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“Really was a "Grand Hotel" - made our holiday special”

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Grand Canyon Railway Hotel
Ranked #3 of 30 Hotels in Williams
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Thirsk, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
94 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
“Really was a "Grand Hotel" - made our holiday special”
Reviewed November 25, 2011

Booked a train trip to the Grand Canyon from Mesa, Arizona so stayed in this hotel for 2 nights in Williams. The hotel is huge and beautiful. So clean, there was always staff about cleaning and ever so friendly. Someone said the hotel had been refurbished well they had definitely not cut any corners, we were just as stunned.! The beds were very comfortable, the rooms very clean and spacious.
Don't know why either that the reviews of the buffet are so awful. We had the dinner and breakfast buffets at the café, which was such an eye opener. There were no queues unless you call 2 people in front of me a queue! The food was excellent, a great selection and hot. Very very tasty and fresh. They didn't skimp on anything. In addition to the buffet food, for breakfast you could have an omelette with many fillings or any type of egg freshly cooked for you personally and for dinner they had pasta dishes freshly cooked for you personally, you couldn't ask for better service. Constantly replenishing the buffet food and cleaning, wiping away food that people had dropped. The choice was superb. The waitresses and in fact all the staff, of which there were many were all pleasant and happy to serve. Someone said the café was busy, well it was in the morning as we were all going on the train to the Grand Canyon but there were more than enough waitresses to hand and we didn't wait at all for the drinks they brought. As soon as we were sat down our waitress asked what we would like to drink and it was brought right away and then we were asked to go and get our food when WE were ready, there was no rush. The whole experience was very enjoyable.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank HelliwellsOnTour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Kent, Washington
Level Contributor
97 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed November 23, 2011

My husband, his sister, and I are spending the Thanksgiving holiday in Arizona. We decided to try the train to Grand Canyon so everyone could watch the scenery, and this meant we had to spend the night in Williams. We bought a package that included this hotel. It is huge, we were stunned! It has been refurbished and they did not cut any corners, it was a quality job all the way around. The beds were very comfortable, the rooms very clean and spacious. We had the dinner and breakfast buffets at their cafe, both were far better than we expected. Very tasty and fresh, and a great selection. They didn't skimp on staff, either. There are plenty of people available to help with anything you need, and they are all pleasant and happy to serve. They were having a Polar Express ride while we were there, so there were lots of kids and families walking around in their pajamas, it sure looked like a lot of fun! We kind of wished we had booked a night for our return trip as well.

Room Tip: Even though we were right on the parking lot, the room was quiet. I'm sure the quietest rooms ar...
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank LocalGirl55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Level Contributor
31 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed November 16, 2011

Arrived around 6pm after taking the train from the Grand Canyon that came complete with a hold up by gun totting baddies. All adds to the fun as we also had a singing Indian as well. . Hotel was very close to the station and as ever during our travels the reception staff were fine. Room was a good size with two standard American sized queen beds, coffee machine etc. Checked with Trip Advisor as to where to eat, which came up with the Red Raven as the top place. Double checked with reception who also recommended it. And yes, the restaurant had an excellent atmosphere and the food was great. It was my birthday so we were dining with friends one of whom bought a bottle of bubbly – that really made the night.
Had breakfast at the nearby railway café – My wife and I thought it quite poor quality food although some of my traveling companions took a different view and thought it good. However it was quite crowded when we went in so that may have made a difference. Interestingly the fire alarm went off around 8am and everyone hightailed it outside. It was a false alarm but like most hotel guests I would imagine, I had not bothered to read the fire instructions on the back of the door. As it turned out this was not an issue but I’ll probably make an effort in the future. I’ll add a note here to say that this was the hotel that Billy Connolly stayed in whilst filming around Williams for his Route 66 program that was aired recently in the UK. The female reception staff thought he was ‘lovely’. I say no more.
At around 9am in the morning about 100 yards from the hotel there is a 15 minute wild west shoot out by the guys who attacked the train the previous day. When that’s over the train leaves for the Grand Canyon. Overall I have no complaints about the hotel but as you can see from my review We did not spend much time in the hotel other than sleeping.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Shaggyhair
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Huntington Beach, California, USA
Level Contributor
80 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed November 14, 2011

Stayed one night with the Polar Express package: one night stay, Polar Express tickets, dinner and breakfast at the buffet. I thought the hotel was beautiful, very clean, very well appointed and just the right size. The bathroom was spotless. Walked a few steps outside to the train depot and buffet. Polar Express was AMAZING, our kids absolutely loved it. I don't know why the reviews of the buffet are so awful, it is what it is - a hotel buffet. I thought it was great especially for the price. I saw staff constantly refreshing and cleaning the buffet area, and the food was delicious, well cooked and very fresh. Never stood in a long line anywhere. Check in and out was quick and painless. This may have just become a new tradition! Be sure to visit Bearizona while in town!

