Where to Stay in Whistler: Best Areas & Hotels, 2018
It began as a logging town, but today Whistler is all about outdoor sports. That would be skiing and snowboarding in winter, and hiking and biking on the same craggy mountain peaks come summer. Located north of Vancouver on Highway 99, the town sprawls across the valley it sits in, but The Village is the main neighborhood, sitting at the base of both Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains, and this is where the majority of the lodging is located. The Village itself is divided into a number of areas, including Village North and Upper Village, all of which are connected by a paved, pedestrian-only walking path called the Village Stroll. If you're in Whistler to ski, proximity to the slopes will be a priority, and a number of the properties in town are located right on the slopes, offering ski-in, ski-out access.
Where to Stay for Luxury
Whistler Blackcomb has no shortage of luxury properties to choose from. At the elegant, posh Four Seasons Resort and Residences Whistler, the service is very personalized, making it perfect for planning a holiday that's all about you - the concierge can arrange activities such as a private helicopter trip to a glacier or a candlelit dinner for two. The rooms are also luxurious, as one would expect from a Four Seasons, and equipped with all the mod cons and very comfy beds.
Looking out onto the gondola and offering ski-in, ski-out access, Pan Pacific Whistler Mountainside has a prime location right at the base of Whistler Mountain. The suites feature floor-to-ceiling windows with impressive views, balconies, soaking tubs in the bathrooms, and kitchens should you wish to prepare a meal for yourself instead of eating out - great for families. It also has a steam room, heated outdoor pool, and Jacuzzi for soaking sore muscles.
Just a five-minute walk from the gondola at Whistler Village, the Pan Pacific Whistler Village Center is another high-end option offering sophisticated, European-style luxury throughout. The contemporary suites are impressive and feature full kitchens and home theater systems. There's also a heated outdoor saltwater pool and a sundeck with mountain views.
Where to Stay for the Best Value
During the spring and fall shoulder seasons, it's easy to get great deals in Whistler at even the most exclusive properties, but during the high season in winter and summer, prices skyrocket. Still, some properties remain good value for the destination year-round. For laid-back luxury, check out the Summit Lodge Boutique Hotel, which is one of the best value options in Whistler. It features classy modern rooms with fireplaces, pull-out sofas, balconies, and kitchenettes with cooktops, which come in handy when traveling with the family or just trying to save money. There is also a Pacific Northwest restaurant on-site and a chic sushi bar, plus a hot tub, seasonal heated outdoor pool, and spa. Look for the property on Main Street in the heart of The Village.
Crystal Lodge Hotel is another posh but good-value option right in the center of The Village and within walking distance of everything. It features 158 chic rooms and suites in varying sizes. They're all done up in modern style, with pillow-top mattresses, iPod docks, flat-screen TVs, and mini-fridges. Premium rooms also feature whirlpool tubs and or fireplaces. There is an Italian restaurant on-site as well as a gym, pool, hot tub, and sauna.
The Pinnacle Hotel Whistler also offers affordable luxury in a central location in The Village, about a five-minute walk from the gondola, and it's dog friendly. The studio suites come in four varieties (the largest has two queen beds) and all feature contemporary decor, fluffy white duvets, large windows, gas log fireplaces, and Jacuzzi jetted tubs. Some also have private balconies.
Where to Stay on a Budget
Whistler doesn't have a budget travel market, especially not in the high season, when the cheapest properties are still more than $150 per night. Still, in the off season, prices drop dramatically, and you can book some of the best properties in this same $150 per night price point.
During the season, one of the cheapest options is Whistler Village Inn + Suites. The rooms have a mountain chalet vibe, with wood accents, built-in furnishings, and gas fireplaces. You can save money by using the in-room kitchens. The location is at the far end of the village from the mountain.
Slightly more expensive, the Aava Whistler Hotel is another semi-budget choice. Rooms are clean and just across the highway from The Village. The staff is friendly, and the hot tub and sauna are perks.
Where to Stay for Romance
The regal Fairmont Chateau Whistler is one of Whistler's most luxe and romantic properties, blending old-world luxury and rustic, mountain-chic style with fantastic views from its Upper Village location. Couples will love the underwater music in the heated indoor/outdoor pools and the upmarket spa, with four jacuzzis, steam rooms, and a sauna. You can even bring your pup. Getting around is a breeze here, as a complimentary shuttle service operates between the mountains every 15 minutes.
Nita Lake Lodge sits right on the lakeshore, a quarter mile from Whistler Mountain's creekside gondola. It may not offer ski-in ski-out access, but it is perfect for a romantic getaway (and a free shuttle runs you to the slopes in minutes). Perks for couples include a two-person soaking bathtub and rain shower and a fireplace in every room at this all-suites property. There is also a restaurant focusing on locally sourced ingredients, a lovely spa, and mountain and lake views galore.
Sundial Boutique Hotel, located right at the base of Whistler Mountain, is another romantic option in a more affordable price bracket, with fantastic mountain views and a rooftop hot tub. The rooms are spacious and comfortable, many featuring full kitchens and fireplaces, and quiet at night. The staff goes above and beyond to make stays feel personal - let them know if you're celebrating an anniversary or birthday for instance.