The Lake Yellowstone Hotel is a classy way to experience the National Park at night. Its grandiose stature is a prominent feature of Yellowstone Lake’s waters-edge, lending it a certain historical pride like that of a statue.
The hotel’s lobby reflects the wide open landscape on which it sits with an expanse of wooden floors, walls and pillars. Heavy furniture is arranged around rugs and fireplaces in the sunroom inspiring relaxation and conversation.
Windows butt against windows, with only small bits of wall in between, filling the dining room with natural light. The dimly lit lobby mixed with the shining lake and mountain view beyond are better reproduced in the memory as a camera’s lens tries and fails to capture the sheer depth of the sophisticated surroundings.
The hotel room is entered through a tall door. The most notable features of the room are the open window, the ceiling fan and the iron bed frame. The feeling reminds the guest of a time that the hotel was surrounded by horse and carriage, and the open window encourages you to remember the significance of a pristine and untouched park.
Time for dinner. As I walk down the stairs and through the lobby I am met with the graceful sound of the grand piano. The keys pair with the rumbling table talk and the clanging of dishes. Most of the wait staff comprise a body of students that are studying at the park and take advantage of the career opportunities at the hotel. During dinner, the lake view hypnotizes its guests, encouraging them to embark on an after-dinner walk down to the lakeside.
The rough, uncut bank contributes to the overall sense of undisturbed beauty and the massive amount of water in Lake Yellowstone sits flat and calm. Islands are visible through the mist, and mountains beyond the islands.
Sleeping with the window cracked allows a crisp breeze to fill the room any time of year. Chirping insects and stirring wildlife emerge to claim what is theirs and guests fall asleep to nature’s lullaby.
In the morning, my eyes open to the sounds of a hotel. Guests arriving and departing outside the window, activity in the hallway and water rushing through the aging pipes above. A breath of inspiration has activated the explorer inside of me and I look forward to stepping out of the hotel into the Yellowstone National Park.