Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge Help

Old Sep 16th, 2003, 07:44 AM
  #1  
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Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge Help

My husband and I are thinking about going to Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge around 12/26/03-1/1/04. Yes, I know it is suppose to be a tourist trap and tacky. Regardless, we still want to go. We want to hike, do the tacky tourist stuff and simply hang out with each other. I have read numerous posts and narrowed our lodging down to a few properties. Any help would be great. We really only need one bedroom but would love at least 1.5 bathrooms so a 2 bedroom would be fine and would like 2 tv's (I have to go to sleep with the tv on.....don't ask), pool table, jacuzzi, hot tub, fireplace, deck and great views. The most important part is that the property is extremely clean though. Here are our choices based on opinions so far:

Chalet Village
Oakhaven Resort
Hidden Mountain Resort
Timbertops
Mountain Valley Properties

The only reason Mountain Valley Properties is listed is because it is a Resort Quest property (ie Sandestin Resort) and I am familiar with them.

Thanks for the help.
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Old Sep 16th, 2003, 10:00 AM
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Forgot to mention that I found that Oakhaven's views were not as good as Timber Tops or Chalet Village and that Timber Tops seemed to be alot more expensive than the other two. Any input on this or does anyone know of an even better place to rent cabins from.

I should probably point out that the reason I am so nervous is that we once rented from a company who sent us pictures that ended up not even vaguely resembling the dump we rented. And by dump, I mean it made the house is John Candy's movie "Summer Rental" look like a palace. Thankfully we did get out money back but I am always leery now when I rent from companies that I do not have prior experience with.

Thanks
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Old Sep 16th, 2003, 10:49 AM
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We have stayed in chalets and we have stayed in the middle of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge in motels.
We much prefer the Hampton Inn in downtown Gatlinburgh. It's right in the middle of everything and everything is within walking distance of the hotel.
Pigeon Forge is about 6-7 miles from Gatlinburgh and one doesn't walk in Pigeon Forge. It's much, much larger than Gatlinburgh. And you have to drive everywhere you go. Not so in Gatlinburg. We like the Hampton Inn because many of their rooms have fireplaces and some face the stream. It really is beautiful the time of year you're going.
John
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Old Sep 16th, 2003, 11:00 AM
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iceeu2
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beachdreams..of the resorts you mentioned, we have stayed at Oak Haven and Hidden Mountain (the one behind the Apple Barn)
Both are great.....
Oak Haven is farther out of town....the cabins are gorgeous...exceptionally clean....outstanding decor.....hot tubs on screened in porch....ducane gas grills...tvs in living area and in master bedroom and in some of the other bedrooms. We have been in about 12 different cabins at this resort and every cabin was exceptional.

Hidden Mountain is just that hidden...excellent location...near Pigeon Forge, but still secluded. The only time we stayed there, we stayed in a 2 br condo/townhouse. It was very nice and clean. My friend stays at the Hidden Mountain Resort that is on further out(I don't know the difference in East or West), and she said she has had great cabins and just ok cabins.
So, for what its worth...both are very nice....although I'm not sure if they have pool tables unless you get one of the cabins with a game room.
And regardless of the tackiness referred to by some, we love Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge...you can relax, fish, hike, shop, go to great shows.
Beware, there will be lots of traffic for the time of year you are going...and, lots of people have standing reservations from year to year, so you should probably go ahead and start checking availability.
FYI....we have some friends who come down every year from Canada and will absolutely stay nowhere except Oak Haven.
Have fun....you will have a fun time and perhaps even a little snow!
 
Old Sep 16th, 2003, 11:11 AM
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I won a weekend at Hidden Mountain once at work for something important like showing up on time or some such, but it was very nice. It was a one-bedroom A-frame cabin and was up in the mountains back of the Apple Barn. We really enjoyed it. It had a fireplace and a hot tub, and I would go again.
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Old Sep 16th, 2003, 11:12 AM
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Good timing - We (myself, husband, and two young children) are going to Gatlingburg/Pigeon Forge tomorrow for the first time. I like your disclaimer about knowing it is tacky. We usually visit "nicer" places but wanted to get away for a few days with the kids and really prefer renting houses/villas to hotels so this area seemed like a reasonable choice.

