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“Incredible property's service suffers during peak occupancy periods”

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Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort & Casino
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Mescalero
Midland, TX
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Incredible property's service suffers during peak occupancy periods”
Reviewed December 31, 2007

My wife and I have stayed at the new Inn of the Mountain Gods at least six times, beginning with the property's opening in 2005, and I am writing this review from a nice IOTMG king suite early in the day on New Year's Eve, while enjoying the resort's outstanding broadband service. We also stayed the old IOTMG many times beginning about 1980. The old hotel was on the same site, and had the same amazing view of Sierra Blanca and Lake Mescalero -- the tribe did the right thing, but they lost a lot of revenue while the old Inn was torn down and rebuilt from scratch. When you walk through the main lobby, you will understand why they insisted on building on the exact same spot, the breathtaking view through the lobby's immense windows is worth the trip by itself. The combination of natural and architectural beauty puts IOTMG on the short list of the prettiest places I have ever seen.

Our stays have been both at peak times when all rooms are full, and at midweek offseason times. I suspect IOTMG simply does not have the staff to handle the peak periods, and this goes for housekeeping, food service, and other areas. Last night we waited for over an hour to eat at the buffet, and when we got to the dining room, maybe a third of the tables were empty. The employees were really hustling to keep up, but it was clear that there were constraints on how many diners could be allowed throught the buffet line in a given time period.

My "above average" rating is given as a composite of all our stays at IOTMG. At times the place deserves a clear "excellent" rating, and at other times the rating should be as low as "okay, but some problems". If you are like me, you will enjoy yourself more when the hotel is not completely full.

I should add that when the staff is not rushed, IOTMG's Wendells restaurant / lounge is as good as anything I have experienced in any big city. The Gathering of Nations buffet is as good as one of the better casino hotels in Vegas, but not as good as the Bellagio. There is also a simple eatery and bar attached to the casino, and a fine barbecue at the nearby golf pro shop. IOTMG is not very far from Ruidoso and its many restaurants, but the same disclaimer about peak occupancy periods applies to the entire town, not just IOTMG.

This hotel went first class with the furnishings, particularly the beds. However long the line is at the buffet, it is highly likely that you will be comfortable in your room. And I defy you to find another hotel with two Bose stereos in a two room suite. Most rooms have great views from their balconies.

As to the remarks in other reviews about staff rudeness, I would say that sometimes the staff is probably harried and overworked. IOTMG employs Apache tribe members and other people from the surrounding community. I have experienced the hospitality of the Mescalero Apache tribe for almost 30 years, and they are very good at it. They will pamper you when they can, and hustle to keep up when the hotel is completely full. I have never seen any hint that the tribe abuses its sovereignty in dealing with guests, and there are many indications that the tribe and its businesses (such as IOTMG) are well integrated into the larger Ruidoso community.

I will return to this beautiful property regularly in the future. The rooms are certainly worth the cost, at least some of the time. If only we had better luck at the casino!

  • Liked — Natural and architectural beauty
  • Disliked — Understaffed
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank SWTourist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Texas
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed December 17, 2007

Horrible customer service. All staff needs to be trained on being hospitable. Front desk is an absolute mess. Takes forever to check in and out. Rude personnel. They are a very bad first impression of the facility.

Over priced all the way around.

  • Liked — View
  • Disliked — Staff is terrible. Rude and slow.
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank RLNTSTR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Mescalero hotels

Albuquerque, New Mexico
Level Contributor
15 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed October 16, 2007

We spent the weekend of Oct. 12-14 at the Inn of the Mountain Gods to celebrate my parents' 60th wedding anniversary. It's a long drive from Albuquerque (~3 1/2 hours each way) but we generally enjoyed our brief stay. The staff thoughtfully greeted my parents with a gift basket (including a bottle of local wine) and card. Nice touch.

Like previous posters, I was somewhat concerned about the "casino effect", especially the smoke part. However, we were pleasantly surprised: Even though our suite was on the main (fifth) floor, where the casino and restaurants are located, it was far removed from the hustle and bustle and so quiet, one wouldn't have known there was even a casino in the same building. The suite was generally well-appointed, with an additional half-bathroom that was perfect for our daughter. However, she reported that the pull-out bed in the living area was rather uncomfortable. The same could be said of the king bed--the "slope" was quite pronounced. But ya gotta love the TV in the bathroom!

