Located 20 minutes from Panguitch, adjacent to majestic Bryce Canyon National Park, is a must-see attraction for visitors and locals alike: Ruby’s Inn.
In 1916, Reuben C. (Ruby) Syrett was a rancher who staked out his homestead claim with his wife and two children. He brought them to a lookout area named Sunset Point (the current location of Bryce Canyon lodge) and noted: “This is one of the most beautiful sights I have ever seen.” Shortly after that, he started writing letters to state officials and friends, stating, “You have to see this amazing canyon, the entire world should see it.”
In 1923 he approached the National Park Service and asked them where they were planning on putting the access road to the park. They said they had a few ideas. A savvy businessman, Syrett said he had a large ranch on the north side of the park, and offered the National Park Service the land to build the road across his ranch. They took him up on the offer. And, as they say, the rest is history.
After 103 years in business, Ruby’s Inn remains a family affair. “My great-grandfather started a very modest operation with 20 rooms, and it blossomed into three hotels with almost 700 rooms on over 1,800 acres,” says Ruby’s Inn hotel general manager, Lance Syrett.
The Syrett family is heavily involved in the Utah tourism industry. Lance Syrett serves as chair of the Utah Office of Tourism Board of Directors and is a member of the Utah Tourism Industry Association Board and chair of the Garfield County Travel Council.
The Ruby’s Inn property has three hotels and a large RV park campground. The hotels have different price points with everything from affordable to luxury accommodations. The Bryce View Lodge is best for those on a budget. The historic Ruby’s Inn and the Bryce Canyon Grand provide the newest and most luxurious accommodations.
Guests won’t go hungry while visiting Ruby’s Inn. There’s a general store as well as multiple restaurants at various price points. The restaurants include everything from diner food to the Cowboy Buffet Steak to Ebeneezer’s Barn and Grill where visitors can dine on steak or salmon fillet. Guests can also attend a cowboy dinner show complete with western entertainment.
There’s no shortage of activities for guests to join in on the fun. Ruby’s Inn offers everything from fixed-wing and helicopter flights, to horseback riding tours that take visitors to the rim of Bryce Canyon, to all-terrain-vehicle tours. The Inn also rents mountain bikes, and there is a paved 17-mile bike path to Inspiration Point. It’s very family-friendly, so our guests can enjoy a nice bike ride, adds Syrett.
“Wintertime is my favorite time to be at Ruby’s Inn. We get a lot of snow and offer a lot of wintertime activities like cross country skiing, snowshoeing and an ice rink complete with a Zamboni,” Syrett says.