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Bearskin Lodge on the River Hotel
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Reviews (1,141)
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All reviewsfresh baked cookiesbreakfast roomwithin walking distancegas fireplacesmall poolwhirlpool tubbiscuits and gravycovered parkingnational parkcity viewenjoyed our staythe main stripgreat place to stayfree breakfastthird floorthe room was nicebalcony overlooking
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1,038 - 1,043 of 1,141 reviews
Reviewed July 31, 2007

booked a different hotel in gatlinburg and it was horribly outdated. we have been to gatlinburg probably a dozen times and decided to try the bearskin due to clean appearance. it lived up to expectations. was clean and neat. had two double beds with jacuzzi tub in room and fireplace. had small patio overlooking stream. breakfast room was small but we simply filled trays and took back to room. have noticed a trend in gatlinburg for hotels to be hiring college kids to work front desk and they are not the best in terms of courtesy. staff was not rude but seemed indifferent. the positive though far outweigh the negative here. location is very good. we (my wife and i and our 6 and 12 year olds) were able to walk the entire length of main drag. would certainly stay here again. is not a bargain but compared to many of gatlinburg's dated hotels is near top.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled with family
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4  Thank jerkers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 15, 2007

I stayed in this hotel for three nights with my daughter and one of her friends, and my mother. The first thing we noticed was that the only elevator in the hotel was terribly slow. Not just a little slow, but terribly slow. One or two floors we would have walked but we were on the fifth floor so that was out. When we got in the room, everything did look nice. It was clean, there were plenty of pillows on the two queen beds. The balcony overlooked a small river and directly into the Family Inn across the way. The sound of air conditioners clearly drowned out the water in the river, but that was understandable. As we settled into the room we noticed that it was very dark. The light bulbs were all 60 watts and were covered with "rustic" looking darkening lamp shades. The sixty watt bulb in the bathroom left you nearly in the dark in the shower because of the thick gauge shower curtain. My mother is an avid reader and knew she couldn't possible relax and read in the amount of light in the room.

She went down to ask if there were any brighter bulbs she could use so she could read. The desk clerk said "There aren't any." My mother asked if he thought he could read in one of the rooms considering how dark they were. His reply was "I don't know, I don't read much." My mother was more than annoyed with his flip attitude. She admits that asking him if he did read, could he see in the rooms?" might have been too much, but it was his response that bothers me the most. He actually yelled, and I mean yelled loud enough at her to "NOT TAKE THAT TONE WITH ME!" that three girls playing cards in the lobby turned to look to see what was going on. Now, perhaps southern grace and charm skipped a generation in Kevin's family, but this is in no way acceptable treatment for a person paying way too much for a dark hotel room in Gatlinburg.

I wanted to leave right away and found 3 hotels with space within walking distance, but my mother wanted to wait and talk to the manager in the morning, which we did.

The manager, Davy Thomas, was polite and offered apologies and a fairly decent discount off of the three night stay. He even had one of the nice young men who works in the hotel bring three of those "swirly bulbs" that put off more light to our room. The discounted rate and the better bulbs satisfied my mother enough that we stayed the remaining 2 nights.

Upon checkout, the same Kevin person was working. My mother made a point to apologize to Kevin for the other night, fully expecting the same in return as a matter of common courtesy. He, however, said "Thats alright, I get it all the time. It doesn't bother me any." No I'm sorry in return, no admittance that he had been out of line too. Nothing but bad attitude. I stood there amazed that this fellow actually has managed to keep a job in the service industry. If he does, in fact, "get it all the time." doesn't he sometimes wonder that maybe his flippant attitude and rudeness toward the customers is why?

