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“Wonderful place for children” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Lodge at Palmer Gulch

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Lodge at Palmer Gulch
Ranked #11 of 12 Hotels in Hill City
Springfield, Illinois
Level Contributor
22 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Wonderful place for children”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 4, 2012

Great place for kids! Top notch for children entertainment. We stayed in the lodge as I am accustomed to 4 star hotels and not any where near a country girl. The lodge was okay. Appears to be an older hotel and a tad rustic for my likings but it was clean and comfortable. Would have like it to be more 4 star but hey, I knew going into this vacation that it would not give me a "big city feel." The lodge does offer cereal/muffins for breakfast (free) which we did not know so this was a pleasant surprise. We ate at the Pondersa dining room one night and it was just so so. We had ants on the table but I was able to overlook them since we were staying in a campground resort. The pancake tent was awesome for all you can eat for $2.50! My daughter loved the waterslide, the pool, the mini golf (which is a very difficult course), and especially the jump pad. It was well worth the stay to see her so happy with all of the kid activities. The nightly movies were fun along with the hourly evening entertainment that is provided each night. We did the tye die shirts and you can't beat the price of $5. We did horseback riding and they were exceptional! Very kind and patient with my 7 year old who has never been on a horse before this trip. The site is close to everything and it appears to be the nicest place in the area. I would stay here again if I ever felt the need to go back to Mt Rushmore. We also recommend Bear USA in Rapid City. Fun to see all of the animals roaming the streets as you drive the area. Just a small note: there is minimal cell phone/internet service in this area. You could occasionally get service near the pool but definitely not in your room. It's nice to get away from technology but I felt lost being unable to call anyone if needed.

Room Tip: I would pay the extra money for a balcony if they are available. It would have been fun to sit outs...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank had22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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174 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (47)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
39 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 19, 2012

Just finished our second stay here in consecutive years. This place has it all! Incredible value for your vacation in the black hills! First of all the location is terrific. You are right in the middle of everything there is to do in the black hills. You're close to Rushmore, close to Custer State Park, close to all the caves, close to Rapid City - you won't be pressed to find options as far as entertainment in the area as there are many choices. Second of all the KOA provides lots of extras you wouldn't get anywhere else. Aside from all the entertainment for the kiddies, there is wine tasting, ATV rentals, massages and other entertainment. The rooms are very nice and well kept. As always check for specials as they run them quite often during the year and summer. If you are military they also give an excellent discount. Will stay again as this is the premier KOA in the entire country!!!

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank anonymousconnoisseur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
southeast us
Level Contributor
178 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 14, 2012

Unfortunately we had alrerady paid for our stay. If you are looking for a KOA like most-this is not it. We could have stayed in a nice hotel for what we paid for a low end RV site. Separate "resort fee" is charged (even for kids) and we did not even use anything except 1 quick dip in the pool. Yes, there is a ton offered there--again it is all at an additional cost. It is clear that some people just come there & never leave the grounds. Our site (#191) was directly across from the bathroom & we had to listen to the exhaust fans from that at night. There was more car/vehicle traffic noise IN the campground itself than on the highway. Last night we had to listen to 2 1/2 hours of karaoke songs from the nearby stage (6 spaces away) well after dark. My husband complained to the staff & they had no idea it was even still going on....poor management. Custer State Park is nearby with beautiful campgrounds or the KOA in Hot Springs is great too.

Room Tip: site #191 is directly across from very noisy/busy bathroom
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank tarheelUS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Hill City hotels

