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“Great Location” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of El Tovar Hotel

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El Tovar Hotel
San Juan Capistrano, California
Level Contributor
10 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Great Location”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 April 2012

Well you cannot get a better location if you want to visit the Grand Canyon. Very historic lodge. Nice restaurant downstairs. Yes it is expensive, but for such a once in a lifetime experience it was worth it.

Room Tip: Any room with a view of the canyon. But even the ones with out a view have been remodeled nicely - o...
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
    • 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?
1 Thank LisaF58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,693 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (637)
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Mobile, Alabama
Level Contributor
30 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 April 2012

Glad we persisted and checked back for months till a suite opened up. The Zane Grey suite had lovely bedding and a spacious marble bathroom. On 3rd floor and no elevators in sight, so may not be for everyone. Nice views of the canyon form the big bedroom windows and from private balcony off the sitting room. Few small things kept this review from being a 5, probably a 4.5 though: the cheapo toilet tissue, and hike up stairs,and the average food in the restaurant. Pretty restaurant, good breakfast, but totally average dinner for $200 for the 4 of us.

Room Tip: highly recommend zane grey suite
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
    • 4 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?
2 Thank J E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
80 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 April 2012

This hotel is in the best possible location but needs updating and upgrading. The a/c unit in our room was so loud that every time it turned on during the night, both my husband and I were awakened. The walls are also paper thin. We could clearly hear the conversation of the guests in the room next to ours and I'm pretty sure they heard ours. Lastly, the restaurant food was pretty bad especially considering the prices they charge. We ate 2 dinners, 1 lunch and 1 breakfast at the El Tovar. The lunch was fine. Breakfast was overpriced. Dinners were terrible. If you order the steak or lamb, be sure to ask for the gravy/sauce on the side because the chef smothers the meat in these sauces that (if you're like us) you won't like. The lamb sauce tasted like toothpaste. Service was very good though. Overall, I'd say overpriced for what you get.

  • Stayed April 2012
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Thewoodlandstexas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Xanterra, Manager at El Tovar Hotel, responded to this review, 16 April 2012
Thank you for submitting TripAdvisor feedback regarding your stay at El Tovar.

I would like to start by offering my apologies for the quality of the food at this restaurant. El Tovar is considered by most to be the best restaurant in the Grand Canyon National Park. We pride ourselves on delivering superior quality food that's equivalent to many high-end restaurants outside of the park. Again, I apologize that we didn't meet these expectations. Your comments are taken very seriously, so they have been forwarded to the proper team members for their review and resolution.

I sincerely hope this experience doesn't prevent you from returning to the Grand Canyon South Rim and dining at El Tovar in the near future. If you do return, please ask for me so I can personally ensure your satisfaction.

David Beckerleg
Food and Beverage Director
Grand Canyon South Rim
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lichfield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
33 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 April 2012

Being on site enabled us to see and enjoy the Canyon before the crowds arrive for the day.Rooms were comfortable but the public areas of the hotel do get very busy during the day as they are open to everyone.Dinner in the restaurant was good but you do need to book before you arrive as it does get very busy.Beware car parking is difficult .

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank lichfield2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta
Level Contributor
250 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 April 2012

My family and I stayed at El Tovar during my kids' spring break. It was a charming historic hotel, filled with character and wonderfully located, sitting at the rim of the Grand Canyon. It's definitely worth a splurge to stay here, for location alone. You can park your car and walk to all of the main South Rim sites, shopping, and restaurants. We booked two terrace-level queen rooms -- the rooms were small (think European hotel room size) but very comfortable and well-appointed. The rooms were spotlessly clean and came with all the creature comforts including very nice toiletries, hair dryer, and in-room coffee maker. The jar of candies on the nightstand was a nice touch! The El Tovar offers room service for breakfast and dinner- a rarity in a National Park hotel. We were able to stumble out of bed and walk out of our hotel to see magnificent sunrises over the canyon at 6:15am. The lobby is warm and inviting with fireplaces, cozy chairs/sofas, and lots of animal heads on the walls - perfect masculine/club sort of atmosphere. The front and side porches are nice for sitting and having a drink and a glimpse of the canyon. The restaurant and bar are both wonderful as well. Staff were all helpful and friendly. My only complaint is the parking -- we had a really hard time finding a place to park since a lot of day-trippers park here -- once they left for the day we didn't have any problems locating a parking place.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled 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?
2 Thank Carolyn G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brussels, Belgium
Level Contributor
74 reviews
60 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 April 2012

