Here is a Dec. 2010 update on the User's Guide to Beatty. It's the closest place to stock up on the eastern approach to Death Valley. If you have to stay outside the park, it's a small, quiet town and one of the better choices. But staying in the park is a far better alternative for really enjoying Death Valley.
• Death Valley Inn, Hwy 95 just south of 374. Exterior is a Spanish villa style with palm trees; outdoor pool, RV park on site. Just like at Furnace Creek, but 35 miles farther from Badwater.
• Stagecoach Inn. Hwy 95 at the north end of town by the post office. Casino, restaurant, gas station, and Death Valley Nut & Candy Co., the biggest place near DV to donate to your dentists’ kids’ college fund.
• Motel 6. Next to the Stagecoach, a newer Motel 6 with indoor corridors and elevator. Laundry room, no pool. Short walk to the candy shop and Stagecoach restaurant.
• Atomic Inn, South 1st St. south of 374. A cluster of modular homes on a side street with an interesting past. It was the Phoenix Inn, and before that Lori's with individual theme rooms. Now it is going back to its roots as a place where defense contractors working at the nearby Nevada Test Site used to stay. For over a year, its website has been talking about a planned museum and drive-in theater featuring exhibits and classic movies from the Cold War era.
• Exchange Club Motel, Hwy 374 at 95. There is no "Exchange Club" now. This started in the early 1900s as a hotel. casino, and restaurant, but the historic section closed years ago and now there is only a motel.
• El Portal Motel, Hwy 374 west of 95, on the quiet side of town. This indie is my favorite sleep in Beatty. It's 50 years old and is still in the original family. It has a definite period look, but is clean and well-kept. Pool open seasonally.
• Happy Burro Hostel, Hwy 374 east of 95. I can’t verify that this is still open as a hostel.
• Bailey's Hot Springs, just north of town. Tent and RV campsites, hot mineral soaking pools.
Beatty has other RV parks; see the first website listed.
Groceries: Rebel Gas mini-mart or a small store at the Space Station RV Park. In the 1980s, Beatty had a general store and a Shell mini-mart (which had a cameo role in the movie "Homer and Eddie") but they are long gone. The Amargosa Toad gift and variety store was in the old general store for awhile, but it closed. There is a shop with that name in Oatman, Arizona, but I don't know if it's the same business.
For good Mexican food, go to Ensenada Grill on Hwy 95 across from the Death Valley Inn. Open all day, serves American breakfasts.
The Stagecoach has a 24-hour restaurant, and a few small eateries are on Hwy 374. All restaurants in Beatty are independent; there are no chain fast food places.
FOR YOUR ADDED ENJOYMENT, BEATTY ALSO HAS:
• Museum, Hwy 374 across from the El Portal Motel. Beatty no longer has a National Park Service visitor center, but the museum can provide visitor info.
• Public library, 4th St just north of 374.
• A small park, with some kids’ play structures but not much greenery (hey, this is the desert! Just down the road are almost 5,300 square miles of national park land for your kids to work off all their excess energy).
• Baptist, LDS, and Community churches. Nearest Catholic church is in Pahrump (75 miles).
• Bank of America branch, Hwy 374 at 95, open 10-4 weekdays.
• Airport with lighted runway, just over a mile long. No fuel or other services. The airport at Furnace Creek has fuel.