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“Some good, some bad”

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The Inn Bolton Valley & Ski Area
Utica, NY
Level Contributor
48 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Some good, some bad”
Reviewed 24 February 2009

I went to the Bolton Valley Resort with my ski club one weekend in early January. My roommate and I arrived late (it was about an 8-hour drive). It was easy to check in and we had a nice, big room. However, there were three of us in this room. When I inquired about a discount, the front desk said they already gave us a group rate based on double occupancy. Still, the room was clean, large and pleasant with a balcony and a view of the ski lift.

On Friday night, after we arrived, two of us went to the bar to unwind. I got there around 10:30 and the bar was getting ready to close at 11. I wondered what kind of resort closes its bar this early when there is no place else to go? The resort is isolated at the top of a mountain road and it's about 10 miles from the closest tiny town that didn't seem to have any businesses either.

There were a few local people in the bar, so the bartender did stay open till about 11:30 for the few customers who were there.

The resort told us that breakfast was served only from 7 to 8 a.m., again somewhat inconvenient hours for travelers. However, the breakfast buffet was good: waffles, hot and cold cereals and toast (although one toaster with four slots can be a time-consuming wait when there's a group.) It was extremely cold that morning, so we went back to our rooms and waited until about 10 a.m. to ski.

Our club has both downhill and cross-country skiers. I believe the downhill skiers liked the slopes. Nordic skiers had a bit of a challenge to get to the trails, though. We had to walk about 100 yards to get to the Nordic center. The only way to get there from the hotel was to walk downhill through the icy, snowy parking lot because there was no separate walkway. I was worried about losing my footing and falling into the path of a car that was trying to find a parking place. At times, the resort had one or two staffers to direct traffic, but it was a narrow driveway and a small parking lot. Skiers on their way uphill to the slopes or to the Nordic Center were supposed to walk off to the side behind traffic cones.

When we reached the Nordic center, I went inside to sign up and get a trail map. We were given $5 coupons to apply to the $17 trail fee (very steep price), but the staffers at the desk told us we couldn't use the coupons even though it said, "good any day throughout the 2008-2009 season." They said we had to use the coupons at the time of purchase! But our trail passes were purchased in advance by our group leader and the coupons came separately. There was no way of knowing that we couldn't use the coupons.

That's a poor policy not to honor the coupons and I should have put up a fuss, considering we were here for the first time and came from several hundred miles away!

The trails were groomed, but icy and I had trouble negotiating them, even though I stayed on the trails marked for beginners or intermediates. Most resorts do leave some part of the trails ungroomed, depending on your preference or for snowshoers, too. Bolton Valley had only one or two "wilderness" trails that were left snow-covered. They went through the woods and were marked expert. But you couldn't get to them without tackling the icy trails first.

I also thought the trail maps were too small and hard to read. Basically, there is one main trail (Broadway) and all the other trails feed off it. Often times you didn't notice there was an intersecting trail until after you passed the small signs.

On Saturday night, however, the resort got about five inches of fresh snow and the skiing on Sunday was fantastic. I got out early before the trails were groomed and I could control my skis in the turns.

The Nordic Center also has a small swimming pool. The children using it on Saturday morning said the water was cold. I didn't try the pool because I didn't want to come out of a heated room and walk that far back to the hotel at night (uphill) in temperatures close to zero.

Another plus: the food. The hotel gave our group a good buffet dinner on Saturday night and the wait staff was friendly and attentive.

I heard that the hotel had recently been taken over by a "local" group of owners, but based on my experience with the young people at the front desk and the staff at the Nordic center, there was nobody in charge who could make a decision to help correct a customer's dissatisfaction. Some of my friends complained also about a lack of hot water in the bathroom, but I was very satisfied with my room. I was disappointed that the hotel didn't have any computers for use by the guests.

The trail fees were way too high considering the poor economy this year. Where I live in New York State, we always have plenty of snow and free ski trails, so I felt the trip to Vermont was a hassle.

