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“Serene”

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Waterside Inn on the Beach
Ranked #6 of 19 Hotels in Sanibel Island
Certificate of Excellence
Tampa, FL
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Serene”
Reviewed 25 December 2006

I found this property at the last minute (3 days to Christmas). I have a beagle and needed a place that allowed pets. I wanted somewhere quiet and serene. I also wanted a small town feel. I found all of these at the waterside inn on sanibel beach.

The kitchens come equipped with all the dishes and utensils you could need. The units are clean and up to date in furniture design. The bathrooms are older, but adequate. You can even take your dog onto the beach (they own part of it on their property) which is cool & sit int he lounge chairs and relax with your pup. I even took my beagle ont he public portion of the beach (although you are not supposed to) and all was ok.

The office staff and owners are GREAT. They made me feel very welcome and even when my beagle bayed for a few hours ebing left alone.

You can even rent your bicycle right ont eh property so you can ride into Sanibel's shopping district or onto Captiva Island to shop, eat, etc.

The only thing I think they could improve on is to offer high speed internet, either plug in or wireless since there is no 'real' cyber cafe on the island.

I can do nothing other than to recommend this property.

  • Liked — Their pet policy
  • Disliked — Limited internet service
  • Tips/Secrets — Yes, have dial up if you want to get on the internet. VIsit the welcome center to get a map and the dining/shopping guide.
  • Stayed December 2006
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank ctrojanowski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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596 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (145)
Date | Rating
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English first
Naples, FL
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 August 2006

We chose the Waterside in part because of the great reviews we saw online and frankly, I'm shocked at how highly this property is rated. Please don't misunderstand me: the location is downright stunning, and yes, it's mere inches from the water, which is a major plus. However, the location aside, the accommodations are not up to decent standards.

We stayed in the Mango Cottage, and while we expected a slight downgrade due to our pet-friendly accommodation request, our cottage actually smelled so horribly we ran out to buy air freshener almost immediately. The cottage reeked of rotting pets or old seafood or something very, very amiss. The floor was cold, ancient concrete throughout the entire cottage, and there wasn't a throw rug in sight. The furniture was clearly well-worn and extremely uncomfortable (faux wicker, with very few throw pillows - you could not sit in the couch or chair in any sort of slouchy, relaxed manner. It was upright or be miserable.)

What really killed us, however, was the grit and grime that covered nearly every surface. We lay in bed at night laughing at how incredibly gritty we were, even after repeated showers. I understand it's a beachfront cottage, and the sand is difficult to extricate, but this went well beyond any normal level of beachy sand. The beds were so gritty that we could barely sleep at night - grit and sand permeated the beds, even on our first night, when we hadn't even been outside to the beach yet.

There was no housekeeping at all during our stay, per the property's policy. Fresh towels were provided, however. The kicker was that there was an envelope from the housekeeping staff for visitors to use to tip them for their good work. Tasteless, given that there was no actual maid service offered.

The bathroom that they claimed was recently redone was clean enough, if tiny (two people could not be in there at the same time), but the shower head was actually situated so low on the wall that I had to either sit down or duck to stand under the spray (and I am not Amazonian by nature. I'm a 5'7'' woman. My husband was forced to crouch for the duration of his shower).

All in all, the location is wonderful, if overpriced, but please, come expecting bare bones accommodations designed for minimal occupancy. For families who simply want a place to shower and sleep at night after being out and about on the beach, this is probably a so-so choice. If you are a couple looking for a romatic getaway, run screaming for the hills. And if you want even the slightest bit of creature comfort or even cleanliness, I suggest you consider other options.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Everything else
  • Tips/Secrets — Look harder for more choice accommodations
  • Stayed July 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
20 Thank Jonnakay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
chicago
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 June 2006

