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“Good lodging to explore Glacier NP”

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St Mary Lodge & Resort
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Saint Mary
Reviewed July 21, 2014

Although not directly in the park, the lodge is right at the eastern entrance to the park and the Going-to-the Sun highway. Of all the lodging choices on the eastern side of the park, this was the most convenient to explore the park. Unfortunately, the Going-to-the-Sun road was still closed because of snow (July 1) and did not open until a few days after we left, thus depriving us of the main reason for coming to Glacier. That said, we were able to explore the first 13 miles of the highway, and it was easy for us to drive up to Waterton and Many Glaciers. The central location of St. Mary's was a big advantage. Addtionally, the small town had basic facilities-- like 2 good restaurants, a supermarket, and gas station. The lodge has a "motel" section, but we stayed in the main lodge itself, which had a lobby with wifi (not in room), lounge, and full restaurant, and a very nice gift shop. A separate coffee shop in the lobby opened early (6 am?) so we could get java before our early departure.
The room was quite clean and comfortable. Unlike some of the park lodges, the room had a phone and a full bathroom-- shower, sink and toilet. The staff was very pleasant and helpful. We had reservations for the red bus, and they helped supply the phone numbers to contact the right people about cancelling the tour.
We had a budget room, and the only downside was it had no view. That hardly mattered to us since the views were spectacular outside, which is where we wanted to be. You don't see a view while you're sleeping! This lodge is not like the grand old park lodges built in the 1930's. Many Glaciers Lodge, with its grand lobby and large fireplace, is more like that. But it was a very nice, more modern hotel, with the advantage of great location. If I returned to Glacier NP, I would probably choose St. Mary's Lodge again.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Robert2835
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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649 - 655 of 915 reviews

Reviewed July 21, 2014

Although we didn't stay at the lodge, we stopped by to have a snack and publish our blogs. We ordered nachos, thinking that would be a small snack. It was HUGE and very tasty! We skipped dinner! Another day we had the huckleberry lemonade and that was to die for! The servers weren't pushy and refilled our drinks without being asked. And the wifi is really strong! This is important is you are staying in the park, where there is basically no wifi to speak of.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with friends
    • Location
    • Service
2  Thank Melodie O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 21, 2014

Just outside the east entrance to Glacier National Park and Going to the Sun Road, St. Mary Lodge offers fast wifi compared to inside the park. Their nachos aren't your everyday fare and enough to tempt 4 diners. Their huckleberry lemonade is a joy to the taste buds. And their gift shop is varied and reasonably priced.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Service
Thank ProBBMom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 21, 2014

This property has the potential to be phenomenally great, however, it is just the opposite. Dirty, bugs, and dated does not match the expense of staying in the motel on this property. I would never recommend the St. Mary Lodge, Cabins and Motel based on the one night we stayed there. The mountain views there are beautiful beyond words and the location on the St. Mary end of the Going-to-the Sun Road near a bubbling mountain brook is very nice. The motel is run-down and dirty. It is their budget property, but not budget priced. I wouldn't even give it a 1 if that was allowed. It is the worst place we stayed on the entire 10 day trip. Avoid this dump if at all possible.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with friends
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank ChixSouth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dan H, Public Relations Manager at St Mary Lodge & Resort, responded to this reviewResponded August 13, 2014

Hi ChixSouth,
I'm sorry to hear that you didn't enjoy your stay at St. Mary Lodge. Your feedback has been relayed to the general manager and will be taken into account when decisions are made about future renovations and pricing.
Best regards,
Dan

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 15, 2014

My husband and I are not super picky. We have stayed at many different hotels, motels, etc. We just were not happy with our stay here, especially given the money it cost. Our room was in the "motel" section across the road. It was small (not a big deal), but clean. We found the bed to be very uncomfortable and did not sleep well at all during our 5 nights there. It was supposed to be 6 nights, but we paid $30 to check out a day early-we were ready for a comfortable night somewhere else!

The shower didn't drain well, so we would be standing in several inches of water by the end of our shower. We used coffee and tea daily, but they never replaced it, so by the 3rd day we were out. One day we didn't get a replacement bar of soap, the rest we did. Some days our bed was fully remade, other days the decorative pillows were left on the floor. The room cleaning was inconsistent in quality. The WiFi in the main lodge (no WiFi in rooms) was spotty. We didn't come to Glacier to spend time online, but since there was zero cell phone service we used WiFi to check in with family at night. It would have been nice if the WiFi had worked the whole time.

