Red Lion is a mid-range hotel chain that offers full facilities and a comfortable room at a good price. That’s true for the one in downtown Salt Lake City, Utah, but it also comes with a view of the neighboring mountains. (Quite a few ski resorts are within an hour or so drive, including the three great ones in Park City.
The Salt Lake City Red Lion is a large, 393-room hotel that’s a pleasant 15-20 minute walk from the Salt Palace Convention Center, Temple Square, and a whole slew of restaurants and bars. For location reference, it’s across from the Doubletree, near the Sheraton, and around the corner from Little America Hotel.
The lobby offers a few places to relax, including a spot by a fireplace in the winter. Check-in was easy and efficient and the staffers were helpful when I twice needed to stow my bags with them. A shuttle runs to the airport hourly.
Two dining and drinking options are here. The Red’s Restaurant is set up like a 50’s diner, with red booths and spnning stools at a counter. It serves a lot more options than the diners of old though, including items that won’t clog up your arteries.
The Harry’s Place Lounge also serves food at night and in line with one of Salt Lake City’s many bizarre alcohol laws, you can’t just saunter in and order a couple beers; you’re forced to order food as well and technically, shouldn’t receive the beer until the food has arrived. (Hey, it’s a city run by Mormons, so they want to punish us sinners.)
As with many Red Lions, the seasonal swimming pool scene is more hip than utilitarian, with nice lighting at night and some comfy hang-out spaces. It’s nestled in kind of a courtyard though, so go in mid-day if you don’t want to be in the shade.
Spacious Rooms are nicer than you’d normally expect in a sub-$100 hotel, with comfy pillow top mattresses, good towels, ergonomic work chairs, and even microwaves and refrigerators in many rooms. The free Wi-Fi worked well in my experience, both in the public areas and the room. Two sets of elevators in different wings keep them from ever getting too overloaded.
All rooms have a balcony with a view. The panorama photo below was taken from mine.
Rates start at a very reasonable $79, often not much more for breakfast or an upgrade. Though be advised when the Outdoor Retailer show is in town (January and August) rates all over Salt Lake City shoot up.
This is one of many Red Lion Hotels distributed around 10 western USA states and Western Canada. See the whole range of them at RedLion.com.
Review and all photos but the pool by editor Tim Leffel, who was hosted by the Red Lion Salt Lake City for purposes of review. Pool shot courtesy of Red Lion Downtown Salt Lake City.