July 2012, I won an employee award which sent me from Sydney to Hotel Alyeska. Long flight via Vancouver. I had my misgivings before I arrived, stupid things like where do i eat and do laundry, what do they eat, it is summer, what do you do, they shoort bears etc. I booked a limo to pick us up from the airport and a Ford van came. So tip to you guys, when you book transfer, make sure you confirm and re-confirm. If they show up in a vehicle less than what you ordered, make a fuss. I did and i got my money back. That aside, that 40 minute ride is absolutely beautiful as you skirt the sounds and forest on the way to Alyeska. The lobby is eccentric to say the least with a stuffed polar bear overlooking the foyer. I was part of a 300 strong corporate group so, the check in was quite efficient. I asked for a high room and we got 8th floor overlooking the carpark. Misgiving #2, oh no, carpark, that means i will hear tour buses, cars and what-nots throughout the day. Wrong. It was quiet. Misgiving #3: there is nothing to do. There is plenty to do. Went to the conservation centre (more of that in another review), took long walks around the resort and off the resort. Walked to Girdwood, walked to Bakehouse, went up the mountain on the cable car, soaked at the most gorgeous hot tub. I had a lunch at the Aurora Bar & Grill which is nothing to write home too. Take the shuttle into town and try the myriad of cafes+restaurants there. Really really good food.
Also ate at Seven Glaciers (as part of the award). Apparently, it is very expensive to eat up there. The journey up there is quite spectacular. The food is, well, ok. Again, go into town.
There is a complimentary shuttle which runs in a circuit, I think from memory, it goes around every 40 minutes. Make sure you get the time right, and if you happen the only person in the bus, tell the driver that you intend to come back at a specific time. My first time in town, the driver, kid you not, drove past me and when he came around 1 hour later, he thought i was "standing around". Right.
To the rooms: we had a HUGE room with 2 x queen beds. The bathroom is split: one toilet closet and one shower+bath. I can imagine this place can be so cozy during ski season. If you are tired from all the walking, just chill in your room. All rooms have views of the mountains.
So, have i changed my mind about "The Shining" ? No, it is a scary/weird film. Have I changed my mind about Girdwood? Oh yes indeed.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel Overview: Nestled in the Chugach Mountain Range in the resort community of Girdwood, Alyeska Resort featuring The Hotel Alyeska is only 40 miles from downtown Anchorage. The Hotel is also near many attractions - two miles from Crow Creek Gold Mine, and 15 miles from Portage Glacier and the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center. The floor-to-ceiling windows in the fireside lobby and grand staircase offer unobstructed views of the north face of Mount Alyeska. Open beams and cathedral ceilings accent the indoor lap pool, 16-person spa tub, and fitness center. Airport transportation (surcharge), ski storage, and a local shuttle are available. Wireless Internet access is available in the lobby, DSL hookups in the rooms (included in resort fee). The Spa at Alyeska offers a wide array of massage, facial and body services. The eight-story property has 304 guestrooms. All rooms offer cable TV with pay movies, and are equipped with coffeemakers, refrigerators, hairdryers, and irons with boards. In-room complimentary DSL is available. All rooms are nonsmoking. You must be 21 years of age or older to make a reservation and check in. Guests under 21 must be accompanied by someone 21 years of age or older to stay in the hotel. Any guest under the age of 18 must be accompanied by parent or legal guardian. Please note: The 2011/12 Ski Season is November 23, 2011 to April 29, 2012 (conditions permitting). Deluxe King Room with one king bed includes bathrobes and slippers, bottled water, heated towel rack, mini refrigerator and coffee maker, in-room safe, iron and ironing board. Located on Floors 4-7. Deluxe: 2 Double Room with two double beds includes bathrobes and slippers, bottled water, heated towel rack, mini refrigerator and coffee maker, in-room safe, iron and ironing board. Located on Floors 4-7. Standard: Room with two double beds includes bathrobes and slippers, bottled water, heated towel rack, mini refrigerator and coffee maker, in-room safe, iron and ironing board. Located on Floors 2-3. Area served: Anchorage (and vicinity). Nearby airports: Ted Stevens International Airport, Anchorage AK (ANC). Area description: 35 miles southeast of Anchorage, at Alyeska Resort in the town of Girdwood, AK. Amenities• Concierge• Conference Facilities• Fitness center• Free parking• Handicapped Rooms/Facilities• Health Club• High-speed Internet• Internet Access• Meeting/Banquet Facilities• Pool & Hot Tub• Restaurants• Room Service• Spa services• Wireless Internet. Dining: Aurora Bar & Grill. Whether you're in the mood for a casual atmosphere or watching your favorite sports event, the Aurora Bar & Grill is family-friendly with comfort food. The diverse menu offers Alaskan specialties and satisfying homemade-style dishes. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. Bar open late on weekends. Seven Glaciers: Feast upon fabulous views and gourmet cuisine at the AAA Four-Diamond Seven Glaciers restaurant. Menu features regional favorites focused on fresh seafood, Snake River Farms meats prepared by Executive Chef Jason Porter. Recipient of Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence. Sakura: Newly remodeled, Sakura Restaurant offers modern and intimate setting with Asian-inspired seafood and meats, hand-rolled sushi and a full sake and cocktail list. Open for dinner. The Pond Café: Located on the second floor of the hotel, the Pond Cafe is the place to enjoy breakfast offering full and continental buffet options and an a la carte menu featuring local favorites such as reindeer sausage links as well as a variety of healthy choices. Tramway Café: Featuring Starbucks™ coffee and espresso drinks, the Tramway Café features quick eats and grab n’ go style items. Open daily for breakfast and lunch. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Alyeska Hotel Girdwood
- Alyeska Resort Girdwood
- Alyeska Prince Hotel
- Girdwood Alyeska Prince Hotel Resort