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“A good place that could be great with few improvements”
Review of Chula Vista Resort

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Chula Vista Resort
Ranked #50 of 75 Hotels in Wisconsin Dells
Kewaskum, Wisconsin
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“A good place that could be great with few improvements”
Reviewed September 3, 2013

My husband & I recently stayed at the Chula Vista Resort (no kids along) for an anniversary getaway. We stayed August 29-31st. We stayed in a studio condo under the all-inclusive plan. I'm trying to be as detailed as possible since these reviews help me choose our vacations so much! It seems this place has been getting some negative reviews lately so I thought I'd share our experience. If I could give this place 3.5 stars, I would say that would be more accurate than 4. The resort has the ability to be really great with a few improvements that I will try to highlight since I know the GM reads these.

ROOM:
Check in was quick. We were given a room on the first floor facing the parking lot, which wouldn't have been our first choice of location. We arrived on a Thursday and thought there would have been better locations available, but decided to stay in our room instead of calling to check availability on a higher floor room. Our room was huge and gorgeous. The first impression was great! There was a kitchen, two full sized beds, couch/chair, 2 tv's, jacuzzi, patio. We stayed in a studio condo so I know this side of the resort is much more up to date and in better shape than the other side. For the most part we were happy with our room with a few issues:
1. Drainage was very slow, if at all! The tub and sinks stayed full for a while
2. No cleaning service during your stay. Someone only comes to replenish towels
3. Mattresses sort of sagged inward
4. The size of the TV was way too small for how far away it was from the bed/living area.
5. There was a second tube-type tv near the beds, but no remote???
6. Ground floor was noisy with foot traffic outside our patio and the vball court, shuffle board, pool right outside

RESTARAUNTS/BARS:
We had the all-inclusive plan so all meals and most drinks were available through out the resort. During our stay, we dined at Margaritas (the outdoor Mexican place by wave pool), Howler's Sports Bar, Big Moe's (golf course club) and the Market Fresh Buffet. For the most part we enjoyed all of our meals, nothing was over the top great. Market Fresh was your standard buffet, I can only comment on the breakfast buffet as that is the only meal we had there. It was good, but not great. I enjoyed the omelets. For beer drinkers, the all-inclusive plan is the way to go. The selection of beer in the bar that was included was surprising to me. Shock Top, Blue Moon, Stella, Spotted Cow, Fat Tire, Leiny's, you name it. For cocktail drinkers there were many fruity style drinks available but if you got sick of sweet, you were out of luck after awhile. Every bartender we encountered was SOOO friendly and informative. They made our stay a lot of fun. They were always offering up different concoctions and shots! Fun! We loved the ambiance by the wave pool bar/restaraunt and spent a lot of time there. The food there was very good and the waiters/bartenders extremely friendly!! We loved the Jalepeno poppers and the FRIED OREOS!!! The all-inclusive plan seems the way to go if you don't plan to leave the resort much. Prices, otherwise, are very high for food & drinks. We did notice that most places had specials running during certain times (ie: 1/2 price apps, 1/2 price beer & maragritas) So it's do-able. I would say that if I was paying those high prices, however, I'd expect a little more. (ie: onion rings for $9, a burger for $14)
My suggestions for improvement in these areas:
1. Add a dart board or pool table, etc in the sports bar. Not much to do in the evening besides watch tv
2. Sadly, we did see a waiter eat food from our plate as he took it away. We were a little turned off by this! He was a friendly guy, but come on!
3. We loved the tiki bar they had on the "beach" area but there was never anyone there and no real reason for anyone to go there. Maybe add some outdoor activies in that area??
4. Signage, labeling or overall information was pretty poor. We found ourselves often wondering when something opened/closed (pool areas, restaraunts, bars). Pools & bars seemed to open & close at different times?? We had no clue how to get to the outdoor waterpark! We walked around the whole darn thing before someone finally told us we had to go INSIDE in order to get OUTSIDE.



WATERPARKS/ACTIVITIES:
Can't really comment on this area much since we did not have children with us on this stay. We did walk around both the indoor and outdoor waterpark areas. It seems very well suited for young kids but I think teens would get bored pretty quick. My husband and I could only handle two slides inside because our legs couldn't handle all those stairs :) but they were fun! The water coaster was not working while we were there and that was a disappointment. We went in there on Friday afternoon and there was not a lot of people in there! We did go mini-golfing onsite. It was included with our deal. It was fun, but I probably would have been angry to pay $10 for it as it was nothing too thrilling! They have a wonderful outdoor tiki bar in their "beach" area but it seems hidden and not a lot of people know it's there. They told us they were open in the evening so we went down there around 8:00. Crickets were chirping. We were the only ones there! Too bad. I think more people would go during the day & night if there was more to do in that section. A pool or something?? Bag Toss?? Horseshoes?? There is no real reason for anyone to go to the beach area other than some chairs to sit on and look at nothing.
We spent a lot of time by the wave pool bar/restaraunt. Wish they would have made the pool a little bigger. It is really very tiny!! Luckily, while we were there that area wasn't very busy so we were able to get in it once.
Improvements:
1. Signage, labeling (as described above)
2. Chula Vista seems to have the right idea in areas, but just aren't executing. For example, the volleyball and shuffle board outside of our room is a nice addition, but we didn't see anywhere that we could get the supplies to play??? I'm sure we could go front desk and ask but it just seems nice to have that somewhere for people to know.
3. The had bonfires going on the beach down by the tiki bar but no one knew it was going on?? Maybe finding a way to better inform guests of these things would be good.

