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“Always enjoyable”
Review of Chula Vista Resort

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Chula Vista Resort
Ranked #53 of 75 Hotels in Wisconsin Dells
Reviewed September 10, 2011

We visited the Chula Vista this July for the third time. We booked at the last minute during one of the busiest weekends. I believe we got one of the last available rooms. All they had for us was a two bedroom condo. It was big and expensive for four people for a short stay, but this was the only weekend we could make the trip. We live near Chicago and really enjoy going to the Wisconsin Dells.

My family has been to the Dells several times. I really like the Chula Vista because of its location. It is right on the river. There is a beautiful view and a peaceful walking area. Our condo looked over the parking lot. Even so, we were on the top floor and I enjoyed seeing the hills in the morning. Many of the other water park resorts do not have this peaceful feel.
Our condo was great. Frankly we did not spend much time there nor did I cook. The fridge was nice for beverages and snacks. Since it was summer, we did not use the fireplaces (2) or the giant tub. The condo was very spacious.

The water park is a little smaller than some of the others in the Wisconsin Dells, but still has a lot of fun slides. My teenage boys are a little old for the water park, but they went a couple of times and had fun. Hint: go in the evening if the place is crowded. People with younger children take them to bed, so the lines at the water park are much shorter. We rode the Wisconsin Ducks during the day. This is always very fun.

The outdoor wave pool is for little kids. Still a restaurant and bar is located there next to the river. They had a ton of lounge chairs. I spent the afternoon there, read a book, and enjoyed the outdoors.

I know it was a busy weekend, but I felt the water park could have been run better. People had to scrounge for inner tubes. I wanted to go on the lazy river and there were no tubes. I went to the manager and he got me one, but I told him he needed many more. I counted. They only had 19 tubes in the lazy river including the one he got for me. I think they needed to repair the tubes, but did not have time to do this. When we had been to the Chula Vista before, there had been tons of inner tubes. I am hoping this is was a temporary problem.

We had eaten at the buffet restaurant previously for breakfast and it was quite good. We had dinner there once on this trip and it was horrible. I cannot describe how bad it was. Everything was fried. Nothing was fresh. They brought dessert to your table and that was bad. Since breakfast was included in our room price we had to eat there the next day. However, breakfast was wonderful. I had fresh fruit and a made-to-order veggie omelet. It was great. They did not serve doughnuts or a lot of pastry, but we did not need to eat this stuff. I would recommend you get the add-on for the breakfast with your room. I think it was $7 or $8 per person over the price of the room. I think this was a good deal since the breakfast included coffee and milk.

Room Tip: Many rooms have views of the river.
  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
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Thank Louise_1980
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,590 - 1,596 of 2,225 reviews

Reviewed September 8, 2011

This resort is a funny mix...it has pricey restuarants and a pretty decent (for the WI dells; impressive for anywhere else) indoor/outdoor waterpark but less than impressive hotel rooms. I've been to other weddings there, but this was the first time my husband and I decided to stay overnight in a double queen room that we shared with another couple. I've never been in their condos or suites, but our room was sub par. I noticed cobwebs in the hallway, and our room definitely needed updating (peeling wallpaper at the ceiling, and nasty crumbling stuff on the top ledge of a half-height wall dividing the beds from the sitting area). There was a mini fridge and tiny microwave. As for the indoor waterpark (weather preventing trying the small outdoor park), I enjoyed going in the early part when there were short lines and less noise, but it quickly became too loud and too long of a wait to enjoy the experience in mid-day. It was also definitely a bit of a hike to get from the room to waterpark. Checkin was slow (apparently I wasn't at the main desk but this place is huge so its hard to know where to go) but express checkout is easy. As for the restuarants, we tried order food to take up to our room inbetween events and they said 15 minutes, which became 45 minutes and for some reason couldn't be put on the room bill. They also forgot the salsa and sour cream, so we called down to ask for it and they didn't want to bring it up since they weren't the hotel's room service but we mentioned the long wait on the small order and they gave in to bring it to our room. Drinks were very expensive. One nice thing was the free DVD rentals (from a service like Redbox onsite) although we didn't try it so I can't comment on selection or availability. All in all, I wouldn't stay here again unless it was for an onsite event, and even then I'd think twice.

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

The Kalahari and Wilderness were full and I'd stayed at Chula Vista once before so I thought I'd try it again. We arrived early and were registered but told the room wasn't ready (not a problem). I was given a number to call to check on the room periodically (they wouldn't call me). I called after a while and the room was ready so we packed up and went to get our keys. When I got to the front desk I was told the room wouldn't be ready for another hour. After having to show the number I called on my phone for proof (no seriously that really happened) that I called, the front desk person then threw the person I called and housekeeping under the bus for the room not being ready. Went back a couple hours later and the room was ready.

The room was somewhat beat up but not bad (there was duct tape hanging from the ceiling for some reason). There are no bars of soap or bottles of shampoo, just dispensers everywhere (never have had that before, but ok). The bed mattresses were horrible (college dorm rooms have better ones...at least they did back when I was there).

In the pool area, there aren't any chairs available to put your stuff on because they let people put one towel on a chair to hold it even though their kids are off playing and won't ever sit in the chair. We just wanted one dry spot to put our stuff on.

Needless to say we went out to eat, so I can't comment on that. Checkout was great though, just put your keys in an envelope and in the box and away you go. Far far away, and no I won't be returning. Sorry to sound like a grouch, but compared to the Wilderness or Kalahari this was a very poor experience.

