Cabin culture runs deep in Banff. The first hotels in the area were sturdy log cabins modelled after classic European ski lodges. Snuggle up in these cozy cabins, some historic and some new, all with classic backcountry charm. Get cabin fever, in a good way, while staying in Canada’s stunning Banff National Park, home of the Rocky Mountains and nearby Lake Louise.
The newly-built river rock and stone Moose Hotel has a secret to tell. It was once a 1903 miner’s heritage home called the Corner House. Now, the two-level house has been lovingly restored with period details like pine wainscotting, an original clawfoot tub, and a pot- bellied stove. Curl up with your partner in the brass bed while your Tesla charges up in the underground parking – or spend the evening soaking in the rooftop hot tub.
It doesn’t get any more authentic than this. The Storm Mountain cabins were built in the 1920s and are still in use today. Smoke from the wood-burning fireplaces have burnished the pine timbers in these secluded, peaceful cottages. There are no kitchens but the dining experience in the main lodge is world class. Located off the main highway between Banff and Lake Louise in a wildlife corridor, this is an authentic hideaway.
Unplug and unwind at Baker Creek. Named after a local prospector, this collection of cabins and lodges backs onto the creek. It’s on a favourite route for local wildlife, especially bears. You’ll find bear carvings and statues scattered all around the well-kept grounds. The cabins have kitchens, but make sure to visit the outstanding on-site restaurant. Leave your phone behind though, since there’s no cell service at the lodge.
Welcome to a gold rush. Surround yourself with honey-coloured pine logs and beamed ceilings in a chalet suite or private cabin at Castle Mountain. Suites are two-level, with plump duvet covered beds, tucked up under the eaves. Cabins are secluded havens with two-person jacuzzis and gas or wood fireplaces. All suites and cabins come with full kitchens. Watch for local wildlife – from gophers to elk and bear – on your way to pick up supplies at the onsite General Store.
This area is known for its stunning views. Appreciate them in full from the lazy-river style hot tub and wading pool at Hidden Ridge; it has a memorable terrace overlooking Banff and Tunnel Mountain. The family and pet-friendly condo style apartments are complete with everything a cook needs, including a fireplace to make chocolate and marshmallow S’mores. Take a walk on the nearby Hoodoo Trail for a closer look at the rock formations making up these sandstone spires.
Four original 1930s era log cabins still stand on the Paradise Lodge grounds. Filled with the warmth of a backcountry cabin, they have been updated with kitchens or kitchenettes and televisions. The modern lodge suites are located in two buildings with wonderful views of the mountains. Lake Louise, the most photographed lake in the park, is a short walk up the road.
Each of the 40 two-bedroom, two-bath chalets at this modern property are privately managed. All have fully equipped kitchens and plenty of space for groups to gather. Amenities on-site include a hot tub and the largest pool in Canmore. The gates of Banff National Park are a short drive up the road or explore the outdoors with horseback riding, rafting, skiing and fishing tours around Canmore.
One of the most popular ski lodges in Banff, Sunshine is open year-round with modern rooms, lofts and suites, as well as some of the best views in the valley. An eight-person, high-speed gondola whisks you up the hill to the lodge during summer and winter. Amenities include the largest hot tub in Banff, several restaurants and a spa. Hop on a shuttle to Banff townsite for more shopping, museums and fine dining.