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“Great Place! Bring your own food.”
Review of Great Wolf Lodge

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Great Wolf Lodge
Ranked #4 of 18 Hotels in Mason
Reviewed September 15, 2010

Our girls are 8, 5, and 10 months, so I basically stayed with the baby and my husband had the other 2. I was expecting everything to be much more "babyish", but it was actually geared more for my 8 year old. We used a promotion code when we made reservations and got a discount, but there were no other discounts at the time since it was holiday prices, so you might get a better deal. We got the Wolf Den room. It was plenty big for us and had a room for the girls with a bunk bed and a tv. The den isn't completely closed in, and there's no door, so it's not exactly a separate room, but they loved having their own space. I highly recommend that you bring lots of snacks and drinks with you. Your room has a microwave and dorm sized refrigerator, so we had chips, capri suns, popcorn, and lots of lunchables. During the winter after everyone gets out of the water, it is REALLY hard to leave the resort to go out to eat somewhere, and the food is pretty pricy at the 2 restaurants there. There's also a Pizza Hut by the water park, which we didn't try. Also, there's a spa inside and a kids spa called "Scoops" where they can get pedicures and manicures with sprinkles and "icing." They get booked up days ahead, so if you are interested, you might want to call ahead and make an appointment. We were disappointed we didn't get to try this, so we're going to call ahead next time! Another thing is you might ask for a room on the 1st floor. The water park/arcade is on the 1st floor so you don't have to keep taking stairs/elevators. The 2nd floor was the lobby floor/restaurants/ gift shop. The top floor was the floor where the kids use these magic wands you have the option of buying. It's like a video game atmosphere where they can wave this little wooden wands around and make crystals light up, etc., and go to a channel in their room to see their points. We didn't do this because it looked like too much money for what it was, but there were a LOT of kids running around with wands. Think Tinker Bell magic as opposed to Harry Potter. At night in the lobby they had a story time with a robotic set (like Chuckie Cheese). I thought it was really boring and lame, and very much a "Mother Earth", Native American theme, and didn't enjoy it at all. But at the end they started singing "Let it Snow" and it snowed in the lobby on all the kids. They really liked that part, and that's all they remembered about it, but just wanted to warn you. After that a "Wolf" (again think high school game mascot) comes out and does story time. We left before the story, but I could hear parts of it about being green/recycling/ preserving nature, etc.
Overall, the kids really really enjoyed the water park. It is huge, and feels really safe. There is an area for small children (probably under 5) with 4 very small water slides and fountains. They can touch in this entire pool. And then there's a wave pool that is a gradual pool (beach style) that goes to 4 feet. The lazy river was colder than the rest of the pools, but I think it's because the water slides empty into it. But my 5 yo could touch all around in it also. There's 2 medium very tame water slides that my 5 yo did by herself numerous times. And then there's I think 3 bigger water slides that use rafts and have tubes in parts. One was a family waterslide. I didn't do these, but my husband said they were a lot of fun. Then there's 2 more pools for older kids to play basketball, etc. Oh, and I hear there's a hot tub that I didn't get to use! :)You get to use the waterpark on the day you check in (even if your room's not yet available) and every day including all day the day you check out. There are changing rooms/showers in the water park. You don't use keys, you use the bracelets that you wear your entire stay, so make sure that they are on good, but not so tight that you can't stand to sleep in them. When you hold your bracelet in front of the door it unlocks. I was reading that you can even use your bracelet in stores to charge things to your room.Also, be prepared to bring cover-ups and flip flops/water shoes. They want everyone to be covered up in the halls, and you don't bring your towels with you. Babies have to have Little Swimmers. And they have lots of life jackets there for kids who are not strong swimmers. You're not allowed to bring in your own floats. Oh, and don't bother bringing towels into the water park. They have towels in the park that you use and don't let you bring them out. But I did see people with snacks in the water park. We never bothered renting a locker. People just laid all their things at a table, and we never had any problems. Overall it is a very family friendly atmosphere, and they have rooms to accommodate very large families. It is a bit costly, but if you can go during the week or during a promotion it's not that bad considering you get the water park included.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled with family
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34  Thank Gardenmomof3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,026 - 3,032 of 3,225 reviews

Reviewed September 6, 2010

We were lucky enough to visit GWL in the middle of the week during the off season, which simply meant there was NOONE there and the price was more "reasonable" than during peak season.
We have three children under 9 and they immensely enjoyed the water park. The staff in the waterpark was sensational and the only complaint we could have about the park was the temps between areas varied from frigid to luke warm. The lazy river and hottub were warm while the water in the wave pool always seemed to be several degrees colder than the other areas. Not a big deal but our 2 year old got the "blue lip" in the wave pool (she survived).
The Hotel was a solid 2.5 out of 5. The room we stayed in was a family fireplace suite. It was spacious enough for the 6 of us. The bathroom was undersized compared to the room.
The HVAC unit in our room (3091) sounded like a Boeing jet engine at take off whenever it came on. That was our largest complaint was the poor maintenance of the room essentials (HVAC, Plumbing, etc.) for the very high rates they charge. (We stayed off season and still dropped $450.00 for 2 nights). If I was paying the normal 3-5 hundred per night I would have been really hacked at the poorly maintained room.
The housekeeping staff did a nice job keeping things clean and tidy and they actually left a thank you note after receiving a tip.... I have read other reviews here about service related complaints we had none. The front desk, housekeeping, and water park staff were all VERY friendly, helpful and professional. It mat have been the off season or whatever but they made us feel very welcome.
We ate at the Critter Cafe and Bar, was overpriced but not overly disappointing either. We had the strip steaks (27.5 each) and were very underwhelmed by the meat but very impressed with the broccolini and potato servings. The service was excellent and the beer was cold and served in mason jars, an interesting but very appropro way to serve beer considering the surroundings! The bar and cafe we felt was an 8 out of 10 overall.
The overall ambiance of the place is very cool. The woodwork, the paintings, the decorations all fit the western lodge motiff so was interesting to walk around and see the variation in wood tones, grains, and colors.
Overall GWF isan interesting place but after staying at numerous 5 star properties for the same money or less we felt it was grossly overpriced for the quality and upkeep of the room and the level of dining options available on site.