GROUNDS:
The location of Chula is what brings us back to this place. We love the river walk, pines and overall location. It is nice to walk around! As stated earlier, the hotel side of the resort needs a lot of work! Those rooms (inside & out) were looking pretty run down but the newer tadditions were looking great. Hopefully they get a remodel going soon. We would like to come back in the winter to go in there outdoor hot tub facing the beautiful river and pines!

We are coming back here for the WAMO dart tournament in 2014 and are concerned with how Chula Vista is going to keep thousands of thirsty dart shooters entertained & quenched in the 1 small indoor sports bar they have. We're hoping for good weather so many can go to the outdoor bars, if they are open in May otherwise many will have to get cabs/shuttles downtown.

I'm sure that I am missing a ton of stuff and I could go on, but for the sake of not having a super long review, I will wrap this up...

A couple quick things that didn't really fit in above:
1. We were randomly charged an extra $5.03 on our check out slip and didn't know what this was for?? We weren't told about it and couldn't ask b/c when we were leaving the line was really long and my husband said it wasn't worth it for $5. It left me with a bad taste however, b/c I'd love to know why the extra charge?? I feel like if Chula Vista does this to everyone assuming that no one will complain over $5 they will make bank off of people.
2. You are taxed 3 times on food & beverage at this resort. I can't remember them all specifically but it was somthing like sales tax, county tax & resort tax. What the heck is resort tax?? Is that normal? I thought in most places alcohol isn't even taxed?? I just felt a bit nickle & dimed in the end

NOTEWORTHY EMPLOYEES:
While most everyone we encountered were very nice & friendly, there were a few that deserve some props. We had great service from Tanner (sports bar), Jenny (sports bar), Josh (tiki bar) & Alicia (Margaritas). They were all very informative, friendly, fun and just really seemed to enjoy their jobs. I hope you to them our appreciation.

Room Tip: Condos or villas are the way to go!
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Ahartmann11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed September 3, 2013 via mobile

My wife was searching groupon and found the groupon for here. We thought it was a great deal but she started reading reviews of the place and only was seeing bad reviews so she was very hesitant over going there. Next day I was at work and purchased the groupon for the following day which was awesome we were able to book less then 24 hour before arriving. We drove up and was going to use the water park while waoting for room and got there at 2 and our room was ready instead of at 4 which was awesome! My 4 year old hated getting his face wet so he was hesitant when we forst got there. After a hour of going down the kid slide and going around the lazy pool he was outside going under all the water and going down the racing slide and the big slides inside! This was so awesome to finally see him not afraid of the water and having fun! Once he started having funii started going down slides and feeling like a teen again. I will definately be back soon and recommend this place to everyone as I already have with all my friends!

  • Stayed August 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Kyle R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dan H, General Manager at Chula Vista Resort, responded to this review, September 5, 2013
Kyle R.,

Thank you for selecting Chula Vista for your Dells getaway, it was a pleasure having you with us and we look forward to being of service again.
We will be sure to keep you updated on future promotions so that you may have another memorable time with us. Have safe travels.

Regards,

Dan Hoppe
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviewed September 2, 2013

Stayed here this Labor Day weekend on a whim. Had a decent condo that totally met our expectations. Was it super spotless - no. Is that to be expected with such high numbers of guests - yes. Room amenities were ok and could have used some additions. Hair conditioner for one. Kids had a blast in the indoor water park. Highly recommend going early in the morning as it does get quite crowded.
The bad - the wi-fi is atrocious. Just horrendously slow, if at all.
Overall, I'd go back for sure - just don't expect to be blown away. It's perfectly adequate as a whole with a great water park.

  • Stayed September 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank PapaTravels76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dan H, General Manager at Chula Vista Resort, responded to this review, September 5, 2013
PapaTravels76,

Thank you for selecting Chula Vista for your recent getaway to the Dells. Teh condo accomodations work well for a family outing like yours. We appreciate the feedback you provided and hope that we may be of service to you again soon. Enjoy the fall season and have safe travels.

Regards,

Dan Hoppe
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wisconsin
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed September 2, 2013

This is a wonderful resort that we have visited with our grandkids every year for at least the past 5 years. The 2-bedroom condos are among the nicest units we've ever stayed in. Our 4 grandkids loved the waterpark. We usually visit in winter, but our August visit enabled to kids to enjoy both the outdoor and the indoor slides and other water activities.

