by Joanna Nesbit
Tucked at the top of Lake Chelan, this lodge offers 28 rooms with lake or forest views in a woodsy setting. Seven units contain kitchens, including several cabins with private entrances and decks. Families will appreciate the lake access, onsite restaurant, and “recreation center” equipped with board games, pool table, books and puzzles. No Wi-Fi or TV. The restaurant and store take credit cards, but we recommend you bring plenty of cash for other incidentals (red bus, bakery, organic garden).
HGours: The lodge, restaurant, and general store are open full time from May through October (check the website for exact dates). The lodge’s kitchen units are available year-round, but families will need to pack in food between October and May. During this period, the restaurant opens only for lunch on the days the Lady of the Lake boat arrives.
Our Editor Loves
- Rustic setting
- Lake access and boat rentals
- No TV or Wi-Fi
- Water Sports
- Game Room
- Onsite Dining
I loved everything about my stay at the lodge. It started with a warm welcome from Christopher when I checked in; I felt like I was visiting friends instead of arriving for my first time. All of the staff was friendly and helpful. That was especially important and noticed since I was traveling alone. My Swissmont room was nice and clean. Lots of hot water and pressure for a good shower. My favorite part was the balcony looking over the waterfront. As I sat and drank my coffee in the morning, I watched an eagle circle overhead looking for his breakfast. It was a little challenging not to have cell, internet or TV; but I knew that ahead of time. Overall, it was good to be disconnected. I hope to return!
We stayed at the lodge at the invitation of some friends that were trying it out too. After I made the booking online, I called the reservation number to get some info on the cabin layout, food option since the kitchen is super basic and how to get there. After 6 phone calls and repeated questions for which they had either vague or zero answers, they transferred me to the lodge front desk and no one would answer the phone. So far, so bad! When we arrived, we had a cabin that was suppose to fit 6 with 2 queen beds and 2 sofa beds. We have 2 teenagers and they did not want to sleep together. There were no extra sheets or comforters for the sofa beds and found this out way too late and no one was around at 9pm for us to get any from Housekeeping. The cabin was so small that all of us were tripping over each other. One bed was in the main room where we ate our food on a table 2 ft away from the end of the bed. The worst part was when we pulled our comforter back to sleep. Both beds had plenty of head and pubic hair from the previous guests. The sheets looked relatively new but clearly unchanged from Housekeeping. This is totally unacceptable. Truly disgusting!!! It was too late to fix the problem and he next day, our hike started way too early for us to complain. The staff at the front desk was not exactly warm and fuzzy to approach. When I dared to ask the front desk for some sheets and blankets, he rolled his eyes while sharing my requests with his co-worker.
He was so condescending. I also asked the same guy if we could rent the kayak and he said he was not really interested in going out to get it ready for us to rent. Another word, don't ask. This is what you get when you are the only hotel in the area.
In addition, the walls between the units are paper thin. The guests next to us knocked on our door complaining we were too noisy because we were having normal conversations about washing dishes. The National Park is great but this lodge is way overrated and overpriced. Since this place is only accessible by a 4 hour ferry or a 28 mile hike, it makes it remote and impossible to fine another option for lodging or food. Their restaurant, which is also the only one in town, besides the bakery is, at best, a diner with restaurant prices. The food reminded me of a cheap buffet or hospital food. It was bland, boring and over priced. They need to update the lodge and give customers something more worthy of the money we are spending. My friend was told by a staff that her kids were getting complaints just because they were active and he threaten to shut them down. Its a good thing he did not say that to a NY like me.