An inside take a look at Dollywood’s latest resort, Heartsong Lodge & Resort

What do the Declaration of Independence, the Statue of Liberty and Dolly Parton all have in widespread? Effectively, they’re all nationwide treasures. However solely one in every of them has a brand new resort open on the foot of the Smoky Mountains, and TPG was there in November when Dolly formally opened Dollywood’s Heartsong Lodge & Spa.

Should you’re confused about why the singer, songwriter, actress and philanthropist has a resort, you then won’t learn about her unimaginable Smoky Mountain theme park, Dollywood, in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. It is one in every of my favourite theme parks on the planet, together with its unique resort, Dollywood’s Dreammore Resort & Spa.

With an increasing number of people flocking to Pigeon Forge to spend a number of days using over-the-top coasters, munching on mouthwatering cinnamon bread and possibly even spending a number of nights on Dolly’s retired tour bus, Dollywood wanted more room and extra rooms to accommodate all the enjoyable.

So whether or not you have been to Dollywood dozens of instances like me, otherwise you’re planning your very first journey to Dolly’s “Tennessee Mountain Dwelling,” here is what you have to learn about staying at Dolly’s modern new lodge, Heartsong.


What’s Dollywood’s Heartsong Lodge & Resort

Heartsong is the second of two official resorts related to Dolly Parton’s theme park, Dollywood. Whereas the unique, Dreammore, leans right into a type of Chip and Joanna Gaines-like upscale southern design, 302-room Heartsong totally embraces the mountain lodge aesthetic. It function stone fireplaces, woodland creature motifs, enormous vaulted ceilings within the foyer and every resort flooring representing the colours and scenes of a unique season within the Smokies.

Associated: 11 finest accommodations close to Dollywood

A real family-friendly resort, there’s an indoor and out of doors pool, children actions all through the day, rooms designed for households with bunk beds, a restaurant and bar, plus particular perks for company at Dollywood, however extra on all of that later.


The way to e book Dollywood’s Heartsong Lodge & Resort

Sadly, Heartsong shouldn’t be related to any main loyalty program, and getting any elitelike perks right here is unlikely — particularly as so many alternative room configurations are tailor-made to sure varieties of company, like suites with bunkbeds.

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That mentioned, Heartsong generally is a nice worth, relying on the time of 12 months you go to. Entry-level king rooms with a sleeper couch begin round $199 per night time, whereas the identical room with the balcony begins at $249 per night time. A household suite with bunk beds begins round $274 per night time, and a junior suite with a balcony, a king-size mattress, sleeper couch and bunk beds begins round $374 per night time.

Simply word that in peak season, like in the summertime and through busy vacation weekends, these charges can fluctuate.


Should you’re a frequent Dollywood customer, one approach to save on rooms is by buying a Dollywood Seasons go to obtain 10% off on Dollywood resort bookings.

The rooms are trendy and cozy


Having stayed at and obsessed over Dolly’s unique resort, Dreammore, I used to be excited to see how Heartsong would differentiate itself from its lovely sister property. Let me let you know, the parents behind Heartsong discovered a approach to broaden on the spirit of Dolly that permeates Dreammore whereas creating a wholly new idea with rooms that really feel like a contemporary and trendy mountain lodge.

In my room, a king with a balcony and Murphy mattress, I used to be really impressed from the second I walked in. Measuring a minimal of 350 sq. toes, the room instantly felt massive, contemporary and, most likely most vital, homey and stress-free. The sage and forest inexperienced colour palette, mixed with mushy leather-based and wooden accents, instantly made me really feel like I used to be within the mountains. Trendy touches, each refined and really current, additionally made it clear the room was properly in contact with the twenty first century.

Strolling in, a big mirror with leather-based straps was hanging on the wall, adopted by an uncovered closet with coat hangers, a number of cabinets, an unstocked minifridge (there is a gasoline station throughout from the resort space entrance to top off on snacks and drinks, plus a market off the foyer), a secure, an ice bucket, and an iron and ironing board.


