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“Reconnect by Disconnecting”
Review of Naniboujou Lodge

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Naniboujou Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Atlanta, Georgia
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Reconnect by Disconnecting”
Reviewed December 20, 2012

We have stayed here for a few nights each of the last three summers. We stay in connecting family rooms so our 7 and 10 year old have their own room and we have ours. There are no TVs, no phones, no wifi and little or no cell service. Know this going in to the experience. Days are spent on one of the most beautiful rock beaches on Lake Superior looking for agates, skipping rocks and wading in the water. We also cross the road to the state park and hike there. Breakfast is big and delicious. French onion soup for lunch. And an entrée for dinner. The dining room does not serve alcohol, but they happily supply ice if you would like to keep something chilled in your room. The Solarium has tables, couches, puzzles, cards and board games. We taught our kids to play clue, monopoly, dominos and other classics here. And we had a great time together, no distractions. My husband is a professor - he has already picked out the room he wants us to stay in and the table in the solarium where he will write when our kids are grown and we come here on a sabbatical. This is a wonderful place. Not high end luxury (the rooms are small, the walls are thin), but a great place to slow down, unplug and reconnect with the people you love.

Room Tip: When you book, call and talk about what you want as all of the rooms are different.
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Scott F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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143 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (52)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Center City, MN
Level 4 Contributor
22 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed September 24, 2012

We didn't stay here as we had reservations in Thunder Bay but was told by a fellow traveler in a restaurant we ate at to stop and take a look. It was a charming, interesting, hotel. Beautiful view of Lake Superior. No phones or tv's in the rooms but this was part of the charm - stepping back in time to enjoy the peace and quiet. The dining room ceiling is hand painted in Indian motif. The have the largest natural stone fireplace in Minnesota in their dining room. We didn't eat here but heard the food is wonderful.

Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank janeo1653
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, Colorado
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed August 15, 2012

We really enjoyed the setting of this lodge. The view and pebble beach are wonderful with a few adirondack chairs to use. The common areas of lodge seem well kept. We had a fireplace room and found it to be quite small, dingy and not as clean as we would like. There were stains on the carpet, blanket and the tablecloth for the very small table in the room. We only stayed one night but the miniscule soap that is provided disintegrated after one use. No shampoo provided. Noise was also an issue. The rooms are not very soundproof making it difficult to sleep. The front desk is not covered from 9:30 pm to 7:00 am, which seemed odd to me. I'm not sure what you do if you need something. There were signs that said to call 911, in case of emergency.
We also had what seems to be the increasing norm - a family who allowed their children to run up and down the hall of the lodge. Apparently no one else was allowed to have peace and quiet since they could not or would not control their children. The decorum of others is not the lodges fault however there was no one to assist with the situation.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Yogadaph
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jersey City, New Jersey
Level 6 Contributor
118 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
Reviewed August 7, 2012

I almost hesitate to write a review because I want to keep this place a secret. I guess the climate will have to help me out. The only thing I can fault this place for is that the rooms aren't very big, and they aren't completely soundproof. (The Sleep Number beds are your compensation). Still, where else can you have such beauty, quiet, peace, relaxation....it's just the best.

I find it refreshing to go somewhere without cell, internet, or TV. And what a pleasure it is to see families talking to each other, not just comparing screens. Some people choose to sit in Adirondack chairs and read all day, others wander the beach (I'm one of those). The dining room is one of a kind, though it would be nice if the lighting were more conducive to reading during dinner (for those of us who don't have a travel companion).

If it's raining, you can sit in the solarium and play board games, talk to other guests, do puzzles, read, or write postcards. If it's not raining, there's no reason to stay inside. Sunrises and sunsets are spectacular, the Brule River is close by, as is Judge Magney State Park. And of course if you want to get in your car, you can explore Grand Portage or Grand Marais.

Naniboujou is an old-fashioned place, in the best sense of the word.

