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“No Charm, Few Amenities” 2 of 5 bubbles
Review of Holy Smoke Resort

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Holy Smoke Resort
Certificate of Excellence
Washington, D.C.
Level Contributor
13 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“No Charm, Few Amenities”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 12, 2014

We stayed at HSR last summer during trip a trip to the Mt. Rushmore area and were disappointed. The cabins themselves are squeezed closely together along a narrow road carved into the hillside. See pictures below for the view we had.

The cabins we stayed in were not charming in the least. Picture a 70s-era TV bolted to the ceiling like a prison rec room. The furnishings were cheap, decor tacky and dreary. A rustic cabin would be fine in a nice setting where you could enjoy the outdoors. Unfortunately, this is not the case here. Guests were sternly warned not to build a fire. The porches were uninviting, with views primarily of other cabins, a trailer park, and a highway. BTW, there were no kitchen facilities. As our traveling companion put it, the cabins were "basically a motel room." At $150 a night, this was no bargain either.

Service was also lacking. The desk is frequently unattended, even during peak tourist season.

My advice: try to get a room in one of many hotels/motels in the town of Keystone. They are closer to Mt. Rushmore than HSR, and may have amenities like pools, televisions, cell service, etc.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank sonnenschein
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
murphy0046, Owner at Holy Smoke Resort, responded to this review, February 14, 2014
Really sorry you did not like the rustic cabin. Why did you wait so long to write a review? Our front desk is manned from noon till nine daily. We have never advertised a swimming pool, so you knew that there wasn't one when you booked the cabin. Some folks are much happier in a motel with a pool. Perhaps that is where you should have booked. Again I know we can't please everyone our service and cleanliness is excellent and will continue to be as our returning guests have told us year after year.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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152 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    81
    47
    13
    4
    7
See reviews for
74
38
2
2
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (29)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 22, 2013

We stayed early September 2013. This is not 5* but you are not paying 5* price, but it is good value 2*. The cabin was clean, the facilities worked and the site was clean and quite. If you want somewhere to use as a base while touring the area, and all you are going to do is use it to sleep, shower and sit on the deck outside in the evening, this is the place.
We did eat in the restaurant (famous ribs!) one night, but were not impressed,it was OK but nothing special. The Powder House Restaurant down the road was brilliant and we ate there for the next few nights.
Would we stay again, YES.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Michael B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lafayette, Indiana, United States
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 18, 2013

we stayed there early sept. we enjoyed the place, very clean and idea place for home base. we wished we could stay longer. we was traveling to Yellowstone from Indiana. staff very helpful. we meet some very nice people staying in the next cabin who stays there often.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Tammy L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hillsboro, Missouri
Level Contributor
29 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 11, 2013

We chose this resort as a home base for touring all of the Black Hills for over a week and that was a good choice. You can't beat the discount of $55 a night for a bed and shower, so that was the second plus. (Although you realize you usually get what you pay for.) Housekeeping was not included; they only changed towels and made the bed, no proper cleaning in 9 days, no capture of living spiders. To stay to the point, our opinion is just this - do not stay in cabin 14, which obviously was the RV office at one point. Clearly posted, "This is not the office", a strange woman opened the door and came in behind me nearly scaring me to death. She never even knocked; fortunately we were up and dressed. I'm sure the cabins up on the hill were nice by the great reviews, and we'd return to stay up there. We were looking forward to their smoky ribs restaurant, from all the reviews, but they just closed it up this year; disappointing. Powder House Restaurant/Resort was the next driveway down and we ate there twice having wonderful food. So, from all I've read, Holy Smoke is a good resort, and we say a good location. They ought to turn cabin 14 into a storage unit, as it had many maintenance issues and barely a lockable door; not at all suitable for guests. It was quiet though, we did not hear any highway noise. Give it a try up the hill though.

Room Tip: Stay away from cabin 14; prior office building.
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
Helpful?
2 Thank talk2terry
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 2, 2013

Really cute cabin with two separate rooms and adjoining bath, and mini kitchen. Large front deck with plenty of room for foldout chairs and room to grill. The staff are super! The location just north of Keystone was perfect for visiting all that the area has to offer. The owner says they will be adding a few more cabins next year that have full kitchens. I would stay there again in a heartbeat!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 Laura M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 1, 2013

Stayed here on recent road trip with my daughter on our way to take her to her new job in Denver. I had never visited the Black Hills and was a little concerned with the description of Keystone as being very touristy. We only had a couple of days on our detour through the Black Hills from Chicago and after alot of research settled on Holy Smoke because it seemed to offer the kind of accomodations we were looking for, was very reasonably priced, and I was very happy with the choice.

The resort is located outside of downtown Keystone, which is sort of touristy--like Gatlinburg, TN. However, the resort is located up the hill from the town--far enough away where you really get to feel the seclusion and quiet of the mountain, yet close enough so that running out to get a supply is a five minute drive. The property is lovely, with the cabins situated in tiers up a pine covered mountain. We stayed in Cabin 11--a two bedroom unit which was perfectly suited to our needs. The cabin itself, seemed fairly new, extremely clean, and had little extras that one might not expect in cabin style accomodations--hair dryers, coffee pot and coffee supplied daily, shampoos and other toiletries, etc. The location couldn't have been better for our short two day stay--just a few minutes from Mt Rushmore and Crazy Horse, right on Iron Mountain Road so direct access to one of the prettiest drives in America on the way to Custer State Park, near little towns like Hill City, etc. As a result we were able to pack in a whole lot in our short stay including scenic drives, wildlife viewing and encounters in Custer Park---even made it up to the Spearfish Canyon. Along the way saw many of the properties I had considered booking and none of them looked as nice as Holy Smoke. Just an excellent property.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Vetra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Urbandale, Iowa
Level Contributor
85 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 30, 2013

Ended up here at last minute because our hotel messed up our reservation. The cabin had more amenities that we expected: 2 toilets and sinks, tv in one room, writing table in the other. Nice setting in the pines, but fairly close to the main highway.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Tim S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Holy Smoke Resort

Property: Holy Smoke Resort
Address: 24105 Highway 16a, Older Gps Is Misleading, Keystone, SD 57751-6641
Phone Number:
Location: United States > South Dakota > Keystone
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 8 Specialty Lodging in Keystone
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Holy Smoke Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 27
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Holy Smoke Resort offers 27 fully modern log cabins, Cabins can accommodate from 2 to 12 people as they are of different sizes. Some are pet friendly and some have fully equipped kitchens. Our Vacation rentals are fully equipped and one has a game room with a pool table and sleeps up to 12. All cabins have bathroom with shower, AC/Heat, refrig., Microwave, coffee, TV and WiFi. Bedding and towels are provided as well. Daily housekeeping is provided in all units except the vacation rentals. We have a 21 site RV Park. All pull-thru sites with TV, WiFi and full hook up Which includes sewer. Sites are long pull-thrus designed for the larger rigs, all have 30/50 amp. Electric. No public showers or public restrooms in the RV Park. The park is for fully self contained RV units having their own bathroom facilities. We offer trail rides from Memorial weekend to Labor Day conditions permitting. Our staff will gladly help you plan activities and places of interest to fit your schedule. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Holy Smoke Hotel Keystone

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