I should not start to review a hotel by reviewing the restaurant, but...Petra's is fantastic. Much more subtle, intense flavors and less sticky sweetness and higher quality than the nearby, more famous Nevados (which is also a 2 minute walk). Burgers is also next door. The new ski center plaza (gondola, more restaurants bars, ticket office, stores) was easy walking distance even for my 80 year old mother, who still insists on carrying her own skis.
Unless you want to spend $400 a night on a condo, this is literally as close as you can get to slope access, and now there's even a ski back trail to the plaza, so you don't have to gondola down in the afternoon. I'd say this is more convenient than the Mammoth Mountain Inn, and you're sleeping at a lower elevation, which is healthier and more comfortable, and you're not at risk of a road closure.
The Alpenhof is a small, independent, skier-focused inn. There's a ski rack in each room, windows that open, good light, good curtains, solid, nice, rustic wood furniture. It is not a new building--that's part of the charm--but many of the rooms seem to be newly renovated.
Yes, there are quirks. The front desk is unmanned for about 15 minutes some afternoons, while the front desk people take deliveries. My husband and I had a running joke about a detectable lump under the (new) carpet in our room--we took turns standing on it, and trying to guess what was underneath. Their wireless router is a sort that Macs do not connect to easily (though much of the time, you can pick up free signal from the village). The free breakfast is always the same: cheap, prepackaged-type mini muffins and doughnuts, apples and oranges, two sorts of juice, coffee/tea, and packets of instant oatmeal. If you're there to ski, and running late, it's really all you need--besides, you also have a free fridge in the room if you prefer to make sandwiches. In summer, some of the rooms are probably hot (no A/C, sunlight in some rooms) but this should not be a problem for any part of ski season. We were there over St. Patrick's day, and we did hear crowds of drunken revelers passing back and forth. In summer, with open windows on all sides, I can imagine the noise might be a problem on a Friday or Saturday night. You can't have "central" and "secluded" at the same time. For us, the convenience was totally worth while. We flew in, had no car, stayed 6 days, had no problem getting around.
The alpenhof has some really nice details. Hand painted flowers and mountain scenes on doors and walls. Access (from the end of a hall, or if you are lucky, from your room) to a balcony that's intensely sunny on a spring afternoon. Very helpful staff (except for the brief periods where they are absent). The duvet-type quilt is high quality, warm and light, though it's a bit odd that they sandwich it between two sheets, instead of using a duvet cover. The heating and fridge were quiet in our room and in my mother's room. The toilet and tub part of the bathroom is tiny and the lighting's pretty basic, but they have decent tubs, with an outside sink, for efficient pre- and post- skiing prep. There are a couple of well-lit mirrors, which makes it easy to get the sunscreen right (important when you're that high up and that far south). I prefer an in-room ski rack to a ski room. The staff were willing to receive and hold packages for us, and also willing to ship packages back to us, which turned out to be slightly cheaper and certainly more convenient than paying baggage fees to the airlines. I was pleased to see lots of CFL bulbs, and also pleased that they left the occasional incandescent in places where the light quality was an issue.
As to the other reviews... If you're really type A, realize that if you and the doughnuts arrive at the same time in the early afternoon, it may take a couple of minutes to get someone back up to the front desk. Ring the bell, don't freak out, and everything will be just fine. Some of the complaints are actually about a different hotel, the Austriahof, which my mother says "had that sour cabbage, mustiness, and old cooking water smell of a pre-war German boarding house" when she stayed there 20 or 30 years ago. Some complaints may be legitimate--Mammoth is great in winter, interesting and vibrant but sometimes hot in summer, and sort of empty and icky looking in fall, after the arts and summer sports people leave, and before the snow returns. Don't blame that on the hotel, for crying out loud.
Anyway, the three of us were delighted, and will definitely stay there again when we go back to Mammoth. I have already recommended the hotel to friends, and will continue to do so.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in the heart of Mammoth just across the street from the Village at Mammoth. Steps to the Village Gondola for access to Mammoth Mtn. Ski Area during the winter months and less than an hour away from the gates to Yosemite via Tioga Pass in the summer months. Amenities include free WI-FI, complimentary continental breakfast, free parking, jacuzzi and sauna (winter) and outdoor swimming pool (summer only). We offer a variety of room types, from Single Queen or King rooms to 2 bedroom cottages with kitchens, to suit your needs. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Alpenhof Hotel Mammoth Lakes