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“Close to Perfection”
Review of Big Sky Lodge

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Big Sky Lodge
Ranked #13 of 48 Hotels in Rapid City
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 21, 2011

Just because things aren't perfect by traditional societal standards doesn't mean that they aren't gosh darned close. Onwards!

Location: 4 out of 5
Not in downtown Rapid City, but still closer to RC than Keystone. Once you pass the main strip, you drive till you see the water tower. If you are driving from Rapid City, the water tower will be on your left. Turn right when you see Calvary Baptist Church. It's a little service road, and turn right again after you get on the road (two quick turns). Backtrack just a little bit on the service road, and you'll find the lodge.

Customer Service: 5 out of 5
They absolutely shine. The 'new' proprietors are absolutely excellent, and the people they have chosen to help them run this local gem are equally as competent, friendly, and professional. The reservations process was seamless, and although you can't make a reservation online, there's something to be said about a local business owner who takes your calls and speaks to you in a mild-manner, casual, and completely calming manner. I arrived and my hand-written reservation slip was ready to go. I was able to check in a bit early as my room was ready. Alicia was there to give me a map right away, and highlight some of the sights. Interestingly, she outlined the Central Hills Loop motorcycle road (which I was going to do anyway). She literally dropped whatever she was doing and talked to me for about 5 - 10 minutes about my travels. Meanwhile, I didn't realize it - but I had seen Jay already coming towards the lodge. I thought he was just a local walking his two dogs, but when I saw him later in the picnic area of the lodge, I realized that was the man I had spoken to about the reservations. They have two dogs: an older retriever named Scooter and a smaller dog named Gracie. Gracie is nuts, you should see her "puppy" sprints. Jay also spent many minutes speaking with me about my travels, and about where I was from, where I was going, if I enjoyed my time here, etc. Truly - Jay and Alicia are two of the warmest-hearted people I've met.

Amenities of room: 3.75 out of 5
I was Room #107, a one bed room. Everything was quite satisfactory. The towels weren't of the finest Egyptian cotton, but they were comfortable and adequately sized. They even provided a separate dyed towel to wipe off things that may stain. The room was small(ish), yes - but it was perfectly adequate and it had a little mini fridge and microwave in it. Contrary to what others have said, I found the beds to be quite comfortable. The bathroom, although older was very well maintained, and the room was very pleasant. The TV doesn't have many channels, but that's ok - you're there to take in the sights of the area, not watch TV. There is no telephone (who are you going to call locally when you have a cell?), and the toiletries are non-boutique but more than adequate. The only "complaint" I would have is that if you have a room that gets afternoon soon (overlooks the picnic area), the air conditioning unit may not be able to keep up with the heat that gathers in the room. Even set at the coolest setting, the AC still stopped intermittently. I mean - it wasn't terrible, but just something to think about if you really can't stand the heat.

Cleanliness of Public areas and Room: 5 out of 5
Absolutely gorgeous grounds. The picnic area was nicely maintained, my room was very well-kept, and the office area was clean as well. I took a peak at the breakfast area, and although small by traditional standards, it looked to serve its purpose just fine. I don't eat breakfast, so I can't speak to the quality of the food.

Price: 3 out of 5
D'oh...perhaps the low point of my trip, but given the fact that I stayed on two consecutive evenings on June 17 and 18 of 2011, I can't really complain. The discounted rate for my type of room (one bed) was 69$, and with tax, it came out to be right around 150 for both evenings. I think this is commensurate with other inns and motels in the area, and probably a bit cheaper too than some of the chains. Considering that K Bar S Lodge was 143 per evening, I think I got a pretty good deal. And yes - of course K Bar S would be a different experience altogether, but given then limited amount of time I spent in the room, I think I fared well. I mean - 69$ isn't exorbitant by any means, but it may be a little higher than what I would have paid if I had to guess at how much a room would cost (53.99). But again, when you think about what you get in terms of customer service, it's not that bad.

Scenery and Ambiance: 4 out of 5
I had one of the rooms that gathered heat in the afternoons. It overlooked the picnic area. I did not mind, as I got to see Gracie and Scooter run around and play sometimes. I did not walk around the building to the hot tub to check out the Rapid City view - once you see the Badlands, a cityscape isn't that intriguing.

Overall: 4 out of 5. Highly Recommended!

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled solo
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Thank wch759
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BigSkyLodge, Owner at Big Sky Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded July 2, 2011

We checked the AC in room 107 after reading this review and found the AC unit was going out! So sorry this guest was warm. There is now a new AC unit in that room. The East side of the Lodge is warmer in the morning and the West side in the afternoon as that is when there is more sun on each side. I wish this guest had told us about the AC and we could have made the rest of their stay even more pleasing. Hope they will come back and try us again. Oh, and Gracie is our baby, Scooter belongs to my brother-in-law!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (619)
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523 - 529 of 619 reviews

Reviewed June 17, 2011

Their rates were very reasonable, there was plenty of room, and it was very clean. The food in their continental breakfast was very fresh, unlike what I usually find at most motels. It had all the normal amenities and the view was so beautiful that visitors were constantly taking pictures from the front of the motel. There is a panoramic view of Rapid City and the prairie all the way to the Badlands. The people were friendly and it was like a home away from home. The only thing that could have been a little better is the beds. The beds could have been a little more plush, but I've seen worse. All in all a great value.

