A glance at her junk mail became the catalyst for the journey from Southern California to Lake Tahoe for Martha Bryan. She is smiling on this snowy March afternoon, retelling the story of how someone with no hotel experience came to own the Cedar Glen Lodge, a gorgeous piece of property in Tahoe Vista with a killer view of Lake Tahoe.
“I was an empty nester and bored to death. I didn’t know what to do with myself,” recalls Bryan. “I saw this junk mail from a Tahoe realtor and it fascinated me, so I went to Tahoe with some friends to check it out.”
The Bryan family purchased a somewhat rundown Cedar Glen Lodge in June 2010 and quickly went to work renovating the 31 rooms (17 of them cabins) that range from studio to two-bedroom with two baths. Of course, it helped that husband Alan Bryan is a skillful general contractor and Martha has a great knack for recognizing how to make a room both unique and appealing.
“It’s a real Cinderella story. If you saw what the lodge looked like five years ago and what it looks like now you would be shocked,” Martha said.
Additional family arrived two years after Martha and Alan purchased the lodge. Daughter Ana Bryan and her husband (David Meade) left their high-end chef positions at a prestigious Washington D.C. restaurant to open The Rustic Lounge. An intimate yet informal fine-dining restaurant with limited seating (24 guests), The Rustic Lounge has quite the regular following thanks to its two gourmet, classically-trained chefs.
“When they decided to come back to California and run the restaurant my mouth dropped,” Martha said. “They make everything in house – from scratch – so the food is fresh every day. It’s a labor of love for the two of them. And naturally I love that they are both living in Tahoe.”
Martha and Alan had no hotel background. She grew up in Mexico and moved to Los Angeles in her 20s and ran a boutique clothing store. The only thing she knew about Tahoe was she loved vacationing there as a family. Although he once considered buying a Tahoe hotel, Alan could never convince Martha that it was a smart move. Ironically, she finally convinced him.
Booking a Cedar Glen room in the peak summer months is difficult – making reservations a year in advance is the suggested practice. The reason why is simple – weather. “Everyone loves the Tahoe weather in the summer. But not everyone loves to ski, which is why getting a room at Cedar Glen Lodge in the winter months is much easier,” explains Alan.
Location is one of many positives regarding Cedar Glen Lodge. It’s 3½ miles to Stateline for gambling and 12 miles to beautiful Sand Harbor on the lake. For skiers and snowboarders, the lodge is very close to Northstar California, Diamond Peak, Homewood, Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows. There’s also a cross-country ski area nearby and some good restaurants, including popular Gar Woods
One doesn’t need to venture too far to experience the beauty of Lake Tahoe, which is located across the street from Cedar Glen. Walking along the Tahoe shoreline on a snowy afternoon is a very cool experience. In the warmer months, swimming in the lake is one option, along with boating or several other water activities.
Not all rooms are the same at Cedar Glen, which offers a free continental breakfast. The elevated portion of the property provides a tremendous view of Lake Tahoe from the “lodge” area of the property. The cabins don’t offer the same views, but are quieter and provide a little more privacy. There are 3 pet-friendly rooms.
Room rates are reasonable at the Cedar Glen Lodge, which features a pool, hot tub, barbecue area, picnic tables, sauna, and fire pit where the S’mores are free. The lodge has many green qualities and was given a prestigious award for being environmentally friendly. The grounds also include a Tesla charging station. The lodge, located at 6589 North Lake Tahoe Blvd, Tahoe Vista, is ideal for families, but can also serve as a nice romantic getaway.
“Cedar Glen Lodge is a wonderful place to stay in Lake Tahoe for many reasons,” said DJ Brown, who spent two nights with her husband in March. “The views of the lake are gorgeous and you can walk there in two minutes. The rooms are meticulously decorated, extremely clean, and the location is close to so many things. And The Rustic Lounge is a terrific place to eat. Our dog even loved staying at Cedar Glen. We are definitely coming back.”
For more information, visit www.tahoecedarglen.com or call 530 546-4281