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“Great for birthday party but pricey”

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Great Wolf Lodge Grapevine
Ranked #6 of 17 Hotels in Grapevine
Reviewed March 31, 2014

Reserved one night here for my 11 year old's birthday party sleepover. The boys had a great time in the water park and the two bedroom room was sufficient for the 8 of us. To save money we had pizza delivered to the hotel lobby rather than order pizza from the hotel. Agree with the reviews below regarding the chlorine volume and even these super excited boys complained about it stinging their eyes, etc. The chlorine smell is so overpowering I could not imagine spending more than two nights here. The elevator situation to the rooms was also a long wait depending on the crowds. Even though this place is pricey, it is not the Ritz so lower your expectations regarding bellhops/valet parking/food quality etc. This place reminds me of Chuck E Cheese but as a hotel with a waterpark. The nature theming is nice but I wouldn't consider this place upscale. Good for a weekend getaway or b-day party, but not a vacation destination...for the money why not go to a beach resort instead? Rated 4 out of 5 just because it served my purpose of having a birthday party sleepover. If I was going to vacation here it would be three stars...too pricey and better options if I want to enjoy the water.

Room Tip: they have multiple room layout options, book early to get the kind that will suit your needs for you...
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  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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2  Thank friscotex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 31, 2014

our 4 kids had a great time in the indoor and outdoor waterpark. lots of activities to keep the kids busy. it is a little expensive but we found it less expensive to book through Travelocity rather than great wolf. the hotel is clean and safe to leave older kids on their own. there are lots of security guards. the room was nice and beds were comfortable. the food is a little pricey but there are lots of good places to eat in grapevine including KRISPY KREME DOUGHNUTS AND IN AND OUT BURGER. the kids ran around the property until very late at night and loved it.

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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1  Thank tylerman19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 30, 2014

I held my son's 10 birthday sleepover party there. I listed off several options and this is the one he chose. I however had not researched the cost of my options and this one turned out to be quite expensive for what it was. Background: We love Disney and we travel, extensively domestically and globally. I'm not anti-"kid experiences" nor spending money on entertainment.

Room:
I booked one night in a cabin suite (pine cabin built in with 1 bunkbed and 1 daybed in the cabin--technically 3 should sleep there). In addition there is a queen bed and a couch that converts to a bed. Overall the room is spacious and could in theory sleep 7, however the materials and quality level aren't that of a four hundred and eight dollar bill for one night. I understand the waterpark is included--but that's also the only reason we are staying. Grapevine is not a vacation destination to our family. The hotel felt like an older Drury Inn or something in the rooms. It was clean, but the room showed wear and tear. The wallpaper in the Kids' cabin was torn in places for example. The mattress was very firm which I don't prefer.There is a dorm style fridge, microwave, and coffee maker in the room. as well as 2 TVs with a few channels. No dvd players and there is no way to call valet--it's walk up and you cannot call ahead to have your car brought around. So the service is not anywhere around the $480 mark. I think they missed the part that though they have added entertainment and theme value to their reasons to visit, they still have to be an excellent hotel for the cost. I don't think in my head "$250 for hotel plus $250 for 5 waterpark tickets". And those rooms are $150-180 rooms. Maybe $225 on the weekend. Basically Disney prices without Disney quality, theming, services, or experiences.

Arrival:
In a word, chaos. We arrived at 1:50 PM (they let you start checking in at 1 PM). I think I jumped in at a lull because I only had about 15 people in front me. They actually have permanent queue corrals to walk through because that's how crazy their check-in process is. I don't understand why this company does not have online check-in for at least their repeat customers and allow them to just walk up and pick up their wristbands. I imagine they want to up-sale to everyone. I waited about 20 minutes in line and the line behind me was longer than when I got there. The girl who helped me was very nice. She didn't even bother with a spiel. I got my bands and had bell services follow me to the room. The kids thought the lobby was awesome. I had unfortunate throwback memories to Showbiz pizza with animatronic forest animals that could move. There is a dramatic glass wall that shows the waterpark from the lobby (lobby is on floor 2, but the waterpark entrance is on floor 1). You have 2 options to getting your stuff into the hotel: bell services or you get your own airport cart to push it all in. As a single adult with 4 kids ages 7-11, I got help. You need cash to tip. Our room was on the 6th floor--and so is the wand thing they call MagiQuest which means lots of kids running around constantly with $32 wands.

