Since most of Big Bear's accomodations are small, independently-operated ones, it's helpful to have websites like Expedia, where I happened to find the Sleepy Forest, otherwise I probably never would have known it existed. I found a decent rate for a single Friday night (sometimes a problem in the mountains with 2-night weekend minimums very common) which was lower than the price on the hotel's own website.
The property is located right off of Big Bear Blvd, near the middle of town, and walking distance to 7-11 and McDonald's. Apparently it's very close to the lake too, but upon driving towards it a few blocks, we never did see it. Of course, that was in the dark so it may have been right there.
There are maybe 20 rooms or so total, and we were booked into the smallest type unit which is perfectly fine for two people. The room had a king bed, fireplace, TV with VCR, wet bar with microwave and medium sized fridge as well as several pieces of silverware in the drawers. A rustic Residence Inn, if you will. The decor is country, with apples being the main theme, at least in this particular room. Everything appeared clean and in good condition, with the exception of lots of cobwebs in the windowsills.
The bathroom had a stand-up shower and looked fairly recently remodeled. These being older cabins, you sometimes got the feeling of dizziness because the floor isn't perfectly level, but I find it easy to forgive that kind of thing in little places like this.
The cabin is freestanding, so there is no noise from other rooms, other than a particularly irritated dog right outside our window whose incessant barking became unnerving in the middle of the night. I think he was on private property in a person's backyard that just happened to butt up next to our cabin, so I really couldn't blame the hotel, although it would be nice if they spoke to the owners about their discontented pooch.
The front desk staff is very friendly and casual, and the small lobby that houses the continental breakfast is cute with country decor and a small curio cabinet full of various Disney "Sleepy" figurines collected over the years. The free VHS tapes for rent is a nice bonus, although I admit it was hard to find any title worth viewing until I finally decided on "Grosse Point Blank" which was quite good. In the lobby and on the hotel website, I did notice quite a few references to "nicer" cabins with a different name and location, but obviously owned by the same people, touting the benefits and upgrades of moving over there, as if to discourage staying at the original Sleepy Forest. I thought that was a little bit odd to downplay your own older property, but I supposed it's simply synergistic marketing at work.
The Prestone logs in the lobby are $5 each but more like $2.49 at the local supermarkets, so either will work. I did notice quite a strong smoke smell in the room while our log was burning, perhaps due to a partially clogged chimney, but it was no big deal.
All in all, a very cute and comfortable place to stay. I imagine the larger cabins are great for more people or simply more room, and they didn't seem to be that much more expensive than mine. With all the nightmarish properties in Big Bear in this price range, I'd say Sleepy Forest is a very wise choice.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Celebrating over 30 years in Big Bear, since 1/22/80. Our family pioneered the popular Jacuzzi Bath in front of the Fireplace in 1985, asking, "Romance, when was the last time?" The Pool Family invites you to stay in the nicest family lodges around. Sleepy Forest Cottages - the original Studios, Suites, Jacuzzi Rooms and Family Cabins, Cathy's Cottages - Our most romantic Jacuzzi Bath-Tub Honeymoon Suites, or our New Vacation Home Rentals - Walking distance from the ski slopes, on the lake, or backed-up to the woods, featuring Full-Size Spa's, pool tables, foosball tables, and more! ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Hotels.com, TripOnline SA, Expedia, Priceline, Agoda, Hotwire and getaroom.com so you can book your Sleepy Forest Cottages reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Sleepy Forest Cottages Hotel Big Bear Lake