If you If you have never stayed at the Ahwahnee Lodge you have to do it once. It will break the bank, but get it out of your system. Current rates are $425 per night for the basic room. If you want suites plan on several bars of gold. Guys, it is something your lady will really enjoy. In the 90’s we planned a Half Dome hike but delayed getting a tent cabin and all that was available was the Ahwahnee – so we took it (Only $300 then). I have stayed in the “regular” rooms and they are pretty small. Ever been to Tokyo? You pay for the ambiance and history. The Great Room is a lot of fun to just sit and gawk at the huge fireplace. There are cottages out back that are really neat. During the hey-day of the Firefall, folks could look at Glacier Point from their window. The firefall went off every day at 9 pm except when John Kennedy was staying there. They delayed it until he was ready! Originally the hotel was going to have several more floors, but money ran out so it is what is it today. Also the current bar area was intended to be the entrance. It was designed to allow cars to roll up under a patio. Disputes between the architect and the builder led to the current design. It needed to be fireproof so the hotel was built of concrete. Those brown wooden slats you see are really concrete that was poured into molds with wood grain and even knotholes! Check out the floor tile in the main registration area…they are original from the 1920’s.
*Carpe Diem Experience– Rick Deutsch–>www.HikeHalfDome.com