We would have rated our experience higher but for one disappointing experience. One night we ordered pizza from the resort restaurant, and were told that it would arrive within 30 minutes. That sounded great, since the kids wanted to go back to the water park and the arcade that evening. After a 60+ minute wait we called and were told that our food was "on the way". After an additional 30+ minute wait we called again and were once again told that the food was "on the way". At that point we canceled the order and took our hungry grandkids to the waterpark and arcade. We know that sometimes food orders get fouled up and delays occur, but it was disappointing that we were told the food would be delivered imminently when that obviously wasn't true. We mentioned this incident at check-out the next morning and expected an apology and maybe even a small credit for the value of the pizza, but we were simply told that staff would talk to the food service people. This was not the kind of customer service we expected from a resort that has provided us with many positive experiences over the years. Not a "show stopper" issue, but still very disappointing.

Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank Traveler3933
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dan H, General Manager at Chula Vista Resort, responded to this review, September 5, 2013
Traveler3933,

Thank you so much for being with us and I hope you made some wonderful memories with you and your grandchildren. I am very sorry for the incident that occured with your pizza delivery, having hungry kids I know how you wished to get them fed in a timely manner. We will be folliowing up with this as well as the checkout experience you encountered. I apprecite you taking the tiem to give us feedback. We look forward to being of service to you again soon.
Have safe travels

Regards,

Dan Hoppe
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kenosha, Wisconsin
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
Reviewed August 31, 2013

My family, friends and I stayed at the Chula Vista in a Condo Suite for the 2013 National American Miss Pageant in August. I was expecting it to be much better than it was for the price we paid. When we got there, the hotel screwed up our reservation and put us in a room that wasn't a condo, then when I complained, they moved us to a villa - which still wasn't right for as many people as I had coming, then finally we got our condo we were promised.

The hotel itself needs much upkeep. The wallpaper in the rooms is peeling. The carpeting needs a shampooing. And the pool outside was very cloudy and somebody pooped in it the day I was outside to swim. Turned me off to it immediately. They didn't even clear the people out to shock it, they just got it out and it was business as usual. Nasty

Unfortunately for me, I will have to stay again because this is where the Pageant is every year, but I wasn't impressed. Although the staff was very friendly and they did finally get my room straightened out.

Room Tip: Call ahead to verify your reservation and be specific. Bring your own food when traveling with your...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank kacastillo39
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dan H, General Manager at Chula Vista Resort, responded to this review, September 1, 2013
Kacastillo39,

Thank you for being with us while attending the pageant, I am sorry that portions of your stay were not appropiate for your stay.
The feedback you provided is helpful for our staff and the items listed will be addressed.
We look forwar to seeing you next year and we will keep you updated on our promotions throughout the year.

Regards,

Dan Hoppe
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madison, Wisconsin
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
Reviewed August 29, 2013

Stayed in the Condos- and they were great. I had never stayed in something that felt so upscale. They were large, clean and comfortable. The walkway to waterpark area was nice too. I had a hard time finding food by the condo areas. It would be nice if the area by the condo elevators had a better variety and was open later. The arcade was great too. My favorite was the outdoor wave pool. It was scenic, relaxed and great for my little ones. The outdoor waterpark was difficult to get to and small. And the indoor park was very chlorinated, bring on the salt water filtering!!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank 4Forever
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dan H, General Manager at Chula Vista Resort, responded to this review, August 31, 2013
4Forever,

So glad you could be with us on your recent journey to Chula Vista and the Wisconsin Dells.
The condos are great accommodations for the family, happy to see it worked out for you and your family.
We hope to see you again soon, have a great fall.

Regards,

Dan Hoppe
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed August 29, 2013

Purchased groupon at the last minute, I called them and was able to use it same day I purchased it, (for Tuesday and Wednesday stay ).the resort is very clean and well kept.the waterpark is just perfect for small kids like mine.the wave pool is perfect also for small kids, not scary for them and location of the wave pool is fantastic.the room is good size( junior suite), 2 double queen then a room divider with sofa bed on the other side and table with 2 chairs.theres Aldo a balcony and the nice view on our side is the hot springs spa and lots of trees.
The downside, is the room needs updating.the small ref makes a lot of weird noise which is bothersome at night.the microwaves looks like its from the 80's.the aircon is very noisy and bothersome too at night when you are trying to sleep.
Our room is in the 1st floor and we can hear all the pounding and walking from the room above us.room smells weird:old too and I
wish I brought febreeze.
The deal included a $25 dining voucher, we used it at Market Place buffet conveniently located inside the resort.the girl at the front desk apologized eight away saying they are short staffed and will have 15-20 mins wait.it looks nice and elegant inside but the food selection is very limited.it was just 8 pm and they said they ran out of steak.good thing I have that dining credit otherwise it's not worth to pay $18/ person for that buffet.
Overall, I was satisfied because I used that Groupon on a weekday.no problem in parking, no lines, not so crowded waterpark.otherwise, I wouldn't pay full price and will consider other places in the area.

  • Stayed August 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Mari727
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dan H, General Manager at Chula Vista Resort, responded to this review, August 30, 2013
Mari727,

Thank you for being with us on your recent journey to the Wisconsin Dells. Glad to see you had a most enjoyable time. We do appreciate the feedback you provided, we are in the process of updating the hotel rooms. I do hope that we will be able to be of service to you again in the near future.

Regards,

Dan Hoppe
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Chula Vista Resort

Property: 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 (Based on Average Rates): $$
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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