The grand house of State Game Lodge sits proudly off the main road of Custer State Park, and guests are warmly welcomed with friendly American hospitality. There are plenty of areas in which to socialise, including the on site restaurant and bar, or outside on the porch in a classic rocking chair overlooking the creek. The rooms are split between several buildings, with some individual cabins also available set in the picturesque valley. All fit with the typical country feel that makes you feel instantly at home.
There are several room categories, our favourite being the Creekside Lodge rooms, which are modern and spacious but maintain a rustic wooden decor. They can accommodate either four or six guests, making them great for families. The main lodge building houses a number of en suite historical rooms, each of which has either twin, double or queen size beds, with some offering two bedrooms for larger groups or families. Some of these rooms have welcomed former presidents over the years, including Eisenhower and Coolidge. Attached to the main building is a separate motel-style building with more modern room options. These feature microwaves and fridges, with two of them equipped with accessibility features for those with limited mobility. Guests may also choose to stay in an individual, self-contained cabin. These have their own kitchen and vary in size, with the largest accommodating up to 20 guests.
State Game Lodge has the advantage of being secluded in the heart of the park, so is an ideal base to reach all main points of interest in the Black Hills, including Mt. Rushmore, Crazy Horse and the Needles Highway, which are all less than an hour’s drive away. However, the property’s secluded location means that guests will have to drive if they wish to have dinner in Custer, which is approximately a 20 minute drive from the lodge.
Food and Drink
The lodge boasts its own on site restaurant, which is open all day for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It has an open-plan layout and offers a selection of American classics, including the local delicacies of buffalo and elk. Adjacent to this is the bar, which maintains a smaller, intimate feel, and is a great place to relax after a day exploring Custer and the Black Hills.
The State Game Lodge welcomes families and most room choices can accommodate up to two adults and two children. Although the property does not offer any activities for children, the Buffalo Safari Jeep Tour leaves twice a day from the lodge and nearby Sylvain Lake presents plenty of family-friendly activity options.
Facilities and Activities
The lodge offers laundry facilities and a gift shop. There are no activities organised on site, but there's plenty to do and explore in the local area - from horse riding and hiking to buffalo safaris and scenic drives. The lodge's staff will be happy to recommend suitable options for you.
There are two wheelchair accessible rooms, which are available upon request.
The State Game Lodge's location is idyllic and its staff will welcome you in like family. The restaurant serves great local food – we loved their buffalo burgers.
Places & hotels on the map
Alternative places to stay nearby
Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favourite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.