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“Could have been Better”

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Fontana Village Resort
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Fontana Dam
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 17, 2008

This resort could actually be a really fun place to stay, if management was improved. My family visited in June and we stayed in the Dogwood cabins. These cabins are dirty and not worth the money we spent. There was no air and I cut my foot on a piece of metal sticking up from the floor in the kitchen. There are nicer cabins there, though with air. During the day, my family had a great time at the resort. There is a great pool with a very small lazy river. There is an icecream store and a frisbee golf course. A pond is on grounds for fishing, but I really doubt there are any fish in there. We never caught any. At night, the place was miserable. The noise level both nights was ridiculous. We did not get to sleep until after 1 a.m. both nights. Some people (I think they were workers) were squeeling their gold cart up and down the road very late at night at kept it up for hours. We have two small children and they could not sleep because it was so loud. People were out talking very loud because they were intoxicated. Like I said, the nights were miserable. I think if we had a nicer cabin with air, we could have shut the windows and kept some of the noise out, but it was so hot in the cabin we had to leave them open. When I checked out I filled out a comment card and said I would like management to contact me. I still haven't heard from anyone and it's been a month. This place has potential, but not worth the money. Needs updating.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled with family
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2  Thank jennlatham18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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492 - 498 of 516 reviews

Reviewed July 1, 2008

I stayed at Fontana Village June 26-30, 2008 with 43 other members of my family (!) for a family reunion.

Some of our family stayed in the Lodge, others rented cabins. My immediate family rented a 3-bedroom, 2-bath Magnolia cabin. The cabin that we stayed in was actually a mobile/modular home enclosed with wood siding to make it look like a log cabin. The size of the rooms was adequate. The master bedroom had a nice-sized bath with a separate shower and whirlpool tub. The kitchen was an average size, with a full-sized refrigerator and basic plates/flatware/pots/pans. The dining nook had a small round table, but because of the configuration could only seat 3 people. The cabin did have a full-sized washer and dryer. The driveway to the cabin was VERY steep, and made this flatlander a bit nervous. Overall, I would call the accommodations basic and adequate, but not plush.

Cabin pluses: Great air conditioning, good-sized bedrooms, very quiet and peaceful, front porch with rocking chairs, cable tv.

Cabin minuses: No telephone, skimpy towels, no icemaker, no dishwasher, STEEP driveway, a little mouse that we could never catch, no paper goods other than toilet paper.

The Village overall had good facilities. My family ate all of its meals together in a private room. The service was excellent, and the food was good. All of the staff were extremely helpful and courteous. There were plenty of outdoor/athletic facilities ranging from putt-putt, 3 swimming pools, disc golf, nearby whitewater rafting, game room, etc. Planned activities included bingo, square/line dancing, a talent show, scavenger hunts and a great bonfire for marshmallow roasting.

The isolation of the village was a problem for me personally. Other than a shall general store and gift shop, there was no shopping without quite a drive (30 mins or so to nearby mountain craft stores, 60 mins to a town.) Also - cell phones and blackberries do not work on the premises. There is one spot about a 2-mile drive from the village where such devices may work, depending on your carrier. Otherwise, take some phone cards and plan to hike to the Lodge to make a phone call.

Village pluses: beautiful scenery, peace and quiet, plenty of outdoor activities, good food, friendly staff.

Village minuses: isolation from shopping, unable to communicate from cabin to cabin due to no phones, difficult for elderly folks to get around due to hills and many stairs.

Overall, if you enjoy mountain scenery and mountain roads and seek a quiet retreat or outdoor activities, this is a good place. If you like to shop for your leisure, this isn't it for you. I also wouldn't recommend it for anyone who has mobility problems.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled with family
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Thank aafolk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 30, 2008

My husband and I own a timeshare at the village, and this was our first year there. We had a wonderful time! There's so much to do, we already have a list of plans going for next year! The staff was very friendly and helpful, the food was good and the cabin was very clean and comfortable (two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a jacuzzi, a deck and front porch, full kitchen and living room).

We didn't have any cell phone reception, but if you go towards Fontana Dam and pull in the scenic overlook, you can get pretty good reception. The village is about 45min to an hour from major attractions (Cherokee Reservation, Bryson City; Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Asheville are about 2 hours drive). We had a great time driving the Hellbender (Route 28) and the Dragon's Tail (Route 129).

The Smoky Mountains have always been a favorite destination, and now it feels a bit more like home with our timeshare. We have an actualy homebase instead of just a hotel room.

Highly recommended to those who want to get away from the hustle and bustle. Quiet, relaxing and beautiful!

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled with family
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Thank jubilee4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 27, 2008

We visit Fontana Village during hike week(s) in April and October of each year. The inn is not top of the line - but that's okay with us! We are there to hike and fellowship with other hikers that meet there at the same time. We don't want to totally rough it - so the Inn is great for us. The fall colors were wonderful in October and the spring flowers are beautiful! Visit during these times and enjoy programs and hiking with approx. 30 to 50 fellow hikers!

