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“Beautiful Place” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Belton Chalet

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Belton Chalet
Ranked #3 of 6 Hotels in West Glacier
Certificate of Excellence
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
50 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Beautiful Place”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 26, 2013

I stayed at this hotel during a short vacation to Glacier National Park in August. Proximity to the park was very important to me as I wasn't able to drive on this trip, however, the other lodging within the park were unaffordable for me, plus the reviews for Belton were great, so I booked with them.

The room was very basic. No TV or telephone. No mobile phone reception either, but this applies to most of the region. I've heard that Verizon has the best signal strength there, but I use T-mobile, and after leaving the Kalispell airport, I have had no signal for the entire 3 days I was there. Imagine a room set in the 1800s, then add lights, electric fan and plumbing. That sums up the room. It wasn't as clean and comfortable as I would like but this is definitely not a luxury property like MacDonald Lodge, but you would choose this place for the quaintness and the view. Do note that even with the cool late summer climate, the room gets hot and stuffy and I had a sleepless first night before leaving the windows open subsequently, which isn't a great idea considering I'm on the ground floor.

Many reviewers complained about train noise, but I had the room facing the parking lot, so perhaps it wasn't that loud for me. When I did hear the trains passing, it wasn't as frequent and as loud as what they all said. In fact it was a nice chugging, occasional choo-choo sound. I am extremely sensitive to noise and really don't think it's as much an issue as noisy guests going loading/unloading their cars in the parking lot in the wee hours.

The decor in the lobby and common restrooms are beautiful and country-style. Very welcoming, and the staff at the hotel were just so friendly and nice. I would say the super nice people at the hotel was what I love and remember most about this place. There are chairs on the deck facing the mountains, and at dusk, you could sit there while you check your e-mail or upload the photos you took during the day, and at the same time admire the sunset. Yes, the wireless internet is reliable and available through most of the property, so you probably don't need that phone signal afterall.

I managed to get a taxi service to this hotel, and really fortunately there was a complimentary ride to and from Apgar transit center every morning and evening, if you choose not to drive and to utilize the park shuttle. Still that was dependent on staff availability, so ultimately you'll be better off with a car here. You can even get a ride to the Amtrak station, which was what I did, but this hotel is just across from the West Glacier Amtrak station. My train leaving the Glacier was delayed by about 2 hours, but the hotel is nice about letting you sit in the common areas until the train was about to arrive.

The restaurant on the property is consistent with the theme at the Belton, right down to the waitor's uniform. Food is generally of good quality, but being asian myself, the ramen resembled and tasted nothing of its sort, even though they do use quality ingredients. The meat entrees look and smell amazing though. I tried the pork chop which was good. Cons: they only open at dinnertime, and it's always a long wait.

I just have one suggestion for this property - that although it is great that we can deposit our keys at the front desk which is constantly staffed throughout the day, I would feel more comfortable if the keys were not placed in plain view.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank S C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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301 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    136
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    34
    21
    11
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (75)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
34 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 24, 2013

We stayed in September and were enchanted with the beautiful property and historically renovated room. Friendly staff, comfortable and cozy lobby and the fine dining restaurant (open for dinner only) was really some of the best food we had on our entire trip.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Steve_and_Jocelyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Olympia, Washington
Level Contributor
31 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 22, 2013

Very nice setting and great location. Staff is friendly and helpful.
But--it is a historical restoration and history is not always comfortable.
No air conditioning, no overhead fans, transoms were not part of the restoration - meaning on a warm summer day - it's hot!. We were provided a dinky little fan that did not help much. Ceiling fans and restoring the transoms so they opened would have made a big difference. Most hotel guests sat out on the ample porch and deck until the sun went down waiting for rooms to cool off.

Our room was on the ground floor on the back side and opening the windows at the bottom meant no privacy as the parking lot and the red bus stop were right outside the window. Opening windows from the top provided some ventilation but the window coverings that provided some degree of privacy had to be pulled up all the way thus ventilation meant no privacy.

On the backside of the hotel we were not disturbed by the train but early morning bus departures were quite noisy. So we had to choose between ventilation and noise or a stifling room and have some privacy. Bed was comfortable but small for an alleged 'queen'. Bathroom was roomy and all worked well. Breakfast is not included in the high rates charged by the hotel. Coffee and ice are available for free and you can buy overpriced pastries in the lobby.

Restaurant at the hotel is very good -excellent food - but again very high priced. And oddly enough although they encouraged to sit on the deck to enjoy the cooling breeze, they had not bothered to put out wasp traps/attractors to draw them away from the food. We were mobbed by wasps who wanted our food. After being stung, we retreated to the stuffy dining room to finish our dinner. We're not wimps, we like being outdoors -- in late summer traps are needed to keep the yellow jackets from ruining outside activities involving food.

