NPR Reviews Provided by
Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort
Published Date: Aug, 3, 2020 Travel Date: Jul, 1, 2020 Rating: 2
Resort Needs a Little TLC
We were drawn to this resort because they offered a private cabin with our own entrance. We felt this place was the best way for our family to getaway while still staying safe during COVID. The website listed the ways that they were implementing safety practices. We were sold by their beautiful website, amenities and onsite recreation activity center. We were pleasantly surprised to see that they even had their own app so that you can view the resort's information, restaurants hours, etc.
We were excited to have a cabin with our own charcoal grill and private seating area. The cabins are situated far enough from each other that you're not disturbing your neighbors. We were surprised that each cabin had satellite tv with most lots of channel options (minus the premium channels).
Check-in was smooth, or so we thought. You were required to wear a mask upon entering the lobby. Unfortunately, that was the extent of the social distancing policy that they implemented. The reception desk forgot to give us bracelets for pool use. We were informed at check-in that WiFi connectivity varies around the resort. When asked if we had WiFi in the Cabin Suites we booked, the receptionist said she wasn't sure.
WARNING: WiFi is only available around the lobby area and around the Cowboy Cabins. We were disappointed that guests who paid the most to stay at the resort didn't have WiFi. I'm not saying that we wanted to be plugged in the whole time while we were there, but we couldn't even check the weather or look up local restaurants because we had no internet, cell or WiFi connection.
The resort also went down in rating for us because the cleaning staff, drove their golf carts around the resort like it was a race track. They nearly ran over my husband while we were walking to the pool area. The staff at the resort lacks customer service skills. Most of the staff acted like it was a chore to assist the guests. When we asked one person for assistance, she said she couldn't help us and proceeded to sit down in the seating area while a long line at the desk gathered. The person working at the pool looked like she was hung over both days we interacted with her. If she's not a morning person, she needs to be assigned something else. We went out of our way to help her open the pool area, going so far as helping her bring in the laundered towels and staking them on the table for her and she didn't even acknowledge or thank us.
Staff did not wear gloves at the restaurant and did not wear masks according to CDC guidelines. The cabin suites are in need of some TLC. The carpet needs replacing, the coffee pot in the room was broken and sleeper sofa looks like its seen better days.
The rooms look like they have not had a thorough cleaning in months. I spotted spider webs along the cabinets and dust on the drawer window sill and handprints on the light switches. The porch area of the cabin looks like it's not even part of their "to do" list.
The bottom line is, this resort needs to spend a little money on fixing their current property rather than their expansion. They also need to invest some time in training their staff to be customer service oriented. Families don't take vacation to be surrounded by people who have a bad attitude.
- Location: 3
- Cleanliness: 1
- Service: 1
funinthesun96 from: beverly hills
Published Date: Jul, 23, 2020 Travel Date: Jul, 1, 2020 Rating: 2
Dirty, no COVID safety practices, but great location!!!
Much like some others who have posted, there is minimal COVID safety mandates in place. before we arrived I asked about the CDC guidelines regarding cleanliness and masks and social distancing and was told very few guests wear masks, there is no social distancing unless you make it, but housekeeping complies with all of the CDC mandates. Guess what? the only guideline they followed were the wearing of masks. and they were among the few employees of the ranch who did. most of the guests did not.
we stayed in a "luxurious vacation rental. #65 the Gathering place.stated that it slept 26 people. we arrived with 12. the pictures on the website are quite beautiful of the interior of the house. The house itself did not look like any of the photos, with the exception of the washer and dryer. none of the furniture, (with the exception of the washer/dryer) looked like the photos!
when we arrived we were dismayed that the windows were streaked and printed with hands. the kitchen was not fully stocked as we had to call and ask for a vegetable peeler, dishwashing washing tablets, propane for the grill, soap to wash your hands. beds had stained sheets on them and mattress covers were pilling so badly it felt like you were sleeping on crumbs. the shag carpeting felt dirty and there were cheese crackers under one of the beds. as well as some childs legos in the carpeting all around the house. the downstairs bunk beds had not been made before we came, so we assumed sheets had not been changed, so no one slept there. (each bunk bed slept three people) and there were three or four of them, i don't recall. . there is no fooseball table and ping pong table in the basement. there is a fooseball table in a small windowless room in the basement with ex-posed pipes but no ping pong table. that was in the garage with one beat up ball and a filthy ping pong table. there is no home theater, only a television with chairs and or sofa. the downstairs bedrooms have stone walls coming up against the windows so it looked like a dungeon. in the master bedroom there was a beautiful bathroom with a walk in closet, (what do you need that for) but no racks or shelves in the bathroom for towels, with the exception of one short one.
in the kitchen there was food left over in the freezer from a previous tenant, the silver ware drawer had dried food on the flatware, and dried food and other debris in the drawer and storage unit that contained the flatware. we had to wash and sanitize everything. the pots and pans that were well used needed washing before we could use them.almost all the utensils and cutting boards were well past their prime! scuffed and very old. there was open flour containers and condiments in the kitchen. clearly not up to CDC or normal housekeeping practices.