Anyway, we've never been before but we are renting from TimberTops - our cabin is called "Afternoon Delight." I'll let you know how we liked it when return. The folks at TimberTops were helpful when I called. I had originally selected a different cabin but when I asked if it was secluded they said it was not and recommened a few that were (which is how we ended up choosing afternoon delight).

I'm jealous that you are just going w/your husband and will be able to hike. We love to hike too (spent a week on St John this summer) but our little ones are still too little to hike. Like I said, I'll let you know my recommendations when we return!

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Old Sep 16th, 2003, 02:58 PM
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iceeu2
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Hi again beachdreams,
I was playing around a bit ago and found a website you need to check out.
Go to sugarmaplecabins.com
These appear to be new cabins with great views. Don't know where they are, but we are going up in a couple of weeks so if I see any of them, I will post back for you.
 
Old Sep 21st, 2003, 09:43 AM
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Gatlinburg is by defintion much cooler than Pigeon Forge.Having stayed in both chalets and hotels in the area,I think , based on what you have said and the time of year you are going, you might be happiest in a nice hotel in the middle of everything.There are cool low-key bars in Gatlinburg..all within walking distance if you stay in town.The Hampton Inn is good as is the Clarion.There are also lots of little unique shops you can walk to in town as well as be part of the New Year Fireworks stuff.I would probably bypass staying in Pigeon Forge..it is much like a " strip area" and one doesnt walk there....plus the traffic is unbearable.Gatlinburg has much more of the mountain village feeling it seems you are seeking.
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Old Sep 21st, 2003, 02:13 PM
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Okay, we're back. First of all, based on what you are looking for I would definitely rent a cabin rather than a hotel. You get so much more fun (hot tub, pool table, etc) and the hotels on the strip in Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge are just that - on the strip in the middle of everything. It sounds like you'd prefer a little more relaxing environment. That said, DO NOT rent from Timber Tops. Our cabin was nice and we enjoyed our trip, but there were some things lacking that really bothered me:

NO network tv! We paid $200+/night and the description said "satellite." They tell me that doesn't mean it included network! Puhlease - even Motel 6 has network tv!! (and we didn't get any movie channels, just a few basic cable)

They weren't ready for us when we arrived. They didn't even know if the cabin had been cleaned (luckily it had) and had us call from the cabin to get the entry code.

Gas fireplace didn't work at all.

VCR wasn't connected to tv. Had to disconnect satellite ourself to hook up VCR and switch the one cable every time.

Bath towels the size of dishrags and only 4 towels despite the fact that the cabin is advertised as sleeping 6.

So that's my review of Timber Tops. I would still rent a cabin if we were to return, just from a different company. Several people recommended Oak Haven so I might go with them in the future.

Other notes. Restaurants we really enjoyed the most were Burning Bush (bountiful breakfast), Park Grill, and Best Italian. Thought the aquarium was great and had a blast having an old time saloon photo taken of our family. Dollywood was completely overpriced and not much to do (unleass your are a big country music fan, I suppose). Food in the park wasn't very good. Lots of great miniature golf. It's fun to drive the strip in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge and just take in the sites - what a hoot!!!
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Old Sep 29th, 2003, 05:28 AM
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Well after to reading your response, we canceled our reservations with Timber Tops. Hubby decided we did not need that possible headache so I really do appreciate your help.

We have decided to fly to Boston and really getaway instead. It is something we have been wanting to do, but hadn't and we checked into it and can get some really good deals so we are booking it hopefully today.

Thanks alot for everyone's help.
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Old Sep 29th, 2003, 06:16 AM
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We have rented chalets 3 times from a company called Mountain Laurel Chalets. We are very happy with this company. Their chalets are located next to the National Park, which is nice because you don't have to drive thru town to get into the park. The chalet we rented were Country Charm, Amazing Grace, and Bear Watch. Go to their website mountainlaurelchalets.com. All the chalets we rented had great views and hot tubs on the deck. All were very clean and when we needed clean towels we simply dropped the dirty ones at the office and picked up fresh ones on our way down the mountain.
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