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“Wonderful Kitschy Experience!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Wigwam Motel

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Wigwam Motel
Ranked #4 of 32 Hotels in San Bernardino
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
13 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Wonderful Kitschy Experience!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 February 2012

Wigwam Village #7 is beautifully maintained and a fun but inexpensive trip ($60!! for 1 night) for a bored couple coming from LA. I can't say enough good things about this place- our visit was wonderful. Our wigwam was non smoking and smelled fine. It was really cool to go inside and see how everything looked; I've always wondered! The most fun I had was walking around the wigwams with Kumar (his family owns this place) and getting a mini tour with all of the interesting history of this motel built in 1949. Kumar was so sweet and told us about all of the wigwam villages, how the motel has changed over the years (ie. wifi), and about the man who created it all. Kumar was so nice- he even brought us some Route 66 root beer & carmel popcorn for a snack during our stay. And he took our pictures in the best spots around the motel! Very cool guy.

Perhaps visiting San Bernadino or Rialto isn't the fanciest thing you could do but I wouldn't say it's the "ghetto" like some people have suggested. Maybe living in NYC for 7 years and walking past the projects of the Bronx altered my perspective.. I never felt weird or unsafe here, just like I was in the middle of nowhere. I also don't understand why people would give less of a rating because "it's not the Bellagio" or whatever. Um, obviously. We aren't really the type of people to spend a lot of $$$ on lodgings or fancy trips.. that's why we went here! 5 stars for wonderful service, clean & kitschy lodgings, and a great time! The pool was very cute and if it had been warmer I definitely would've taken a dip in it.

I have already recommended this place to my friends in LA. If you want an amazing dose of kitsch look no further down Route 66.. it's all here. The McDonald's Museum (unofficial but located where the original one stood) was also a lot of fun. I guess this place is really what you make of it- bring the fun with you and you'll have an amazing time.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank neufus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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841 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (115)
Date | Rating
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  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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English first
Cardiff, South Wales, UK
Level Contributor
38 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 February 2012

We arrived quite late to the wigwam motel after travelling back to California from Las Vegas. My satnav could not find the motel and keep directing us to some random field - at this point we were quite worried that the wigwams had gone! Eventually we found them!

We stayed at this Motel in June 2010 - a little late writing this review. oops!!

We enjoyed our stay and 1 night was plenty - couldn't see much in the area worth sticking around for. As we arrived late we struggled to find somewhere to eat so we went to dominos which was a few minutes up the road.

The room was very dated and smelt a little fousty. We weren't too bothered as we weren't expecting much - it was more of a novelty stay. They motel seemed very quiet when we stayed but it was mid-week. The recepetion staff we phoning us at 10.30am to remind us that check out was 11.00am prompt. I couldn't see people queing up to check in but they were very keen to get us out. Even though the stay was almost 2 years ago you still remember the small things.

The motel/wigwam offered free wifi which was a bonus.

Would we stay here again - probably not but it is worth a visit if passing. How often do you get to stay in a wigwam!!

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank laur3njayn3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
44 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 January 2012

If you ever find yourself in need of a time travel experience or High Kitsch Route 66 adventure, there is perhaps nothing as ultimate as sleeping in a cement teepee.... this is IT!

You'll feel the very least as if you have stepped onto a Tim Burton film set! This is pure hilarious Americana from the great age of road travel.

Aside from the amazingly preserved buildings and well kept grounds, we found the owner, Kumar to be extremely welcoming and helpful navigating local kitsch and good restaurants. He gave us good suggestions for local attractions (Tiki Drive-In) and was so much fun to talk to.

The Wigwam Motel has bravely not bowed to "remodeling" or "updating" their rooms, thus ruining the original charm of motor-touring motels. They have kept the original tile in the bathroom and head boards, and what updating we saw was done in the spirit of the period.

True, the rooms are smaller than what is common today. The wigwams were built in the late 40's and were designed to sleep in, not spend the day in. If you want a super-sized hotel with no personality, go some where else, because the Wigwam is the real deal- a motor hotel.