we were there thursday through sunday. on thursday it was quieter and I allowed my girls to go to the pool. but they knew to leave when it got too crowded which happened around 6:00 and continued throughout the weekend. no life guard, no social distancing nada!!! just throngs of people. just like at the recreation barn. so many guests and employees without masks, and no social distancing. when we went to the visual reality kiosk there were two chairs. the young lady who worked there was using lens wipes to wipe off the goggles but not the handles or the seats. I asked her if i could use a disinfectant wipe to do that and she said yes. she even offered that they should do that but the governor hasn't required it, so it was a good idea i was doing it. she didn't wear a mask. only one of the employees, a young man who worked there did.
but i have to say even though the ranch was clearly lacking any safety regs, the people who worked there would try and make your stay as comfortable as possible. i stopped asking them to bring things or change sheets because it was my vacation too, but they brought us everything we requested. the front desk crew were great, the security was kind, the housekeeping girls were lovely and the recreation employees were fun, cheery playful and kind. although we didn't eat in the restaurant (this time) the gentelman at the front desk and the female waItress were so nice and got me some sugar because we had none. there were only two male services at the restaurant who were rude and mean.
we have stayed here before because the location cannot be beat. the hikes are amazing! you are just outside the entrance to Zion. you cannot beat the views.and we had a much different experience the last time we were here.
- Sleep Quality: 3
- Service: 4
StephanieOTR from: Fullerton, California
Published Date: Jul, 19, 2020 Travel Date: Jul, 1, 2020 Rating: 3
Good things and bad things (including bad COVID safety practices)
Well let's start with the good things. We stayed in a cabin and it was pretty comfortable. Bed was comfy and it was nice to have our own space, fridge/microwave/sink in the kitchen. Sort of clean but the carpet was kind of gross and high touch surfaces like doors and windows had obviously not been cleaned well. Great location though - easy to access the east entrance of Zion and the checkerboard mesa area which is amazingly beautiful. Our daughter enjoyed the pool area and it was nice they had two pools, slides, and two hot tubs! Great to relax after a long day of hiking. The food in the restaurant was pretty good too. The star gazing was unreal - so beautiful if you walk up above the ranch area to get away from the crowds.
OK here's the bad - first of all they don't seem to really care about COVID safety. There are signs up about it but only maybe 30-40% of people you see have masks on indoors. Super busy lobby with no social distancing even possible and most people without masks. The pool was the same with crowding. We actually left the pool at one point because it was just packed and impossible to stay even 4 feet away from others when in the pool. I saw several staff without masks at all, so there dosen't even seem to be a uniform policy for staff about wearing masks indoors. Glass doors with greasy streaks on them so they clearly aren't cleaned at all regularly as they claim on the website. A few hand sanitizer stations but they were often empty. At the breakfast buffet guests help themselves and handle all serving spoons etc. without anyone cleaning or any hand sanitizer in sight. Several staff in the restaurant wearing masks on their chin. Basically they seem to be pretending to have COVID safety measures but don't actually implement them seriously.
The place was pretty quiet the first two nights we stayed, but on friday night the quads started rolling in and we had super loud ATVs doing laps around the area including kids on quads, blasting music all hours of the night. Much like San Felipe if you've ever been there. Not our scene and it's sad to see in such a beautiful place that could be so peaceful turn into this. Don't come on the weekend if you're not into that scene I guess. We were glad our cabin had A/C and we could close the windows and drown out the noise so we could sleep - I can't even imagine the tents / camping sites!
- Value: 2
- Cleanliness: 2
- Service: 3
211tmotie from: Riverside, California
Trip Type: Family
Published Date: Jul, 15, 2020 Travel Date: Jul, 1, 2020 Rating: 4
Family Cabin with a View
We stayed for three nights at the Zion's Edge Cabin. The Cabin itself was amazing. The views were so beautiful. The cabin had pots/pans and all the bathrooms were stocked. There was even masks and hand sanitizer packaged. The cabin had a basketball court, play ground, a camp fire area. The cabin itself would be given five stars. We would love to return to this cabin.
The resort was a disappointing...not because it didn't have amenities but because of the lack of organization. There was a free glow in the dark capture the flag night and over a dozen families waited for over half an hour for someone to come orchestrate the event. Even after multiple staff members were told, no one came. All we were told was that someone was coming. The resort needs to understand the position this puts families in with regard to planning and time wasted.
browneyedflowerchild from: Mahwah, New Jersey
Published Date: Jul, 14, 2020 Travel Date: Jul, 1, 2020 Rating: 5
Such a Fun Place to Stay
I truly enjoyed my time staying at Zion Ponderosa. I felt like I was at an adult summer camp. I stayed in the Cabin Suite and it was super clean and cozy. I also enjoyed all the open use activities on the property such as the mini golf. Ray's Restaurant was also great and I was never bored! Totally perfect for families, couples, solo travelers and more.
- Rooms: 5
- Sleep Quality: 5
- Service: 5