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“waaaay too crowded beach”

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Resorts of Pelican Beach
Certificate of Excellence
Evansville
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“waaaay too crowded beach”
Reviewed 7 August 2013

This was our second time staying at Pelican. It will be the last. I'm sure I can find something in this price range that isn't so congested.

The beach was goofy! One can hardly get to the water without walking on towels and ducking under umbrellas. It really is that bad.

The place was booked to capacity and the elevators were always busy. Making things worse, one of them never worked the entire time we were there. Never any maintenance workers fixing it either. Making things worse, it smelled like people had vomited in them.

Nice pool, but good luck getting a chair unless you get up early to stake your ground.

Our unit, #2010, was nice and clean. Well equipped. Only complaint was the king bed. The mattress should have been replace a long time ago. Kind of like sleeping in a hammock.

Some of my complaints can be addressed by the owners and staff. However, the beach congestions is just something you'll have to deal with if you stay here.

Room Tip: I was in 2010. Nice room, but bed was uncomfortable.
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with family
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3 Thank Trevor99evansville
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Ponchatoula, Louisiana
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 August 2013

Pelican Beach 1403- Condo was very nice. We were very happy with it… for a few hours. Turned the air on when we got there and noticed it was a little loud but figured it was because it we just turned it on and it was working hard to cool off. As the night went on, it got louder and louder. None of us slept the first night. When we called the management company the next morning, it was obvious they already knew of the a/c problem but still let us stay in that condo. The second night we were moved to another condo. The third day we were moved into, you guessed it, ANOTHER condo. In our 4 night stay, we slept in 3 different condos. When you have 5 people’s luggage and 4 days worth of food to move, it doesn’t make for an easy move. Our entire Saturday was ruined because we were waiting on the Southern Vacation Rentals office to get our next condo ready for us to move in. It took us a half a day to get packed and unpacked again. We weren’t settled in anywhere until the last day of our vacation. By that point, we were disgusted. We completely understand that things happen and a/c units DO break. However, when you pay the amount of money we spent for these condos and you are inconvenienced by having to move 3 times, you should be well compensated. We fought with Southern Vacation Rentals for 5 days and they wouldn’t budge off of giving us any more than a 10% discount. I’d like to see how the Management at SVR would like it if this happened to them on their vacations. You come on vacation to relax and you spend 3 of your 4 days on the phone getting moved around everywhere and all you get is $30 off your condo a night when we paid $315 a night is a slap in the face. They felt that we were compensated enough by being moved out of 1403 but they aren’t taking into consideration how much time and effort it took to stay on the phone to make these arrangements and how much time it took to move all over the place. We will NEVER use this rental company again! The condos are fantastic, the Management is NOT.

And might I add that we were told that 1403 had a washer and dryer but it did NOT. There is a community wash area down the hall. Also, when we got there the ice machine was turned off in our freezer and we discovered that there is no community ice machines at these condos. We had no idea we needed to provide our own ice. Even Motel 8’s have ice machines. That needs to be added to the “Things you bring” section in your fancy smartphone app.

Room Tip: Make sure you bring ice!
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
7 Thank Julie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SC
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2013

Ok, this is a good/bad review. I decided to take the wife and teenage daughters to Destin for our beach vacation this year.

First off - the 2 bedroom condo we rented was very good. We enjoyed the condo. It was everything we expected based on the website pictures. I guess the only negative is that the condo above us had a tile floor so everytime someone moved a chair it sounded like fingernails on a chalkboard! But I have no complaints about the condo. The owners did a great job with their furnishings. Additionally, there are 20 floors (actually 19 since there was no 13th floor) so the elevators were used quite a bit. One of the four elevators never worked the entire week we were there but again no problems. And the staff did a great job cleaning the high traffic areas. The checkin process was fine. We had no problems with the staff as they were nice during check in and check out. Be sure to keep a luggage cart in your room the night before you check out - seems that's the thing to do to ensure you don't have to lug your bags to your vehicle...

We ate out 5 of the 7 nights we were there. Got to say Louisiana Lagniappe was our favorite and the most expensive of all the meals. McGuire's Irish Pub was good. Fisherman's Wharf was ok - as well as the night we just ate at the Hard Rock Cafe at Destin Commons (outdoor mall area). We did not like the Laredo Cantina that well but they had a great Margarita!

Destin Commons is an outdoor mall area (Bass Pro Shops, Movie theater, Books a Million, etc...) and was a good place for the girls to spend more money. We didn't do the water park or any of the outdoor amusement type spots. I was intrigued by Fuddpuckers but I couldn't talk my wife into letting me pull in to check it out...

On a cloudy day we took a trip down to Okaloosa Island to walk the pier ($2 per adult). We also went through the Gulfarium ($20 per adult) to see dolphins, seals, sharks, turtles, etc... Everybody seemed to enjoy the exhibits and shows. Definitely not sea world but they do a great job there.

Ok, now the bad and it pains me to say it but the beach was terrible. There are two huge high rise condo buldings there at the Pelican Resorts. Evidently in Florida the property lines extend to the edge of the water. And both properties that border the Pelican property put up caution tape along the boundary and do not (repeat do not) allow Pelican renters/owners on their beach. So imagine 3000 people crammed into 150 yards of beach front. Let's just say everybody gets to know their beach neighbor. We rented an umbrella and two beach chairs from the beach service which was fine. However, they don't get there to setup until 8ish/9am. So the early birds who own their own umbrellas/chairs get most of the beach front spots. So in my opinion, go to Walmart - buy a cheap umbrella and stake your claim while you make coffee. The week we were there there was basically 4 rows of chairs and umbrellas along the beach. Both properties to the left and right of the Pelican property were not crowded. If you want an idea of how it is setup try google earth and zoom in on the beach area. You'll see what I'm talking about.