  • Stayed January 2009
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank UpstateNYUtica_NY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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90 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (25)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Boston
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 15 December 2008

Got a great deal at this place for an early season ski and stay. The place is very nice, there was nothing "Yuck" about it. The room was everythign i expected, I wasn't looking for a 5 star room, i knew what to expect of a small ski resort. The room was big, the bed was big, had a nice little balcony. All you have to do is wake up and walk out the door to the mountain. The James Moore Tavern is a great place to hang out, the food is awesome, they have a nice beer selection with alot of local brews, and the staff was very friendly and personable. We just happened to be there at the right time because a rep from the Long Trail Brewery was there giving away free Long Trail swag and he also bought everyone a round who was drinking Long Trail. Overall, we had a great time at Bolton Valley and would definately consider making it a yearly trip!

  • Liked — Located at the base of the mountain, big room, and nice bar.
  • Disliked — the smell of french onion dip in the lobby from the deli
  • Stayed December 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BostonHenny4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boston, MA
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 September 2007

This hotel is awful. Everything is broken, Hot tub is out of order. Restaurant is expensive and not good. Service is rude.When we spoke to the manager she didn't seem to care and didn't offer anything to make us happier. Walls are thin. Rooms are really small. Water pressure is weak. Not fun at $170/night.

  • Stayed September 2007, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank laurenann247
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Bolton Valley hotels

Chicago area
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 July 2007

We chose to stay at the Bolton Valley ski resort for one night of a northeastern US summer road trip based on its mention in an "Off the Beaten Path" guidebook. It would probably be a fine place for a winter stay if you were a back-to-basics skiier, but in the summer we got the impression that we were intruders in a place where outsiders were an inconvenience. The plastic chairs on our tiny balcony, which had a view of the parking lot, were covered with bird droppings. There was no air conditioning, which might normally be fine in the mountains, but Vermont was experiencing a 90+ degree heat wave when we were there. The sliding screen door latch didn't work, so we hesitated to leave the glass door open overnight. During the summer on weeknights, there is no one at the front desk after 6:00 pm, just a posted emergency number for "security," so asking for a room change wasn't an option by the time we returned from dinner (miles away) and discovered the problems. When we checked out, the desk clerk appeared annoyed that I asked for a paid receipt, and neither of the two people behind the desk asked how our stay was (I did leave a written list of our concerns in the comment envelope provided in the room). Of the seven different places we stayed during our trip, this was the only disappointment.

  • Liked — Proximity to Stowe
  • Disliked — Large amounts of bird droppings on balcony chairs, overall neglect
  • Stayed July 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank RoadDuo2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PA
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 October 2006

We booked a room at this “resort” (notice the quotes—I’ll get to that in a minute) through Hotels.com because we were traveling through Vermont and wanted to stay near Stowe. Hotels.com told us the hotel was 7 miles outside of Stowe (they said there were no vacancies for Stowe itself). We were tired, traveling with a young child and wanting a hotel where we could swim, eat and go to bed. Hotels.com claimed the hotel had a restaurant, and a heated indoor pool.

Well, we arrived at the hotel to find that the restaurant was closed for the season, the heated indoor pool was in a heated room, but the pool itself was not heated (daughter turned blue and chattering after 3 mins in water) The pool room itself was moldy—there was black mold in the grout all along the pool’s caulking and the cement floor was seriously scary. Our bed was hoisted up on cinder blocks so it wouldn’t fall off the broken bed frame, the coverlet was stained and sticky, the screen door did not close tightly and mosquitoes swarmed our room all night long (no air conditioning, so we left the door open for air). So we decided to travel the 7 miles into Stowe to find another hotel—that 7 miles was actually 20+ miles!.

I looked at some of the hotel’s literature on their ski trails and they do have quite a set-up for the backcountry skier. I would recommend this place for someone who would be outside the entire time and didn’t much care what kind of bed, or facilities were waiting for them on their return for skiing all day—but I would not recommend this “resort” for anyone who is actually looking for a resort!

