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“A perfect secret beach spot”
Review of Lahaina Inn Resort

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Lahaina Inn Resort
Reviewed 27 October 2013

I've been staying at Lahaina since 1998, and have been there in every season of the year. I love this area of Florida, and especially FMB. I've walked the entire 7 mile stretch of Fort Myers Beach several times. I'm convinced from what I've seen of other resorts & their beachfronts that Lahaina is the perfect location on Fort Myers Beach. I can't recommend Lahaina enough! Great sand, lots of nature (dolphins! birds! seashells!), friendly staff, well-maintained, comfortable units: a very peaceful and relaxing place. Read on for more specifics:

I love the section of beach where Lahaina is located: middle of the island, away from the noise of the pier (aka Times Square) at the north end of the island and not overshadowed by the multi-story condos at the south end. If you're looking for a nightclub atmosphere, you won't find it here. Rather, it is serene, quiet, with the only "nightlife" the stars, the waves, and -- maybe -- a turtle. (Because it is right on the beach, outside lighting must be dimmed during turtle season and you're expected to close your blinds at night to shield inside light.) You are right on the sand, with lots of palm trees -- a picturesque island paradise. Two small swimming pools are on the property, and there is a fitness room as well.

The beach is white sand and it is quite wide at Lahaina. If you like to walk the beach, this is a great place for that, or for riding bikes. If you are interested in shells, you will find lots right outside your unit's door. If you're on the beach early enough, you'll find a variety of shells that have not been broken in the surf. Lots of starfish, sand dollars and Florida Fighting Conches to awe you -- but leave them on the beach if they're alive! And don't throw the Conchs back into the surf -- they live in the sand and come up at low tide to breathe! Another reviewer commented that the beach was dirty. I've never experienced that. The only time that I've seen any kind of trash on the beach was in the weeks following Hurricane Charlie. You will find seaweed, shells, driftwood, sometimes fish after a storm, but that's nature, not trash.

Some may call the decor -- it's typical "Old Florida" style -- a little dated, but the units are well-maintained and I've seen new furnishings in the units 3 times in the 15 years I've been staying there. So, "dated" can only refer to the style, not the quality of the furnishings. All but 3 units (which are clearly designated) are on the beach. Almost all of the units have at least 3 stairs to access, some more. The only exception (I think) are the two pool side units 12 & 13. The steep stairs to units 21 & 22 are not brightly lit and might be an issue for some who have difficulties with stairs or seeing at night.

Some of the other reviews indicate that there is road noise. There is in units 26-29. BUT, there is only one main road through the island and most hotels are right on the road, so this is not something that you won't encounter in some rooms/condos at most other resorts on the island. The other beachside units do sit a little further back so you have more of a sound barrier. I've never found it to be much of a problem as life mid-island seems to quiet down by 10pm. For two weeks a few years ago, I had to conduct phone interviews while on vacation and the only place I had decent cell coverage was sitting beside the road -- so, how noisy can it be at night, if I could conduct business calls during the day while practically standing in the road? (Note: this was completely because of the shoddy cell phone carrier that I had at the time. Haven't had problems cell signal with any of the major carriers for last 4 - 5 years).

Internet service can be spotty and always seems to be more of a problem on Sundays, but maybe that is because nobody is in the office of address the issue (the only day the office is closed; they do respond to the emergency number off-hours). Another reviewer who has been there more recently than I noted they have upgraded the WiFi so maybe it is no longer a problem. Seems like every place on the beach has wifi, so (without getting too geeky) there are lots of access points broadcasting, so there is bound to be some issues from time to time. Still, I've never found it to be that much of a problem and that includes the weeks I've spent there when officially "working".

Kitchens are well-equipped but small. Still, it is possible to cook a full meal there, should you choose. Publix is within walking distance, and there is a great gourmet grocery (The Sandy Butler) just as you approach the island bridge. If something is missing from the kitchen, just ask at the office & they will get it. There are several grills throughout the property too if you want to grill. They are well-lit, so you can grill after dark. Maintenance crew is great, as is the office staff. There is very little turnover -- I think the man who manages it has been there for over 30 years. Staff loves to greet vacationers at Monday breakfast and Wednesday Hot Dog Lunch. I've never had to sit through a sales pitch. Most of the people staying there own their weeks or have exchanged them through RCI. I think that is one reason why the units remain in such good condition from year to year.