Other restaurants in the area are more reasonably priced.

Room Tip: rooms in back tend to be quieter - avoid travel during warm months.
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank coupleofsightseers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 11, 2013

We stayed on September 30 and were impressed as we viewed the historic hotel and were excited about staying there. The entry lobby is decorated nicely and had a fire which was welcome because of the damp. However, the room was small and had a double bed, a small desk, a metal chair (ice cream store style), and a tree stump chair(very low to the ground). I did not find it charming but rather somewhat spartan. I brought in a chair from the balcony to sit on. All the needs are ticked off (hot water, working plumbing, warm wool blankets, wifi) but it just was not a pleasant room. I did not find the noise from the trains bothersome and there are many that pass through the night. I guess we slept well because of the hiking. It would be nice if they offered hot beverages in the lobby at all times rather than coffee at 7 AM. We were leaving early and missed it (no big loss) but it would be hospitable.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank arlinekCalifornia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Deer Lodge, Montana
Level Contributor
33 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 5, 2013 via mobile

Stayed there for the Autumn Amore weekend the last weekend of September. It was an unbelievable deal and a great way to spend our anniversary weekend. The fOod in the restaurant was excellent. We went to the tap room prior to dinner both nights and the two bartenders were very friendly. The wait staff both nights were also friendly and professional. The room was great in an old time atmosphere ... No phones and no tvs!! All of the hotel staff were amazingly friendly and accommodating. Breakfast in bed was fun. We had such an amazing weekend, we booked for next year already!

Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank ThomasJandMe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
137 reviews
52 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 3, 2013

By far, the most authentic accommodation we stayed in and reminiscent of a bygone age. In fact, if you dine on the patio of the restaurant, you'll see the staff race out to form a line and wave at the train as it pulls into the railway station opposite!

Our room was on the first floor and the railway station/roadside aspect of the hotel with a private balcony. It had an ensuite shower-room. We felt like we had stepped back one hundred years as the bedstead, authentic bedding, lamps and even the light-switches were appropriate to era of the hotel. The room was clean, cosy and attractively furnished. (We live next to the main railway line in Calgary, so anticipated the need for ear plugs!) If you are a light sleeper, you will hear the trains going by, throughout the night. Also, you will hear noise in the corridor and doors closing as its an old building without modern sound-proofing or door-closing mechanisms.

We stayed for two nights in this hotel and enjoyed the experience. Yes, it is a noisy location and its an old creaky, historic building with uneven floors and room doors that can bang closed without careful attention (which guests are reminded about on checking-in) The restaurant is fantastic and we ate till we burst. Its a short drive to the entrance to the park and there is a well stocked supermarket nearby and a gas station a 30 second drive away.

We sipped wine on our balcony , late into the evening and enjoyed watching birds roosting in the trees opposite and a bat swooping past

We stayed at another property very nearby that was new and modern and had tvs, so if that what you are looking for, go there. If you want charm and nostalgia and to imagine how our wealthy ancestors lived, then stay at the Belton Chalet (but bring ear plugs! )

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Fyski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saginaw, Michigan
Level Contributor
41 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 1, 2013

Belton Chalet is a comfortable, vintage hotel built by the Great Northern Railway before there were roads in this part of Montana. That's why it's across from the train station. Those who complain about the train noise should just get out and hike in Glacier, they won't hear a thing, they'll be sleeping so well! I found the train sounds comforting and nostalgic. The floors creak, the showers are hot and strong, there's an old upright piano in the lobby that guests can play. The bed is comfortable, the breeze is great. Wonderful place to stay!

Room Tip: Loved room 42: Windows on 2 walls.
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank cathpiano
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Belton Chalet

Property: Belton Chalet
Address: 12575 Hwy 2 East, PO Box 206, West Glacier, MT 59936
Location: United States > Montana > West Glacier
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 6 Hotels in West Glacier
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Belton Chalet 3*
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are a 1910 National Historic Landmark hotel built by James J. and Louis Hill of the Great Northern Railway. After being closed for fifty years, the property underwent a three-year restoration completed in 1999 and is now a National Historic Landmark. The Belton Chalet was the first chalet built for Glacier Park and the park’s first winter headquarters. Belton Chalet, family owned, once again welcomes guest from across the world. Thank you for being our guest and a part of our history. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Belton Chalet West Glacier, Montana
Belton Chalet Hotel West Glacier

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