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“Fun.. But not what I hoped..”

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Wilderness at the Smokies Resort
Ranked #8 of 20 Hotels in Sevierville
Cleveland, Tennessee
Level Contributor
36 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Fun.. But not what I hoped..”
Reviewed March 27, 2009

To sum it up, yes, I would go again, but I would plan ahead. If you want to go for the indoor water park experience with children or teens then listen to my advice. If you want to go for romance.. forget it! There is nothing at all romantic about this resort.

We stayed in room 12039 & 12041 (side by side, opens into one large suite.) The fact you can close off sides of the suite might be handy for 2 couples traveling together, privacy wise. We were about midway down the hall on the second floor. The hallways are LONG, very very LONG, so plan to do some walking. I will pop up some photos to show you.

Pros: The room was nice and clean, they had just finished cleaning it when we got up to the room. Nice fireplace, 3 independent flatscreens, dual temperature controls, full kitchen with a small dining table. My 8 yr old adored the bunk bed. The living room had a bed that you pull down very easily and it was very comfortable to sleep in.

Cons: There is no screen on the balcony door, this could allow bugs in if you leave it open for a breeze. The rooms are not huge, they are not tiny, but also not very large, about 800 sq ft. There are two bathrooms but they are both on the small side. There was a nice vanity space outside the bathroom I found useful. The carpet looked a little ratty on the edges.

The resturaunt looked really nice. We decided to eat there before going to the pool on our first night to save time. SKIP IT! It was far to expensive and it did not taste good.. the wait staff kept staring at us when our 2 yr old and 14 month old would fuss (as little ones can do after a long car ride) as if we were a pain bringing in small children. My 8 yr old who inhales every pizza known to man, said thier pizza was gross and he would rather eat school pizza. Indeed he took 2 bites and did not touch it. To top it off the manager.. Bill I believe someone called him, was complaining about the consistency of the soups and sauces loud enough for us to hear at our table, at a very attentive young man staffing the buffet. Which just further dampened my appetite since I can not stand snobbish managers. The food did need improvement, but the customers did not need to hear him complaining about it, and he doing nothing to help the matter. Our bill was over $40 for 2 adult and one childs buffet that we barely touched. They did not bother to ask us if we enjoyed our meal. If you must eat there, go to the snack bar, its expensive but not nearly as terrible as the resturaunt.

The arcade was lots of fun. They have a handy card system that you pre-load credit to. They even gave us $5 free to use towards the games. My 8 yr old had a ton of fun and got a few nice little prizes from it. The games range from 1 to 4 quarters or credits per game. Interesting and fun games.

The big deal was the water park and it was a lot of fun. They have plenty of towels there, no need to bring your own. They furnish floats for the wave pool, and life jackets for the little ones were plentiful. The kids loved the wave pool, the kids playground area, and my 8 yr old had a blast on the slides and in the indoor/outdoor hot tub. The slides are all a blast, the water fun is definatly 5 stars. BE prepared for a crowd, and kids.. lots and lots of kids.. I hope you adore children, there are a lot of them there. Mornings before 11 am and late evenings after 8pm were the least crowded times. Hours were 8 am to 10pm when we went on March 22 and 23rd, 2009.

I advise you bring your own food or order in pizza, or visit the Ryans down the street for decent meals with a family. There are also plenty of other good resturaunts if you need something more than a buffet and pizza and you do not want to cook. I miss those sit down resturaunt days.. It's hard with little ones.. Enjoy your trip!

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled with family
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Helpful?
4 Thank vgates81
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (718)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Thai first
  • Any
English first
East TN
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed March 26, 2009

We had a great experience from start to finish. We arrived before check-in time, but the staff was kind enough to allow us in our room right away. We told them we had young children that might need to nap and were given a nice quiet room on the third floor of the Lodge attached to the waterpark. We never had any difficulty with noise during our stay. The one bedroom was ideal for our two families and multiple children. Everything was very clean and well equipped. The waterpark had something for everyone in our group...including kids ages 2-12. The staff was all very kind and helpful - from reservations to the bartender - they all went above and beyond. It seemed like during our stay every time I thought, "I wonder if they have ____", they did. We had a wonderful time and plan to return.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank psa137-4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Northwest Indiana
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed March 25, 2009

I was traveling with my mother and 2 year old son. We were coming back home after two months in Georgia. We were all pretty stressed out, but we still had a great time at Wilderness. We stayed for two nights at the River Lodge, the hotel attached to the waterpark. It didn't cost much more during the week, and it was totally worth it. The only time I might not care iif I had to take the shuttle is if the weather is warm and perfect.

Having read other reviews, we requested a room near the waterpark and away from the construction. Our room was on the first floor overlooking the parking lot. The location was great because we parked right in front of our room and could bring everything in through the sliding glass patio doors, including my sleeping toddler. The room was quiet and we didn't hear any kids after about 10pm. We had a studio suite. It was clean, comfortable, and the couch and kitchen areas were nice to have.