Layout: Lobby/ store/ restaurant/ front desk is all on the 2nd floor. There is one set of elevator banks only of 6 elevators and they go SLOWLY. There are hidden adjacent staircases. Down on the first floor after exiting the staircases or elevators you get to make a long run down retail/ carnival main street to get to the waterpark. You pass the ice cream place, the kid pedicure place, the arcade, the tattoo place, wandmaking place, stuff an animal knock off of Build a Bear etc. Be prepared for "can we go there? can we have that?" before you make it to or from the waterpark unless your children are extremely disciplined. Mine usually is, but add in 3 friends and it was tough. If you need some areas to meet up or lounge, 5th floor has landing areas in front of their conference rooms that overlook the main lobby. We had dinner/ cake there.

Waterpark:
Fun! And it's all indoor (they do have an outdoor place when it is warm enough that they opened 12-5 that day but we didn't bother) so no sunburn. I appreciate that. To your right is a toddler area and a small wave pool that goes off about every 15 min. They have noodles only in the pool. To your left are the cabanas, adult only jacuzzis, and past that the exit areas for tube and raft rides plus a sports pool. Down the center is the fort (with obligatory dumping bucket of water) with a couple small slides attached, a lazy river, and the structure for the big tube rides and 2 raft rides including the tornado which is on the exterior of the building. You can do it all in half a day with repeats, no problem. The lines are reasonable--expect 15-30 min for the most popular rides. There were enough lifeguards. The water was heavily chlorinated and the lazy river barely moved and at 3 feet was tough to float in. The big tube rides were excellent--there are no scary rides here. Everything is family-oriented. My 7-11 years olds were tall enough to do it all and thought it was all great. My 10 year old was annoyed he couldn't get in the hot tubs--his favorite part of any pool. The food prices inside the waterpark were average (we didn't try any). They provide towels and lockers cost $20 upfront with $10 back after you return the key. I don't get the cabanas--anywhere else you rent them because they line the main pool or the beach or something you want to look at or observe as you relax. The cabanas are in a circle in the front and face a bunch of public tables. Why bother? The restrooms were incredibly cold and for whatever reason--the a/c was running hard. All in all, the water park was nice enough--on par or slightly better than Hawaiian Falls in the Colony. It's by no means a Schlitterbahn. The busiest we saw the park was 2-5p because all the people checking in could join those already there.

Food:
We ordered in Palio's to be delivered. Decent thin crust pizza. They were very fast even when I ordered at 6 PM on a Saturday night. They are literally across the street. I brought my son's cake picked up earlier from Market Street. It worked out our room was ready--would have been an issue if it wasn't. I was told at check-in I got the last room ready to go. As stated we held our party on the 5th floor lounge and it was ok to light candles. I also brought a ton of snacks like fruit and cheese and kept in the room. Breakfast was at Old West Cafe which was excellent and affordable.

Summary: Dated rooms. They have lots of add-ons and want to charge you the discounted price of $70 (!?!) to bundle making a cheap wolf, wand, etc. Or just $32 for a wand to set off animated experiences around floors 1 and 6. The waterpark is pretty good and safe. Do it once--but businesses need to create a reason to return and they have not here.

Better alternatives: 3 days in Galveston with Schlitterbahn and Moody Gardens or go to San Marcos for Schlitterbahn and the Comal River. Eat at the Rainforest Cafe and go to Hawaiian Falls (you'll save hundreds!!!). Honestly, I spent less so far on 2 impromptu days at Disney World that I added to a business trip next week. And the wand thing? On Disney Cruise line's newer ships the art animates itself cause you walked by or got a free card to activate the detective that's built into artwork all over the ship. At Magic Kingdom, they have a game you collect cards for and at no additional cost. And the effects are not cheesy. Imagine a plastic treasure chest lighting up at $32 per kid--that's MagiQuest.

Bottom line: the kids had a great time together. The rooms are old and basic and they need to be refreshed. There are kids and clueless groups everywhere. Nothing is included and bring cash to tip. The theming while dramatic in the lobby is fairly cheesy and and as bad as painted on trees on some walls in some cases. Will we return? Probably not. I'll spend money, but it needs to be worth it.

Room Tip: Floor 6 has MagiQuest--best to avoid. 5 is quieter.
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  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank farfalla818
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 30, 2014

Our 2nd visit and we had a blast. The water park is so much fun and has something for everyone. Magic quest is a must everyone from 6 to adult will enjoy it. Meals are a bit pricy so we don't eat there. Enjoy

  • Stayed: March 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Perry918
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 29, 2014

Pros:
1. No sand or sunburn.
2. Lots of lifeguards around, feels very safe for young children even when they are not directly in front of you.
3. Very convenient to take an elevator to the water.
4. Food a surprisingly good value, especially at Hungry Like a Wolf Pizza Restaurant. Each entre feeds an entire family. We had the spaghetti and meatballs and pizza. Both very acceptable. Spaghetti came with a massive loaf of garlic-cheesy bread which was delicious.
5. Decent and easy parking.
6. Kids loved it.
7. "Kid Cabin" room great for large families like ours. Room was spacious and had a kitchenette.
8. The grilled salmon at the Lodge Restaurant on the 4th floor was fantastic.

