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Grand Portage Hotel and Casino or Aspen Lodge?

Level Contributor
33 posts
24 reviews
Grand Portage Hotel and Casino or Aspen Lodge?

Doing the north shore water falls trip with my husband and 11 year old son Oct 16 and 17. We are trying to decide between staying at the Grand Portage Hotel or Aspen Lodge in Grand Marais. Reviews are less than satisfactory at both, but those are the only two properties that had short notice availability.

We don't like smoke! Is there any benefit to staying in Grand Portage and overlooking our concern about this smoking hotel and casino? Is there any historical value or must have experience with staying in Grand Portage?

5 replies to this topic
Level Contributor
1,235 posts
751 reviews
1. Re: Grand Portage Hotel and Casino or Aspen Lodge?

I wouldn't stay at either. If you have your heart set on the Grand Marais area, you may want to try the Naniboujou. It is a basic. rustic, quaint, historic hotel with no tv, pool etc. However, the view is beautiful and the history is very interesting. There are board games available for fun. If there is no availability, I would stay in the Lutsen area. It is about 20 minutes from Lutsen to Grand Marais.

Level Contributor
5,374 posts
1,203 reviews
2. Re: Grand Portage Hotel and Casino or Aspen Lodge?

If you do not like smoke then you should not stay at the Grand Portage Hotel. I stayed there once and was not impressed (plus there were a ton of smokers). I have never stayed at Aspen Lodge so cannot comment on that property (other than I like the town of Grand Marais better than Grand Portage).

1 post
1 review
3. Re: Grand Portage Hotel and Casino or Aspen Lodge?

Do NOT stay at Aspen Lodge. Yes, the price is slightly lower than other hotels in Grand Marais - there's many reasons why. It hasn't had any updates in more than 20 yrs. The same bedspreads are on the beds that were on 20 years ago, the first time we stayed there. The carpets are filthy and stained, as are the bathtubs and sinks. The continental breakfast is a joke, except if you're satisfied with cold cereal and yogurt. The employees give the impression that they are in dire straits - no teeth, stained clothes, no personal skills. Nothing would get our family in the pool or hot tub due to sanitation questions. With a major influx of money and COMPLETE renovation, this could almost meet the expectations everyone should have of a hotel..

4. Re: Grand Portage Hotel and Casino or Aspen Lodge?

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Destination Expert
for Minneapolis
Level Contributor
4,702 posts
22 reviews
5. Re: Grand Portage Hotel and Casino or Aspen Lodge?

Marcia, I posted a reply intended to the original poster, but then the dates of their trip didn't jive with 2018. You resurrected a ghost post was four years old.

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