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“Ariel Dunes - The New Standard for Condominiums in Florida!!!”

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Ariel Dunes at Seascape Resort
Ranked #19 of 55 Speciality Lodging in Destin
hattiesburg, ms
Level 4 Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Ariel Dunes - The New Standard for Condominiums in Florida!!!”
Reviewed 23 August 2008

My wife and I, as well as two other couples, stayed at the Ariel Dunes the weekend of July 11th, 2008. We booked our stay through book-it and had no problems with our reservations. I believe the problems stated in earlier reviews about unstated charges have been remedied because all of our charges were correct. We payed 687.20 including tax for the 2 night stay. We stayed in room 510, which was a corner room with a view of all of the Seascape Resort as well as the beautiful beaches. To say the least, this Condo was absolutely a cut above the rest. I have stayed in Condos from Colorado Springs to Paradise Island, Bahamas and this is the new standard for Condominiums everywhere. We arrived around 4pm at the Condo and were immediately impressed with the gated entry with security services as well as the stunning view of the Condo and the beautiful green golf course it is positioned on. The check-in counter is in the breezeway between the Ariel Dunes. As I was walking to the check-in area, I noticed the large stainless steel bar-b-que grill that guest can use situated in a little concrete hut area on the grass just before you get to the breezeway where I was then blown away by the beautiful view of the ocean. This set the mood for what would be a beautiful stay. Check-in was very quick and the staff was extremely helpful. We got a little envelope with our room keys, wrist-ring pool bands, parking card, and an ammenity card from La Dolce Vita which is the name of the company that runs the little stand on the beach where you go to get your free chair rental for the day with umbrella that comes with your room rental. We then used one of the many nice push carts by the elevator to load our luggage on and headed off to our room expecting a clean room with a nice view but we were under estimating what our experience would be. As we entered the room, we noticed the nice tile in the hallway as well as the blast of cool air which is great for those hot Florida summers. This condo has 3 rooms and two wrap- around balconies. The decorations were very nice and quite appropriate for a beach area. One room had 2 twin beds and a private bath with shower and a large closet, the other had a queen size bed, with private bath/shower, large closet, and a very large wrap around balcony with a view of the greens as well as a side view of the beach. I then walked further down the hall to the kitchen area which was beautiful with granite counter tops. The kitchen has a blender, toaster, coffee maker, mixer, can opener, portable phone, large pantry with wire shelves, stove/oven, microwave, double sink/disposal, dishwasher, tons of nice silverware and cooking utensils, baking dishes, pans, bowls, large fridge/freezer, wine glasses, regular glasses, coffee cups, plates, and an In-room concierge book with pics and descriptions of area attractions. You then move to the adjoining carpeted living room and dining area which has tables and chairs, swivel rockers, sleeper sofa, entertainment center with cable tv and a coffee table as well as some beautiful artwork. As if this wasn't enough, you then proceed to the other balcony with a view of everything Florida (beaches, pools, condos) and this balcony wraps around the entire living room and also has another sliding glass door that enters the master bedroom. Oh yeah, the master bedroom is off the living room with a comfortable queen bed, entry to the balcony, large chest for clothes, huge closet, private bath with separate garden tub with a framed mirror above it as well as candles and plants and an awesome all glass shower. The unit has a great digital air conditioner as well as a full size side by side washer and dryer. To say the least, this condo is absolutely gorgeous, very clean, and beautifully decorated. There are also trash chutes on each floor next to the elevators so that you can drop your full trash bags in them as needed. Now about that stand on the beach that you reserve your chair at that comes with your room - this stand also rents jet skis, banana boat rides, water trampolines, and large climbing iceberg for the water. The easiest way to get to the stand is to walk down the road by the beach (easier than walking in the sand) until you get to the walkway bridge that goes over the road and then just walk down the hill to the stand or just call the seascape resort beach tram and ride. I believe the stand opens around 9am or 9:30am, but we just picked the chair we wanted at 7am that was on the beach to the left of the stand and then reserved the chair when the booth opened later that morning - no sense standing in a line at an empty stand when you could be lounging on the beach. All you need to reserve your chair is the amenity card and your room number. The 11,000 sq ft pool at the condo is gorgeous as well with the umbrella fountain and zero entry for the kids. This pool is behind the Ariel Dunes and there is a more plain pool also. They are side by side. The restaurant at the hotel is located in the breezeway across from the check-in area, and they have the largest fresh cinnamon rolls you have ever laid your eyes on. The condo is within a mile or two of all the outlet mall shopping and restaurants you could ever want. I do recommend eating at Another Broken Egg Cafe which is in Sandestin at the Baytowne Wharf while you are there because the omlets are fabulous, and the shopping and atmosphere around Baytowne is wonderful. My wife and I also ate at Cafe Grazie for our anniversary, and it was wonderful as was our waiter who was fresh from Italy - now how is that for realism. The food and atmoshpere were great. My family and I will definately be back soon. My compliments to the owners of our condo and the management at the Ariel Dunes. Thank you for a wonderful stay.