  • Stayed: October 2007, traveled as a couple
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Thank TheHappyHiker11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 7, 2008

Our motoring club calls the village home few a few days each year. If your into driving the twisties of the Dragon this is the place. Because of the variety of accommodations my review will be on the Willow and Dogwood cabins only. The Dogwood are leftover from the days when this was a workers village from the building of the dam. Most have been remodeled somewhat but don't expect much. The Willows are nothing more then a mobile home with a very nice deck added on. My money now goes to the Willows because they have AC and TVs. This year our Willow was very nice and just had a mattress refresh.

Fontana is in a very remote location if you do not bringing food your are driving at least 30 min or dining at the village.

  • Stayed: May 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank Cranky64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 2, 2008

This place is great....We stayed in the fireplace rooms..
Great and clean....nice staff, beautiful lobby, restaurant....
Yes the maids were a little rushed and rude, but overall I give this place a B+
Would definately stay here again

  • Stayed: April 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank OZJEREMY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 13, 2008

We are here as I write this review during the week beginning Sunday, March 9, 2008. We traded in a week at our timeshare for an exchange at Fontana Village through RCI. We stayed in unit 479, which is a quad unit (2units down, 2 units up) in which all four units have 2 bedrooms, 2 baths (shower in the hall bath, and an older oversized jacuzzi and double sink vanity in the master), a full kitchen, a sitting area (with sofa and loveseat, TV with cable, video and DVD player, and wood burning fireplace) combined with a dining area with table that seats six. A bar between the galley kitchen and the dining area seats two. The kitchen has a dishwasher and all the appliances, dishes and cookware needed for six. The two bedrooms share a small rear deck overlooking the trout pond with bubbling creek, and there is a deck out front overlooking the tennis courts. The unit was refurbished about a year ago, and is nice, but the sleeper sofa and master bedroom beds leave something to be desired for a good night's rest.

It seems that we are a bit early for the resort's "season". The recreation center is closed (contains the exercise room that was advertised), the indoor pool is not open ("we're waiting on a part"), the person at the registration desk told us that the small outdoor pool at the lodge was heated and was open, but in fact it was not being heated at the present time and was useless to a guest staying in mid March. We were "one week too early" to secure a bike to ride on the area trails. There was equipment available to check out for putt putt, shuffleboard , tennis and disc golf at the general store just down the street from us. Across the street from the store another outdoor pool with a small "lazy river" feature is being built. The resort has been extremely quiet, almost deserted, which was fine with us since we just wanted a relaxing and quiet week for our "Spring break".

We followed the advice of the resort and bought groceries more than an hour away as we were driving in, because the last 30 miles of road leading to the resort were so curvy that you would not want to retrace these miles (at 15 or 20 miles per hour due to the severity of the curves). The scenery is beautiful. The road is a haven for a miata owner with the top down, but is not ideal for the motion-sickness prone women in our family, so we're choosing to drive that road (the part of 129 that's called the "Tail of the Dragon", with more than 300 curves in 11 miles) only to get to and to leave the resort. The Bistro restaurant has been open this week and appears to have reasonable prices and menu, but we bought all we needed from the Walmart in Madisonville.

The people here have been very nice, and have met our needs and requests, even going beyond the call of duty in some respects. We had had firewood delivered to the unit when we were prepared to go get it, etc. There is one bit of information that I can provide, though, that I feel falls in the category of "things I would have appreciated knowing at the beginning of my stay". We went to the Fontana Dam the day before we left the resort, and there are signs posted on the restroom doors there (and have been for years) that recommends that the Fontana Village water be boiled before it is used even to brush your teeth. This is due to the age of the water treatment system, which needs to be replaced. I talked to the resort's Manager after I saw this notice, and he was surprised to hear this report at first, but a similar letter is framed on the right wall of the reception desk alcove at the resort, unnoticed among several other framed articles of information. I would read this upon checking in, and make arrangements to use bottled water during my stay. The manager offered to provide bottled water for us for the remainder of our stay.

  • Stayed: March 2008, traveled with family
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2  Thank Family_Traveler_Dad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Fontana Village Resort

Address: 300 Woods Rd, Fontana Dam, NC 28733-7603
Phone Number:
Location: United States > North Carolina > North Carolina Mountains > Fontana Dam
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) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Fontana Dam
Price Range: $132 - $169 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Fontana Village Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 199
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Fontana Village Resort, a year round destination resort, is set amidst the pristine beauty of the Nantahala Forest of western North Carolina, gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The Village has a wide range of accommodations, including rooms in the intimate settings of The Lodge, suites, cabins in the forest, as well as RV & tent camping on Cheoah Lake. Add conference space, complimentary wi-fi service, restaurants and lounges, General Store, gift shops, outfitters, pools, marina, fitness center, mountain bike shop, miles of on-site trails suitable for biking and hiking, and it's easy to see why Fontana is a Great Smoky Mountain Destination. The resort offers an assortment of dining options including the Mountview Restaurant and the Wildwood Grill offering resort-casual dining and event catering. The Pitstop offers a fast fare menu for guests or travelers on the go. If watersports are on your itinerary during your stay, the Fontana Marina, located on the beautiful 30 mile long Fontana Lake, has an assortment of different watercraft rentals and equipment available. The Marina's ship store offers a complete line of tackle, light groceries and snacks and anything else guests might need for a perfect day on the water. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fontana Village Hotel Fontana Dam
Fontana Village Fontana Dam

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