Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge
This beautiful national park retreat is a little different from its fellow Fairmont Hotels. Rather than being a grand railway hotel or set in a building that resembles a fairy-tale castle, it’s has the vibe of a hidden-away log cabin. What it lacks in grandeur, it makes up for in both heritage and setting. Visitors (including members of the royal family, both past and present) have been heading to the lodge for over 100 years to see the Rocky Mountain landscapes, originally staying in one of just 10 tents which overlooked the beautiful Lac Beauvert. The lake is probably the only thing those first visitors would recognise today as the resort is now dotted with rustic-style log cabins, and a large main building which houses the restaurants, bars and cosy lobby – the perfect place to curl up by the fire with a good book. We love the relative feeling of seclusion here, however, it’s just five minutes by car into the main town of Jasper and the park’s highlights, such as Mount Edith Cavil, Maligne Canyon and Lake and the popular Athabasca Falls, are just a short drive away.
While most hotels are just a base to return to at the end of the day, the Fairmont is a destination in itself. Many of the activities that are available throughout the park, such as kayaking, biking and horse riding, can be enjoyed straight from the lodge. You can rent canoes from The Boathouse and get those Instagram-worthy shots out on the lake or hire a mountain bike and explore some of the 700 acres on two wheels. It’s not all about the summer activities here. Once winter rolls around you can ski in the nearby resort of Marmot Basin, skate on the iced-over Lake Mildred and explore the grounds on show shoes, cross country skis or fat bikes. Even the Fairmont’s golf course becomes a snowy playground. Grab one of the toboggans or tubes and head to the groomed runs on the driving range.
The rooms and suites are more rustic than they are elegant, as you might expect from a mountain lodge. Some rooms are located in the main building while others are in two-story buildings set throughout the resort. The most sought-after rooms and suites, and those that we highly recommend you go for are the ones that have a lake view. There are few other views that we would like to wake up to while in the Rockies. If you’re visiting in the winter, or even the cooler months of the spring and autumn, choose one of the junior suites or suites with a fireplace.