It was quiet when I arrived at the hotel lobby and I was like the only guests in the large lobby as I hear the crackling of the fireplace beside with plush leather sofas complete with boardgames and books about the nature that abounds in Jackson Hole and Yellowstone National Park. During summer, Jackson obviously becomes the gateway to the southern entrance of the Yellowstone but it is closed at the time I was there in March.
A very friendly welcome greeted me at the reception desk and it seems the hotel has already prepared for my arrival as I had booked an Elk Refuge Package with the hotel, which I thought had included breakfast for 2 people every day but it turns out the package includes breakfast only on one day for 2 persons. The package thus includes room and one pair of tickets as well as 2 breakfast coupons. In a sense it did not offer any savings compared to getting these tickets yourself so it would not be something I would pay for had I known otherwise. The package came down to $490 for 3 nights with taxes while the standard room rates was around $129++ per night.
Since I was travelling alone, I was able to use the breakfast coupon over 2 days and I had booked the lowest category of room (Inn King Room) and while the hotel does not seem to be fully occupied, there was no offer of upgrades. Higher categories of room includes a fireplace and there are some suites available as well. A good thing was I was provided a room on the 3rd floor near the one and only elevator.
Room No: 308 Category: Inn King Room
Going inside the room, I was very pleased with the quality of the furnishings and the decor. The ski lodge and western country design flows through from the lobby to the rooms with wood panels and dark brown wallpaper. I also liked the pegs by the entrance door to hang ski jackets and apparel which is a must-have in my opinion for ski lodges.
There was a very comfortable King bed in the middle of the room with a long bench that was useful to place my luggage. Along the wall there was a TV console that held a bar fridge that had free space to place one’s own beverage and snacks. There is also a Keurig coffee machine common in most US-based hotel chains. Keurig’s aren’t as good as Nespresso but they are better than nothing.
At the other end, there is a bay window where one can sit on and get a nice view of the Snow King Mountain about 10 minutes drive away. There are also 2 comfortable arm chairs to relax in at the corner. For a small hotel, it was a very nicely furnished room.
My favourite feature in the whole room though was the bathroom as it had 2 vanity counters, one inside the bathroom and another outside. This made the room very convenient for more than one person staying as it allowed multiple people to get ready at the same time in the morning to prepare for an early start at the slopes.
Not only that, the room also features a walk-in shower cubicle that was spacious. Though it was let down by the somewhat weak water pressure. It was like they made a beautiful bathroom but lacks a rainshower feature as that would have made this hotel close to perfect.
Another slight disappointment was that the hotel amenities does not include bath & shower gels. They supply 2 bars of soap, a bottle of shampoo, conditioner and body lotion. That’s it and no shower gels were available. While the amenities were provided by Gilchrist & Soames, the bar of soap was quite rough and something I did not really enjoy using. A good tip for visitors would be to bring your own shower gel.
Because the 3rd floor is the top-most floor the view here is supposedly the best and it is quite unlikely to see taller buildings around. Though the view was alright, it was mostly of the surrounding commercial complexes and warehouses. I do still enjoy spending the afternoon after a day on the slopes relaxing with the mountain view.
Another thing the hotel lacked was a swimming pool and a hot tub. I guess that was why they named themselves as an inn. It was quite disappointing for them not to have a hot tub since I would have liked a warm soak after snowboarding or skiing. While they lacked that facility, the hotel does provide a laundry room that guests could use free of charge with detergent and fabric softener being supplied on the second floor. This feature might make it convenient for guests to request for a room on the second floor. This room is at the end of the corridor and there are stairs at the end for easy access between floors as well.
Other amenities inside the hotel includes a fitness centre which I did not check out, and a workstation with a printer that guests can use on the second floor mezzanine overlooking the lobby. Wireless internet was also complimentary for all guests and easy to use. There was also a free shuttle from the hotel departing in the morning at 8:30am to Teton Village where the base of Jackson Hole Ski Resort is located at and a pick-up at 4:30pm from the same location. While guests are encouraged to reserve seats before hand, I had no trouble getting it on the 2 days I needed it. Guests could also use a complimentary local bus service that runs from the ski resort to town if they need to return early and it stops quite close to the hotel.
Breakfast was served in the main dining room beside the lobby which is a huge space that seems to have its own bar. However the dining room does not serve dinner at all when I stayed and this whole large space goes empty and quiet at night.
The breakfast coupon allows guests to order from an a-la carte menu and includes a glass of juice and one coffee or tea. I ordered the French toast with orange custard on the first morning and the Cowboy breakfast on the second.
Both the breakfast set was delicious and the service in the dining room was also excellent. One of the waiter was actually working part time in the hotel and his main job was actually in the nearby Aman resorts (yes, the famous Aman resorts!).
The dining room also doubles as a pantry for guests requiring coffee and tea throughout the day. In the evening the hotel also provides afternoon snacks for weary travellers by serving hot soup, cookies and sometimes scones as well. And the great part was the selection changes every day so that was a really nice touch indeed!
From the tasteful design of the rooms to the gracious service by the staff to the well thought amenities like complimentary laundry stuff to afternoon snacks, I think this hotel does hospitality very well indeed. What I gathered from the staff was that the owner of the property invests the time and money to maintain and improve the facilities and should they ever upgrade the bathroom shower to become more well equipped or even add a hot tub in the premises, I think this hotel would be a winner in Jackson! For now, I would still recommend the hotel as it provides a comfortable enough refuge!