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank mnordness
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 6, 2011

We had never been to Wisconsin Dells before, so when our friends invited us to join them for a three-day stay on Chrismas, we couldn't even imagine what it's like to go down a water slide in the middle of winter in the middle of Wisconsin!

We definitely loved the concept of an indoor+outdoor water park resort. The only mistake we made was booking a condo instead of a room: condos are not part of the interlocked complex of housing and entertainment at Chula Vista, so instead of just donning our swimming suits in the morning and following the elaborate network of corridors to the indoor water park, we had to dress up, jump into the car, drive a couple of minutes, park the car, rent a locker and change clothes.

The room we stayed at was a two-level apartment at a condo complex, with a balcony and a full kitchen, plus a fire place. It was quite comfy, and was cleaned every other day (you may order a daily service, too). The thing I liked most was the quiet (Christmas is one of the quietest times in Wisconsin Dells).

One thing you should DEFINITELY not miss is the Caminsky Bros. steakhouse. By far and large, this is one of the best restaurants I had ever been to in my life (and I have a very extensive travel experience - plus demanding culinary needs).

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled with family
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Thank lubger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 6, 2011

This was our first time there and we loved it! The water park is large enough for my kids (8 and 10) and they had so much fun! The outdoor wave pool was one of their favorite spots, which worked for the adults, too (happy hour)!! We stayed in the condo portion of the resort and it was very well kept and very roomy!! The men golfed and said they loved it! We took the girls (8 and 10) to the spa for kid manicures and Debra was awesome!! They loved it! The buffet is very nice and has something for everyone.

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled with family
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Thank hipmomof2IL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 5, 2011

We stayed in a three bedroom condo (which was privately owned and we rented directly from them online at widellscondo.com) and were very impressed. It was actually a two bedroom condo and a single condo with a pass through door so we had three bathrooms and the people in the single condo had a quiet place for the baby to sleep for naps.
The room: The place was clean and fairly well stocked as far as the kitchen went. There could have been more dishes and silverware considering it sleeps up to 14 people. We had 9 people (two of them being babies) and we had to do dishes after each meal or we didn't have anything to eat with or off of later. I have to say the beds were very comfortable. The sitting room only had one couch and one chair so there were a lot of buts on the floor if we wanted to watch a movie. The table only sat 4 people, but the kitchen counter had a breakfast bar type of sitting area with 4 chairs. It was difficult for our group to sit down to a meal together. The bathroom was huge (could have done with about ½ the size and given the other half to the bedroom). One thing I notice is that there were no hooks or racks for towels or swim suits. This is after all a water park! Nothing dried at all in there either, even with the exhaust fan on. The house keeping staff was very nice and courteous.
The water park: The hotel and the water park are connected by an underground passage so you didn't have to go outside to get there which was nice. There was a kiddie water area outside which was great for the small ones. There was a 12 inch depth lazy river with a slide. Perfect. The kiddie area inside was a bit deeper and there was so much noise and activity our two small ones (18 months) were scared of it. I loved the fact that any play area outside was totally fenced so I didn't have to worry about one of the kids taking off while I was dealing with the other one. The outdoor wave pool was great for the small kids, but older (teenage) kid and adults will find it very tame. Max depth is 3.5 feet and the waves aren't very big at all. The pictures on the web site are very deceiving. The indoor water park was great for the 6 year old. He had a blast. There were some fun medium size slides for him. There were some fun larger slide for the teenage crowd and the adults as well. The outdoor park had 3 slides for smaller kids, and 5 slides for teenage/adults. Not very big or impressive in my opinion. They say they have a beach, but there is not water associated with it, and there are so many chairs on it you can’t find any place to play. The mini golf was expensive (4.50 per round) and not included with the stay which made me mad. The way the park is set up is annoying but smart from a business standpoint. There is only one way in and one way out. You must go through the indoor park and the snack bar to get to the outdoor, and the mini golf is on the other end of the outdoor. You have to pay and pick up your clubs and balls at the front desk, treck through the entire place to play, and then treck all the way back to turn everything in again.
The people next door to us were being very loud and we called the front desk on them at midnight. We had to call again at 12:45 am and they finally did something about it.
Overall opinion, we would go back, but we will probably try somewhere else next time just to compare.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank Erin C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 5, 2011

This resort will have you saying "Kalahari? What is that?" My family and I have been staying here everytime now we come to the dells. This place has so much to offer with an indoor water park with tons of slides and a water roller coaster and a snack bar. Also there's an outdoor park with some wild slides and pools. We stayed in the villa like rooms across the street which a shuttle is always accessible when you need to get across the street. They also have a golf course if you're into that. The staff is very friendly and the lifeguards are fun to joke around with. The location however is out of the way of everything else. You have to go downtown and turn on River Rd and it's a couple of miles out of the way but that adds to the reasons to stay because it's quiet. Overall two thumbs up for this hotel...clean rooms, friendly staff, etc etc!

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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Thank ILOVENYCalot2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Chula Vista Resort

Address: 2501 River Road, Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965-9062
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Wisconsin > Wisconsin Dells
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:
#14 Top resorts Hotel in Wisconsin Dells
Price Range: $124 - $262 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Chula Vista Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 620
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Chula Vista Resort and Waterpark is a complete resort experience in Wisconsin Dells with over 200,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor waterparks. Luxury comes standard in all of our guest rooms, suites and condominiums. Bring your clubs and challenge yourself on our 18-hole golf course. At Chula Vista, we invite you to laugh harder, splash bigger, stay longer and vacation better at Wisconsin Dells' most complete family resort! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Chula Vista Hotel Wisconsin Dells
Chula Vista Theme Hotel
Chula Vista Wisconsin Dells
Hotel Chula Vista Theme

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