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“Definitely not meant for a relaxing weekend away.”

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Grand Cascades Lodge
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Hamburg
Livingston, New Jersey
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Definitely not meant for a relaxing weekend away.”
Reviewed February 24, 2014

My husband and I went here for what we thought was going to be a nice relaxing weekend before our twin babies are born in a few months. Not sure if it was just the time of year but with the exception of our time in the spa, this trip was definitely not conducive to relaxing. To start, our room was 4 doors down from the pool so we had a nice 8 am wake-up call every morning as all of the young children went running (and screaming) down the hall. That pretty much lasted until about 9:30-10:00 every night. Our bathroom door was broken and needed to be physically lifted up to open and close. After a few requests from the front desk, they finally sent someone to fix it. All of the restaurants were booked, which is fine, but they opened a buffet to accomodate the people who couldn't get in. The lack of assortment and quality of the food was so bad that my husband and I ended up spending $33/person to eat a plate of french fries. Only to walk over the the restaurants shortly after and see a slew of open tables. Evidently a lot of people don't show up for their reservations. On the positive though, the spa and spa staff was amazing. The spa facilities were very nice and offered a relaxing and quiet retreat. In addition, the crystal tavern was very good the one night we were able to get reservations. Funny thing was we felt lucky to get them and there were numerous open tables the entire time we were in there. Would definitely consider coming back once we have a family, but definitely do NOT recommend for a couples weekend away.

Room Tip: Make sure you are not on the first floor!
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank rabramo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vincent S, Front Office Manager at Grand Cascades Lodge, responded to this review, March 3, 2014
Dear Rabramo,

Thank you for visiting Grand Cascades Lodge and for sharing you comments with our team and other travelers. I greatly appreciate it. I am glad that you enjoyed your spa and Crystal Tavern dining experiences and hope that there were other aspects of your stay that were equally enjoyable. I believe that your comments regarding the number of families with children staying in the hotel during the Presidents' Week holiday are fair, and I certainly understand that a couple looking for a relaxing getaway would be impacted as you were by many children occupying the hotel. And, in fact, as you wrote, when you have children of your own, this will be a great destination to have fun with them. However, there are many times, often when kids are not on holiday from school, that the hotel is overwhelmingly enjoyed by adults looking for tranquility. I encourage you sincerely to contact me, and I can help to ensure that your next experience here is much more positive, even without children.

I hope that you will contact me and look forward to having you as a guest once again.

Warm Regards,

Vinny Sammartine
Lodging Operations Manager
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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (223)
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English first
Manhasset
Level Contributor
29 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed February 21, 2014

Our kids got inspired by the Winter Olympics and wanted to ski for the first time. With that, we didn't want to travel too far in case they give up within the first hour so made a last minute decision to stay at the Grand Cascade and ski at Mountain Creek. It took us 1 1/2 hours from Long Island, NY, and we were able to swim, ski and snowtube during the stay. Their biggest asset is its close proximity to NYC. We booked a 1-bedroom suite and it was great with the full kitchen and a washer/dryer. We literally prepared all meals saving a lot of money and time especially with little children. Laundered all ski clothing right after returning from Mountain Creek. We really liked the convenience of free frequent shuttle service to the Tubing and Ski area. Everyone we encountered at the resort was friendly. I really liked their bedding with a heavy duvet and crisp sheets.

The biosphere pool was much smaller than expected and its strong chlorine burned. I could feel it even before stepping into the area. The water looked questionable and it was really crowded. Nevertheless, the kids really enjoyed the water slide and having the option of swimming after a day on the slope. They even had movies every night in the pool area and my daughter really enjoyed it. My husband and daughter didn't ski but were able to participate in a few children's activities throughout the day. They even venture out to their sister hotel, Mineral Spring, for an activity leveraging their shuttle.