I wouldn't pay even the discounted rate to stay in this hotel ever again, especially when there are so many hotels in the area. Just as a side note, the pool here was tiny and the lazy river was very small too. So much so that the kids traveling with us were board and disappointed.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled with family
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15  Thank kentuckymom99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 3, 2007

We just returned from a trip to the Smokey Mountains with my 2 teen boys. We were VERY disappointed in the BEAR SKIN lodge. For $180 per night, I expect a lot more, and was VERY disappointed but will NEVER return. Nothing in the hotel was spacious or roomy. The lobby is small, the ONe and only elevator that services 5 floors is SLOW, EXTREMELY slow, and it was hot, smelly with stale air. The bathroom is very small, I felt like I in my houseboat or on a cruise ship cabin bathroom. THe room did have a fireplace that came on with a switch and a jacuzzi. The bed was soft and comfortable, but the comforters on the bed are slick on both sides and will not stay on the beds. It is a down comforter in a large pillowcase, adn the down comforter slides down in one corner and off the bed (very tiring chasing the bedding all night).
The breakfast is in a SMALL room with limited seating and space. THe hot waffle irons are in demand and they had an ice bucket filled with frozen boiled eggs, they had ice clinging to them and I assume they are served like this daily as the microwave had a large sign that said to not cook eggs in this over as the egg will explode...
They did offer carry trays to carry your food back to your room because there was no space to sit down. The one server who was working in the room was helpful and displayed southern hospitality by her kindness..
THe pool Was TINY as was the Lazy river.. there is not room for more than a couple families... very disappointing!
the best thing about the hotel is the location. It was located at light #10 at the end of Gatlinburg and the beginning of the Smokey Mountains.
SInce we were traveling with our teen boys, we wanted to spend a couple days each in Pigeon forge and Gatlinburg so they could do it all. We stayed the first 2 days in P-forge at the Music Road Hotel ($130 night) and was so sorry we left there after we got to bearskin lodge..I would NEVER stay at the Bear SKin Lodge AGAIN, I felt cheated!! I could not find any coupons for the lodge either, which was disappointing.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled with family
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13  Thank kytravelerslm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 26, 2007

I have been to Gatlinburg MANY times, as we live in NC - just over the mountain.
I was SORELY disappointed in this hotel. I went up with my husband & 2 young children, as well as my parents- who had their own room. My father is handicapped (he is on oxygen) & needs to use a wheel chair. When we arrived we were told our room was not yet ready (but he didn't have a clue when it would be either) - being that it was only 1pm & ckin wasn't until 3pm, we didn't mind & decided to go into Pigeon Forge for a couple of hours. Before we left we informed the hotel clerk that we have a handicapped person who needs to get off his feet & he assured us that it would definitley be ready by 3pm. Upon returning at 2:50pm, it was not ready, 3pm not ready, 3:20pm not ready, 3:30pm not ready - 3:40 FINALLY ready. 1st of all- WHAT hotel (that charges $140 per night) does not have early ckin to begin with? Especially considering ckout is at 12 noon!
Then- if you have never been to Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge- you should be aware that anything saying "river view" is a bunch of baloney. It is a stream about 6-10 ft wide. This hotel is no different. Go into the Smoky Mtn park for a better view of the river.
-NEXT- this hotel offers a FREE continental breakfast. The only catch, you have to wait in line behind ALL of the people working there. It is between 7am-10am & not once did we go down & not have to wait behind workers. That is completely in appropriate.
-NEXT- the next day after arrival, we were able to get a good look at exactly why the rooms were not ready on time. We woke about 8am to get moving to the parks, & the room 2 doors down had about 5 maids laughing, walking around eating, TV blaring & sitting on the beds. As I approcahed my parents room down the hall, the room across from them was blaring a spanish radio station as 2 girls "looked to be" cleaning.
-LASTLY- this is a 5 STORY hotel. You need to use the elevator. THERE IS ONLY ONE in the entire hotel! ONE! And due to the fact that you have to share this elevator with the service people (carrying out mattresses & handtrucks of supplies), & the maids bringing down dirty laundry & garbage - PLUS everyone else- it is SLOW! It BARELY makes it up & down the shaft. We were on the 5th floor- it took forever!
I have stayed in quite a few hotels in my day, this one is NOT worth the $140 a night. And that is what you need to keep in mind- $140 per NIGHT. The service was seriously LACKING.

  • Stayed: June 2007, traveled with family
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13  Thank shanniebear
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 23, 2007

The outside of the hotel was beautiful, the location ideal. BUT the staff could have been friendlier, in fact not once during our 3 day stay did they look up from the TV they keep behind the counter. When we asked questions, it was obvious we were bothering them. As for the room, nice, clean, but the bathroom was tiny and not as clean as I would have liked.

  • Stayed: June 2007, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank maxlouie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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