  • Liked — Leaving
  • Disliked — the whole thing was AWFUL
  • Tips/Secrets — Drive around Stowe and just walk into a place that looks nice and ask for a room--don't use Hotles.com
  • Stayed August 2006, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
9 Thank sheeboo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Beverly, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 March 2006

This hotel was clean, but worn out. Room contained what you would expect of a Super8Motel or Motel 6 (2 beds, dresser, small table, two wooden chairs), although actually the Super8 has more amenities. Thankfully we could use the balcony as our refrigerator as there was no refrigerator in the room (and not a microwave to be found).

The continental breakfast was marginal (no milk to drink for my two little children) and offered in a tiny deli that was reached only by going outdoors. We had dinner in the hotel's Tavern, which offered a cozy atmosphere and tasy pizza from their new pizzeria next door. The "food court" downstairs was cozy with its natural stone fireplace, but in need of a really good cleaning.

As we were previewing a timeshare, we paid very little for the room/lift tickets. However, if I was paying the regular $100+ for the room, I would've been terriby disappointed.

  • Stayed March 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Nancy G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maryland
Level Contributor
18 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 October 2005

I thought I would add my reflection on staying and skiing at Bolton Valley. We booked a suite as a part of a package at the end of the season, at a great price. It had a full kitchen and accommodated 4 comfortably. It was decent but not exceptional. No fuctional problems with anything as I recall. The hotel room my friends were in was a little worn. The hotel itself was a maze. Getting from one part of the complex to another was not simple and required going outside or in order to get to some rooms off the elevator, required going up or down steps. Never-the-less, we had a great time especially as a group. The mountain was large enough to make the trip worthwhile but logistics were such that you could wait at the base for whoever you're looking for. Being a ski in /ski out location adds a big plus to the factor. Free covered parking in the garage gets points too. On the mountain during the weekend, activites were taking place where samples of Vermont products we given out (cheese, syrup, yogart etc.) That reminds me. Bring food as there are not many dining choices or none at all if the restaurant is closed. The pool, although a little walk away from the main hotel, was a good size and temperture. Access to the resort is up a hill and when we went out to Burlington to the Magic Hat Brewery and Burton Snowboard Factory it snowed. Our friends without four-wheel-drive almost didn't make it back up. It is a nice mountain for all skill levels and not at all crowded when we were there. I suspect most skiers bypass Bolton Valley for Stowe or other big name resorts. Since not all of the mountain was not open in late March when we were there, I would go again to ski the trails I missed. Especially if the price is right. A good stop for a ski bum.

  • Stayed March 2003
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Nomadd22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Inn Bolton Valley & Ski Area

Property: The Inn Bolton Valley & Ski Area
Address: 4302 Bolton Access Road, Bolton Valley, VT 05477
Region: United States > Vermont > Bolton Valley
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 B&Bs / Inns in Bolton Valley
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — The Inn Bolton Valley & Ski Area 2.5*
Number of rooms: 109
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Vermont Skiing and Riding at its best!Bolton Valley Vermont is a unique, high mountain alpine ski village surrounded by over 5,000 pristine acres. At Bolton Valley the recreational opportunities are as numerous as the views are spectacular. In the winter, whether your're interested in skiing or snowboarding, telemark or Nordic, backcountry or night skiing, Bolton Valley has it all in abundance. After your legs have had enough, relax in the Sports Center's jacuzzi, heated pool or warm up in the sauna. Need more activities? Join a basketball game, play tennis, or work out in the exercise center. There is no limit on ways to stay active at Bolton Valley. Great food? We have that too. Want to stay in slope side lodging? Look no further. All lodging, whether it be the Inn accommodations, suites, or condominiums, are all slopeside or within a short walking distance. No cars needed at Bolton Valley, it's all right here. We are family friendly, affordable, and offer loads of fun. Bolton Valley is the place to get away and enjoy the best Vermont has to offer. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bolton Valley Hotel Bolton Valley
The Inn Bolton Valley & Ski Area Vermont

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