The beach property itself will keep us from ever staying at this property again. Other than being packed in like sardines, the ocean has eroded the beach and has created a ledge. If you like to walk or run on the beach near the water - well you need to be part mountain goat or run behind the tractor that cleans the beach. Simply- the beach front is terrible. Yes, the sand was white and on a couple of days you could see why the area is called the Emerald Coast. But we assumed from the storms and rain that we had, the "june" grass was a turnoff as well. Definitely not what we expected.

Will we ever visit Destin again? Probably. But no way we stay at the Pelican. And it's not because of the condo or the staff or the parking. It will be because of the beach itself. I would suggest anyone who is trying the Destin area for their first trip - ask the property about the beach before you book. Ask about the umbrellas and chairs situation.

So our grade for this trip would be average. The emerald coast wasn't as pretty as we expected. Heck, most of the time we couldn't even see the water from our vantage point.

If you have any questions I'll be glad to answer! Hope this helps other first time Destin visitors.

Room Tip: Our 2 bedroom condo faced east so we caught the morning sun. Do not stay on lower floors overlookin...
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank golfcaddie99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed 2 August 2013 via mobile

This was our second and last stay at pelican beach resorts! The beachfront is way over crowded! They are trying to accommodate two resorts with one beach area. Front desk help was rude! Rooms were nice and clean. Only one washer/dryer per floor. People kept moving our laundry from washer to dryer. It couldn't have been done for too long. Pizza was great at the cafe. Black mold around the pool area, and my son fell 3 times. Our first experience here was excellent, sorry to say we were very frustrated with the overcrowded areas!! The rows on the beaches were five and six rows back with neighbor resorts being one row!!

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Anonymous3811
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 4 Contributor
30 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 July 2013

Resort is very convenient to everything--it's in the middle of the block. Lots of eateries and shops closely nearby (e.g. Chick fil A, Golden Corral, Wendy's, McDonalds, Winn-Dixie, Target, Hog's Breath, whataburger, Ihop, Water Park, Go-karts, etc.).
Beautiful scenery w/ palm trees, clean and very serene. Having a security guard office in front to monitor incoming cars is very nice. We stayed in terrace bldg which was literally a 2-3 minute walk to main bldg/beach--didnt need to take advantage of the FREE Tram rides. Bldgs are well maintained. Beach is clean but rather small area--that's b/c there are tons of resorts all lined up in a row along the beach next to each other. We chose to rent beach chairs/umbrella ($7/hr) if you're stay is short. Elevators are fast!
Our 2 BDRM/2 BATH condo was nice and modern--3 flat screens and updated washer/dryer. Balcony is nice and long--extends down to master bedroom. It would have been nice to have whirlpool tub in master bedroom. Make sure u bring a couple of extra rolls of toilet tissue to have on hand--they provide 1 extra roll in each bathroom. If staying a week and cooking in your room also bring extra trash bags (3) and dish washing detergent--they only provide 2 packets for dishwasher. You'll definitely need laundry detergent--none provided.

You must try Shake's Custard while here! We went to the Donut Hole early--like 8:30 am and had only 5 minute wait for a table. Ate breakfast and It was just okay--a bit pricey. Donuts were just okay--lots of variety but taste was not "good or great".

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Vanzi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kentucky
Level 5 Contributor
89 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 July 2013 via mobile

I don't understand how this place gets such great reviews. The resort, which consists of two buildings (the Terrace is 1/4 mile back from the beach) is nice enough - no issues with the room. However, condo and home owners associations now control much of Destin's beachfront. As a result, all guests have to stay in the beach area right in front of their lodging. Yes, you can still walk the beach, just not stop and sit. Pelican has too many units for the small amount of beach. We were so far back that WE COULD NOT SEE THE OCEAN! We ended up going to the public beach down the road. On the bright side, all the tacky beach property divisions and enforcers leave at about 5:00 PM. So you can use the beach in the evening.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank CheapWorldTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Springfield, Tennessee
Level 4 Contributor
44 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 July 2013

We have stayed here twice and both times it was a wonderful experience....this time we were there on the official start of summer...even though it was crowded, we still had excellent service from the front counter and the staff was pleasant and helpful. Loved the beach, the view, the condo in itself...we stayed in 1704 which was great for dolphin watching. Will absolutely stay here again and again!

Room Tip: Recommend rooms above 9th floor...better view less noise.
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Dorene Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Resorts of Pelican Beach

Property: Resorts of Pelican Beach
Address: 1002 Highway 98 E, Destin, FL 32541-2992
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Florida > Florida Panhandle > Destin
Amenities:
Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 55 Speciality Lodging in Destin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Resorts of Pelican Beach 3.5*
Number of rooms: 345
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Pelican Beach Resort and Conference Center and the Terrace at Pelican Beach are located in the heart of Destin. Pelican Beach Resort includes 340 gulf-front and gulf-view condominium units, 19 floor high-rise with 1 and 2 bedroom units. The Terrace includes 95 units lakefront views with 2 and 3 bedroom condominium units.Guests at either property can use the facilities at both, which include 3 large pools, one kiddie pool, two hot tubs, two fitness centers, two saunas, tennis, and an arcade/game room. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Resorts Of Pelican Beach Hotel Destin
Pelican Beach Resort Destin
Resorts Of Pelican Beach Destin, Florida

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