Housekeeping service was inadequate. By the time we returned from ski at 4pm, our room was not cleaned. When they came by at 5pm, we had to turn down the service given that we were just too exhausted to empty the room. Even when they were there one day, I could see that the service was rushed as the bed wasn't properly made and the floor was still dirty. I felt bad for staffs as they all seem to be hard-working and pleasant. Clearly, the resort wasn't properly staffed. Also, I couldn't believe that they had two small elevators for the size of the resort. It was very slow and got crowded very fast.

In terms of checking out, we wanted to use the check-out service via TV but saw a discrepancy on our bill. We were supposed to get a 20% discount President's Week but the bill didn't reflect that. However, when inquired, the front desk took care of it without hassle. I was so glad that I had an email confirmation on my phone to prove it. Another thing to note is that the resort signs are not clearly marked from outside so watch out when driving. I wasn't too happy with the Mountain Creek Ski so not sure whether I'll return although the hotel is ok. If not skiing, I don't see why I would return to this area.

Room Tip: A suite with a full kitchen is a good value if traveling as a family.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
2 Thank happymamaof3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vincent S, Front Office Manager at Grand Cascades Lodge, responded to this review, March 3, 2014
Dear HappyMamaof3,

Thank you so much for choosing Grand Cascades Lodge and for providing such a thoughtful review. It is greatly appreciated. As you noted, our suites make a nice home away from home, especially after an active day outdoors, and to be able to prepare a snack in the kitchen or dry wet ski clothes in the dryer can be a nice convenience. The combination of our Tempurpedic mattresses and new bedding are very comfortable as well. I am glad that you enjoyed your accommodations and our amenities both here and at Mountain Creek for skiing.

Although you did visit during the very busy holiday of Presidents' Week, when the hotel is filled with families such as your own, we maintain very high standards for both customer service and for housekeeping, and if they fell short, which based on your comments clearly was the case, I sincerely apologize. I appreciate your patience, and it is my hope that, despite this, you and your family will visit us again. Please contact one of our hotel managers to assist you when the time comes to rebook.

Thank you again for sharing your experience, and I look forward to your return.

Warm Regards,

Vinny Sammartine
Lodgingin Operations Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bedford, NY
Level Contributor
194 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
Reviewed February 20, 2014

We booked the Willow Suite. It was the best hotel room we have ever been in and that is saying a lot. It had a well appointed kitchen, amazing bathroom, great living room and sunny balcony. But the lodge itself was a zoo. Check in was a nightmare (4pm at earliest and they mean it). Pulling up to the lobby was quite difficult given the traffic and getting to the lobby was even worse. The slush and puddles were unavoidable. The lobby itself was a filthy mess. But given the weather conditions we forgave it. The biosphere was so crowded with children that no adult would dare to venture near it. Not that it mattered, as the chlorine was so strong it made your eyes water. The 7 pools they brag about at Minerals did not exist. They have one pool. Granted it has an outdoor component, but it is one pool. They do have a couple of spas that they count as pools, but the description is a complete lie. The restaurant, Latour, was interesting -- something you want to experience no more than once. Also note that all the restaurants, except the buffet, were closed M-Th -- not a great thing given the location of the lodge. And service -- the worst I have ever had in a hotel. Long story short. If you have kids they will love the place. There is lots for them to do and they won't mind the chlorine and filth and lack of service. The rooms are big with space for them to chill. You have a wash/dry and kitchen to top it off. But if you are a couple looking for a bit of romance, do not even think about it!!!!

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Kitkat_NY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vincent S, Front Office Manager at Grand Cascades Lodge, responded to this review, February 26, 2014
Dear KitKat,

Thank you very much for visiting our hotel and for taking the time to offer comments from your recent stay. I appreciate your time, and it was a pleasure speaking with you on the phone the other day. I apologize that your check-in experience was not as crisp as we normally are able to offer. We try to accommodate all early check-in requests and on days when our occupancy is high, we offer early check-in on a first come first serve basis to allow those who are here to get in their rooms first. The heavy snow, sleet and extreme cold were impactful, and I truly am sorry that you did not receive the proper welcome and assistance from our valets and bellmen.