The view from the patio overlooking the lake was just gorgeous (would have been "spectacular" if we'd have timed the fall foliage better--we were probably a week too early!).

We got in fairly late in the day on Friday, so we decided to eat at the buffet. It was reasonably priced and served better-than-average buffet fare. Room service breakfast was timely and pleasantly served.

We loved the fitness center--a wide range of equipment, a nice pool and hot tub.

Unlike some of the prior posters, I thought the staff was very pleasant and the service was generally fine. All in all, it was a very pleasant stay. I would definitely recommend it.

  • Liked — Rooms overlooking lake
  • Disliked — Parking garage is a LONG distance from the rooms
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank querqeekid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
texas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed September 30, 2007

RUDE! RUDE! RUDE! Please know that this hotel is located on an Indian Reservation and they do not abide by State and Federal Laws. If you have trouble here, you are on your on as they are a soverign nation! In fact they will turn on you and tell you that you are the one that is wrong and if you don't like the way we do business that's just tough! My husband and I have stayed here several times and each time it has gotten WORSE. We were staying at Inn of the Mountain Gods in September during the Aspen Fest Motorcycle Rally. We were not a part of the rally. My husband is a disabled veteran and we had been parking in handicapped parking for a couple of days. When we arrived back to the hotel one evening all the handicapped spaces were filled with motorcycles. None of which had handicapped stickers or plaques. We went to advise security that there were no handicapped spaces available due to all the motorcycles and Toby from security was VERY RUDE and took my husbands drivers license and wrote down all his information telling my husband that he was being difficult. He treated my husband as if he were a criminal! Security personel was MORE THAN RUDE! We asked for a manager but were refused. Security advised us that they were a soverign nation and did not have to abide by State and Federal laws, even those concerning handicapped parking, even though they have parking spaces with handicapped only signs. We finally got back up to our $169.00 room and called management and they agreed that motorcycles could not park in handicapped spaces but by then our stay was ruined. At $169.00 a night I expected much more and will NEVER darken their doorway again. There are much nicer places to stay in Ruidoso at the same price or less. Do yourself a favor and DO NOT STAY HERE!

  • Liked — Nothing
  • Disliked — The whole stay was a dissapointment
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank annoforegon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Texas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed September 27, 2007

The place is beautiful but the non-professional service, poor attitudes and bad food was outrageous. We paid over $50 per person to eat at Wendells. Not only was the dining room dirty but the server was inept and food was cold and did not fit the discription on the menu. Inexcusable for a 4 diamond restaurant! The server knew nothing about wines either. The hotel desk clerks were rude, nobody seems to know anything, much less how to take care of a customer. The casino was smoke filled and unfriendly. Who cares if the place is beautiful if you can't enjoy anything they have to offer. Stay away from this train crash.

  • Liked — The property
  • Disliked — the service and the food
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank 5startexas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Antonio
Level Contributor
37 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed September 3, 2007

My wife and kids (ages 5, 7) have stayed here several times over the last two years and generally enjoy the hotel. The setting is spectacular. The hotel overlooks a beautiful mountain lake with Sierra Blanca mountain as the backdrop. The decor blends Native-American culture with modern architecture. In the lobby, huge windows look out over the lake and provide for many places to sit, relax, and take in the view. Outside, there are several terraces where you can sit and enjoy the view in the fresh mountain air. All of the rooms have balconies overlooking the lake, though some of them are too low to give the great views that you see in the lobby.

The rooms are very nice. Obviously, the hotel is nearly brand new, but the decoration is nice and the hotel is very clean and well appointed. The rooms are very spacious. The beds and linen are comfortable and high quality. All of the hotel facilities are nice, including the indoor pool, indoor hot tub (they should have put it outdoor, not underground!!!), and exercise room.

In the summertime, you can rent paddle boats (costs extra) to explore the lake and fish. Sadly, there is no way to hike in the beautiful forest around the Inn. They really missed out on a great opportunity by not putting in hiking trails. But, I guess they are tailoring to gamblers who are there only to drink, smoke (more on that), and blow money. In my opinion, they could really make this place world class by offering some outdoor options, such as mt. biking, horseback riding, hiking, etc.

