausage in the main Dining room-AMAZING!! My question is when are the getting a fire pit....

Stayed: June 2014
2  Thank Kyle W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2014 via mobile

This place looks really nice from the outside, but the rooms are no more than a closer with a bed & bathroom.
Very noisy and on the cheap side with everything but the main building where they have the gift shop, snacks and a Restaurant that is not that good and very over priced!!!

Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Eugene F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tracy S, General Manager at McKinley Chalet Resort, responded to this reviewResponded June 21, 2014

Thank you for your review of your recent stay at the McKinley Chalet Resort. I am sorry to hear that we did not meet your expectations during your stay.

Since our recent acquisition of the resort in September 2013, we have been working to refurbish and refresh many guest rooms and the grounds as a whole. We have several room types throughout property without a somewhat different set up in each. I apologize that we were not able to provide a better experience for you.

i hope we have another opportunity in the future to share with you the comfortable, clean and updated accommodations that we offer.

Thank you!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 18, 2014

My wife and I stayed as part of a Holland-America cruise extension. The room was nice , a bit rustic, but if you are familiar with Yosemite and similar places, it was of good standard. The room was clean and well-serviced.

Try to get a room near the main lodge if you don't like walking or waiting for a shuttle. It's a big property. The benefit of rooms far away is that they are near the river with nice walks and good views.

We came back late from the park so the bar was the only place to get food, but it was OK with good service.

The hotel staff were very friendly and anxious to please.

We would recommend this place.

  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank AlantheRover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tracy S, General Manager at McKinley Chalet Resort, responded to this reviewResponded June 21, 2014

Thank you for your review of your recent stay at McKinley Chalet Resort. We are glad to hear that you had an enjoyable stay with us.

I hope the rest of your Alaska travels were delightful and we hope to see you again in Denali.

Thank you!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 17, 2014

I find Alaska mass tourism to be a bit bizarre: you get mostly elderly upper middle class tourists traveling to the middle of nowhere where they sit on buses to (hopefully!) view some wildlife out the window. Logic would suggest "rugged" Alaska to be a young person's destination, but that is not at all true: it's a bucket list destination for upper middle class retirees, with the average age of Denali visitors being 59, and the average age of McKinley Chalet guests undoubtedly older than that.

I doubt most of their guests will be happy with what's provided here, as it's both expensive and not great. But it is an OK place to sleep in the middle of nowhere. And, honestly, that was all I was looking for. As an independent traveler, the McKinley Resort -- like other cruise ship hotels -- offer cheap rooms on the nights they're not full up with cruise passengers. And when they offer these rates -- usually below $150 night -- these hotels are a better deal than their more rustic-and-even-less-comfortable competitors.

New owners (Holland America) moved some of the buildings to be closer to the river, but this seems like a really bad idea given that you can only access these rooms via shuttle bus. Who the heck wants to be reliant on a shuttle bus to reach their hotel room? The area where these units were placed isn't yet landscaped, and there did not appear to be any actual river views. I would insist on being close to the main lodge where you can come and go as you please and, if you're a rare independent traveler, where you can easily access your vehicle. Many of these rooms also have small sitting rooms which, I think, make them a bit more comfortable. Unfortunately, the laundry facilities are in a building that requires shuttle transportation, so we waited to do our laundry elsewhere.

If you don't have a meal plan booked, I think you'll do better eating across the road at the "Glitter Gulch" shopping sprawl. The Thai takeout restaurant -- almost directly across the street from the hotel -- is quite excellent and affordable.

Bottomline, I suspect that most high-paying cruise ship passengers will be a bit unhappy with the relatively Spartan and not-well-laid-out nature of this lodge, and independent travelers will only be happy if they grab a cheapo rate and are just looking for a place to sleep near the entrance to the Denali park.

Stayed: June 2014, traveled with family
4  Thank Dave's_reviews
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tracy S, General Manager at McKinley Chalet Resort, responded to this reviewResponded June 21, 2014

Thank you for your feedback regarding your recent stay with us. We appreciate your input and continually strive to provide an excellent experience to our guests.

You are correct in that we recently acquired this property and have made many changes over the past 9 months. We did move 9 buildings tot he river view, overlooking the Nenana River along the walking path. The entire lower campus is accessible by foot or property shuttle, as it has for many years. We wanted to provide a better view shed and experience to our guests during their stay, so by moving our back-of-the-house operations (warehousing, laundry etc) to another area and then moving the guest rooms to the riverside, we hope to achieve that. We recently completed the majority of the landscaping and the grass is growing beautifully. It certainly has come a long way in recent months.

We do offer several dining options on site, including the Grizzly Grind espresso stand for grab and go options, the Sourdough Trading Company for casual Alaska fair and our semi-upscale Nenana View Grill which highlights local Alaska seafood and locally sourced menu items.

We work to provide a unique Alaska experience to all of our guests, so we appreciate your candid feedback. It is through this that we get better.

We hope we have an opportunity to host you again at the McKinley Chalet Resort.

Thank you!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 15, 2014

I guess the name has changed to McKinley Village Lodge. I would call this one step up from "glamping". My definition of "resort" is that there is at least a jacuzzi and maybe a sauna or steam room. This has neither. Our Norwegian Cruise Lines group was in the newer section. Two stories, no elevator. It was difficult as one of our party has trouble getting up & down steps and we were told "no guarantees" when we requested a first floor room. Of course we were stuck on the second floor. At least they had a little cart to get back & forth to the lodge dining room. There was a little restaurant right next to our building, but only open for dinner. Meals are even more expensive than in Anchorage. Cheaper alternative is Quigley's General Store on the premises.

Room Tip: If they let you pick, I would look for a room overlooking the river. However, we had a legitimate reason for requesting a first floor room and we didn't get it. This is not an ADA friendly hotel.
  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled with friends
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1  Thank LGA026
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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