In the primary bed room space, I used to be impressed by the stylish and easy wooden and leather-based headboard with extra leather-based straps (a theme all through the room). Above the mattress was a cute mural with a sundown view of the Smoky Mountains (harking back to the duvet of Dolly’s “Blue Smoke” album) behind a mama and child bear and flowers internet hosting Dolly’s signature image, butterflies. The mattress itself was completely comfy, and I slept advantageous throughout my three-night keep.

On one nightstand, there have been built-in energy retailers, and on the opposite nightstand, an alarm clock with wi-fi charging capabilities.


Throughout from the mattress was a protracted wood console with a padded bench that I am positive would’ve been a fantastic place to take my sneakers off (although I used it as a spot to dump my backpack), plus storage and a 42-inch TV with streaming capabilities.

There was additionally a desk with a chair good for getting some work accomplished, together with a small however environment friendly single-cup espresso maker. One factor I particularly liked was a bit sound machine the place you could possibly combine totally different nature sounds to actually make it really feel such as you have been on previous Rocky Prime.


Reverse the desk, a small sofa sat in opposition to a wood cupboard that contained a pre-made Murphy mattress. The sofa magically collapsed down when the Murphy mattress was open, making it simple to transform the area.


There was additionally a balcony overlooking the doorway to the resort with two chairs and a wood desk.


The toilet was a two-room affair with a single-sink self-importance and plenty of additional floor area. There was an enormous mirror with these wood straps, however with the added impact of an in-mirror mild to glow as vivid as Dolly (plus etched lightning bugs, in any other case referred to as fireflies). After all there have been additionally additional towels, a hair dryer and a few small rest room facilities.

There was additionally a black cosmetics washrag, which I discovered humorous contemplating Dolly has mentioned publicly she by no means takes off her face at night time.


The bathroom and bathe have been separated by a sliding barn door, so two folks might, in concept, use the area on the identical time, however do not count on it to work as a lot of a sound barrier. The bathe had a glass sliding door, white bathe tiles and Heartsong-branded rest room facilities that smelled fairly good.

Get your fill with elevated Southern meals


Belief me once I say you will not go hungry at Heartsong, as there are a handful of locations to eat or moist your whistle.


Begin your day with Starbucks espresso and grab-and-go from the Songbird Market within the morning. There, you’ll be able to load up on snacks for the day, order a sandwich or a pizza, seize ready-made meals to take with you or get Dollywood’s world-famous cinnamon bread for a sugary jolt. It is open all through the day, so don’t be concerned if you have to get your afternoon caffeine repair on, too.


The primary restaurant, open for breakfast and dinner, is Ember & Elm: Tastes Rooted In The Smokies. Located in an attractive, trendy eating room, company can have a continental breakfast ($19) or order dishes like rooster and waffles (go for the Nashville sizzling rooster, $19), cinnamon bread french toast casserole ($14) or more healthy choices like avocado toast ($18).

For dinner, make a reservation and cargo your desk up with Southern consolation classics and good-for-the-soul favorites. Biscuits (my favourite meals) got here to the desk with out ordering (a dream). I actually loved all the things I ate, together with deviled eggs 3 ways (crispy pimento cheese, rooster caesar and sizzling honey shrimp, $14), a mouthwatering heirloom tomato and burrata salad with grilled peaches ($15) and an airline pan-seared rooster breast with brussels sprouts and root vegetable puree ($32).


On the restaurant’s informal bar, the place you can even order meals, I loved an incredible wedge salad with grilled rooster and plenty of nice toppings, like crispy bacon, tomatoes and bleu cheese ($16). I additionally ordered a caramel apple Outdated-Original with a sticky, caramel-glazed rim ($16). The bar known as Excessive Observe is open later, and I discovered it stuffed with drained dad and mom on a Saturday night time go to after Dollywood closed.

Lastly, you’ll be able to order meals and drinks to the pool with poolside service. Or, should you really feel like staying put in your room, an in-room menu with highlights from all of the aforementioned eating retailers is offered from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.

There are two swimming pools for company to get pleasure from


Although I visited Heartsong in early November, I have been to the sister property Dreammore a number of instances throughout hotter months. I can let you know the swimming pools there have been continuously busy and full of oldsters lounging in chairs, children guffawing and splashing round and an general joyous ambiance that comes with a theme park trip.