Although there were many, many families visiting with children this week, that is not always the case. During school holidays, many parents getaway to Grand Cascades with their children, but aside from that we generally have fewer children than the other resort hotels.

As I said on the phone, and most genuinely meant, I hope that you will visit our resort again, and if I can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Warm Regards,

Vinny Sammartine
Lodging Operations Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Level Contributor
51 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed February 18, 2014

The hotel was extremely short staffed on Presidents Day weekend. Valet nowhere to be found, rooms not ready til 6p at night and room service "out of service". The staff was clearly annoyed with management's lack of foresight on the holiday rush and their attitude towards the guests suffered. Pool was so over chlorinated, numerous guests complaining of burning eyes. Food and towels left outside guest room doors for days. To top it all off, I checked out and found almost $100 of erroneous charges on my bill. Might as well stay at the Appalachian at Mountain Creek where you can ski in and ski out since none of the "luxury" amenities advertised at Grand Cascades were evident upon arrival.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank FoxyRoxy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vincent S, Front Office Manager at Grand Cascades Lodge, responded to this review, February 26, 2014
Dear FoxyRoxy,

Thank you for visiting Grand Cascades Lodge, and for taking the time to share your comments about your experience here. We have a beautiful property with many fantastic amenities and are proud of the excellent and genuine service we provide our guests. That being said, many of your comments regarding how busy the resort was during your stay are well taken. That we as a whole failed to provide you with that sincere, personalized service and that you were not able to take full advantage of what the resort offers is my great regret. I hope that you will consider visiting our Lodge again, and moreover, I encourage you to contact myself or one of the front desk managers to assist you. I am very confident that we can make the situation right.

Thanks again for your time and patience,

Vinny Sammartine
Lodging Operations Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed February 12, 2014

As a professional event planner, I have utilized this resort for a corporate event back in 2008 and I liked it very much. When I found out that my dear friend was getting married there I was thrilled. The rooms are the same but the new tempurpedic mattresses were a welcome surprise. They do a great job of keeping the rooms very clean. I find the rooms to be very dark though. Lots of dark paint and wallpaper which are in need of better and brighter lighting. The shades on the window are either open or closed. There is no sheer curtain to let in light. Since we were on the second floor just behind the lobby, people driving out of the parking lot could look right in so we had to keep the shade shut at all times. The pool area is lovely but there are too many kids for my liking but being that it is a "FAMILY" resort, I can't really complain. The wedding was held in the Saratoga room which has aged a bit since my last visit. There are some cracks on the window frames and for some reason there was absolutely no heat on in the room. Everyone complained for the first hour. Finally I went and sought out the Banquet Manager and he fixed the problem immediately. The bedding was clean and fresh. I slept like a baby in that fabulous bed. We had brunch in the Rotunda room which was nice but they only had one person cooking eggs and one cooking pancakes so by the time you got your eggs and waited in line for the pancakes, the eggs were cold. Also on the hot buffet stations, the covers are not sliding so you have to pull the entire thing off and try to find a place to set it down so you can serve yourself. It was difficult to navigate but it looked pretty. I loved the small touches like serving yogurt parfaits in canning jars and having milk in mini milk bottles with paper straws was so adorable. Very nice food and presentation.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank LaureenNYC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vincent S, Front Office Manager at Grand Cascades Lodge, responded to this review, February 26, 2014
Dear Laureen,

Thank you so much for visiting the Grand Cascades Lodge and for taking the time to share comments from your stay. I most definitely agree with you that our Tempurpedic beds are so comfortable, and we recently upgraded our pillows, sheets and blankets to make them even better. I'm glad that you shared your memorable stay with friends and family for such a special occasion and our banquet team does an excellent job. I am sorry that there was a small issue during the reception, but I am happy that it was rectified quickly. Thanks for your other comments, both positive and negative about the event, and I will share them with our banquet manager.

