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Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
April 26, 2008
heber ctity, Utah
August 22, 2007
Gardiner is one of three small Montana Towns located at the gates of Yellowstone National Park. Rooms here are generally less expensive than in the park. Gardiner has lower a little rates than West Yellowstone and it’s closer to major park features. Mammoth Hot Springs nearby. Gardiner’s disadvantage is that it is much smaller than West Yellowstone, has only a few restaurants and limited nightlife.This was one of the best Comfort Inns we have encountered. Room rates vary greatly depending on the season, ranging from $50-$175. The motel sits well back from the road and uphill, minimizing traffic noises, not that there is much nighttime traffic here. With no neighboring buildings blocking the view, there are nice views of the surrounding mountains in every direction.As soon as we walked in the door to register, the lobby got our attention. This is no postage stamp sized motel lobby. The lobby extends almost the full width of the building, is two or three stories high, and decorated with big game trophies and a grotesque Elk antler chandelier (bring your camera in). The lobby decor is 20th Century ersatz rustic. It brought to mind my artist friend’s basic principle of art and architecture-- "if you are going to make it ugly, make it big and ugly and it will impress the masses." It’s one of those rare hotel lobbies that makes you want to grab the complimentary morning newspaper and coffee and sit down in the lobby to read and soak in the atmosphere.Rooms (we have stayed here two or three times) were top of the line Comfort Inn quality– fairly good size with hair dryers, Internet, coffee/tea in the room, decent storage space, comfortable beds, a sink area separate from the bathroom, TV, a chair, and, something not always found, decent lighting at night. Most importantly, there were good curtains on the windows for keeping out light and it was quiet.All room entrances are on interior halls. This greatly assists comfort in the cold weather, of which there is a lot at Yellowstone.
Make use of the free local phone calls from your room to make a diner reservation, especially if you want to go to the restaurant at the Best Western, by general agreement, the best eating place in town. A minimal breakfast, served in the lobby, is included with the room. There is an indoor hot tub. Indoors is smart in this climate. A casino, bar, and restaurant were added since we were there. There is truck parking. Although we never encountered this problem here, if you want to insure a quiet night’s sleep, ask for a room away from truck parking as many inconsiderate truck drivers leave the motors, or refrigerator units, running all night long.
From journal Yellowstone Territory