Donna Gates, founder of Tonglen Lake Lodge

Our Story

Set in a pristine Alaskan location surrounded by peaks, tundra, tiaga and an expansive lake, Tonglen Lake Lodge is a celebration of art, sustainability, community and nature. Able to soothe body, mind and soul, it is a transformative place of inspiration, relaxation and beauty. It is your answer to Denali Park lodging.

Tonglen Lake Lodge is founded by local artist and owner Donna Gates who was first captivated by the magic of Alaska upon arriving for a summer job in 1980 at Denali National Park. Living on the edge of Tonglen Lake since 1981, where she lived an authentic, off-the-grid, Alaskan lifestyle, she raised a family and cultivated a career as a fine artist.

In 2012, Donna’s vision to turn five acres of land into a luxury Denali Park lodge that escapes the crowds and offers the opportunity for visitors to experience Denali from the tranquillity of this unique property became a reality. In 2013, the construction of the artisan cabins and the impressive main Lodge, featuring the, Artisan Café, were completed by a team of local experts. Tonglen was created to offer the perfect location for couples or families alike to vacation in Alaska, and since its opening day, it has proven to be just that.

Tonglen Lake Lodge is Donna’s tribute to her community and to Denali. Idyllically positioned only 10 minutes from the main entrance of Denali National Park, Tonglen Lake Lodge is a wilderness retreat that allows you to escape the crowds and enjoy an authentic Alaskan experience that will leave you in awe.

Created by Hand

From the construction of the log lodge, private cabins, unique doors and furniture, Tonglen Lake Lodge is a celebration of handcrafted talent by local artisans. Everything from the railings, pottery, glassware and sculptures sets Tonglen Lake Lodge apart as a visual feast characterised by a never-ending artistic journey.

Tonglen Lake Lodge
Alaskan wilderness

The Tonglen Experience

Denali National Park with its expansive 6 million acres of Alaskan wilderness which includes Mount McKinley (Denali), the highest mountain peak in North America, is a wonder of nature that attracts more than 600,000 visitors every year. If you need Denali Park lodging but like the idea of escaping the crowds then consider  Tonglen Lake Lodge which offers the space, comfort and peace to recharge while you enjoy an authentic, luxurious Alaskan experience in between excursions.

Our mornings begin with locally brewed coffee and delicious breakfasts that are made in-house to set you up for a day of adventure and when prefer to relax, our private log cabins, common areas and breathtaking scenery of the lake and mountains will ensure your comfort and tranquility.

Apart from our many onsite guest activities, which include local presentations and yoga classes as well as local art and music offerings, our evening campfires and dinners at the Lodge are favorites with our guests. Here, new friends are often made while our guests enjoy the first-hand stories of the area’s unique history shared by the Tonglen Family.

At Tonglen, our guests enjoy the feeling of being at home while their every need is anticipated. Amongst the consistent feedback that we receive, our guests tell us that our attention to detail, excellent cuisine, warm hospitality and friendly, helpful staff are some of the things that made them feel so at home. We hope that will be your experience too.