Rooms are not cleaned daily. Towel exchange is on Monday mornings until around noon. On-site laundry, but you need your own detergent. Towels in room are always in great condition and they give you plenty to last to Towel Exchange, if not the entire week. AC & water pressure has always been great in every unit I've stayed.

There are lots of things to do in the Lee & Collier county area -- Ding Darling Nature Preserve, 6-Mile Slough, Corkscrew Sanctuary for nature lovers, shopping outlets, boat & fishing excursions, movie theatres for rainy days, minature golf and other attractions for kids, parasailing, water excursions, sunset cruises, etc., and lots of restaurants throughout the island, with a major concentration of bars & live music in the Times Square area. It's a perfect place for a Sit in a chair in the sun type vacation, but lots of options should you want to do more.

Room Tip: Your choices may be limited by when you want to go since most of the weeks are owned by Time share o...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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9  Thank TravelingAnnie5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 5 October 2013

Our family has stayed at Lahaina many times, so hopefully I can give you the “inside scoop.” We love this peaceful resort with its gorgeous views of dolphins and sunsets from the private balcony. The area is quiet at night, and I've always felt safe there even when I've stayed alone. Lahaina is attractive and comfortable. The resort isn't plush, but I prefer its casual ambiance where you can really enjoy the laid-back feel of island life. I also love having the beach so close to our door – and not having to ride an elevator down a dozen floors to enjoy the sand and surf! You'll be in good hands at Lahaina. Since the resort has had the same manager for 30+ years and some long-term staff, you know it's run by caring people who know what they're doing!

Here's the scoop on what's in the units: They have nice kitchens with full-size appliances – fridge, dishwasher, glass-top stove, and microwave. The kitchens include coffeemaker/filters, dishes, cookware, and utensils. Dishwasher detergent and dish soap are included, but bring your own laundry detergent if you'd like to use the free washers and dryers, which are located by the office. Towels for bath and kitchen are included, but bring your own beach towels. Each unit has free WiFi for your computer (connection is good), a DVD player (you can borrow movies for a minimal fee), TV, and clock/radio. (There's even a good old landline phone – lol!) There's also a vacuum, iron, and hairdryer.

For recreation or relaxing, the main attraction is the beach with its soft white sand and gentle waves. It's perfect for children and sandcastles! The slope of Fort Myers Beach is also gentle, which makes it the most comfortable shoreline I've ever walked on. There are seven miles of uninterrupted public beach for strolling, fishing, or shelling. Lahaina has two pools, several gas grills, and beach volleyball. You can rent jet skies or boats nearby. Pool toys, board games, puzzles, and books are available on site.

On the island, you're close to restaurants, library, cinema, churches, post office, and shopping. (There are mainly souvenir/resort-wear shops on the islands; malls and high-end stores are 15-30 minutes away on the mainland in Ft. Myers, Bonita Springs, and Naples. By the way, a nice Publix supermarket is only two minutes away by car, or you can take a pleasant ten-minute walk along the beach and then cut across the road to Publix.) Southwest Florida has some great sightseeing, including Thomas Edison's estate and the Everglades. Nearby Sanibel & Captiva Islands are fun to explore. Or it's wonderful to kick back and relax at Lahaina!

Room Tip: If possible, get a gulf-side unit for the terrific view (although the units across the street are mo...
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  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled solo
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10  Thank 32Hoosier34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 August 2013

Lahaina was a perfect beach experience for us! Our travel requirements, in order of importance: An allergen free ocean front room with a balcony, views of the ocean, and immediate access to a white sand beach, perfect for walking and celebrating sunsets. Lahaina delivers the total package.
When we called to book our room, the front desk person was extremely informative and articulate about the property and answered all our questions patiently. She added, "Make sure you are here for the Wednesday bar-b-que where all the quests get a chance to meet and have lunch.
Our unit was built on the beach with the calm waters of the Gulf at our door step. We stepped onto the white sand beach and engaged in our favorite past time; we walked for miles under a brilliant blue sky with the relaxing sound of the ebb and flow of the Gulf along side us.
We had a full kitchen and kept some food on hand that we enjoy. In the mornings we brewed fresh coffee and enjoyed sipping our brew and relaxing on the balcony. There are great restaurants in Ft Myers and we are as particular about our food as our accommodations. We did our research and were never disappointed. In the evenings we returned to sunsets on the beach and drinks on the balcony.
We appreciate that the Lahaina web site gives explicit diagrams of rooms and their locations. Using this information we were able to choose the room that best suited our needs. We also read reviews, were able to do the research, ask the right questions and the result was a perfect hotel experience for us.
Before we left Lahaina, we booked a future week and are so eager to return.

