We were very pleased with our comforable king-bed room in the Tamarack building. I would guess that the adjacent Dogwood and Aspen buildings offer similar rooms (online map is available), which are totally modern and tasteful, very clean, have a small fridge, TV and WiFi, decent bath/shower with plenty of towels, plus a nice view of the trees. I think each building has 8 units, 4 upstairs and 4 down. Suggest staying upstairs with your own semi-private balcony and table/chairs. They also have vaulted ceilings so it seems to feel a little more spacious than downstairs. Pricey at around $250/nite inc. breakfast but you're right in the valley and wake up ready to do your daytime thing and not waste precious time. There are older buildings that may not offer such a nice experience so do check and try and get one of these more recently built ones. Ours was at the Yosemite Falls end of the lot so we took a couple moonlight walks to see them at night and were there in 5 minutes. There seem to be several of these more recent buildings so ask when you book.
We booked directly with DNC via their website www.yosemitepark.com and avoided a 10% service fee offered by some other website who's link appeared first via Google.
My only complaint is the crappy food at the Food Court. If it were good but expensive, or average but reasonable, I'd say 'you're at the park for the wonders of the park and not a fine dining experience and should have lower expectations'. But the Food Court is both expensive AND terrible. Since you're basically a captive audience its particularly annoying that the DNC company that runs the show doesn't take some steps to improve the offerings. No salad bar, watery mashed potatoes, grisly burger -- the worst institutional food that costs airport prices and is lower quality than that. Its obvious that no respectable chef regularly tastes whats being served. I can understand that every single item served has to be trucked in through a difficult route and maybe that adds to the cost. But at least make it decent! Shame on you, DNC.
The Mountain Room Lounge has a few OK salad, soup and sandwich options that seemed totally worth the extra few dollars. The Mountain Room itself has steaks and other higher-end items but at $20-$30 per entree, wasn't going to be a daily dinner option, especially if you have a family to feed.
Breakfast can be included as part of the bed & breakfast package when you book your room, and you get a $13 credit plus a coupon for large, good cup of coffee or tea from the cafe's Peets counter. I'd say do it if you're planning on breakfast at the cafe. We had good granola ($4), supplemented with fruit we brought and grabbed a sandwich and chips for lunch later ($9) to use up the $13. The plated traditional American breakfast of eggs/spuds/meat was I think $9 but one bite of the sausage my partner got was unpleasant and made you instantly wonder about exactly what it was ground up to make it.
The overall park experience was, and always will be, stunning. Don't think its one of the seven wonders of the world but it should be. Just bring as much picnic food as you can and be very careful at the Food Court.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Yosemite Valley Lodge is a favorite choice for families and large groups. Its close proximity to Yosemite Falls makes it the perfect base camp for exploring Yosemite National Park. Its glass and wood architecture work in unity with the surroundings and the ample windows allow in the bright mountain sunshine while providing remarkable views. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Yosemite Lodge At The Falls
- Yosemite Hotel National Park
- Yosemite Lodge Falls
- Yosemite Ca
- Yosemite View Lodge
- Yosemite Hotel At The Falls
- Lodge Reservation Yosemite
- Lodge Yosemite
- Yosemite Lodge Hotel
- Yosemite Falls Lodge