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“A dud”
Review of Carefree Resort

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Carefree Resort
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Carefree
Reviewed January 23, 2012

Carefree and Cave Creek are wonderful towns full of character and within easy travel distance of Phoenix or Scottsdale. My elderly parents were visting from out of state and I took them up to the Carefree Resort in order to see the Third Annual Hot Air Balloon Festival hosted by the resort.

Balloon Festival:
Admission was $8 per person and festivities began at 4pm - by festivities I mean a band composed of several 14 year olds, stands selling fried dough, and an "arts and crafts" area showscasing a things like made-in-China plastic toilet paper holders of cartoon-like horses. Attendants told us that maybe the hot air balloons would start filling with air by 6pm. The balloons were not going to fly and would simply sit in the parking lot.

The Resort:
We wandered into the resort to kill time. It is tired, old and uninspiring. Although I didn't see a room, the dining area, front lobby and patio were enough - dusty, dirty and even a duct-taped broken window/door.

My father has a bad knee and twisted it while we walked around the parking lot, so we needed to leave (it was probably 5:45 - no sign of inflating balloons yet). I stopped to ask if the organizers would consider a partial refund of our entry fees given my dad's injury and my general disappointment with the entire affair. We were flatly refused, without apology.

The facility did provide a golf cart to return my father to our car, which I appreciated. Overall, though, I would not return to the event or the "resort."

  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled with family
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3  Thank eyeterri
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gst_Services_Mgr, Manager at Carefree Resort, responded to this reviewResponded January 25, 2012

We apologize that the Carefree / Cave Creek Balloon Festival, or the resort for that matter did not meet your expectations. However, if you were able to stay a little longer you would have seen five incredible balloons inflate and an amazing fireworks display, before the high winds prevailed and created a safety issue. Unfortunately, we do not have any control over the weather. We did have over 6,000 people attend and although the high winds prohibited all the ballons from inflating, we received numerous great comments.

As far as the resort is concerned, we just completed a multi-million dollar renovation that included our lobby, restaurant, lounge, resort rooms, and all public areas. You mentioned that the floors in our lobby were dusty, which I am sure they may have been. Again, with over 6,000 people at the resort at one time using the lobby bathrooms and patronizing our Lariat Restaurant and Lounge, it made it extremely difficult to do our regular cleaning. However, this is an anomaly and not our normal operating procedures.

The Carefree Resort & Conference Center is the host of the festival; however, we do not have any control over the gate or refunds, as this is handled by the organizers and not the resort. In any case, I am glad that we were able to assist your father with a golf cart ride back to your car.

Should your travels ever bring you back to the Carefree area, I would be happy to give you a personalized tour of our resort and point out all the upgrades that we have made in the past year.

Thank you for your comments and I will pass the festival-related items on to the organizers, as this is how we all improve and make adjustments for next year.

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Reviewed January 14, 2012

We picked this resort from the internet when looking for a night's lodging in the mountains near Phoenix. The quoted rate of $136 (incl tx, et al.) seemed too good to be true. It wasn't. Wonderful facilities and gardens with large swimming pool. Comfy bed, beautiful view from rm 2116 of distant mountain, gardens, and pool. We drove to the resort after a dinner at the Horny Toad (be sure to try the strawberry short cake, enough for two). There are no streetlights in Carefree leaving the stars and any moon as a source of light. We would have been lost without our GPS. The room had all the ingredients of a minibar sitting on top of a cabinet. It would have been helpful to have a refrigerator in the room. Just inside the entry door there appears to have been at one time a table or cabinet. This would have been helpful when making coffee, using a curling iron and a hair dryer in the morning. Breakfast was tasty ordered from the menu. The buffet was ordinary. We'll be back.

Room Tip: Rooms 2114 and adjacent are a good choice to have coffee on the patio in the morning while watching...
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  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank compost4all
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gst_Services_Mgr, Manager at Carefree Resort, responded to this reviewResponded January 20, 2012

Thank you for your great comments. We are glad that you enjoyed the resort and our beautiful surroundings. However, I apologize that we did not make you aware that we have refrigerators available upon request in our Premier rooms (the room type in which you stayed). Currently, they are in all our newly renovated Resort and Sonoran rooms and soon to be in our Premier rooms. In the meantime, I have taken the liberty to note this in your profile, so that we may have one in the room on your future visits.