Our room was very clean- And there was little noise. The lawns and pool are well cared for and are great for kids to run off extra energy acquired on the road. There is also a very cute fire pit for roasting smores or roasting hot dogs. Ask for the tepee nearest it, if your heart so desires.

The Wigwam books up quickly on weekends, so book a week or more in advance.

All in all a great stop along Route 66- the surrounding town is sadly not as cool.

Room Tip: Ask for a teepee near the fire pit or pool.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2011, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Vacannes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Palo Alto, California
Level Contributor
137 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 119 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 January 2012

We stayed in #19 at the Wigwam Motel in San Bernardino on 12/30/2011. This was our 2nd Wigwam - we stayed at the one in Holbrook AZ last year. The rate was very reasonable - around between $70 and $80 a night.

So, we "slept in a wigwam" - actually a concrete poured structure just big enough for 2 beds, with a little restroom/shower off to the side. As a wigwam, it's surprisingly roomy, but as motels go, it's sort of cramped, and a tall guy like me has to be careful, or you bump your head a lot. But the novelty of it, especially if you are on a Route 66 pilgrimage, makes up for that. There is a pool (which we did not use on our December stay) and Cable TV to provide diversion if you're sticking around.

The beds were OK; not the most comfortable and somewhat small, but clean enough. Bathroom standards have clearly changed since the 50's; the absence of a shelf to put out shaving kits etc. was awkward, and none of us even tried to use the shower, since it was so much smaller than even the standard setup we're used to. Unfortunately, the architectural form of the wigwam pre-empts expanding the bathrooms at all, so you just have to put on your nostalgia hat and be glad you're not really living in the 50's anymore.

Comparing Holbrook and San Bernardino: If you are going to stay in only one "wigwam" in your life, we recommend Holbrook, mainly since it's close to the Petrified Forest National Park and many other natural things to see. It also has cool 50's cars left around as decorative props for photos. It has a larger office for checking in, with a gift shop and a Southwestern museum attached. But, we don't recall a pool, and actually the rooms in Holbrook were less comfortable than the rooms in San Bernardino. And, Holbrook is further away if you live in California. So, if you're doing a Route 66 journey, we really recommend you stay in both and see for yourself.

Note:
For all those reviews that described the neighborhood as dire or dangerous, well, we don't know what they're talking about. Rialto is not Beverly Hills, for sure, and there is some level of economic distress in the Inland Empire in general, but we saw nothing that made us feel one bit uneasy driving around in our Lexus. We suspect the fact that the neighborhood seems predominantly Latino (there is a "llantera" across the street) may have colored the impressions of some reviewers. We saw nothing to worry about. Check out Foothill Blvd. on Google Street View and see for yourself.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Frank S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
68 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 November 2011

Travelling route 66. Stayed at Wigwam motel (number 16) on 8th November 2011. The rooms are larger than they appear from outside. Very comfortable bed. Clean room. Good flat screen tv. Small criticisms - why no bedside table - plenty of room for one. Why no shelf in bathroom? Had to put razor, toiletries etc on floor. Why is there a picture of Venice canal on a wigwam wall?
Completely ruins the indiam theme. At just $66 including taxes - good value. Free WiFi but no breakfast facility.

Room Tip: Choose one at the back - slightly further away from the main road.
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank aussieroy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Wigwam Motel

Property: Wigwam Motel
Address: 2728 W Foothill Blvd, Historic Route 66, San Bernardino, CA 92376-5333
Phone Number:
Region: United States > California > San Bernardino
Amenities:
Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 32 Hotels in San Bernardino
Price range (per night): ₹ 5,387 - ₹ 7,296
Hotel Class:2 star — Wigwam Motel 2*
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Historic Route 66! One of the few remaining classic motels. This family-fun roadside attraction was built in 1949 and has undergone a renovation phase. The motel offers a complete guest room in a peculiar fashion of actual wigwam units. The motel comprises of all the standard hotel amenities and even includes free Wi-Fi connection! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Wigwam Hotel San Bernardino
Wigwam Motel San Bernardino

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