Wawona Hotel, Yosemite National Park
Reviews - Wawona Hotel
- Age Group: 60 +
- From: United States
- Traveller type: Retired
Read 464 additional reviews of Wawona Hotel at TripAdvisor.
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Historical Traveller Reviews of Wawona Hotel
Great placefrom V Traveler
Expectations: the key to enjoying the Wawona Hotelfrom A TripAdvisor Member
We have been staying at the Wawona for more than 10 years, first with our children (who were in their early teens when we started going there) and more recently for mini-getaways, just the two of us.
Of the 100 or so rooms in the main building and several outlying buidlings, roughly half have private baths and the rest require guests to use communal bathrooms and showers. If you call for a reservation and find that only the latter type of room is available, and are not prepared for this type of "roughing it," then stop right there. Do not book a room. You will not enjoy it.
On the other hand, if you consider having a room with hard walls an improvement over, say, a tent cabin at Curry Village in Yosemite Valley, then you will enjoy virtually any room at the Wawona.
If you are lucky enough to book a room with private bath, you may still find that the lack of soundproofing in some rooms is a drawback.
Despite these factors, we have consistently found the Wawona to be a wonderful place to stay. We are originally from New England and this is the closest thing to staying at one of the grand hotels of the White Mountains that you will find west of the Mississippi. Sitting in one of the many Adirondack chairs around the hotel, or on the balcony of the main building, enjoying the beauty of the tall trees and the hills surrounding the hotel, possibly with a glass of wine in hand, is a marvelous experience.
Tom Bopp's piano and singing in the lounge are another reason we keep going back. He specializes in show tunes from the early 20th century as well as more obscure songs from that period. When we were there recently there were several "Bopp-ophiles" in the audience who engaged in high-spirited banter with Tom about the merits of various pieces of music.
We also had an excellent meal -- end cut of prime rib -- in the Wawona dining room. It has been uneven in the past but we found no fault with this meal.
The reviewer who said "I think the hotel is misleading people selling itself as a luxury hotel" puzzles us. The Wawona has never billed itself this way. There is, unfortunately, some confusion in people's minds between the Ahwahnee Hotel, which does bill itself as a luxury hotel, and the Wawona, because of the similarity of the names, and the fact that they are both in Yosemite. The two properties are very, very different.
In short, set your expectations appropriately, be prepared to do without some of the services and facilities that you would will find at a more modern hotel, and you will be amply rewarded by a stay at the Wawona.
Difference of opinionfrom A TripAdvisor Member
Great location for the giant sequioa trees, although the main part of the park is a 30-40 minute drive away (albeit picturesque). All in all not great, but not quite as bad as some have made out on here. You have to remember that you are limited to accomodation in the park (and we were not feeling rich enough to splash out on the Ahwanee!).
Loved the Wawona Hotelfrom JZNKCB-George
Had a room with a bathroom, so the main problem was solved. (see below)
Yes it is is a bit noisy, but it is old (by US standards), and it actually has an interesting history. Food and service, plus local advice and historical info. was good, and the food, like the hotel itself, a bit pricey, but worth it.
Sitting on the verandah before (and after) dinner with a cold drink in your hand watching the sun go down was very enjoyable.
Downside - I had to use the toilet (restroom to all you americans), and used the ones in the shower block for the peasants! without their own bathroom. Was not impressed. Old and dirty. As this is the START of the US school holidays, and therefore the peak season, you would expect some degree of cleanilness here.
Does the good out weigh the bad?from cavedwellerwi
Worst hotel I have ever stayed in.from A TripAdvisor Member
The showers in the basement were filthy and unwelcoming and the hotel was noisy due to the wooden construction. Even worse, we were woken at 2:00am by the people in the room next to us using the bathroom - the rooms seem to be arranged with a bathroom between two rooms, each room having a door into the bathroom. Our door was locked. Next door had access to the bathroom and of course therefore we could see a line of light under the door and I didn't really want to be woken by the sound of someone else using the bathroom at 2:00am. We couldn't sleep because we could hear all the conversation, snoring etc from next door. In addition, the radiators in the annexe can not be turned off or adjusted. The management suggest you "leave your window open". It doesn't work. We were too hot all night. The room was tiny and had 2 beds crammed into it. The decor was dingy. The food in the restaurant was dissapointing and overpriced. I was furious and we checked out early next morning and I demanded a refund for the room. Do yourselves a favour and think very very carefully before staying here. I have stayed in hotels all over the world and this really is one of the worst. Even a cheap motel in the US has better facilities - at least you get a bathroom - for example - and I think the hotel is misleading people selling itself as a luxury hotel. It really isn't and in my opinion should be turned into a museum if the building is of historical importance rather than remain open for business charging $160+ per night for what has to be one of the worst value experiences on the planet.
chill-outfrom A TripAdvisor Member
Really enjoyed our stayfrom A TripAdvisor Member
t go backfrom A TripAdvisor Member
But unfortunately, the Wawona Hotel is rickety, and we stayed in the Annex, a building with attached verandahs. You could hear every word anyone said as they walked past (and yes, simple walking sounded like stomping). Additionally, they decided to fire up the largest loudest lawn mower I have ever seen at 8:30 am on Saturday morning. As one of the previous reviewers experienced, the Wawona was noisy beyond belief.
Another reviewer said something like unspoiled travelers should their experience, and sir or ma'am, I beg to differ. Compared to a tent, it's luxury, but I would much rather spend the night out in the peace and quiet of the unspoiled wilderness than another night in that noisy hotel. A piano player just isn't enough.
The restaurant was a disappointment. I ordered salmon, and I rarely want to send something back, but in this case, I was tempted. It had an odd, off-note flavor and was dry. The service was very, very bad and very, very slow so I decided to just gulp it down rather than risk another long wait. I ordered creme brulee. Rather than custard, underneath the over-burnt crust was a rather bland pudding mixture. My husband's chocolate pie was straight out of a box. Just bad. And overpriced, overpriced, overpriced!
Besides the grounds, the only other good feature about the hotel is the golf course. You just won't find a prettier backdrop. But I don't have to stay at the Wawona to use their course, and they don't have to worry about me going there again.
Loved the piano playerfrom A TripAdvisor Member
Top Local Tips for Yosemite National Park
Stick With the Easier Hikes in the Winter Trails get very icy in the winter. Unless you're an expert, my advice to you is to stick to the easier hikes. The trail to Bridal Veil Falls was so icy that both my husband and I fell down. And I fell down hard enough that I saw a few stars. We even had snow boots on, but that wasn't enough.
what to see in may A big "wow" for Yosemite which is awesome but be prepared for different weather conditions, out of 3 days, one day brilliant sunshine with brilliant views, one day breezy and cool but brilliant views, one day snow showers, heavy mist and none of the expected views so don't go for one day at this time of year, go for longer! It's too early for most of the flowers but the dogwoods were lovely to see. The waterfalls were fantastic.
Get to the restaurant early!!! While the restaurant at Wawona was good (but a little overpriced), I would suggest getting to the concierge prior to opening, especially for breakfast. If you get there right when breakfast opens, you will be caught waiting in a line and by the time you get to the front, there will already be a wait. Get there at least 15 minutes early!!!!
Other names for Wawona Hotel
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- wawona yosemite
- wawona hotel yosemite national park
- wawona hotel yosemite
- wawona hotel
- Address: 8308 Wawona Road - Yosemite National Park - California - 95389 - United States
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