This is a beautiful historic property with a spectacular location in Grand Canyon. The public areas are really nice, and the restaurant is worth it - both for breakfast or dinner.

But, and for me, this was quite a but, the rooms themselves are really not up to the standard of the rest of the hotel. At least the one we stayed in. Ours was a standard room. It was down a flight of stairs, looking over a parking lot, and just about big enough for a very small queen size bed, a closet, and a small table. Once we got in there with our two suitcases, you could hardly move. The size of the room and the bed meant that it got really claustrophobic - and that, combined with the strange noises coming from upstairs, meant that we slept really badly. In addition, the room was dark and felt like it hadn't been renovated in at least a decade. Certainly, I was very happy that we left the next day and didn't stay a second night as originally planned.

We stayed another night in the Kachina lodge, just next door - it was the same price, with a full view on the canyon, two queen beds, fully renovated - no comparison at all - I would say to everyone to stay there rather than El Tovar.

Room Tip: Avoid the rooms that are downstairs.
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank FreidaBru
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Xanterra, Manager at El Tovar Hotel, responded to this review, 16 April 2012
Thank you for taking the time to provide us with your feedback on El Tovar Hotel.

Since El Tovar Hotel is now on the National Historic Register, we are extremely limited in what modifications we can make to the lodge. Unfortunately, we are unable to change the size or layouts of the rooms. We can, however, make slight improvements as needed. I will note your comments about the condition of the room and have it reviewed as we consider making other improvements throughout the hotel. We also encourage guests to notify the front desk or a member of management if they are ever unhappy with their accommodations. We in turn will do our best to relocate the guest or find another way to ensure their complete satisfaction. I apologize that this didn't happen.

I hope your recent experience doesn't prevent you from returning to the South Rim and staying at El Tovar or any of our other in-park lodges. If there is anything I can do for you to make your next stay more enjoyable, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Mike Harding
Rooms Director
Grand Canyon South Rim
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Arlington, Virginia
Level Contributor
63 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 April 2012

El Tovar is worth it. We went with our young daughters for three nights, and glad we booked the deluxe room. The first night I was disappointed when I looked out the window and saw the parking lot. But then, in the morning I realized we had a shared balcony (door was behind a curtain) with a fabulous view of the canyon. Fantastic way to read the paper and drink the free coffee provided for you in the mezzanine. Guests are invited to play the piano throughout the day, and we lucked out, when a gentleman played, taking any and all requests, for a couple of hours one evening. We enjoyed the breakfast in the morning as well. We ended up going every morning, despite the high price. Beautiful historic, "hunting lodge" lobby. It's expensive, the rooms are old, but it was a lot of fun and you can't beat the convenience. Check in was easy--Leigh helped us get our bearings and gave us ideas about what to do there--David the concierge also gave us some great ideas about what to do on our way back down to Sedona--Thank you both!

Room Tip: We loved our balcony--rm. 6463
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Lisa M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about El Tovar Hotel

Property: El Tovar Hotel
Address: Apache Street and Center Road, South Rim, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ 86023
Region: United States > Arizona > Grand Canyon National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Grand Canyon National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — El Tovar Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 78
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
El Tovar Hotel Grand Canyon
El Tovar Grand Canyon
Hotel El Tovar
El Grand Canyon
Grand Canyon El Tovar
El Tovar Lodge

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