There are limited dining options, and the restaurants are all closed by 10pm, so make sure you eat early enough! We spent days hiking and eating our own food, but weren't always back in time for dinner. The staff tended to be rude-the "concierge" wouldn't let my husband use their phone to make a local call to book an attraction. (They also do not do any booking for guests) Instead, they made him walk back across the street to call from our room. There were people complaining at the front desk about stuff all the time.

The location was great, though. It was only a few hours to the Waterton side of the park (I would advise looking here for lodging if you want a more touristy area) and an hour to West Glacier. If the hotel wasn't so expensive, we wouldn't have minded as much, but for the price we expected better customer service. I filled out their online survey after our stay, and discussed my concerns. I received a generic reply that said nothing specific about my responses, so who knows if they even read it.

Bottom line: it's clean, good location, but definitely NOT worth the money. I would look into other options first, or at least go in with lower expectations so you aren't too disappointed.

**Remember your passport if you are a US citizen and want to visit the Canadian part of the park!! We forgot ours and a friend had to mail them. Waterton is great-you don't want to miss it.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank colette424
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2014

If you want to discover a National Park, but don't like staying in super old hotels that smell old and funky, you need to consider this place. I love enjoying the scenery in a National Park, but I want a good bed and pillow, a clean smell, an updated bathroom, a little character. Chain hotels are necessary sometimes, but I prefer a unique and memorable experience. This lodge is on the river and though the view may not be as glamorous as The Many Creek Lodge, it certainly met my needs.
The food in the restaurant was very good and the staff is exceptionally friendly and helpful. Every staff should be as well trained as this one.
So there's always room for improvement and the internet service needs to be expanded. Service is available in the downstairs lounge that seats 8-10 people. Though there is a TV here, don't plan on watching it. I think they get 8 channels - CBS, NBC, and ABC are not channels that receive.
In summary, I'd recommend this hotel as a best bet for those who don't like old, funky smells or chain hotels.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
1  Thank Cindy L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 7, 2014

We stayed for 2 nights in the budget room. I know it says budget but for the price it didn't seem budget at all. It is in the basement with no window - awful we wanted to leave. Don't do it. Pay more and stay somewhere else. Karen Freeman

Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
2  Thank karenmaryfreeman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dan H, Public Relations Manager at St Mary Lodge & Resort, responded to this reviewResponded August 13, 2014

Hi karenmaryfreeman,
Thanks for leaving some feedback about your recent experience. I'm sorry that the room did not meet your expectations. We try to make sure that we are providing an accurate description of our rooms at the time of booking. Looking at your reservation, the room you stayed in did in fact have windows. Since it is in the lower level of the lodge, the windows don't offer a view comparable to that found in some of the more premium rooms.
Best regards,
Dan Hansen

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about St Mary Lodge & Resort

Address: 3 Going-To-The-Sun Rd., Saint Mary, MT 59417 (Formerly The Resort at Glacier/St. Mary Lodge)
Location: United States > Montana > Saint Mary
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Saint Mary
Price Range: $169 - $430 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — St Mary Lodge & Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 115
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated just outside Glacier National Park's east entrance on the historic Going-to-the-Sun Road, St Mary Lodge & Resort provides a combination of natural beauty with full-service modern comforts. With 115 guest rooms spread among seven facilities, every experience is unique. From rustic and relaxing to upscale accommodations, the Lodge has something to fit every taste level and budget. Highlights of St. Mary Lodge, Cabins and Motel include:• Located at the East Entrance of Glacier National Park • 115 Rooms Different Rooms to Choose from: Main Lodge, Great Bear Lodge, Cabins, and the West or East Motel • Snowgoose Grill • Curly Bear Cafe • Glacier Perk Espresso & Candy Shop • Mountain Lounge (Lobby Bar & Lounge) • St. Mary Grocery Store & Gas Station • St. Mary Gift Shop • Loose Moose T-Shirt Shop • Trail Creek Outfitters • Wireless Internet Available in the Lobby • All Rooms are Non-Smoking • Pets Welcome at the East Motel ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
St Mary Lodge And Resort
St Mary Hotel Saint Mary
St Mary Resort
St Mary Lodge & Resort Saint Mary, Montana

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