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank Neutralatbest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 22, 2010

This was our second trip to a Great Wolf lodge, the first being to the lodge in Traverse City Michigan in 2008. Both are similar, but unless things have changed this one has better water slides and they have an in house pizza hut express that made eating in more affordable. We also visited Kings Island, which could be easily reached by foot via a path from the lodge. I also like the fact that the wireless internet was free (although the signal wasn't always strong).

On the downside, the view from our room "pool side" room was of their HVAC equipment.

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled with family
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Thank MichiganFloyd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 18, 2010

I have read all the reviews and was actually a little disappointed that my wife had booked us a room here. We just got back a few minutes ago and I thought that the hotel deserved a better chance than I would have given it because of some of the negative reviews.
Here it goes.
1) Yes it's expensive but what else do you expect from a hotel affiliated with a theme park. I have had the same experience when I went to disney. If you think the buffet at the hotel is expensive, just wait until you go into King's island. Paid 10$ for a candy bar and 2 suckers.

2) Our room was clean and up to date with a fridge to store snack stuff. We had a nice little balcony with chairs. Kids loved the bunk beds. What else do you need. They don't advertise themselves as the ritz. (Stayed there in Chicago, London and Cancun, nice)

3) Water park was fun. My kids loved the pools and slides. The area was warm but understandably so. Once my kids had been in the park for about 90 minutes they were shivering. Didn't seem too warm then. You have to understand that they cater to a smaller clientele that loses body heat rapidly (large surface area to weight ratio)

In a nut shell. It was fun. A little on the expensive side but I can't imagine anyone really expects to get a bargain at a theme park. Staff was helpful and friendly. Check in was easy. Room clean as were the pools areas. Would stay there again. My son says it was "Awesome". And that's all that really matters in a place like this.

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled with family
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4  Thank gregrev
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 13, 2010

We recently stayed at the The Great Wolf Lodge and we loved it, we had a wonderful time and the staff was so nice and went out of their way to make our stay something we would never forget. I have stayed at plenty of hotels before but the staff have never been so nice. Thank you!!

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank Stacey46
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 11, 2010

The water park at this place is superb for young children. I was disappointed as we had requested a family suite. When we arrived there seemed to be some issue about our accommodations and we were finally told that we had been upgraded to a room with a jacuzzi. When we arrived to the room, it was a handicap room. I am well aware when a hotel does not have rooms left they use the handicap rooms. The jacuzzi was right next to the bed so it was not something that would be used by me, my daughter or infant child. If it had been in the bathroom that would have been different.
I was surprised to discover that the hotel does not use ANY kind of cover on their mattresses; not even a mattress pad. With alll the information out there about how dirty mattresses are or can be I was disgusted that a resort that caters to familes (many young children still wet the bed) would not have protective covering on the mattresses. The final thing that made this stay not as desireable as it should have been was finding a prescription narcotic pill laying on the floor next to the refrigerator; a pill that could kill an infant. I didn't make a scene about the pill that we found, but did notify the front desk. They were not even concerned enough to ask me which room we were in.

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled with family
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3  Thank Josie6199
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 8, 2010

we went to Kings Island. The location is great. we walked to the park from the hotel (about a 10 min brisk walk to the front gate). Our biggest dissapointment was that there was no outdoor waterpark. The indoor water park is OK, but it was really too hot in there to be enjoyed. For the price of the room, I expected to be able to enjoy a water park. We ended up buying extra tickets for Kings Island since there wasn't anything to do at the hotel. We've always stayed at the Wisconsin Dells GWL and I guess I should have researched more, I just expected about the same. The room service was borderline. We like to come in for a break during the day, and the room was never ready (we spend 3 nights).

I would not return to this GWL, I'll go to the hotel across the street, spend less than 1/2 the price and use their free shuttle bus to Kings Island.

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled with family
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Thank renatebe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Great Wolf Lodge

Address: 2501 Great Wolf Dr, Mason, OH 45040-8085
Location: United States > Ohio > Warren County > Mason
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) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Family Hotel in Mason
Price Range: $228 - $408 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Great Wolf Lodge 3.5*
Number of rooms: 401
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Also Known As:
Great Wolf Hotel Mason
Great Wolf Resort
Great Wolf Lodge Mason, Ohio

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