Lodging at Old Faithful Inn: 5 Pros and Cons for Yellowstone Visitors | Big Horn Basin Media

Lodging at Old Faithful Inn: 5 Pros and Cons for Yellowstone Visitors

Written by on June 17, 2023

Distinctive History and Scenery at Old Faithful Inn

Old Faithful Inn is one of the prime destinations for people visiting Yellowstone National Park. In fact, it’s the most-requested lodging destination inside Yellowstone, meaning you’ll have to plan well in advance if you want to snag one of these coveted reservations.

Located right by Old Faithful Geyser, it’s no wonder that so many people want to overnight here and use the Inn as a base camp for their Yellowstone adventures. However, there’s also quite a bit of history to this lodge, not to mention its unique aesthetic and quality amenities.

Still, Old Faithful Inn isn’t for everyone. Before you decide to book a stay here, you need to know about the pros and cons of this iconic Yellowstone destination.

Ready to make an informed decision? Let’s have a look at what makes Old Faithful Inn the right — or wrong — destination for Yellowstone visitors.

1. Pro: Location, Location, Location

Want to wake up, eat breakfast, or enjoy a nightcap with the legendary Old Faithful Geyser erupting right outside your window? This is the only place to enjoy such a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience.

The Old Faithful area is busy, but that’s because there are a number of destinations that make this region of Yellowstone National Park so popular. From Old Faithful Inn, you can easily access Grand Prismatic Spring and some of the park’s most stunning hydrothermal features — a key draw for Yellowstone visitors.

There’s also a plethora of fantastic fishing and hiking destinations in the Old Faithful area, which means people staying at Old Faithful Inn can spend less time driving and more time immersing themselves in the majesty of the world’s first national park.

Related: Rating 13 Absolutely Wild 1-Star Reviews of Yellowstone’s Old Faithful Geyser

2. Pro: Stunning Design

There’s nothing quite like the appearance of a log cabin, and if you’re a fan, you’ll love staying at Old Faithful Inn because it’s one of the world’s biggest log-style buildings.

The Inn itself was built using local stone and logs in 1903-1904. The design itself gives us a glimpse into an age gone by, helping you shed the day-to-day stressors of life and embrace an open, relaxed mindset to get the most out of your Yellowstone vacation.

The lobby fireplace is a huge draw. This absolute behemoth towers above visitors, and the hearth itself looks big enough to burn a cord of firewood at a time. It’s easy to imagine that the visitors of a century ago had no trouble staying warm during the winter months.

Elsewhere, rustic architecture and features ground you in the inimitable lifestyle of the Yellowstone region.

3. Pro: The Unique History of Old Faithful Inn

After the Upper Geyser Basin Hotel burned down toward the end of the 19th century, 29-year-old Robert Reamer designed what would become the Old Faithful Inn beginning in 1902, with construction beginning a year later.

The total cost of construction? Roughly $140,000, with another $25,000 spent to furnish the new hotel.

A temporary sawmill was set up about eight miles south of Old Faithful Geyser, producing boards from timber harvested at the site. Meanwhile, workers sourced stone for the hotel from a spot on the road to Craig Pass about five miles east of the Inn as well as the Black Sand Basin.

Several modifications and expansions followed the completion of the initial construction, including the addition of the East Wing in 1913, the West Wing in 1928, and englarging the dining room in 1922.

The dining room fireplace was damaged by the Hebgen Lake earthquake of 1959, and the entire building was partially shaken from its foundations.

And, in 1988, firefighters saved the Old Faithful Inn from the North Fork Fire during a wildfire season that absolutely devastated much of Yellowstone.

4. Con: Price and Availability

For a deluxe room at Old Faithful Inn, expect to spend north of $600 per night once taxes and fees are rolled into the total. Yes, that’s considerably more expensive than reserving an RV campsite elsewhere in Yellowstone.

“Well,” you might say, “can’t I just book a less expensive room at Old Faithful Inn?” Sure you can, but guess what? Every other Yellowstone visitor has had the exact same idea, so these more affordable rooms go quickly.

What does that mean? If you’re intent on staying at Old Faithful Inn without spending an arm and a leg, you need to book your room(s) well in advance.

5. Not All Bathrooms are Private

You can bet that in 1904, when Old Faithful Inn first opened, there wasn’t an expectation among visitors that they’d all have their own master bathrooms. As such, many rooms within the old lodge have no private restroom or shower attached.

That means — you guessed it — many guests wind up using communal restrooms and showers.

If you’re a germophobe or you really, really like your privacy, this may not be the best option for you.

That said, sharing a restroom is rarely as bad as you think it’ll be, so don’t be afraid to read some reviews before you allow this point to become the deciding factor in whether you book a stay at Old Faithful Inn.

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