The waterpark was loads of fun. My toddler stayed in the toddler area most of the first day, but then he spent the next two days at the bigger kids play area. He was soon able to do everything - climb, dump water, work levers, pull ropes, etc. I stayed close to deter rough play around him, but I never had to intervene. We only did the wave pool a couple times, but he enjoyed that as well. None of us went on the slides. My toddler averages about 3 hours at a time. He got a bit rashy, but we swam a lot. An Aveeno oatmeal bath and some lotion cleared it right up. I didn't have any issues.

My mom didn't want to swim every day, and she ended up watching TV in the lobby the day we checked out while we continued to swim. The staff was great and even gave her free coffee even though it’s not regularly offered. The staff was friendly and helpful throughout the stay. There’s also a concierge but it was king of weird because he was just standing there and didn’t look like an employee at first.

We were a bit disappointed that there wasn’t any complimentary coffee, cookies, etc and no free breakfast offerings (donuts, muffins, something light) since we’re used to staying at Holiday Inn Expresses and similar hotels, but I do understand it’s a “resort.” We had takeout from the restaurant the first night, and it was just ok. I though the prices were pretty reasonable ($7-$8 for a sandwich and fries). The grill at the waterpark was a bit pricey but not outrageous, and the food was edible but nothing special. We ordered breakfast off the restaurant menu and got HUGE portions. It was pretty good as well. Stay away from the "breakfast buffet" as it was overpriced and lacking. The mocha I got from the deli was bad, bad, bad. The Red Lobster in town was the best I've ever been to.

One other note - make sure you know what hotel you’re booking and be aware that there are cancellation fees if you cancel altogether but not to change hotels. They also require a deposit.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank tekne1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
manchester tn
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed March 25, 2009

We just got back from the wilderness indoor waterpark.The minute we arrived they gave us are room,The only problem was when we walked in to our surprise our two rooms that where together had people in them,Talk about oops!They where very mad because we had a key to their room,So was all nine of us in are group.But all in all they gave us another room and the rest of the trip was great,I really liked the way the lifeguards where very freindly,But the food was very very high in price.We would do it again.But bring our own food! Kris Hill,Manchester,TN

Helpful?
2 Thank ManchesterTnKris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, AL
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviewed March 23, 2009

My family and I just returned yesterday after a week long of fun at this resort. We all had a blast and really couldn't find much to say other than good things. If I had to complain the one thing that bothered me was the vacationers would run down when the park opened and place the resort towels on all of the chairs then leave and not return until noon or later. This was very aggravating to us, we went around 10 but there were no chairs but no people either. After 2 days of this we decided to go down at opening time and just start our day earlier than planned. The other thing was the staff could have been nicer and more helpful. They weren't terrible but didn't seem like they knew what was going on and just a little rude but overall not bad.

Helpful?
Thank dannigirlsmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nashville
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed March 22, 2009

2nd time I have stayed, first time I left semi-positve review. This time we arrived around 1:30 and our room was not ready. We did not figure it would be, as this is a resort hotel and check-in is not until 4:00. However, they took my cell phone number and said they would call when it is ready. They did let us use the water park before our room was ready. However, we had dinner arrangements at 5:30 and when we were done at the water park at 4:30 our room still was not ready. When I asked the front desk about the 4 pm check-in, her only response was that is what they try to do. Try?? You advertise a 4 pm check-in, should I try to make your 11 am check-out? No apology, no lets see if we can find something else...just sit and wait. We finally went back to the desk again @ 5 pm to complain, and a different (more friendly) desk agent said she would call housekeeping. Amazingly (or coincidentally) they called and said our room was ready just a few minutes later. Don't advertise a 4 pm check in, if you can't make it!
The scarier part is the lack of key control and room access. My mother whose name was on the room went to the desk and asked for another key to our room was never asked her name let alone for identification. Another person in our group's key quit working and a housekeeper let her into the room. Even worse a man with a security name tag let us into our room without verifying we were supposed to be in that room. If you stay make sure you use the safe, and dead bolt the room when in it. They will let anybody into your room!!

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 5-Travels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Sevierville hotels

Cheermomrocks
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed March 21, 2009

The Cons: Check in is at 4. We arrived at 4:15 and it was 5:45 before our room was ready. We ended up having to change rooms the second day because of a leak in the ceiling right over the bed.
The room could use more lighting.
The food at the water park is nasty and waaaaay over priced. (Im talking 7 bucks for nachos and cheese).

The Pro's....guest services were very friendly and accomidating. We ordered room service for breakfast and although it was over priced, the food arrived at the time requested and was decent.
The rooms are pretty good sized, the bathroom is a bit small, but overall they were clean and nice. We had a microwave, coffee pot and small fridge.
The waterpark is great! My kids had a blast. The wave pool was shut down on the second night because some kid had an accident in the pool...but that was not the hotels fault.
The hotel is about 5-10 mins from downtown Pigeon Forge but there are several places to eat and shop cloe by.

All and all we had a good time. The hotel is still new and developing and could use some tweaking.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank hairgirl34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Wilderness at the Smokies Resort

Property: Wilderness at the Smokies Resort
Address: 1424 Old Knoxville Hwy, Sevierville, TN 37876-1358
Location: United States > Tennessee > Sevier County > Sevierville
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#9 Family Hotel in Sevierville
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Wilderness at the Smokies Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 713
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Also Known As:
Wilderness At The Smokies Hotel Sevierville

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