If you seek a Snoqualmie spa for a weekend getaway from Seattle, then look no further. The Salish Lodge & Spa is a luxurious mountain lodge, perched on the edge of the Snoqualmie falls, and within spitting distance of numerous hiking trails or ski pistes.
Snoqualmie spa location
Less than an hour from Seattle, Snoqualmie is a quaint western town with enough attractions for a weekend visit, but the highlight is this Snoqualmie spa tucked away inside the Salish Lodge.
Snoqualmie spa tour
Let’s take a tour of the property, so you can decide whether to splash your cash. The Salish Lodge is definitely not a budget accommodation option, but if you are celebrating a special occasion or simply want to treat your loved one, this Snoqualmie spa should be an option.
Salish lodge arrival
Valets greet you as you drive up to the property. They help unload your luggage (we had a lot!), chat about your day and escort you into the lodge. These guys are impressive. Even though the lodge has 86 rooms, they greet us by name every time we requested the car. Nothing is too much trouble for them either.
The lobby is impressive, with a large log fire crackling by oversized leather chairs. It’s a heartwarming welcome, especially compared to the frosty February temperatures outside.
We give our details and while we wait for an email confirming that our room is ready, decide to go and explore the local area.
Things to do in Snoqualmie
Given Jason and I are hugely active, a night in Snoqualmie in February is enough for us. When we visited, most of the hiking trails were closed due to ice, so there wouldn’t be enough to amuse us for more than 24 hours. However, in summer, that would be a different story. There is easy access to biking and walking trails that could comfortably amuse us for a long weekend. It is worth bearing this in mind, when deciding what time of year to visit and how you will amuse yourselves.
Here’s the main local attractions that we visited.
The lodge is perched on the ridge by the 268 foot falls which were formed by the flow of ice and glacial debris over 10,000 years ago. In February, it’s a relatively slim torrent of water, but once the snows start to melt, the volume of water significantly increases, creating a more impressive sight. Nevertheless, it is 100 feet higher than Niagara Falls with average volumes of water between 500 and 1,500 cubic feet per second. It’s not a trickle, that’s for sure.
Snoqualmie Railway Museum
It’s worth a quick visit to the Snoqualmie railway museum in Snoqualmie. In 1889, entrepreneurs built a railroad to aid coal and iron mining. A happy byproduct of this development was the influx of tourists into town to see the falls.
Sadly, the arrival of the motor car soon put an end to the rail road and it was disused in the 1970s. However, there’s a free exhibit which explains the history of the railroad in this area. There’s also a handful of rail carriages you can inspect, and some of the photo displays are fascinating.
Twin Peaks filming locations
Fans of Twin Peaks may recognise the lodge as one of the filming locations for Twin Peaks, the cult 1990s TV series. In nearby North Bend, you can visit Twede’s diner, another common sight in the series. There is allegedly a sign welcoming visitors to Twin peaks on SE Reinig road, but we drove the entire length (twice!!) without spotting it. I can only assume therefore that it has been pulled down, perhaps to deter annoying tourists wanting to take a picture of the sign.
This is a cool circular lake, with an island at the core so it looks like a strange shaped donut on the map. It was semi frozen when we visited, so looked eerily beautiful. You can see the lake from SE Reinig Road but there’s nowhere to stop in winter. It may be easier in summer when the snow melts and the road widens.
We return to the hotel, and whilst chatting to the server in the bar, we receive the email confirming our room is ready.
Salish lodge hotel rooms
I always experience a moment of anticipation on entering a new hotel room, especially if it is a luxury property. So, I was excited to explore the rooms at Salish Lodge. I was not disappointed.
These rooms are seriously wow! Each room has a spacious vestibule with plenty of clothes hanging space, and drawers to house your belongings. The bathroom is decorated with sleek off-white tiles, with a tub and shower, huge vanity sink and plenty of storage space for personal toiletries. There’s also lots of towels, all neatly tucked away in a cubby hole.
The piece de resistance is however, the huge bedroom complete with its own fireplace. It has a super king-size bed directly facing the fire, with a comfortable seating area and outdoor terrace. There’s tons more space to deposit cases and personal items and a huge flat screen TV. I will leave you to decide whether this room is worthy of a weekend getaway.
Note, the bed is seriously comfortable and you may not want to leave. The soft throw is super warming and snuggling. It’s tempting not to leave your room at all!
Club 268 Upgrade
We opted for the Club 268 upgrade and I highly recommend this. An additional $99 gets you:
- Access to the Club 268 lounge, serving wine and canapés between 5pm and 7pm
- Complimentary continental breakfast in the Club 268 lounge including bagels, muffins, fruit, yoghurt and an assortment of meats and cheese
- Access to the spa soaking pools. Strangely, there is no access for guests unless you book this upgrade or a treatment (more about that shortly).
- 20% off spa treatments
- Non-alcoholic beverages and snacks available all day
I highly recommend this package. Even without a spa treatment, you will easily recoup your money providing you indulge in evening drinks and breakfast.
Note, at check in, this upgrade was not even mentioned. Staff in the spa made me aware of this upgrade option, so you may find that you need to ask them about it. I don’t know if this is an oversight or a deliberate ploy to encourage clients to book into the spa. Anyway, it is the best value way to access the spa during your stay.
Salish lodge spa pools
We visited the spa twice during our stay to soak in the pools and although it doesn’t have aromatherapy rooms, it is lovely. The pools are surrounded by hardwood, and stunning views of nature through the panoramic windows.
Salish Lodge spa
Now I have to be honest and say that I didn’t have a treatment. If I have one criticism of this lodge, I thought the treatments were massively over-priced. An hour massage costs in excess of £100. Now, admittedly this is partly due to the poor US-GB exchange rate currently, but even at historic rates, these massages would be at the upper end of my tolerance level.
That said, the spa smells lovely and fresh when you enter and I suspect the experience would be lovely, if you are happy to blow that amount of cash on a massage.
Food and drink
We ate dinner in the Attic, which has panoramic views from its windows. Food is more snack like than haute cuisine, but I enjoyed a generous piece of succulent Steelhead (pink fish, very similar to salmon) with vegetables. Jason opted for a chicken and vegetable pie. Pints of lager were priced around $8 but we filled up on wine in the Club 268 Lounge. Our dinner including a starter to share totalled $75.
If you prefer not to splash so much on dinner, there is an Italian in town. There’s also a large brewery pub and a few smaller options so you won’t starve. Further up the hill in Snoqualmie ridge there is a large complex with a number of further options but you will need to drive. You could walk into Snoqualmie in decent weather, although when we visited sidewalks were covered in snow and so a little perilous.
This hotel really delivers a high-class service. All the staff we met would stop to chat, and were very attentive.
This lodge is small and compact with limited other facilities. For instance, there’s no fitness centre or swimming pool which would be nice. Guests receive complimentary day passes to a local Sports + Fitness facility offering yoga, spin classes, cardio and free weights. Although it’s not on site it is just 3.5 miles and a seven-minute drive from Salish Lodge. However, that drive might prove too much of s deterrent and I would argue that this lodge is for people seeking a little indulgence on a relaxing break.
I loved the lodge, it’s décor, the rooms and service. It is perhaps better suited for a summer stay (unless you wish to ski nearby) so you can take advantage of the biking and hiking trails but it’s not a match for my favourite lodge in the United States (Devil’s Thumb if you are interested).