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DanaPMc Nov 8th, 2003 08:02 PM

Recommendations on places to stay in or near the Grand Canyon.
I'm planning a first time visit to the Grand Canyon in early April and have been researching various places to stay. I've read so many conflicting reviews my head is spinning. It seems like every place has just as many negative reviews as positive ones. I've narrowed it down to a few possibilities. El Tovar sounds nice but all they have available are standard rooms. Maswik Lodge is an option as is the Grand Hotel. I don't need a real fancy hotel but I do want something fairly nice. Does anyone have any comments about these places to stay or any others? I think I would prefer to stay in the park but that's negotiable. We're planning to stay 3 nights in/near GC and then 3 nights in Sedona. Any comments on that plan are welcome. Thanks so much for all your help.

gail Nov 9th, 2003 03:11 AM

If you are interested in hiking, etc, then 3 mights sounds fine - but if you just want to do a little walking, seeing South Rim from various points, then 3 nites may be a night too many.

The National Park Service lodges may or may not be what you call "fairly nice". We stayed at Bright Angel cabins and they are just basic rooms - double beds, small bathroom - but they are right at the rim. I would recommend staying in the park since the outside the park hotels really are a longer drive than we would have wanted. If you have not found it, the site that tells you about availability is - they handle room reservations in many of the national parks.

Beatle Nov 9th, 2003 04:23 AM

I also stayed at Bright Angel cabins. As Gail said, they are very "basic" but clean, and ask yourself how much time you will be spending in your room while at GC. I would stay there again because I would rather be inside the park- take a coffee in the morning and walk out to the rim as the sun is coming up- imo a great way to really experience the Canyon.

MaryZ Nov 9th, 2003 06:06 AM

I can't recommend highly enough that you stay IN the park, although you won't find luxury accommodations there. But, your overall experience will be so superior to staying in Tusayan! The El Tovar is a beautiful, historic hotel in one of the most stunning locations in the world. Maswick isn't on the rim, so I vote against it.

help Nov 9th, 2003 06:39 AM

right on the rim is the Bright Angel cabins(under $100),Thunderbird hotel,Kachina hotel(both about 115),El Tovar(the more expensive and quaint)...I have stayed at the Thunderbird a few times and was very satisfied...and freinds we went w/stayed at the Bright Angel and loved it...I'd stay in the park..sunrise and sunset is awesome....I thought driving to Tusayan was too far and also outside the park...there is a rest. at El Tovar and Bright Angel..and also the Steakhouse for supper...also a lounge @BA...there is a grocery store(about a 10 minute walk from the rim) and 2 more hotel type(Maswik and another) places by it..and a sports bar there too....almost forgot a cafeteria there too...hope this helps..

DanaPMc Nov 9th, 2003 07:20 PM

Thanks a lot everyone for all your help. The El Tovar only has a non-view standard room available. Would it still be better to stay there than at Maswik with a view of the forest? From what I understand you'd have a 10 minute walk to the rim at the Maswik. I guess I'd rather be closer to the rim than be able to look at trees. I had no idea places there would book up so quickly. I thought I was doing well booking 5 months in advance.

gail Nov 9th, 2003 11:28 PM

You don't need a Canyon view from your room - we stayed at a non-view cabin at Bright Angel and it was a very short walk to rim - about 100 feet or so. In the summer, the rim-view cabins are right on a pathway leading to everything and windows are at path level - it must be noisy. I would imagine same would be true for El Tovar. Maswik Lodge is not just in the trees but across 2 roadways, 1 set of railroad tracks and indeed a 10 minute walk. However, all lodging at South Rim is in a cluster - any would be preferable to staying outside the park. Don't know what is open in early April, but people regularly eat at several restaurants in the various lodging.

help Nov 10th, 2003 01:37 AM

keep checking back because there are always cancelations...I'd stay at El Tovar over Maswik..I'd go ahead and make a reservation and change it if you can get a reservation at one of the other lodgings..there is nothing like walking out your door and seeing the canyon..mule deer and other don't really need a view outside your room window..

Cher Nov 10th, 2003 05:54 AM

Just got back from Gr Canyon and I would definitely recommend staying at one of the accomodations on the rim vs. Maswik (even if not with a rim view room ... you really don't need to pay for this view ... you're right there and will see it all day!)

zootsi Nov 10th, 2003 06:13 AM

If you can still get a room at Bright Angel, I would jump at it. Sure the rooms are simple, but they have a 1950's rustic vibe to them, and they are very clean. As was mentioned above, the Bright Angel rooms are so close to the rim, you don't really need a room with a view - just walk a few hundred feet and you are right on the edge. I also agree that 3 nights might be too much unless you are doing some serious hiking.

sandyelin Nov 10th, 2003 06:37 AM

We stayed at the Bright Angle recently and loved it the rustic cabin
made the stay perfect with the setting of the area. Great view from our room and very clean.

MaryZ Nov 10th, 2003 06:56 AM

If I could get a room, any room, at the El Tovar...I'd snap it up.

dpcta Nov 10th, 2003 07:30 AM

We have stayed in the non view standard room and my advice would be don't do it. The El Tovar is a beautiful old hotel with an unbelievable view but those who rave about staying there, must have stayed in one of the suites or maybe even the view made up for the room. We stayed in a room in the basement that overlooked a sidewalk. We had a lovely view of everyones feet. The room was old and smelly and the bathroom was worse! It was not worth the money at all.

SEW Nov 10th, 2003 07:43 AM

I Recently stayed at Bright Angel in the lodge. It was by no means fancy, but then again wasn't expensive either. I would not stay in Maswik, it is too far from the rim. Thunderbird and Kachina are along the rim with El Tovar and Bright Angel. I don't know what the rooms are like though.

I agree with the poster who said book a room and keep checking to see if they have any cancellations.

dunas_dog Nov 10th, 2003 11:30 AM

Stayed at Bright Angel Lodge a couple of weeks ago. Rustic, basic but comfortable. The rim is literally on your doorstep. I fell out of bed early and got some great pictures. They do a reasonably priced dinner/breakfast also.

Have a good trip.

DanaPMc Nov 11th, 2003 06:27 PM

The description of the standard room located in the basement is exactly the kind of room I'm afraid of ending up with. I'll probably end up making a couple of reservations and hope for a cancellation of a nicer room at ElTovar.

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