Room Tip: Get a lake view room if you can.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Yvonne C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level 6 Contributor
125 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed July 25, 2012

How refreshing to check in at a hotel and not see TV's, people on laptops and mobile devices. First, there is no cell phone service at the Naniboujou Lodge(there is in Grand Marais 15 miles to the South), no TV, no phones in the rooms and no bar. One can have alcohol in the rooms if you bring it. What they do offer is the most gorgeous lakeviews of Lake Superior in a pristine setting. Famous people stayed here in the late '20's: Jack Dempsey, Ring Lardner and Babe Ruth when it was a private club. It's beautifully preserved and the dining room is a wonder and the huge solarium is perfect for reading, games and puzzles. Certain types of people stay here-those seeking quiet, relaxation and serenity. I found a book in their library on trout fishing and I don't even fish and I could hardly put it down. This is the place to de-stress. There were families with babies and children and lots of older adults and all looked like they were having a very nice get-away. My only complaint is the little odd, penny-pinching things the lodge does such as serve complimentary coffee in the lobby from 7 to 8 am only, and the miniscule bath soap and having to ask for shampoo. But then who can complain about paying $115 in high season for a lakeview, fireplace room?

Room Tip: In high season, book early. Open year-round-would be incredibly lovely in the autumn.
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Phoenix663
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Mn.
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed July 9, 2012

We got there a bit later in the evening so didn't take advantage of all the things they have there, including a solarium, restaurant, etc.

The knotty pine they have in the place is great. Loved that. But the room is pretty small and a bit older.

It is right next to Lake Superior and just across the street from a great state park, which we were able to take advantage of.

Great locaton, but not a great hotel.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank drccds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St Paul, MN
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
Reviewed July 8, 2012

Naniboujou is beautiful. The building....the expanse of the grounds and the views of the lake.
I think I could have overlooked a few things, if my initial experience with the reservation clerk via the telephone had gone better. She was rude and impatient as I asked questions. I attempted to choose a room from their website, not really knowing which wing was which. I wanted something quiet and ignorantly assumed that all their rooms would be (come on - we're out in the woods!) Silly me. They have a great restaurant and that means noise. We stayed above the kitchen, and would have loved the room in the winter, but not in July when we needed to have the windows open 24/7. The only time it was quiet was after 10pm and before 6am. Constant hum/noise from the outdoor kitchen venting etc....(could a partial roof be installed to bounce the noise away from the building??) Aside from that, we liked the food, the waitstaff (yeah Sarah!), the English Tea in the afternoon, the Solarium, the Sleep Number bed and the waterfront. Our fireplace room was larger then some that we saw, but the shower was itsy bitsy. If you dropped the soap, you would have to open the door in order to pick it up. I did not notice on the website, whether it said shampoo wasn't provided. We did not get any. I thought they did a marvelous job of keeping the place in good repair. It must take a lot of work just to touch up the paint. We commented on the noise in our room, upon checkout, and were told we should stay in a different one next time. I thought that was a very poor response. A bit of empathy would have gone a long way. Perhaps it was the same woman who took my reservation. I would return for a meal, but would stay in Grand Marais.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank SuzyQ5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Naniboujou Lodge

Property: Naniboujou Lodge
Address: 20 Naniboujou Trl, Grand Marais, MN 55604-2141
Location: United States > Minnesota > Grand Marais
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 32 Specialty Lodging in Grand Marais
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Naniboujou is a place to come home to! Originally built as a private exclusive club in the 1920's - boasting such charter members as Babe Ruth, Ring Lardner, and Jack Dempsey. Naniboujou is on the National Register of Historic Places and is open seasonally - featuring an award winning restaurant as well as lodging. In keeping with the historic nature, Naniboujou continues to be media free and offers guests an opportunity to unplug, unwind, and completely relax - either in their room, the grand dining room, or on the shore of Lake Superior. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Naniboujou Hotel Grand Marais

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