“This is my favorite trailer of all the ones I’ve seen,” said a friend in the RV world. I was surprised by their gushing over the Grand Design Imagine 2800BH. Not that there’s anything wrong with this floor plan, but I have seen it before. That’s not necessarily a good thing or a bad thing. But I did have to look further at this model to see what I was missing.
Funny thing – I was talking to them right as I pulled off the highway headed for my campsite in Millersburg, Indiana. There, to the left of me, was a monster Grand Design facility. Life works in funny ways.
There are two entry doors to the Imagine 2800BH, which I think is a huge bonus. That’s especially so if you have a lot of people who are staying in it – as you might in a large bunk model trailer. Each of those doors has a different type of stair construction. That, at first, might seem curious – but it makes a lot of sense.
I’ve heard from several of you who really dislike the solid steps for a number of reasons. One of those is that they may not be usable when you’re in a tight storage lot. They also could bring in debris when the weather is especially lousy. So if you want a quick in and out, the more traditional travel trailer stairs can be a good choice.
Those stairs are the type at the bedroom door in this model, so since we’re talking about those, let’s go in here first.
Grand Design’s cabinets are unique
Throughout the entire coach, Grand Design has a modern, clean, two-tone cabinet design. They’re almost Art Deco-style cabinets and drawer pulls. It’s a clean look that is unique to Grand Design, and I like it. It also imparts a high-end feel which reinforces the branding.
In the bedroom there are cabinets on either side of the queen-sized (60” X 80”) bed along with drawers beneath those. Overhead you will not be surprised by the fact that there’s a vent. But you might be happy to learn that this trailer is fully wired and prepped for that hole in the roof to accommodate a second air conditioner.
Yep, this sucker is a 50-amp trailer.
Under the bed is a sort of hope chest, which is not uncommon. But I have mentioned the sliding box in this storage area in other reviews – and I do like it. Also, the door to the rest of the interior from the bedroom is rather large, which is also nice.
Once in the main living space of the Imagine 2800BH, you’ll notice that the tri-folding couch and U-shaped dinette share space in a large super slide. The dinette is a nifty affair as the lower cushion along the outside wall can actually be pulled out to form an ottoman. You can use it with the couch, for example. This is pretty slick. I also like the fact that the table is free-standing and is constructed of the same material as the countertops.
Little details make a difference over time.
No shortage of counter space in the Imagine 2800BH
The galley is an “L”-shaped affair with the sink along the shared wall with the bedroom. There’s a counter extension, also made with the same material as the table and the rest of the counter. There is no shortage of counter space.
When you add the surface of the flush-mount three-burner stove with 17” oven, that makes for even more prep space if someone is looking for that.
Next to that, the refrigerator face has the same appearance as all the other cabinets, completing the look. Again, little details. Speaking of details – there are pet dishes in a drawer below the refrigerator. There is also a drawer below the oven that has peg holes and pegs to keep pots and pans from sliding around. Clever.
Further down the camp side you’ll find a TV which can swing out. There’s a large pantry behind that.
Under the TV is a space to put things like game consoles or DVD players. The space is covered by a smoked glass door. So you can keep that closed yet the remote controls will still work.
Double-over-double bunks in the rear of the Imagine 2800BH
At the rear of the trailer are double-over-double bunks. They have a rounded edge facing the main body of the trailer. The bottom bunk has a portion where the platform it’s on can swing up. That makes space for things like a bicycle or such. This could also be a good place for a pet crate, if that’s something you travel with.
In the bathroom, adjacent to the bunks, there is a 30” X 36” shower with a Nautilus shower door. That’s a plastic sheet on a roller with a squeegee. The porcelain toilet has good space around it, and the sink has additional counter space.
Lastly, at the rear entrance to the trailer there is space for shoes under the cabinet that holds the TV. That’s also a usable feature.
Outside the Grand Design Imagine 2800BH
We’ve talked about the two different stair types. Also noteworthy is the smaller outdoor kitchen with a two-burner propane cooktop and 110 vac 1.6-cubic-foot refrigerator.
This trailer, like the rest of the Imagine line, features a drop frame construction. This translates into a nice amount of storage space at the front.
I’m also a big fan of Grand Design’s universal docking station. That puts all the water and power inputs on the trailer in one spot. It’s also inside a compartment – as you might expect to find in a fifth wheel but not in a travel trailer.
Lastly, the baggage doors are all slam latch design with magnetic hold backs. I also appreciate that, while there are two gray tanks, Grand Design has actually plumbed them together. That means you only need one sewer hose hookup to dump all the tanks.
I know a lot of people really hold the Grand Design name in high regard. This is also going to make this trailer potentially easier to sell down the road. Like Airstream, if you can brand yourself successfully in this business that actually has value in the real world.
Also, I like that Grand Design has now incorporated their tire pressure monitoring system into their Compass Connect app. That allows you to monitor tire pressure without needing yet another screen in the cab of your truck. This trailer features their Compass Connect system in a panel with buttons. You can also control it with your smartphone, thus giving you choices.
Grand Design has really managed to do an exceptional job with their messaging and working to establish a quality image in the customer’s eyes. I think they are a textbook example of really good marketing and keeping a focus on the messaging in every way possible.
Relatively common floor plan but with a more stylish interior
This is a relatively common floor plan in the Grand Design Imagine 2800BH but one that doesn’t often get the more stylish interior. I can see why my friend likes this model.
One area where I could see some improvement is in a better suspension and tires, as well. Neither of these is going to matter except to geeks like me who look at tires and suspension almost before we do anything else.
The cool thing about the huge variety in the RV world is how there are both objective and subjective reasons to love a specific product. I can understand the appeal of this design and, while not my personal favorite, I can’t fault my friend for feeling this way. But there are a lot of choices in this floor plan so I would consider those just to make sure you’ve made the right choice for you.
These RV reviews are written based on information provided by the manufacturers along with our writer’s own research. We receive no money or other financial benefits from these reviews. They are intended only as a brief overview of the vehicle, not a comprehensive critique, which would require a thorough inspection and/or test drive.
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So obviously the tires can get swapped to Endurances but what can reasonably be done to upgrade the suspension?