The resort used to be known as Key Lime Cove. The Great Wolf Resorts chain purchased the property, renovated it, and reopened it as Great Wolf Lodge.
At 80,000 square feet, the Great Wolf Lodge near Chicago boasts a large indoor waterpark. Like the rest of the resorts in the chain, the park and the hotel have a woodlands theme. Unlike other major indoor water parks, the Illinois location does not feature any high-thrill, flashy water rides such as a funnel ride, uphill water coaster, or a FlowRider surfing ride. As a result, Great Wolf Lodge is more ideally suited for families with young children.
In addition to the water park, the resort offers a range of other “dry” activities. It’s somewhat similar to a cruise ship (albeit one that is docked on land) in that it is designed for for guests to stay for a few days and has plenty of things to do. While it’s certainly possible to leave the resort and do some sightseeing in and around Chicago, most visitors probably remain at the resort for the duration of their stay.
Water Park Attractions and Other Activities
Among the slides and attractions in the water park are Double Whirlwind and River Canyon Run, two family raft rides; Coyote Canyon, a bowl ride; the Slap Tail Pond wave pool; and Fort McKenzie, a large, interactive water play station with a tipping bucket.
The resort includes activities with its room rates such as group bedtime stories; appearances by Great Wolf’s costumed forest characters; and games, crafts, and other group activities offered throughout the day. Among the experiences that require additional fees are mini-golf, bowling, a ropes course, a climbing wall, an arcade with redemption games, and the interactive adventure game, MagiQuest.
For adults and older children, there is a fitness center.
What’s to Eat?
The resort has a few on-site dining options. Campfire Kitchen, a table-service restaurant, is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Entrees include seafood dishes and salads. There is also Hungry as a Wolf, which specializes in pizzas; Timbers, a casual dining spot with burgers, chicken tenders, and other choices; Barnwood, which offers cocktails and other libations; and a Ben & Jerry’s ice cream shop.
Admission Policy, Hotel Info, Location, and Operating Schedule
The water park is included with the room rates. Great Wolf used to restrict admission to its water parks only for registered hotel guests, but it now offers day passes to the general public.
All of the accommodations at the Great Wolf Lodge are suites. They include standard one-room suites, themed suites such as a Wolf Den with bunk beds, and larger suites with multiple bedrooms.
Because it is an indoor water park and offers weatherproof fun, the park (and hotel) are open throughout the year.
The resort is located in Gurnee, Illinois, near Chicago.The address is 1700 Nations Drive. It is near Six Flags Great America
- From Chicago: I-94W or I-294W. Exit Grand Ave. (Rt. 132E) in Gurnee.
- From Milwaukee: I-94E. Exit Grand Ave. (Rt. 132E) in Gurnee.
- From Western Illinois: I-88E to I-294N. I-294 North becomes I-94W. Exit Grand Ave. (Rt. 132E) in Gurnee.