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank hbmom92649
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Level Contributor
16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed November 12, 2011

I recently stayed at the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel in Williams, AZ prior to going to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon on the train. The hotel is very comfortable and the staff is really friendly. Our room was well appointed and had all the conveniences one would expect. The bed was comfortable and triple-sheeted. The bathroom was quite nice and had all the amenities we needed. The room had a coffee maker and a nice flat-screen television with a good choice of free channels. There was also a mini-fridge in the room. We were able to park very close to the entrance to the lobby so transporting our bags on the provided luggage carts was very easy. In the evening we hung out in the hotel’s pub, which features an antique bar and is very cozy. There is a beautiful wood fireplace in the lobby where you can lounge on over-sized, very comfortable leather sofas and chairs! We also enjoyed the indoor pool and Jacuzzi. Our stay was relaxing and quiet, and everything worked out just as hoped. In the morning we were just a stone’s throw from the railway station. Literally everything was completely satisfactory during our stay at the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel! Highly recommended!

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled on business
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Helpful?
Thank vegas4locals
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vancouver
Level Contributor
21 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed November 6, 2011

The hotel is a good way to see the Grand Canyon without paying the unbelievable prices closer to or inside the park. For a family on a budget it was worth the extra hour drive to the South Rim. We also ended up walking around Williams and were surprised by how well this Route 66 town looks after tourists. Good value in local restaurants and old-style diners, the Pine Country Restaurant being a favorite.
The hotel seems to forever be under renovations and can be a bit of a nuisance but it never detered our visit. Hotel desk staff were very good at recommending different ways to see the Canyon, complete with their personal reviews.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank watermaa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Eugene, Oregon
Level Contributor
34 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed November 1, 2011

Stays at this hotel are usually sold as a package, that includes some meals at the hotel cafeteria, train travel to the Grand Canyon, and (an upgrade) overnight stay at the Maswick Lodge in the canyon. (I highly recommend that you do get the upgrade; otherwise you only get about three hours in the canyon before you have to return to Williams.)

The hotel itself is clean and appears to be reasonably well run. I would take issue with there description of some so-called rooms as “Delux”. These are more or less standard motel rooms. Perfectly OK, but hardly delux. The hotel cafeteria is actually better than I expected. Hardly world class food, but certainly acceptable. We are vegetarian and had no trouble finding food to eat there. Hint: For breakfast, it is worth the wait to get in line for the eggs or omelets cooked to order. Same goes for the pasta at night. Avoid the precooked eggs or pasta on the buffet.

The train trip is extremely well run and fun; lots of cornball entertainment before and during the ride.

The Maswick, which is your overnight destination in the package is just OK - very basic national park motel. Do avoid the Maswick cafeteria, though, as the food is dreadful - the food at the Bright Angel Lodge is much better. (On our next trip, we would likely take the train in, stay at the Bright Angel, which is much nicer, for several days at least, then train back)

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Mr_K_From_Eugene
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Canyon Railway Hotel

Property: Grand Canyon Railway Hotel
Address: 233 N Grand Canyon Blvd, Williams, AZ 86046-2563
Location: United States > Arizona > Williams
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Williams
#4 Business Hotel in Williams
#5 Family Hotel in Williams
#5 Romantic Hotel in Williams
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Grand Canyon Railway Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 298
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience the luxury of a bygone era at Grand Canyon Railway Hotel. Designed to resemble the century-old train depot that housed the original Fray Marcos Hotel, our hotel is a relaxing retreat in a picturesque Western setting. The 298-room hotel is just a block away from downtown Williams and historic Route 66. Combined with a variety of amenities such as complimentary wi-fi, an indoor pool and hot tub, delicious dining options at Grand Depot Cafe and Spenser's Pub, The Grand Canyon Railway Hotel is the perfect place to stay before embarking on your grandest of journeys! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Canyon Railway Williams
Fray Marcos Hotel
Hotel Grand Canyon Railway

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