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All reviews the hotel manager stepping back in time double room second bedroom sea life center tours depart quaint hotel shared bathroom alaska railroad bed was very comfortable resurrection bay danny murphy linens refrigerator cruise
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Reviewed 14 June 2018

The Van Gilder was definitely older...very small room, no tv ( which really wasn’t the worst thing) and there was no way to shut off the heat in the bathroom. It was quiet, sorta clean and right next to the water, shops and good dining. The brewery was a few blocks away which was nice. The manager was nice and helpful. It needs updating but not bad for the price.

Date of stay: June 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank Tana J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
railwaycantina, General Manager at The Van Gilder Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 1 July 2018

Thank you for appreciating our great location right in downtown, Seward! The Van Gilder hotel is the oldest surviving hotel in our town dating from 1916. However, we are looking into updating our accommodations, so thank you for the feedback!

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Reviewed 31 March 2018 via mobile

What a quaint hotel with a friendly staff! My girlfriends & I stayed in the suite. The views were beautiful from the 3rd floor. (Be ready to walk the stairs if you aren’t on the 1st floor as there is no elevator.)
Danny helped us decide where to eat, explore, and hang out. He was amazing.
We’ll be back soon.

Date of stay: July 2017
Trip type: Travelled with friends
1  Thank 149gingerr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
railwaycantina, General Manager at The Van Gilder Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 11 June 2018

We appreciate your positive review! We are happy you enjoyed the gorgeous views of Resurrection Bay from your suite. You are welcomed to email us with any recommendation and suggestions to improve our place.

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Reviewed 20 September 2017

Danny, the resident hotel manager, was delightful and so helpful. He sent me a comprehensive list by email of must-see's and must-do's in the Seward area, complete with directions from the hotel, including hikes (Lowell Point and Two Lakes) that were off the beaten path and most enjoyable. We were upgraded to a two-room suite on the second floor at the front of the building. The room was quaint, and very clean, and filled with antique furnishings. The mattress, however, was past its prime, rather saggy in the middle, and there was no mattress cover, which was kind of disconcerting. We stayed there two nights and wrote it off as a hostel at Alaskan prices. There is a little break room downstairs with a communal refrigerator and coffee maker. If you enjoy spending your evenings sampling Alaskan beers, this is a great place to stay because you don't have to worry about drinking and driving. Lots of interesting watering holes within 4-5 blocks. There is no elevator, so this in not an accessible facility.

Date of stay: August 2017
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
1  Thank ARretired
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 September 2017

This place is long past it's best before date. We stayed at the Van Gilder with another couple for two days in August of 2017. The only thing this place has going for it, other than some interesting history and downtown location is a hardworking and fortunately, very handy building manager. When we arrived we were told our room wasn't ready by a kid about 14 who was minding the desk (not Danny the lovely building manager who is wasted in this dump).... but we could leave luggage at the hotel and head over to a local restaurant or pub for a few hours. We knew we were early, so weren't surprised at this. However, since we had just arrived by train from Anchorage, we asked to use the washroom before heading out and were told there "were no public washrooms". Seriously? We hadn't just walked in off the street, we had rooms booked. We later found a bathroom on the second floor that is actually the bathroom for one of the suites....but it is in the hallway. Could have used that! When we returned at 3pm for our room we were told there was nothing on the third floor ready yet but we could take a second floor room. When asked if there was a difference we were told "no". Well, the difference is that the 2nd floor windows are entirely blocked by a building 3 feet away. Literally nothing to see but a brick wall. Being tired from the trip and planning only a 2 night stay before heading to the cruise ship, we decided not to ask to change rooms. We went out for dinner. When we returned, I went to use the shower only to find the shower curtain had 18" of nasty pink/grey slimey stuff at the bottom of it. Gross!. As well, the oval shaped toilet had a round toilet seat on it...so when a woman sat down, her legs actually touched the toilet bowl - the seat was about 4 inches too small to cover the toilet bowl. Sheets were awful. Full of holes and questionable stains and no pillow protector on the pillows. Just a single case over a nasty stained pillow. I managed to find extra sheets and pillow cases in the hallway closet so remade the bed and turned the lights out. Five minutes later we heard a commotion in the next room where our friends were staying, only to find their ceiling in the bathroom was about to collapse as a pipe had burst. The manager was reached by cell phone quickly and found them another room for the night. We considered changing hotels the next day but it was pouring rain and re-packing and moving for only one night seemed too much work. So...went to bed the second night, and then the power went out. It remained out until morning. Seems it was only a fuse, but seriously.. this place is a gong show. The building manager was pleasant and helpful but the owners had no interest in satisfying any of our concerns. They did offer a 20% discount for our inconvenience.... Still waiting for that 3 weeks later - yet the charge for the room for the two nights appeared on my credit card the day we checked in. That should have been my first clue! Anyway, don't stay in this dump. Floors are dirty, beds are awful with nasty sheets. Oh...and in the "communal kitchen" the milk in the fridge was dated July. We stayed there the middle of August. Yuck, yuck, yuck. And this "bargain hotel" cost us $570 Canadian for two nights!

Room tip: If you must stay here because every other hotel in town is full, ask for 3rd floor & check sheets & shower before you decide to stay.
Date of stay: August 2017
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
4  Thank kdavies1575
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 September 2017

As long as you go to this place with the right expectations, it is a perfect place to crash and take your boots and raingear off after a day of adventure around Seward. There aren't any frills and the decor looks left over from when the hotel was built, but the water was hot and the room was clean. Were it not for the uncomfortable bed (I'm super picky, so it may be fine for others) and broken TV (didn't miss it after our first night), I would have given the place 4 or 5 stars, if for no other reason that the onsite manager (Danny) went out of his way to make sure our stay was perfect. When my wife realized she forgot her comb, he picked one up for her on his evening grocery run(we didn't rent a car, since we were going to get on a cruise in a couple of days and the store was too far of a walk). He even volunteered to give us a ride to the cruise ship terminal. As long as Danny is still there, this place is worth staying at while in Seward.

Date of stay: August 2017
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank joshpuchalski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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