Category Archives: Editorials

Banff’s Tunnel Mountain Resort – luxury and family friendly

BANFF, Alberta – Because I had to get back to Banff after having the time of my life on my last Canadian Rockies vacation, I decided this time to stay at the Tunnel Mountain Resort. Friends of mine had stayed there and had raved about the gorgeous setting, the incredible comfort of the loft suite they had rented for themselves and their kids, and all of the amenities that made their mountain vacation the best they’d ever had.

It’s hard to travel with children, but my friends could not stop marveling at how easy it was at Tunnel Mountain with its playground, indoor swimming pool, and outdoor barbecue area. I trust these friends, so sight unseen, I booked myself and a friend for a week in an Executive Suite.

I usually base my vacations around convenience as I like to get around on foot or by bicycle whenever possible. Tunnel Mountain Resort is only minutes from downtown Banff, which already gave it a high rating in my book. Arriving on a shiningly brilliant Canadian Rockies afternoon, my friend and I were taken to our luxurious suite which featured a king size bed, an intimate sitting area, a fireplace, a jet-water bath, and a separate steam shower. We were hard pressed to leave the comforts of our new week-long home to go exploring, but we managed to quickly unpack and get ourselves out the door to enjoy the rest of the day in downtown Banff.

Returning to our suite, we decided to take a swim in Tunnel Mountain Resort’s indoor swimming pool and then to drain out our city tensions with a soak in the hot tub and a long steaming session in the sauna. We planned our week while wrapped in fluffy towels, knowing that Tunnel Mountain Resort was exactly what was required to decompress in one of the most beautiful settings in the Canadian Rockies. Later on, the incredibly helpful and knowledgeable staff was able to recommend some out-of-the-way places in the Banff area for us to explore, helping us to feel like the insiders we are not!

With the majesty of the mountains all around, our week at Tunnel Mountain Resort went way too quickly. We were able to work out in the well equipped exercise room before we went out each day to explore Banff and its surroundings. Returning each evening, we were grateful for the comforts and the graciousness of this truly unique Canadian Rockies resort that caters to every desire. After our great experience, both my friend and I are busy recommending Tunnel Mountain Resort left and right, not only for couples, but as the perfect mountain vacation getaway with friends, co-workers, or the entire family.

Douglas Fir Resort and Chalet, Banff’s top family/kid-friendly resort

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Rooms at the Douglas Fir Resort are classy and cozy.

Banff, Alberta

When my friend Sue decided to invite me and two of her other best friends on a trip to Banff and the Canadian Rockies before her wedding, I couldn’t be more delighted to find out she had booked a two bedroom A-frame chalet at the Douglas Fir Resort & Chalets.

I had heard about this amazing place for some time and determined that one day I would find the time to go. And now here I was on my way with great friends, ready to enjoy it.

I am going to admit right here and now that it was very difficult to leave the chalet to explore the Canadian Rockies and the majestic fir forests that surrounded us. With a queen size bed in the loft, two singles downstairs, and a pull-out sofa bed in the living room, we were in Rocky Mountain chalet heaven! Add the charm and warmth of wood everywhere and you too would be happy to wile away the hours relaxing with several good bottles of wine and your best buddies.

Your kids will have a terrific time at the resort's water park.

Besides us, there were many families enjoying themselves at Douglas Fir, and there was no mystery as to why. Known as Banff’s most child-friendly resort, there seemed to be activities galore for kids and parents alike.

One family was having a bang-up birthday party in the waterpark area for their seven year old, with the full use of the party room that was filled with child size tables and chairs. We took a look at the two indoor watersides that are a child’s paradise and then had a swim in the beautiful pool, going on to enjoy our own brand of nirvana in the sauna and steam room. The resort even offers a fitness room, which we passed on this time around, as our intention to do a great amount of hiking was going to give us enough exercise.

If there is any one thing that seals the deal for me to return, it is Douglas Fir Resort’s policy on dogs. The owners realize that leaving a family pet behind can be painful, and so they offer pet friendly condos for vacation travelers who want to bring Fido. This is duly noted for my next trip to Banff, as I hate leaving my puppy behind. Not all rooms are pet friendly, however, which makes it easy for visitors who have allergies to book rooms that are hair and dander free.

The Douglas Fir Resort provides non-stop fun for families.

The Douglas Fir Resort provides non-stop fun for families.

There are many vacation options at Douglas Fir Resort & Chalets. You can stay in a one bedroom condo, a one bedroom with loft condo, or rent a studio or loft in the lodge. You can also rent an A-frame chalet like we did, and stay in either a two or three bedroom accommodation, or you can stay in one of the specialty suites such as the Mt. Rundle Suite, the Executive Suite, the Jacuzzi Suite, the Cascade Suite, or the Bachelor Suite.

One thing is for sure – there is no question that the perfect accommodation is there for you in one of the most perfect settings the Canadian Rockies has to offer.

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