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Alta Crystal Resort at Mount Rainier
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Reviews (357)
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Reviewed August 21, 2012

This “resort” makes you pay up front with almost no basis for refunds or cancellations. Thus, you can imagine my surprise that my room was under construction when I arrived with my family. Loud and vigorously smoking cigarettes, several workers had our unit under scaffolding and surrounded for 2 of our 3 days, and made it so we could not use our room during the day. On our 3rd night, a family was permitted to move in (well after dark) underneath us with 2 dogs which barked & barked well into the wee hours. The rooms are old and worn and dated. The carpets are filthy. Because of the workers, our rooms smelled of dank tobacco, but I do not know if that is all the time. I suspect it is. Alcohol is available all the time, so there were drunken patrons in the pool, at dinner, at the bon fire, etc. This may be nice on spring break, but not with a family. Other than the location, I cannot think of a single good thing to write about this place.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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Thank PNMLAW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
cadematoWashington, Owner at Alta Crystal Resort at Mount Rainier, responded to this reviewResponded August 23, 2012

Wow. This review caught me by surprise since I had a chance to chat with this guest at the barbecue and he seemed very pleased. He also said he and his sons had gone on some wonderful hikes and really enjoyed their days' adventures.

We are sorry that this guest was not happy with his stay, and hope you will read our other reviews (especially regarding families) since most families love it here -- and say it's one of the most family-friendly places they've ever stayed!

It is true that we were re-surfacing the chimney next to his room during part of his stay and this project is now completed. This guest checked in early afternoon the first day and, at that time, we told him that the workers would be gone by check-in time if he'd prefer to go on a hike first and check in at the normal time. He said he and his sons were very tired and asked to get in the room right away. We're guessing that we never recovered from a negative first impression.

It's also frustrating when a guest doesn't let us know about problems while they're here. We asked the chimney workers not to smoke near the buildings and, had we realized that they were doing so, we would have spoken to them immediately. Our rooms are all non-smoking so this is not a common occurrence.

And as I was here the whole time he was here, I can assure you we weren't overrun by drunken guests. In fact, we're about as far from a party place as you can get!

A wise friend of mine said that most people who write reviews either love a place or hate a place -- and this is so true. Hopefully, you'll take the time to read some of our other reviews and judge for yourself.

Vivian Cadematori
Co-Owner

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 19, 2012

My family stayed there from 8/1 to 8/4, wish it could of been longer! Amazing weather since we're from Delaware and beating the heat was great. We stayed in the loft chalet which everyone enjoyed especially the kids , so much to do - we loved the hot tub and the pool. Beds were very comfortable. Unfortunate thing was we didn't get time to get a fire going in the room.The hikes around the area itself were beautiful - we did the loop and the scavenger hunt - my kids enjoyed that. We were close to Mt Rainier Park and the place i wanted to see was the Grove of the Patriarchs-incredible. Also if you ask the owner Steve, he will mention a place nearby that is a walkable distance that has a serene grove with large trees. The activities at the lodge were nice , owners managed and made the BBQ dinner on Thursday which was really good and very friendly. They had games there for the kids and liked the bingo night, very welcoming people! I enjoyed the vacation and this place will always be remembered.
To mention, my daughter and i made a fairy house nearby a place they cut wood at the lodge, hopefully it's still there.Right after the wood piles. We were in Maine many years ago, which had hidden fairy houses all around and wanted to make one here--to keep the fairies safe and warm at night. Maybe others can start making more. Fairies love places to stay when they can't make it home in time.
There's no restaurant there at the site but they have a great selection then what i expected , pizza , frozen pastas , cereals , milk ,cream cheese , etc.so we didn't have to go to the store before checking in.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank kathy h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 18, 2012

We just finished a blitz of a vacation through western Oregon and Washington. We rarely ever stay in the same place two nights, however, we did so at Alta Crystal Resort, and we are glad we did. We stayed in a "loft chalet suite", which worked great for our family. Our two boys liked getting to have their own beds, and they shared the upstairs bathroom. My wife and I had our own room and bath on the first floor.

We were located close to Crystal Mountain, so our horseback riding trip was easy to get to, and we were close to the Rainier National Park entrance, adjacent to the "Sunrise" area. We made use of many of the offerings at Alta, including the hottub, bonfire, horse shoes, badmitton and ping pong. We liked the facility so much that we were torn between hiking the mountain and just hanging out to relax. Our sons also enjoyed the stay. Our younger son enjoyed tending the wood-burning fireplace in our chalet (wood & kindling provided daily), and our older son was able to get good internet access on the T-1 line in the Recreation Lodge (internet access wasn't great in the chalet, however, it was not a priority).

They stock a nice variety of groceries in the main office, from cereal and milk to steak and salmon, and the items are very reasonably priced. They also have a surprisingly good selection of recently released DVDs.

If possible, get there for the Thursday night barbecue. Although they ask for a donation to help cover the costs, it is well worth it, and the bacbecue provided us with an opportunity to visit with other guests. Be sure to get a grilled salmon burger - amazing. Alta Crystal is a long way from Ohio, however, if we return to the area, we will certainly hope to stay there again.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank Buckalope
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 20, 2012

We returned for the 2nd year in a row. Very friendly family oriented. Breath taking scenery all around. There was a family activity every night. The pool was comfortably warm. The only draw back is telephone service. And I should mention we picked up a little hitchhiker (mouse) but they are all around living in the woods mostly.

Room Tip: There are no close restaurants so pack your food there is a kitchen in each room and once or twice a week they host a barbeque.
  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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5  Thank LaurieB12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2012

We chose this "resort" expecting the normal resort amenities. Note that there is no restaurant on the premises. The best that you can do is travel about 15 minutes by car in either direction to get the equivalent of pub style food. The other option was to buy a frozen pizza, etc. from the store at the resort and cook it in the kitchenette in our one bedroom "chalet suite". The internet was spotty and initially wasn't working at all. After working with the staff for about 40 mins, we got enough connection to at least catch up on e-mails. Forget internet surfing let alone streaming. Note as well that there is no cell phone reception there or at the near by Crystal Mountain Resort area or until you get about 30 mins down the road toward Seattle. So, if you need to stay connected and/or are not interested in cooking your own food, then look elsewhere.
The "chalet suite" was of mid range motel quality with a bathroom that you might expect from 35 years ago. It cost as much as a beautiful room at the Westin in Seattle, so it was not a very good vaue.
Note also that since you are in the woods, all that you can see from your room is trees, parked cars from other guests and other "chalets". No flowers or gardens that one might expect at a resort. Kids of other guests did seem to be enjoying the heated pool, but it is too small to do any swimming.
The view of Mount Ranier from the gondola at the top of Crystal Mountain is breathtaking (15 mins by car) to the gondola. Had it not been for that, the overnight stay would have been a total loss.
The owners are friendly people, albeit not very tech savvy. Unfortunately, their answer to every concern is that they are restricted by what they can do by the park service, which may be true, but then don't advertise that you are a resort if all that you can offer is basic motel accommodation. If you are looking for an expensive motel in the woods with a pool for the kids and want to do your own cooking, and aren't that fussy about the amenities, then you have found the right place.

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank IntrepidTorontonian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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