On behalf of our staff, we look forward to having you visit our resort again, whether for another wedding or simply for leisure.

Warm Regards,

Vinny Sammartine
Lodging Operations Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey
Level Contributor
135 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 120 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2014

I've heard nice things about this, but to experience it first hand was even better. The lodge is expansive, lots of parking - no fee. The staff were friendly and helpful. There is a nice little hot chocolate station for the 'kids' when they return from skiing. The one bedroom suite includes a kitchenette, fireplace, patio. it's not big, but it's cozy and homey. there's even a tv in the bathroom which also had a jacuzzi tub, could not resist. We had dinner in the Springs Bistro, a nice italian restaurant; the food, the service, everything was just superb. On top of that, they have the biosphere pool which is heated, plus a hot tub that goes to the outside of the building, so you're sitting comfortably in a hot tub with snow around you - completely awesome experience. there's a slide, an indoor hot tub, a steam room and a sauna, plus snack bar. you can stay there all day and just enjoy the view of the mountains outside. Our family had a fabulous little break here.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank ladychow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vincent S, Front Office Manager at Grand Cascades Lodge, responded to this review, February 26, 2014
Dear Ladychow,

Thanks for your review. I was delighted to read that you enjoyed so thoroughly your stay at Grand Cascades Lodge. The staff at our property takes great pride in being able to help provide comfort and relaxation to our guests, and we are passionate about providing excellent service. I truly appreciate that you took the time to share your feedback and eagerly await your next visit to our resort.

Warm Regard,

Vinny Sammartine
Lodging Operations Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed February 3, 2014

I am not affiliated with this property in any way, shape or form. I simply stayed there two nights for a business conference in mid-January. I've been all over the world; expensive places for business, well reviewed places for pleasure. I must honestly say that I have never been more impressed with a hotel's combination of service, décor, cleanliness, sleep (pin drop and the finest bed one can imagine), food, character and overall feel. I was stunned. I heard good things about it but not like this. The only caveat here, of course, is that I did not pay for the trip, which of course makes everything that much better. Still, if I'm looking for a weekend getaway from the New York area, I'm heading here in a heartbeat. The pool and spa facilities have to be seen to be believed. The only minor drawback is the lack of walking trails nearby. There is golf all around, and looks to be beautiful courses, but some walking trails would have worked well.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Brian C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vincent S, Front Office Manager at Grand Cascades Lodge, responded to this review, February 26, 2014
Dear Brian,

Thanks for visiting the Grand Cascades Lodge at Crystal Springs Resort. I am so glad that you enjoyed your brief stay, and on behalf of our staff, we look forward to your return, hopefully for less business and more leisure! In particular, summer is a great time for our resort as it brings a host of outdoor amenities, including golf, fishing, canoeing, archery, and some great hiking both here and locally. We have a hiking trail on our property that circumnavigates the back 9 of Wild Turkey and the Appalachian Trail (among others) is a just a short drive away.

Thank you again for your kind words, and hope to see you soon.

Warm Regards,

Vinny Sammartine
Lodging Operations Manager
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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 Grand Cascades Lodge

Property: Grand Cascades Lodge
Address: 3 Wild Turkey Way, Hamburg, NJ 07419-1531
Phone Number:
Location: United States > New Jersey > Hamburg
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) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Hamburg
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Cascades Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 250
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience Grand Cascades Lodge, the NY metro area's newest and most luxurious resort hotel. Ideally situated in the scenic mountains of northwestern New Jersey and just 47 miles from Manhattan, this elegant retreat offers spacious designer guest rooms with gourmet kitchens, fireplaces and balconies. World-class amenities include a distinctive Biosphere Tropical Pool Complex, the luxurious Reflections Spa, six award-winning golf courses, an 18-hole grass putting course, 4-star Restaurant Latour, 3 indoor/outdoor heated pools, meeting and conference rooms, on-site pro shop, gift store and more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Cascades Hotel Hamburg
Hotel Grand Cascades

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