by Julie Bielenberg
Gateway Canyons is a remote, luxurious oasis located in the Unaweep Canyon, a canyon many claim to be one of the most unique red rock canyons in the world. It makes for stunning views from every location of the resort. The resort notes that this is said to be the only canyon in the world that is drained by two creeks, East Creek and West Creek, simply adding to the beauty and diversity in activity available at Gateway Canyon Resort.
Onsite activities include three outdoor swimming pools, hot tubs, plenty of sidewalks and lush gardenscapes with ponds to walk and bike along. There is kayaking, hiking, climbing, horseback riding, mountain biking, fishing, snowshoeing, and more available through programming at the resort. And, a newer addition to the activity options is a sky adventure from a bird’s eye view in a helicopter with views of spectacular red rock canyons, monoliths and mesas, snowcapped mountains, lakes and rivers.
A unique perk of the resort, and an attraction that draws day visitors, is the Gateway Canyons Auto Museum, home of the one-of-a-kind 1954 Oldsmobile F-88. There are more than 50 cars; models and surrounding displays offer a rare glimpse into the beauty and history of the American automobile.
Palisade Ranch is associated with the resort and located just up the road, with 500 acres and a network of well-marked Colorado horseback riding trails that climb over 1,500 feet in elevation. Riding lessons are available for both beginners and those with horseback riding experience. Another perk families enjoy — every Saturday morning is a real Old West experience as guests help the resort’s cowboys and cowgirls gather the cattle off several hundred acres of the scenic landscape and drive them back to their corrals. Advance reservations are required.
When it comes to lodging, the options come in everything from multiple room one-bedroom casitas to inn rooms to two-story stargazing accommodations. All are luxurious, well kept, stylish and very comfortable. There is plenty to choose from for dining selections onsite. While some of the restaurants rotate hours during different seasons, there is a main restaurant, pool bar and food service and breakfast options. You need not leave the property if not desired — everything is located onsite, including a convenience store with food, produce and last-minute items.
For the age-appropriate, there is also a full-service spa and onsite workout facilities.
Our Editor Loves
- Onsite family activities
- Outdoor swimming pools
- Gateway Canyons Auto Museum
- All Inclusive Rates
- Horse Back Riding
- Family Room 5+
- Free Wi-Fi
- Meal Plan
- Onsite Dining
I have nothing but great things to say about this place. Yes, it was pricey, but worth every penny. We experienced none of the negative remarks indicated by some previous reviewers. The resort itself and the grounds are well maintained, the staff was friendly and helpful. Our room was exquisite. We tried both restaurants on the premises and each had great wait staff and delicious food. We did not try the pools, but they looked very inviting. The roads leading to and away (towards Utah) are extremely scenic.
The property has potential and the location is fantastic, but when you pay $500/night you expect more, much more. We were celebrating an anniversary, could have ruined everything, but we decided that money is not that important.. otherwise I would be crying until now. There were several issues:
- room was not clean. Plenary of spider webs everywhere..
- restaurants are terrible and service not much better. Just an example.. ordered eggs and hash browns, specifically because we wanted hash browns and we even order separately eggs and a side of hash browns... came with potatoes. When asked the server she said, “Yeah, we changed the menu!”.. couldn’t you have told us when we ordered? $13 for eggs and potatoes, not even a piece of bread?? And $9 for coffee that was horrible.
- We paid $500 a night and not even breakfast is included? I stay in $100 hotels that have better breakfast for free
- $500 a night and not even a bottle of water in the room??
- ordered a cheese plate one day. It was good and had a peach sweet/spice salsa that was quite tasty. Ordered the next day because we liked it... was not the same!!!
- picking up leaves is also not necessary...
I could go on, but I think you get the idea. I found out that the hotel is for sale, don’t know if that’s the cause or the consequence.. whoever buys it has a lot to do to change the expectations.. I don’t think I’ll try it again.