We stayed at the Holiday Inn Club Vacations Panama City Beach Resort over Spring Break - mid-March 2014.
As others have mentioned, you must be very specific about which "Holiday Inn" resort you are staying as there is another much further down the beach that seemingly all the shuttle drivers know about and presume to be the one at which you are staying. I was fortunate to have written down the ADDRESS as several times we had to reference the address along with "the one across from the McDonalds" in order to get to the correct place. I'm not sure why there is such confusion as I was told the resort had changed names/ownership at least 2 years prior, but there was MUCH confusion any time we mentioned "the Holiday Inn Club Vacations PCB" to shuttle drivers, Town Trolley drivers and restaurant delivery people.
The villa is nice, the view tremendous! The beach is truly "sugary sand"! I was not aware, but perhaps others are, that the beach chairs are "for rent". We were asked to vacate or pay for the chairs we had dared to sit upon.
The pool and hot tub were great and despite being there over Spring Break, weren't overly crowded at any given time.
The "activity room" was laughable. We asked at the desk about renting a DVD or games. The DVD selection was pretty sparse and not terribly current. We had to have a maintenance worker meet us in the activity room in order to get a board game. He let us in to a villa that housed the "activities". There was a chest freezer, a table or two and some shelving with games. I think there might have been a karaoke machine but that was about it. We chose a game, after sifting through them to find one that appeared to have all the pieces, and asked how to check it out. The maintenance man said he had no idea, that he was just there to let us in. Transportation was a major issue for my kids and I. We didn't rent a car so were at the mercy of public transportation. The shuttles are plentiful, but expensive. The "town trolley" was a fine option, once we were able to track down a stop! They are not marked in the area of the property and no one seemed to quite know where a stop was. After asking at the property, a gas station, a grocery store AND a liquor store, we were finally directed to a stop well off the beaten path in front of a rather nondescript motel.
It was a bit noisy in the wee hours of the morning with all the "spring breakers" coming back from a night on the town. We had 2 instances of someone trying to open our door and banging and screaming expletives. Once they realized they were at the wrong place, they moved on.
Overall, this is a nice place, but I probably wouldn't go back. I wouldn't necessarily say this is a particularly "family friendly" spot. Not a lot to do other than swimming on property. Pier Park is fun and a short 3-4 block walk (but sidewalks are sporadic), but other than that, not a whole lot to do. There are several dolphin tours and tours to "shell island" but they are dependent upon the weather. Unfortunately the weather while we were there was cool and rainy so we couldn't take advantage of those options. Again, shuttles to and from are expensive so renting a car would probably be something to consider.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This beachfront, newly refurbished Gulf Coast gem provides a relaxing escape and many activity options for the perfect family getaway. And it starts with the perfect location among some of the highest-rated beaches in the country! Sugar-white sands, turquoise waters and plenty of beachside fun make Panama City Beach, Florida a popular place to vacation in the sun. Holiday Inn Club Vacations(R) at Panama City Beach Resort features villa accommodations with fully equipped kitchens and living/dining areas, plus free Wi-Fi internet access. All villas feature private balconies overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. The heated, outdoor pool and large hot tub offer direct, waterfront beach access. Kids enjoy the activities center, while you'll love the fitness center open 24/7. When it's time to explore the area, you're in for plenty of beachside fun. Pier Park, the area's largest outdoor entertainment, shopping and restaurant complex is only one mile away and offers over 100 stores, restaurants and huge movie theater to enjoy. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Tropical Breeze Hotel Panama City Beach
- Holiday Inn Club Vacations Panama City Beach Resort Florida