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled on business
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Thank bioprofsd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 14, 2011

Had an excellent experience staying here. Called to book the room and didn't get an answer, so I left a message and within 5 minutes Jay called back. When checking in Alicia recommended several things to see and do, all of which were excellent suggestions. You're more than simply another guest, you become friends. The owners are genuinely interested in your stay and do what they can to make your stay as enjoyable as possible.

The rooms are small, but the beds are comfortable; my wife and I stayed four nights and slept great all four nights. A couple things that are different, no phone in the room and no peephole in the door. The phone isn't a big deal since everyone has cell phones now. The peephole would be the only thing we'd change about the room, but when you consider everything about a motel, a peephole is extremely minor. The TV has few channels, but let's be honest, who goes to the Black Hills to sit in their room and watch TV?

Bring your swimsuit because there is an outdoor hot tub that overlooks the city. Absolutely beautiful views at night! You can see the entire city while relaxing after a long day in the Hills. The breakfast each morning consists of a large selection of muffins, donuts, rolls, fruit, cereal, hard boiled eggs, juice, coffee, and milk. Nothing ran out, if it got low, it was quickly refilled.

The high speed internet works great; my wife and I had to do some homework the first night there and had no problems at all. The view alone makes this motel worth a stay, but the cleanliness of the entire property and the excellent service make this a place to come back to over and over again!

Overall, this was the best motel stay we've had in a long time, and we travel quite a bit. Thanks Jay & Alicia for a wonderful stay, we will be back!!

Ryan & Kate

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Fishingnerd33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 5, 2011

We are a family of 4 (2 kids under the age of 3) and we had another family with us (famly of 3; child who is 2) and we stayed in the Skyline Suite. It was perfect for us, because it had to bedrooms and a fully equipped kitchen. It was great for us, since we have children who needed to eat at every meal, so we were able to cook meals and not go out for every meal. The staff was amazing! They were able to help us with every need. We needed a pack-&- play and they had one for us. The breakfast was good for us, because toast, bagels, cereal, and bananas are what our kids were used to eating at home. The only down fall for this suite was that the only air was in the living room, so when we closed the bedroom doors at night, the rooms got hot. Granted the days/nights we were there it was always in the upper 70s low 90s. We all loved this motel and will be back again, and will stay in the same room! Thank you again for everything!

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank JessG_4-3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2011

The place is quaint. It is dated but it has heart. 100% is given to you as a guest. The property has panoramic veiws of rapid city. But most important is the service the owners and everyone give. Thanks Jay and Alicia!

  • Stayed: May 2011
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Thank wetrytogetout
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 2, 2011

My husband and I spent one night in this lovely hotel, and hope to come back and stay here again. We were warmly welcomed by the friendly and helpful owners. The room was clean and cozy. My husband and I enjoyed sitting on the bench at the back of the property and watching the full moon rise over Rapid City. There is also a small park-like area in front with picnic tables. This place was in a lovely, quiet area. The free breakfast provided a wonderful variety of fresh and tasty foods. This was my favorite hotel that we stayed at on our trip from Indiana to Washington state.

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank Bluejay444
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2011

Jay and Alicia:

Just wanted you to know how pleased my wife Joan and I plus ALL of our kids and guests were that stayed at Big Sky Lodge for my son's graduation from
School of Mines this past weekend. You guys do a GREAT job with your facilities and I can tell you we won't be bashful in recommending Big Sky to
friends and relatives that ask "What place do you guys recommend to stay in Rapid City?". Its refreshing to stay where the owners and their employees
are easy to work with and REALLY go the extra mile to accomodate their guests. Arriving late last Thursday evening and leaving our room keys taped
to the office door was priceless and shows that you two really put your hearts into the operation. Great view, spotless rooms, and fantastic
management. Put it all together and you guys have only one direction to go.....UP!

Thanks again for your hospitality!!!!

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled with family
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Thank Cook59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Big Sky Lodge

Address: 4080 Tower Rd, Rapid City, SD 57701-5391
Phone Number:
Location: United States > South Dakota > Rapid City
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites
Hotel Style:
#3 Family Hotel in Rapid City
#7 Business Hotel in Rapid City
#7 Romantic Hotel in Rapid City
Price Range: $63 - $96 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2 star — Big Sky Lodge 2*
Number of rooms: 31
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Also Known As:
Big Sky Hotel Rapid City
Big Sky Motel

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