Cons:
1. Customer service was poor overall. Lots of employees who could obviously help, but rather chose to avoid eye contact and just ignore every patron. This was especially prevalent at the arcade (4 employees behind the counter, only one helping someone else, ignored my family for 5 minutes when we were obviously waiting in the area that said "wait here"), but also at the front desk and restaurants.
2. Expensive rooms.
3. Add-on packages not a good value. Paw Pass kid photo a total joke, you can take a better picture yourself. Paw pass also included a scoop of ice cream. They were out of ice cream when we went by, so they gave our girls a cookie instead but made us pay extra for the cookie! MagiQuest game is for slightly older kids who have more than a one minute attention span.
4. Resort is extremely thick with chlorine.
5. Food not healthy at all.
6. Long wait for elevators.
7. Nickeled and dimed for a little girl manicure! The manicure in the Triple Scoop Package was apparently just a basic manicure, and they charged extra for little decorations here and there. Crazy!


My recommendations:
1. Stay for one night only or the chlorine will get to you.
2. Don't get the Paw Pass or Triple Scoop packages.
3. Eat at Hungry Like a Wolf or eat off resort.

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank GH_ShrtOrDrCook
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GWL_Management, Guest Relations Manager at Great Wolf Lodge Grapevine, responded to this reviewResponded April 3, 2014

Thank you for visiting Great Wolf Lodge – Grapevine and for sharing your feedback! I apologize for the service you received while staying because what you describe is not customary for us.

We recently discontinued use of the Triple Scooop Package and have instead started offering a standard mani/pedi combo package. Guests then have the opportunity of upgrading their service once they are at the spa.

We hope to see your family again soon!

Jason
Great Wolf Guest Relations

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 23, 2014

It seems like a very expensive way to pass the time, but my 7 year old nephew had a blast. I think that he would like to go again, which I guess is the only thing that matters, but it is expensive. I think that next year we may try something like schlitterbahn. I cannot imagine that costs as much. The rooms were dated and the bathrooms tiny.

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
1  Thank GriffinDallas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GWL_Management, Guest Relations Manager at Great Wolf Lodge Grapevine, responded to this reviewResponded April 1, 2014

Thank you for staying at Great Wolf Lodge – Grapevine! I understand where you are coming from in regards to price, but there is a lot of value having waterpark passes included in the room rate. We value our waterpark admission at $40 per person, per day. With a one night stay at Great Wolf Lodge, you get two days of waterpark play and for a family of 4; this is a $320 value. This can mean the actual cost of your room (depending on when you stay and your suite style) could potentially be free because our rates start at $199.99.

We appreciate your feedback and will share it with our team in Grapevine.

Thank you for choosing Great Wolf.

Jason
Great Wolf Guest Relations

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 23, 2014

We'll I thought this would be a great idea but I am stuck in the room because the chlorine in he park is enough to kill every living thing in china. I realize the value of having chlorine so folks don't get sick,,,,, having said that they have to used so much that u can't stay in the water park for very long. Sad that I chose this and I can't even enjoy it with my daughter. The lodge looks greAt they have other things available but this water baby is annoyed to not get to do what we came here for .

Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
1  Thank Lara P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GWL_Management, Guest Relations Manager at Great Wolf Lodge Grapevine, responded to this reviewResponded April 1, 2014

Thank you for visiting Great Wolf Lodge – Grapevine and for sharing your experience! We greatly appreciate your concern about the chlorine levels in our waterpark and understand that each person is different with varying levels of tolerance. We constantly monitor the chlorination of the waterpark and when adjustments need to be made, they are done in real-time. This allows us to ensure the highest conditions of safety for our guests.

If a guest is sensitive to chlorine, we recommend visiting the waterpark in increments of 2-3 hours and then either showering off in the waterpark, or taking a short break back in their room.

I hope this information will assist you when planning your next trip!

Jason
Great Wolf Guest Relations

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Great Wolf Lodge Grapevine

Address: 100 Great Wolf Drive, Grapevine, TX 76051-0962
Location: United States > Texas > Grapevine
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:
#10 Family Hotel in Grapevine
Price Range: $249 - $540 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Great Wolf Lodge Grapevine 3*
Number of rooms: 402
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Also Known As:
Great Wolf Hotel Grapevine
Great Wolf Resort

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