Room Tip: On the Lahaina web site, the diagram of unit buildings and room configurations is accurate. When yo...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank madimach
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2013

I have been here 3 times. They must have upgraded their WiFi system. In now works really good. Strong signal and fast.

The beach is beautiful. Clean and a very large area.

It is a very relaxing property. The people at the front desk are very, very nice.

There is a huge video library for rainy days too.

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled with family
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5  Thank 556ChrisC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 March 2013

Right on road. Traffic all night. Never slept. Outdated. not fancy at all. I thought the pool area was awful. Pool was in back and isolated.. No lounge chairs in pool area. Very uninviting. Never used pool. Very sad. Never saw a staff person around except for towel exchange day. Skimpy on towels, etc. I wanted new linens midweek and told I must wash my own. Really! I'll go elsewhere. I am on vacation. I thought the money I paid was not worth it but it is on the beach...I guess you pay for that!

Room Tip: Right on road. Loud all night. Never slept.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled with family
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4  Thank Donna C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 February 2013

This was a last minute internet find. It's A small place with not a lot of amenities but the unit was nice and clean. The furniture was nice with all the kitchen utensils supplied including a dishwasher.We were in a two bedroom unit across the street which faces the road which can be a little noisy in the morning but bearable.The beach across the street was nice for just lying around or great for taking along walk along the water.They supply beach chairs for lying around but if you need a umbrella for some shade bring your own.There are two small pools on the premises on each side of the road.If you are looking for a new modern state of the art resort this is not the place for you.There was a new kitchen but the rest of the space was a little dated but not bad. would definitely visit this place again

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank blueblurr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 December 2012

This was a last minute trip for us through an RCI exchange. We wanted to be on the Gulf and as far south as possible. This is the place.

It is small place of only 40+ units. 3 of them are across the street and are all 2 bedrooms. There are 2 pools. One on the beach side and one behind the 3 units across the street. The pools are heated at about 80 or so degrees. Very nice. We were in unit 28 (a 1 bedroom) which directly faces the beach. Amazing views like Jamaica. The unit is small, but it has a full kitchen/fridge. Nice king size bed but little storage room except for the closet (no dresser-but, a couple pull out drawers). There is no safe in the units, but, after we were there a day or so, no need.

We saw dolphins almost every morning from our 1st floor deck. All rooms are non-smoking, so you head to the deck/outside to smoke. No problem.

You will meet great people at this resort that have coming here for years and/or decades. It is mostly retirees that come here and/or rent/own here. We were the youngest group in the pack that week. Which is ok because everyone was extremely nice and friendly. Great people!

The staff was excellent! If you need unit items, just go to the office during business hours and ask for them. Towel exchange is on Wed from 9am till noon and you can pick up other supplies you may need. They have a free breakfast on Mondays (Eggs, bacon, and toast) and free lunch on Wednesdays (Hot Dogs & baked beans). Nice gathering times for all.

You are about 3.3 miles from the hot spot of the stretch and what is known as the pier. The trolley runs daily and has many stops during that trek. It is 50 cents per person for each ride (doesn't matter where you get off).

You have to go to the Heavenly Biscuit for breakfast as least once. It is on Mango and Estero Blvd. Little place and really crowded. Great breakfast sandwiches but I would shy away from the gravy (bland). Open from 7:30am till 1pm 7days/week.

The only reason we didn't rate this as a 5 are threefold:
1) No hot tub (Big deal for me)
2) No screens on the sliding glass doors to the deck/balcony (especially on the first floor)
3) No safe in units. Even though I did say no worries about this. I would still like a safe for things.

We would go back in a heartbeat, but it is a tough resort to trade into during the peak times. We got last minute lucky.

GREAT PLACE!!!!

Merry Christmas to all,

Dave and Missy

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank DaveandMissy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Lahaina Inn Resort

Address: 5580 Estero Blvd, Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931-4195
Region: United States > Florida > Southwest Gulf Coast > Fort Myers Beach
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 29 Speciality Lodging in Fort Myers Beach
Number of rooms: 37
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Also Known As:
Lahaina Hotel Fort Myers Beach
Lahaina Inn Resort Fort Myers Beach, Florida

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