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Reviewed January 14, 2012

I spent the last week on December at the Carefree resort and I couldn't have had a nicer week. The entire staff went out of their way to make my stay enjoyable. I was especially impressed with our housekeeper, Jasmine. She made sure that our every request was taken care of and always with a smile. I'm already looking forward to our next trip back to the Carefree resort.

Room Tip: We had a room on the first floor facing the pool and found it very convenient.
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  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Steve46052
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 8, 2012

This place looks nice upon first glance, but was disappointing in the end. First, upon checking in , we were hit up by a $10/day up charge for coffee, shuttle, news paper and the use of the pool/spa. When you book a room on line for one price and end up paying $10 more for stuff that should be included, it makes a bad impression from the start. Second, the place was nearly empty and we get put in a room facing away from the courtyard which is actually quite attractive. The few other guests were put in rooms directly adjacent to ours which posed its own problem. This place is so poorly sound proof between the rooms that we could here neighboring guests talking late at night and on one occasion, I heard the guest in the unit next to ours fart in the bath tub. Every time anyone in any of the neighboring units flushed a toilet, it sounded like it was happening in my room. When I did try to take advantage of the coffee I was forced to pay for, the dispenser was empty and had to wait nearly ten minutes in the lobby for someone to get me a cup from the kitchen. The staff was hanging out right outside the door I had to access smoking cigarettes. It's not the worst place I've ever stayed at but it could have been a lot better.

Room Tip: Ask for a room facing the pool/courtyard
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  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Lori M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2012

We just got back from our week long stay at the Carefree Resort in Carefree, Arizona. We could not have been more pleased. The room, the grounds, the restaurant, and the service far exceeded our expectations. We had a waiter named Matthias who we were lucky enough to have for every meal we ate there. He was superb! We never had to ask for a thing. It was almost like he could read our thoughts. Water, drinks, appetizers--he really knew what we wanted and had great suggestions for ordering. We will definately be back. We love this place!!! Bronwyn Asplund-Walsh

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank basplund
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2012

We love the Villa! We want to buy one, looked into at our last stay (Christmas 2010?) Couldn\'t come up with all cash down :-<
There were no paper towels, we needed to buy some and left 1/2 a roll. The sofa bed was not okay for any length of time sitting. I was suffering from a cold and needed to rest a bit, it was not comfortable.
More options for Vegetarians would be greatly appreciated. I'm certain you will find more and more coming your way.
BUT we love the villas and have always enjoyed our stay at your resort. I think this is our 3rd time (twice before we stayed in a room) and we will be back! The landscaping, the quiet, the stars at night, the birds in the morning, the local town, it was amazing!!!
Thank you so much!

Room Tip: the suites have an amazing view. Ask for what you want, they've always tried to accommodate us.
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  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank marvin67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2012

The Front Desk employees and Bell Staff were friendly and was willing to assist me in anyway. It is a a great place to get away, with the Spa, Tennis, Fitness Center and fantastic Restuarant and a very spacious and relaxing room with all the amenities. I will recommend the resort to all of my friends that are coming to visit the Phoenix area

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled solo
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1  Thank Ken B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Carefree Resort

Address: 37220 Mule Train Road, Carefree, AZ 85377
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Arizona > Central Arizona > Carefree
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Carefree
Price Range: $149 - $369 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Carefree Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 234
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are excited to let you know, the Carefree Resort & Conference Center is under new ownership who will be making capital improvements to the rooms and public spaces over the next few months. The first construction renovation will be in the Cartwright building beginning August 17th until November 3rd 2017. During this period, we expect minimal interruption to the guest experience. We apologize for any inconvenience but want you to know the resort will be fully operational during this period. Just North of Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona lies a desert gem, the Carefree Resort & Conference Center. Here you can embrace the Southwestern lifestyle in total relaxation. It’s a place of soothing and simple spaces with uncluttered panoramic views of the Continental Mountains. Play tennis, enjoy the Spa, or simply relax at the pool with a margarita. For couples, families or groups, Carefree Resort & Conference Center is a year-round destination that truly lives up to its name. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Carefree Hotel Carefree
Carefree Resort And Conference Center

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