Not many hotels around the world can boast the floatplane show that is a daily occurrence at the Lakefront Anchorage. Situated on the shores of Lake Hood, the world’s busiest floatplane base, this hotel is buzzing all summer long in the Land of the Midnight Sun.
A gallery of wildlife
Many business and vacation visitors choose this convenient location for lodging just after arriving in Alaska due to its proximity to the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport. The Lakefront Anchorage has a free shuttle service that will whisk you to or from the airport in about five minutes. As you enter this lodge-style themed hotel, you know you have left the big cities of America’s lower forty-eight states far behind. Mounted wildlife adorns the lobby and surrounding rooms with bear, moose, mountain goat, and several type salmon to view in anticipation of your Alaskan visit. Hallways feature wildlife photos like moose and bald eagles to set the wildness at play in your mind before going out on adventures. You might even see a real moose your first day in Alaska!
Comfort and a view
The well-trained staff will help you transition to one of their 248 spacious guest rooms and suites. Ask for a lake view if you like to watch the floatplane action from the comfort of your room. The guest rooms offer 350 sq ft/33 sqm of space to stretch out in. Wi-Fi is complimentary and the room comes with: HDTV with cable channels, in-room safe, radio alarm clock, mini-refrigerator, coffee maker, ironing board, and hair dryer. Choose the Mt McKinley Suite or Mt Fairweather Suite with 740 sq ft/69 sqm to handle up to three guests. The suites offer separate living and dining areas for a home-away-from-home feel plus the amenities listed above.
Comfort is paramount
The beds are medium firmness and quite comfortable for most guests. Pillows seem to be of higher quality than most hotels of this class and even though I brought my own, I chose the hotel’s pillow. The shower felt great after a very long trip from Baltimore, MD with plenty of hot water and strong pressure to wash the weariness away. Their towels also seemed to be of high quality and there were plenty of them. The desk area provides a good workstation for those who need to get some work done, and the Wi-Fi seemed fast for uploading and sending photos and video.
A deck looking out on the floatplane scene
The Flying Machine Restaurant is open 6 am to 11 pm daily in summer and 6 am to 10 pm in winter. For an Alaskan style breakfast, try the seafood omelet with king crab, shrimp and smoked salmon, or eggs with reindeer sausage. If the weather cooperates, enjoy their outdoor patio, The Deck, for food and drinks while dozens of floatplanes fly close by on approach to land on Lake Hood.
The hotel’s free shuttle doubles as a tourist transport and will take guests downtown for access to shopping, visitor center facilities, and restaurants. The Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum is only about a ten minute walk away where visitors learn about the pioneers who braved the wilderness in their planes we would consider antiques. Admission is 15 USD for adults, 12 USD for seniors, and 8 USD for children 5-17 years old. Several hiking trails are in the area and the staff can help you find the right one. The Tony Knowles Coastal Trail is popular, giving visitors sweeping views of the Cook Inlet and mountains near and far away. This easy to hike or bike popular trail is not far from the hotel. Check out the link at the end of the article for more information on access and suggested activities on this urban trail.
Why stay anywhere else
When your Alaskan trip is almost over and you transition back to Anchorage, it’s hard to find a better place than the Lakefront Anchorage to stay. After all, you have already got comfortable with its location and amenities, why risk a lesser hotel before leaving such a magnificent state? Here you can be assured your trip will finish on a high note.