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“Wonderful stay!”
Review of Blue Bell Lodge

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Blue Bell Lodge
Ranked #2 of 24 Specialty Lodging in Custer
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 5, 2010

My husband and I spent three nights in a "sleeping cabin". There are many different types of cabins here, so that may account for some of the varying reviews. This cabin was new, (others looked much older) and incredibly spacious. Two double beds, a kitchenette with microwave, sink and cook top (no dishes provided), a dining table to seat 4, a fireplace inside, an outdoor fire pit and round picnic table. We had no problem with mice, like some of the prior reviewers mentioned. Wi-fi at the lodge did not reach here, but the lodge was only a two minute walk away and wi-fi was good there. All the employees we ran across were super friendly, especially Jim Bob at the front desk. We did the chuckwagon cook out one night - highly recommend - and agree with prior reviewer - get on Cowboy Keith's wagon! He was a delight! There are other lodges to stay at in this park, and honestly, they're all within driving distance of each other so if this one doesn't seem to suit your fancy, try another. We did a bunch of hiking around Sylvan Lake and did like the look and feel of that area, we'd probably stay there next time just for something different. We ate dinner one night at the State Game Lodge, that seemed a bit more upscale. Legion Lake had less going on activity wise, but seemed like a nice, quiet place to stay also. Some of their cabins were directly on the water and would appear to have a fantastic view of the lake. Overall, we loved this park and can't recommend it enough. Enjoy, no matter where you stay!

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank sahedges
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BlueBellLodge, Manager at Blue Bell Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded February 3, 2011

Thank you for your review. Custer State Park is a beautiful place to visit and stay. We take pride in the quality and service we provide. At Blue Bell Lodge, the Chuckwagon Hayride Cookout is offered nightly. It is a family fun filled activity for all to enjoy.

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Reviews (256)
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223 - 229 of 256 reviews

Reviewed August 4, 2010

It was absolutely beautiful! The rooms were pretty clean, the staff was helpful, the price was high. Unfortunately, once you are in Custer State Park, everything is more expensive. Would I stay there again? ABSOLUTELY! The fire pit every night, the deer out of our front door, and best of all, the Chuck wagon dinner. We almost didn't do this because of the price, but at the last minute changed our minds. We traveled with 3 young children (8 and under), and it was the best night of our trip. We sang, listened to stories, dance, and ate. It was 3 hours of great entertainment. My best advice is to ask for Cowboy Keith's wagon--he made the night.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with family
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Thank familytraveler1976
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BlueBellLodge, Manager at Blue Bell Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded February 3, 2011

Thank you for your review. It was a pleasure having your family at the Blue Bell Lodge. Custer State Park is a beautiful place to visit.

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Reviewed July 23, 2010

My family and I stayed in one of the 6 persons cabins and it was smaller than represented in the online brochure. It was so dark and when we tried to open the curtains, my sister and I were laughing because we had to take the cheap little rods off the window to move the curtains. One of the windows didn't latch so we left our valuables in the van. It was quiet and very pretty in the park so we slept well. In the morning we found out that a mouse had eaten through several items on the counter. I told the Manager (?) in the morning at check out what had happened and he just shrugged it off with not even an apology and walked away. Just a simple explanation at check-in that there was a "mice infestation in the park" ;as was told to me by the opening mgr. ; and we could have stored everything different.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank Romanintheruins
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2010

We booked this cabin for mid June for our stay in the Black Hills with our two boys ages 6 and 7. We booked one of the old log cabins with a queen and a pull out couch and a "kitchenette" which had a hot plate (which we did not use-looked like it had seen better days and the mouse traps in the cupboard where it was stored was not appetizing), fridge, and coffee pot. A microwave would have been nice. The cabin had been redecorated with new carpet, bathroom had been updated, etc, but it was dark and smelled like mothballs and possibly a dead mouse? We heard mouse activity the first two nights (squeaking and rummaging in the trash can), but didn't see them and I told myself as long as I don't see them I'm fine (even though I wasn't, but I was trying to stay positive and not ruin our great trip). We saw the mice on the third night and that was it. I couldn't sleep all night and could hear them scurrying all over the cabin. The next morning I went to the lodge and I explained nicely that I didn't want to stay the last night and wanted to check out early. They told me my reservation was non-refundable so we could check out early, but would still be charged for the 4th night even if we didn't stay! I asked for a different cabin then (there were some newer ones at the resort), but he said they were all booked. The manager did call to some of the other resorts in Custer and finally found us a lodge room at Sylvan Lake Lodge which was fantastic! I wish we would have stayed there all four nights because the scenery was more rugged and mountainous along with the gorgeous lake, the room was awesome (we actually got two rooms for the same price as our cabin at blue bell so the kids had their own room) and the best part was it was on the third floor with NO MICE! The restaurant was also great. I would not go back to the Blue Bell again. We stayed there mainly so the kids could go horseback riding, which we did one day, but we could have still stayed at Sylvan Lake and driven to the stables----it's only about a 40 minute drive from Sylvan to Blue Bell through the gorgeous Needles Highway....also Sylvan has great hiking and rock climbing nearby and is closer to Keystone. We walked by the cabins at Sylvan and they looked nicer than the ones at Blue Bell, but I'm sure they would be more likely to have mice than the lodge rooms. I realize we were in the mountains and there are mice around, but it got to be too much to handle. For the money of $140 per night I would expect them to do more about the mice problem. Oh, there was also a huge dead crow under our cabin window which attracted huge flies. They did move it promptly, though, but still gross. I would not recommend staying here if you don't like mice!

Stayed: June 2010, traveled with family
2  Thank familylovesfun76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2010

We stayed four nights in one of the "sleeping" cabins (two double beds, fireplace, kitchenette) and loved every minute. I originally tried to reserve a smaller "camping cabin" since it was only myself, husband and 10 year old son, but they were all booked so we went with the bigger cabin. Even though it was more expensive we thought it was well worth it. The cabin was clean and very spacious. There was our own firepit right outside the cabin so we made a campfire every night. The location can't be beat - beautiful scenic drives and tons of wildlife right in the park. We saw many buffalo, deer, and prairie dogs every day. We ate one dinner and one breakfast in the Lodge - good food and service. The highlight of the stay for my son was the horseback ride we took through the park from the Blue Bell stables. Everyone we had contact with from the lodge to the stables was very friendly and helpful. If we ever come back to the area we would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank IslandBoundinKS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 2, 2010

beautiful resort. The cabins are rustic looking and very well spread out in the woods. Every morning I'd take my coffee and sit outside, watching all the birds and bunnies.
If I had to find something to complain about, it would be size of the cabins. There were only two of us, which was good-any more and you'd be real tight. In the bathroom, there was so little counter space, I usually left my toiletries outside the bathroom and reached out to get what I needed.

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank simbasmom32
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 10, 2010

We stayed in cabin #14 at Blue Bell Lodge. It's lovely to stay in the park and our grandkids liked the freedom of not being in another hotel room but... the rooms were not clean and some of the furniture was not in good condition. We also depended on being able to buy some groceries at the little store there (having been told that by the booking person) but were shocked to find that it sold mostly gifts items and very little food. We did eat at the lodge restaurant and enjoyed that. If you are driving and able to bring some kitchen supplies it would be great.

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank norms_mom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Blue Bell Lodge

Address: Custer State Park, 25453 Highway 87, Custer, SD 57730
Location: United States > South Dakota > Custer
Amenities:
Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 24 Specialty Lodging in Custer
Hotel Class:3 star — Blue Bell Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 240
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A historical lodge offering horseback riding and camping trips through Custer State park. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Blue Bell Hotel Custer

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