Because it warms up, I do know the identical can be mentioned of the massive out of doors pool at Heartsong. It has a type of funky U-shape design with a zero-entry space on one aspect and a peninsula-like area within the center; I might simply think about my niece utilizing it as an Olympic-like leaping platform. There’s additionally a waterfall that is positive to be successful with anybody trying to calm down throughout a sticky Tennessee summer season day. For much more enjoyable, there is a splash pad for teenagers.


There’s additionally a sizzling tub outdoors that stays open because the temperatures drop, and each children and adults have been flocking to it.


Even when the out of doors pool is closed, a big indoor pool is open day-after-day till 10 p.m., giving the little ones a great way to burn what power is left after a protracted day operating round.

Household-friendly actions abound


Although you may seemingly spend most of your time whizzing round on rides like Huge Bear Mountain at Dollywood, if in case you have kiddos, remember to save a bit time to get pleasure from one of many many on-property experiences like Camp DW.

With that program, children (and children at coronary heart) pays between $10 and $20 to take part in numerous crafts, like making magnets or Christmas tree ornaments. I joined a gaggle to make my very own stuffed fox, even making a want on the guts earlier than placing it in; I used to be blissful to have a particular memento to convey dwelling.

Different actions embody each day studying time within the library full of books from Dolly’s Creativeness Library, a charity she began that has donated greater than 2 million books to children all over the world.

And at night time, be part of the Camp DW crew for “Roasties,” the place all company can seize a connoisseur marshmallow (we’re speaking those filled with much more candy goodies), get a spot across the campfire and make s’mores whereas lightning bugs dance round. Some nights, there’s even a stay sing-along.


And if merely sitting by the fireplace is your preferrred approach to go the time, there is a centerpiece firepit outdoors with dozens of chairs surrounding it, plus smaller pits your group or household can declare. Inside, chairs and couches are centered round a large double-sided stone fire; practically each time I walked by I noticed somebody cuddled up with a e book in hand.

Resort company get nice perks at Dollywood


Making Heartsong a Homebase for a go to to Dollywood is a good concept as a result of resort company get the VIP therapy.

For starters, ticketed company get precedence entry to Dolly and Dollywood’s Splash Nation water park and early entry on Saturday to get pleasure from a choose experience (although there are some restrictions). You may additionally get complimentary TimeSaver Passes that permit you to skip the road on sure rides 5 instances in a day and make reservations for sure exhibits. You may additionally get free trolley service to and from the parks and the choice to have in-park purchases delivered to the entrance desk of the resort.

Should you want extra assist planning your good day, we have now a helpful information with all the things you have to know earlier than visiting Dollywood.

Trying out


I’ve mentioned it earlier than, and I will say it once more: Dollywood is among the finest theme parks within the nation. Should you even have an inkling of need to go to, here is your signal to go.

Now, it is solely getting higher with the addition of a contemporary new resort that is a fantastic place to spend a day. At Dollywood, you’ll be able to sleep in an attractive resort, eat at a very fantastic restaurant, get pleasure from rides for the entire household after which spend the following day exploring one in every of our most lovely nationwide parks.

Some would possibly say that Dolly Parton had no concept what she was doing when she transformed a drained previous theme park into Dollywood again in 1986. However I do know in my coronary heart she knew precisely what she was doing — and precisely what it might grow to be: a world-class expertise with not only one however two unimaginable resorts for the entire household to get pleasure from.

Finest bank cards for reserving accommodations close to Dollywood

There are over a dozen wonderful journey rewards bank cards on the market for resort stays. The appropriate one(s) for you’ll rely upon should you’re loyal to a selected program or chain, whether or not you need premium perks, and should you worth advantages like annual free nights, computerized elite standing and profitable incomes charges.

Listed here are three nice bank cards to make use of for reserving stays throughout quite a lot of resort chains and unbiased properties whereas nonetheless having fun with money-saving options and high-end advantages.

