I purchased a Travelzoo deal for a 2-night stay at Skytop Lodge back in June of 2013. The promotion was about 64% off the actual value. The reviews on Tripadvisor were decent and so I decided to give it a try. We have recently cruised and loved the experience of having meals and most of the activities included in our rate. The Skytop deal was a good opportunity for us to try out a 'cruise on land' experience.
We are a family of four with one child who is over 12 years old. I purchased the 2-night stay at $398 plus two vouchers for an additional child over 12 for $45 per night. Our total Travelzoo purchase was $488.
There are additional charges on top of this, which we paid directly to the hotel at check out.
6% State Tax
1.5% Local Occupancy Tax
The additional charges for our 2-night stay was $89.56. Our total expenses were $577.56. The deal also included a $10 per day activities credit, which we did not end up using.
The full details with pictures and links to the Lakeview Dining room dinner menu and activities with details and pricing for the week of our stay can be found on the blog:
Included in our stay:
- Lodge mini-suite with a king sized bed and full sized pull-out sofa bed. The room was definitely plenty of room for 4 people.
- Three meals per day for everyone. We had dinner at the Lakeview Dining room where jackets are not required. The Windsor Dining room required men to wear jackets (they have them available to borrow if you did not bring one), which was not our style as we prefer to be comfortable.
- Activities that were included at no extra charge like archery, outdoor mini golf , volleyball, horseshoes, and other activities and presentations for the days that we were there like the wilderness survival guide and frog hunt. There was also mini-golf and ping pong tables in the arcade room on the first floor.
- Use of the indoor and outdoor pools, slides and trampoline at the lake, and shuttle service throughout the property
- All games at the arcade, including the pool table and air hockey table.
- Pretty much everything listed on their Activities page: Rock climbing, kayaking and canoeing, bike rentals (or you can bring your own), paintball, geocaching ($10), shooting, lawn bowling, tennis (they let you borrow the racquets and tennis balls but there is a $10 court fee), and s'mores for the campfire (you can purchase them for $6 for a small bag at the Tea Room, or bring your own).
- Other activities that you can book through their Adventure Center such as the treetop adventure course and laser tag.
-Golf and fishing lessons, rock climbing sessions, and arts and crafts.
The Main Lodge:
Check in is at 4 pm but we were told that early check in is possible as long as the room is ready. We arrived at the lodge at around 2:30 pm. The main reception area itself was a good size but the front desk is tiny. There were two people at the front desk to help. I was assisted by Jesse, who presented a very distant and not so welcoming presence. She was quite standoffish and not very helpful. I travel to different cities throughout the country every year and have experience with up-scale hotels and I was disappointed with my experience with the Skytop front desk staff. She asked me for my Travelzoo voucher print-out, which I was first confused about because I already gave them the unique voucher numbers when I checked in. Jesse pretty much demanded it (which I think could have been done in a more professional way) and ordered us to go downstairs to the Business Center to print our vouchers. Our room was not ready yet and we still needed our travel vouchers printed so we did not yet get our keys at that time.
I read on the website that there was tea time everyday and asked Jesse about the 'tea' time, I wanted to confirm time (4 pm) and to know where it would be held. Jesse responded with a very condescending tone and said, "Is that your 'tee' time?" I then realized that she misunderstood my question for a golf tee time and clarified my inquiry. She had an attitude that she did not want to be bothered with questions and did not readily offer information about the meals and what we need to know even though I told her that this was our first stay. Again, not what I would expect from the front desk staff, whom I think are integral members of the team as they are the front line staff and often are the ones that provide the first impressions with guests.
Another front desk staff, Monica, helped us when we came back after printing our vouchers. She was much more professional, personable, and helpful than Jesse. Monica helped us in a way that I would expect front desk members to do. It took her a little while to find our keys as there must have been a mix up when Jesse first gathered our info. Monica was pleasant and explained the meals to us and answered questions that I had without making me feel that I was bothering her.
It took us about 25 minutes to print out 2 vouchers at the Business Center. The computers were very slow in processing and internet connection. The room was very small and dingy with average inkjet printers. It wasn't something that I would expect for this type of place especially because they host conventions and meetings. The Lodge's business center was disappointing compared to many hotels that I have been to for conventions that have more updated equipment.