  • Liked — Loved the views, great kitchen, master bath, cable, awesome pools, fast elevators, great airconditioner.
  • Disliked — Having to leave and not having more time to spend at this great location.
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank TRAVELMATES2005
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (35)
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Deridder, Louisiana
Level 6 Contributor
36 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2008

I was very impressed with the room and property. The room was very nicely appointed, and had many more things than I thought would be there, such as a blender, coffee maker, etc., but that probably varies by room. For the building having 24 floors, I was very impressed with the speed of the elevators, it never seemed like the wait was too long. We were on the 17th floor and had a very nice view of the beach. Our kids loved both pools and we spent most of our time there as the beach had june grass (looked almost like algae) the first few days and was full of jellyfish the entire week. The jellyfish were bad everywhere - there were tons even all the way over in Pensacola, so I don't think this problem was just the area around Ariel Dunes. As for the walk to the beach, it is really not that bad, it looks longer than it really is. On a couple of days, pool chairs were hard to come by for our family of 4, but I think that's due to the fact that many people were at the pool instead of the beach due to the june grass & jellyfish. As for the staff, I never experienced an instance where they were not helpful, check in was fast and any questions we had were properly and promptly addressed. Overall, the property and condo exceeded my expectations. For the price I got, I would definitely stay here again.

  • Liked — Great value!
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank Andbod1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lafayette, La
1 review
Reviewed 4 August 2008

For my club's Girlfriend Getaway, we stayed at Ariel Dunes. It was awesome!!! The condo was beautiful, with great amenities. Very stylish and chic. Had a wonderful view of the beach from our balcony. It was very spacious. We would definitely consider Ariel Dunes next time we're vacationing in Destin.

  • Liked — Near the beach & conviently located near shopping outlet, resturants, etc.
  • Disliked — Not a thing, Very pleased.
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank RealWomenRead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
bama
1 review
Reviewed 28 July 2008

Stayed in a 2 bedroom + bunkroom. The room and furnishings were great! Even the lightswitches were labeled so that you didn't have to go around flipping switches trying to find the fan or the lamp or the light. The bed was comfortable, and there were flat screen tvs in the bedrooms (even the bunkroom) and living room. The owners of other units might or might not have similar furnishings though.

The only problems with the room were that the ice maker in the freezer was turned off, so we did not have any ice, and there were no blow dryers. We called the front desk to ask about a blow dryer, and he said, "Did you not bring one?" Then he said that he would "look around but we don't normally keep extras" and that he "would call if he found one." Never heard back from him.

Went down to the Cabana Cafe and asked the lady (Sweet Mary) at the register if there was an ice machine anywhere and she told us just to bring our cooler around the counter and she filled it with ice, for free.

Other than Sweet Mary, I was not impressed with the customer service. While checking in, I asked a question, and the girl interrupted me before I could barely finish. When I told her that I booked through bookit.com, she pretty much washed her hands of me and told me that I would have to call bookit.