Worthington, IA
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 12, 2012

We choose the Palmer Gulch Resort because my sister and her family stayed there in their RV and liked it. While we have a camper, we decided to rent a cabin instead because we thought it would be just as cheap to do that than spend extra money on gas to pull it there. We looked online at the pictures of the cabins and choose Cabin #2. We could tell it was indeed "rustic" but as long as it had running water and electricity we didn't mind. Afterall, it is a cabin and it is all part of the experience. The part that we didn't expect was how dirty the cabin would be. The floors were full of dirt and dog hair from the previous guests. My son's bedding was covered with dog hair as well. It looks like they probably changed the sheets but the bedspread and blankets had hair all over them which then got on the sheets. The rug in the kitchen area was covered in dog hair and dirt. I asked the front desk for a whole new set of bedding, which they provided. I also asked for a different rug and if someone could please go over the floors again with a vacuum and preferably a wet mop...this however, they would not do. The screened in porch area was ok...but here again since it was screened in with no actual windows that closed so the floor and furniture in there were very dirty. The kitchenette area was fine and provided us with everything we needed...a refrigerator, stove, microwave, sink and toaster as well as dishes. The bathroom was fairly updated in comparison to the rest of the cabin but needed a good cleaning. The shower leaked and got the floor wet everytime someone showered...but hey, at least my bathroom floor was clean this way. The 2 twins bed mattresses were in good shape. Our double bed, however, was not. The mattress was old and worn out. My 6'4" husband was about a foot too long for the bed.

The rest of the resort was nice though and I think we would have a much better experience if we would've been in our camper. There were activities for the kids and a great all you can eat pancake breakfast each morning for around $3.00 a person. The location is good and you are within 15-20 minutes from most of the major attractions in the Black Hills. I would probably stay here again but NOT in the cabins. For almost $150 a night with no housekeeping services included.. (that was an extra $40 a night) I don't think it was a real great deal. My main complaint though was the cleanliness, not the facility itself.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Jennie J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Ulm, Minnesota
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 9, 2012

Resort offers numerous play and splash/swimming areas. TV stations are very limited (no ESPN). Staff are very helpful with advice on area attractions and directions. Internet service was down 2 of the 3 nights we stayed. Cell phone service is not good but that's the case in the Black Hills. Great location (right in the middle of all the major attractions). Kids activities every night and the staff always had contingency plans for rain. Beautiful resort grounds, easy to navigate. Rooms are small but have balconies with beautiful views. Continental breakfast is basic (bagels, cold cereal, muffins, juice). Lodge is quiet. Definitely will stay here again.

Room Tip: There are no bad rooms here. All rooms are quiet and easily accessible to the elevator and exits.
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jennifer J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aurora
Level Contributor
25 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 4, 2012

I would think this is one of the better KOA's with all the fun stuff on the complex. Didn't partake in any but plenty of offerings. Stayed in the lodge and it was decent. Would like them to upgrade to queen beds as doubles are outdated. Continental breakfast is so so. The rustic cabins are just what they are rustic, at least number 4 where some of our party stayed. Heat is supplied by starting a fire.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Larry D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Arlington, South Dakota, United States
Level Contributor
22 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 30, 2012

We visited the Lodger at Palmer Gulch only to indulge in a horseback ride, and we are glad we did! I was accompanied by my husband and three kids--ages 15, 12, and 8--for the one hour ride, and each of us thoroughly enjoyed it. The horses we rode were gentle and incredibly well trained, and the guides (there were three assigned to our group of roughly 12 people) were friendly and clearly interested in the well-being of their beasts. I would highly recommend this experience to families whose children would love a horseback ride. Lots of fun!

Room Tip: We did not stay...only rode the horses on site.
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lisa61372
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lodge at Palmer Gulch

Property: Lodge at Palmer Gulch
Address: 12620 Highway 244, Hill City, SD 57745-8902
Location: United States > South Dakota > Hill City
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 12 Hotels in Hill City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Lodge at Palmer Gulch 2*
Number of rooms: 62
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Whether exploring the spectacular views of Mount Rushmore National Park, hiking through Custer State Park, climbing Harney Peak, or enjoying the day at Sylvan Lake, the Lodge at Palmer Gulch mixes the adventure and relaxation of the outdoors with the convenience of resort style accommodations:∙ 62 lodge rooms∙ 20 full-service private cabins∙ 10 row cabin duplex rooms∙ 6 executive lodges∙ 3 meeting facilities. We also offer fine dining, shopping, and family friendly itineraries! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Lodge At Palmer Gulch Hotel Hill City
Hotel At Palmer Gulch
At Palmer Gulch Hotel

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