The Platinum Card® from American Specific


Incomes charges: This card earns 5 factors per greenback on airfare bought instantly with the airways or via the Amex Journey portal (on as much as $500,000 of airfare purchases per calendar 12 months). Plus, you may earn 5 factors per greenback on pay as you go accommodations booked with Amex Journey. All different purchases earn 1 level per greenback. Bear in mind, Amex factors switch to Hilton Honors at a 1:2 ratio, to Marriott Bonvoy at a 1:1 ratio and to Alternative Privileges at a 1:1 ratio, and there are typically switch bonuses.

Advantages: This card is totally filled with perks, however among the many travel-related ones you may need to maximize, together with some hotel-specific advantages, are:

  • As much as a $200 annual resort credit score, within the type of a press release credit score, on pay as you go Amex Wonderful Inns + Resorts or The Resort Assortment bookings with Amex Journey while you pay together with your Amex Platinum (Resort Assortment stays require a two-night minimal)*
  • Entry to Amex Wonderful Inns + Resorts and The Resort Assortment
  • Complimentary Gold standing with Hilton Honors and Marriott Bonvoy*
  • As much as $200 in assertion credit yearly for incidental charges charged by one airline you choose*
  • As much as $200 yearly in Uber Money, legitimate on Uber rides and Uber Eats orders within the U.S. (cut up into month-to-month $15 credit plus a $20 bonus in December)*
  • As much as $189 in assertion credit to cowl your Clear Plus annual membership*
  • A $100 assertion credit score for World Entry each 4 years or an up-to-$85 payment credit score for TSA PreCheck each 4 1/2 years (relying on which software payment is charged to your card first)
  • Entry to the American Specific World Lounge Assortment, together with Centurion lounges, Precedence Go lounges, Airspace lounges, Escape lounges, Plaza Premium lounges and Delta Sky Golf equipment (when touring on same-day Delta flights, restricted to 6 annual visits from Feb. 1, 2025)*

*Enrollment is required for choose advantages.

Annual payment: $695 (see charges and costs).

Learn our evaluate of the Amex Platinum card.

Capital One Enterprise X Rewards Credit score Card


Incomes charges: Earn a limiteless 10 miles per greenback on accommodations and rental automobiles booked via Capital One Journey, 5 miles per greenback on flights booked via Capital One Journey and a limiteless 2 miles per greenback on all different purchases.

Advantages: Cardholders get $300 in credit yearly for bookings made via Capital One Journey, plus 10,000 bonus miles each account anniversary, beginning in your first anniversary (value $100 towards journey). By way of the Capital One Premier Assortment, cardmembers can get pleasure from free breakfast, on-property credit and room upgrades (if out there) on stays at taking part properties booked via Capital One Journey. Additionally they obtain as much as $100 in assertion credit for both TSA PreCheck or World Entry.

Annual payment: $395 (see charges and costs)

Learn our evaluate of the Capital One Enterprise X.

Chase Sapphire Most well-liked Card


Incomes charges: This card accrues 5 factors per greenback on journey booked via the Chase journey portal, on Lyft purchases (via March 2025) and on Peloton tools and accent purchases of $150 or extra (via March 2025, with a restrict of 25,000 bonus factors). It additionally racks up 3 factors per greenback on eating, choose streaming providers and on-line grocery retailer purchases (excluding Goal, Walmart and wholesale golf equipment); 2 factors per greenback on all journey not booked via the Chase journey portal; and 1 level per greenback on all the things else.

Advantages: Cardholders obtain a $50 assertion credit score on resort stays bought via the Chase Final Rewards journey portal upon opening the cardboard and every following cardmember anniversary. Additionally they obtain a ten% bonus based mostly on their complete spending in the course of the account anniversary 12 months at a price of 1 level for every $10 spent. This card additionally has a number of the finest journey protections within the trade, together with journey cancellation insurance coverage, journey delay insurance coverage and first rental automotive protection, amongst different insurance policies.

Annual payment: $95

Learn our evaluate of the Chase Sapphire Most well-liked.

Associated studying:

For charges and costs of the Amex Platinum, click on right here.

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