The downside to the hotel is obviously the casinos. I generally don't like the type of person that casinos attract, but to each his own. However, these people tend to smoke a lot, and the smoke permeates the beautiful lobby, despite fancy filtration systems. I didn't get the smell of smoke in my room, however. You can be rest assured the smoke isn't going away, as the casino is what makes that place money.

As for food, I have only tried the "Gathering of Nations Buffet," an all you can eat buffet in the hotel of italian, american, and mexican foods. It is a bit pricey and of only decent quality, but it is convenient. Unfortunately, there is not a single window in this restaurant, which really takes away from the experience.

I never had problems with the staff as some visitors reported. I lived in New Mexico for a while and had several friends and co-workers who were Native American. Quite honestly, I believe cultural differences can explain many of the reported problems with the staff being rude.

Stayed November 2006
Helpful?
1 Thank raoulduke101
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Angelo TX
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed August 28, 2007

We were a little hesitant to stay here due to some of the reviews but decided to see for ourselves and we are so glad we did. The place is beautiful. Spotless. Our room was perfect. The beds were comfortable and what a beautiful view. We had our coffee on the balcony each morning. Each person we encountered at this resort were friendly and helpful. Check in was a little slow but that was due to the person in front of us being unable to decide what they wanted. Our check in went quickly and smoothly. Valet and bell services were quick and efficient. Casino personell were cordial. The casino was not overly crowded. Its not Vegas but it was fun. Yes, there is smoke but it is a casino afterall. We did not use the pool or spa services. We had room service for breakfast and found it to be quick and accurate. We had lunch at the Sports bar and it was ok...sandwiches and burgers but good. Service was good.
The buffet was as to be expected as we ate just before they closed. Again friendly and efficient wait staff. We had dinner at Wendell's and found it to be a very nice dining experience. Excellent food and service. We will dine there again on our next visit. We enjoyed our stay and would definitely stay here again.

  • Liked — The view and large comfortable rooms
  • Disliked — Length of hallways.
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank scrapbookbrenda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort & Casino

Property: Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort & Casino
Address: 287 Carrizo Canyon Rd, Mescalero, NM 88340-9641
Location: United States > New Mexico > Mescalero
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Mescalero
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort & Casino 4*
Number of rooms: 273
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
EXPERIENCE A RESORT AND CASINO THAT IS ABOVE AND BEYOND. New Mexico’s premier mountain resort awaits with impeccable service, mouthwatering cuisine for every palate, incredible gaming action, and breathtaking alpine scenery to nurture your soul. Situated high in the picturesque mountains of Mescalero, New Mexico just outside of Ruidoso, guests return time and time again to Inn of the Mountain Gods to enjoy the clean mountain air, stunning panoramic views, and exciting entertainment options. Upon your arrival, you’ll be greeted by a stunning lobby featuring a sweeping view of the snowcapped mountains, lake and championship golf course. Guests have come to expect all of the little extras that come standard here at Inn of the Mountain Gods. From the moment you arrive, you’ll be enchanted by original works of art throughout the property, roaring fireplaces in the lobby, and a tranquil setting that makes the everyday world feel a million miles away. Beyond that, discover an endless variety of activities, entertainment and escapes to make it a getaway you’ll never forget. 273 LUXURY ROOMS AND SUITES, NUMEROUS DINING OPTIONS FROM A SIGNATURE STEAK AND SEAFOOD RESTAURANT TO A SCRUMPTIOUS BUFFET, 40,000 SQUARE FEET OF MEETING SPACE, 38,000 SQUARE FOOT CASINO, INDOOR POOL, A FULLY EQUIPPED WORKOUT FACILITY, SKIING AND SNOWBOARDING, 18 HOLE CHAMPIONSHIP GOLF COURSE, BIG GAME HUNTING, SKEET SHOOTING, HORSEBACK RIDING, FISHING, GONDOLA RIDES. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Inn Of The Mountain Gods Hotel Mescalero
Hotel Of The Mountain Gods
Mountain Gods Inn
Inn Mountain Gods
Mountain Gods Hotel
Of The Mountain Gods Hotel

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