  • Liked — Room furnishings
  • Disliked — customer service
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank girlweekend
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
dallas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 July 2008

We rented unit 0210 in tower II the week of July 14-18. The unit was a complete mess. When we arrived on Sunday, 7/13, the drapes in one bedroom were completely detached from the wall (hardware and all), the carpet was full of stains in the living areas, the patio screen door was torn off (someone must have walked through it), and several of the patio table's tiles were broken and laying on the patio. I called 3 times over the week to have these items fixed but nothing ever happened. All I ever heard was ‘a work order has been created’. I don’t feel that I received the property that was advertised. We fully expected a Platinum unit as all the advertising said "absolutely gorgeous and a 10". The condition of the unit was a 5 at best.

Another problem was the unit had no basic cleaning items provided. No dish soap, dishwashing soap, laundry detergent, garbage bags, etc. - no cleaning items whatsoever. The unit felt like a well-visited hotel rather than a platinum condo.

I have left messages for Holly, the Seascape Property Manager, but have not received a reply.

Destin oferrs too many nice properties. This one should be avoided

  • Liked — location
  • Disliked — Staff - cleaniness
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank jdallasDallas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level 5 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 July 2008

I am quite the traveler and have very high expectations of what I look for in a resort property... That being said, the Seascape Resort (ariel dunes) was a great location, sitting just across the street from beautiful Miramar Beach.

The condo we had was a 3 bedroom 3 bath unit. It had three balcony areas, living room and full kitchen with dinning room. It had all the comforts of home and had lavishly appointed with fine linens. There was a flat screen TV in each bedroom and a larger one in the living room.

I understand that all the units are NOT the same though, beings they are individually owned. As for the condo itself, I could not have asked for more. Even the pool was 100% prestine!

The staff at this resort was NOT up to par by any means. We had to wait over an hour to check-in. After a long drive, this is frustrating to anyone with small children! We paid our remaining balance in cash and placed our credit card for incidentals. We learned the day of our check-out that our money was applied to the unit of the person that was in front of us in line! We stayed another day to talk to the manager in the office (whom was obviously off duty the day of our check-out). We finally cleared it up but with a ton of red tape and hastle!

They also forgot to give us our pool passes and then tried to charge us for losing them.

Another thing, the phone in the condo was turned off - their response... "It is up to the owner to pay that bill"... It was not a big deal since we all had cell phones but come on...

The beach was perfect and came with an umbrella if you got up early to wait for one... (7:30 am-ish). The sand was clean and free of debris. The emeral blue waters were warm and friendly to us that week.

Overall, the condo - nearly perfect!
the staff - the worst I have ever seen.

  • Liked — The condo was perfect!
  • Disliked — The staff was terrible!
  • Stayed August 2007, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank Rebecca A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 17 July 2008

Atlanta, GA

When my family and friends got there. We were very happy the view was excellent. We were on the 12th Floor, we were able to check-in right away. I expected the staff to be friendly but they weren't. What really bothered me is that Friday night we took our children (3 and 4 year old to swim at the beach) When we got back I gave them a bath. One of the towels hanging on the rack had some blood. I almost dried my kids with that bloody towel. The staff only works from 9-5pm so there is no way to contact anyone. The following morning at exactly 9am I personally visited the front desk and informed of them of what happen. The maid brought some towels but left the bloody towel. Around 12:30pm, I again went down stairs at this point I was furious because they are just not taking this whole thing seriously. Can you believe we stayed 2 nights and when we check out no one came to pick up the bloody towel.The condo management/owners and its staff has to abide by the OSHA regulations. The bottom line, the condo and the view is nice but the health of my family and friends are first. You just don't know what people has now adays, so I will not come back to Ariel Dunes and will not recommend it because of what we went through. I requested for a supervisor who is never present when I informed them of the problem. I've also informed the condo owners and e-mail them as soon as I returned home no e-mail no apologies...You decide???

Stayed July 2008
Helpful?
1 Thank bakasyon2002
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ariel Dunes at Seascape Resort

Property: Ariel Dunes at Seascape Resort
Address: 112 Seascape Dr, Destin, FL 32550-7029
Region: United States > Florida > Florida Panhandle > Destin
Amenities:
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #19 of 55 Speciality Lodging in Destin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Ariel Dunes at Seascape Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 225
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Ariel Dunes Hotel Destin
Ariel Dunes At Seascape Resort Destin, Florida

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