Our first impression with the Activities desk staff was also not so favorable. There were three staff members at the desk chatting and my husband was waiting in line for his turn. No one at the desk acknowledged him and they just kept chatting. My husband tried to get their attention but they proceeded to ignore him.
Rest of the Staff
Because of our experience with Jesse at the front desk and the activities desk staff, we asked to speak with a manager to address our concerns. We had only been there for about 30 minutes and were already ready to leave because of the staff. It took about 10 minutes for someone to come out, which ended up being the assistant manager because the manager was not available. We discussed our concerns with her and she was apologetic and answered more of our questions about the facilities and activities.
Other than our experience with Jesse and some of the activities desk staff, the rest of the staff members were very professional and accommodating. It is a shame that some staff members just ruin it for the rest of the group, first impressions always last with me and my first impression of the lodge was unfortunately very poor. The bell hops, other front desk and activities personnel, facilities and dining room staff were all great. The staff that we interacted with and made an excellent impression on us were: Jeff from the Lakeview Dining room, Tim our bell hop, Mason from the Windsor Dining room, and Rick and Cheyenne from the Activities desk.
Windsor Dining Room
Breakfast and lunch are served buffet style at the Windsor Dining room. You also have an option to get a bag lunch to take with you on a picnic. Teas, coffee, danishes and fruit are also available right outside of the Windsor Dining room during breakfast.
A selection of Tazo teas, lemon/lime water, pink lemonade, and assortment of cookies are served daily at 4 pm in the Pine Room, which is in the main lobby. Note that the lines get long because there is only one table for the teas and cookies and another table for the lemonades, water, and cookies.
Mini Suite (King)
We were in room 411, which overlooked onto the South porch (a really beautiful view). The room was clean. There was a Keurig coffee maker with some pods, cups, and sugar and cream. We did not get our supplies adequately replenished the next day as we did not receive more cups or enough coffee pods (only had 3 instead of 4). The sofa was older and the throw pillows were pretty flat. There were also stains on the sofa cushion. There is no in-room safe or refrigerator. The bathroom had enough room, although the toilet paper holder was placed in an awkward spot under the pedestal sink and our toilet was wobbly.
Overall, the Main Lodge had its charms but parts of it needed some repair and updating.
Lakeview Dining Room
We had dinner at the Lakeview Dining room for both nights. Jeff, who was our wait staff the first night, really saved the day for us after our unfavorable experience. He was so accommodating and attentive to our needs. Jeff went above and beyond to make our dining experience extremely pleasant. The food was great and we enjoyed our meals. They had a kids' table that had pizza and other desserts or the kids can order from the regular menu. The dinner menu was the same for the two nights that we were there. Each person got to choose an appetizer, soup or salad, main dish, dessert, and non alcoholic drinks that were included in the meal plan for the Travelzoo deal. The portions were generous and we never left hungry.
Overall, we were satisfied with our experience at Skytop. I would have expected a lot more from the place, however, especially based on how much it costs to stay there. I was glad to have been able to try out the lodge at a discounted rate. I don't know if what we got was really worth the retail value of the package without the discount. It was nice to try it out but our overall experience with unfriendly staff did not make me want to consider going back. Based on what we are looking for for a family vacation idea, my family would rather spend the money towards another cruise.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Naturally InspiredExperience the ultimate retreat by visiting one of the most esteemed lodges in the country—Skytop. This grand historic estate features the very best in accommodations, fine dining and limitless recreation including the new Adventure Center at Skytop.You and your family can explore 5,500 pristine acres of inspiring natural beauty while enjoying a range of seasonal activities. Choose from the adventurous—like clay shooting and downhill skiing—to the serene—like nature hikes and full spa services. No matter your age, personality or desire, Skytop Lodge can make your next trip an unforgettable experience. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Hotels.com, Travelocity and Jetsetter so you can book your Skytop Lodge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Skytop Hotel Skytop
- Skytop Resort All Inclusive
- Resort Skytop Lodge
- Skytop Lodge Skytop