My family of four stayed at the Waterside in June at the Pineapple and had a wonderful stay. The room was clean and had a wonderful view of the beach. I was surprised to find a full size refrigerator and new stove in the kitchen area, was really expecting some little dorm style appliances. We only had a problem with this size room at night when the kids wanted to stay up late and watch TV. Next time I think I would rent a cottage just to have the seperate bedroom and a place for the kids to hangout. Was able to sneak a peek in a vacant cottage and it look very nice and spacious. The Condo we looked at was also very large and beautifully decorated, but I prefer the intimacy of the actual resort. We took a bike ride around the island and rode by all the large resorts which look like large, impersonal, apartment complexes, (we have enough of those here in Chicagoland area, I don't need that on vacation) I wanted something Old Florida, small, close to the ocean. Waterside delivered. Staff was helpful, pools are somewhat small, but there are two. Would definitely return to the Waterside

  • Stayed June 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank inthepark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
North Haven, CT
Level 6 Contributor
161 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 June 2006

The Waterside Inn is a smaller seaside inn. My family of 6 rented one of the condos for one week following our visit to Disney for a period of recovery. I had notified the office when making the reservation that my party would be 6 and they advised that we needed to book a condo. Upon arriving I noticed that there was one larger bed, two twins and one roll away. We did check the couch and it appearred to be a pull out bed so we tried to pull it out. We didn't even get it half way out and it stopped moving and became stuck. The couch was now unusable. We called the office and they brought up another roll away bed. They didn't know the couch was a sofabed. I found out later that the condos are not owned by the Waterside. They are owned by consumers who rent them out. The Waterside takes care of them I do believe.
It took about 2 days but they did replace the couch and for our wait and for the calm way we handled the wait they discounted us.
Other than this, the trip was wonderful. The room was clean, but so you know, housekeeping does not clean the rooms daily in the condos. They will change your garbage and bring you towels.
The owners host a small outing once per week that is very nice. The beach was right there so we went each day. Hope you like shelling. It is impossible to even get to the water without seeing and touching many shells.
Don't take this as a negative review. I enjoyed and so did my family. It was relaxing and enjoyable, but I also don't want to state perfection. If you are looking for the Hilton, you will not find that here, but if you are looking for family fun and relaxation in a quaint inn. This is your place.

Helpful?
8 Thank dbbohner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
washington USA
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 May 2006

We had the great beach front cottage and it was freshly painted. Other than that, we thought it was a very expensive stay. Someone came in and gave us fresh towels each day. The kitchen towel looked like a cleaning rag. Don't expect nice towels or sheets or shampoo and hand cream. We prefer a firm mattress but the one there was like sleeping on the floor it was so hard.

There was a lot of sea weed (I would imagine it is seasonal) so the ocean swimming was not good. The pool was full of kids all day long (the pool is very, very small, don't let the brochure deceive you) so swimming in the pool was not an option.

We enjoyed Sanibel Island but wound up driving to Captiva every day because the beach there is gorgeous. The dolphins came right in close to shore and the sunset is much better there.

It is a nice place to stay compared to what we saw around it but the leaky toilet, noisy fridge, neighbors air conditioners on 24 hours a day and having to sweep up sand everyday made us feel it was overpriced.

You must pay in full 30 days before arrival. I didn't mind that but noticed after I got home from vacation another charge of $20.35 was added to my credit card. It's not that it's so much money, it's the idea of being charged extra for what I do not know. I have to just eat it or go through the hassle of calling them and disputing it. I just don't care for gouging.

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank ezcheezy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Philly PA
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 May 2006

My mom and I stayed at the Waterside for a week in March, and we are planning to return next year. The staff was friendly, the room was comfortable, the guests were pleasant and the view and location were peerless. I didn't see another property that I'd choose over the Waterside, and I can't wait to return.

  • Stayed March 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Philly_Traveler1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 5 May 2006

My girlfriend and I stayed at the Waterside Inn in a cottage suite, Kiwi 109 I believe, in mid-April and we loved it. We got a room without a screened in porch which was fine, but if I go back I would get the screend in porch cottages because they really looked like a nice place to chill out during the evening and grab a bite. The room and kitchenette were clean and spacious. The location was ideal. I had never been to Sanibel before and was worried that the location would be a problem. Turns out the Waterside Inn is centrally located and RIGHT ON THE GULF! The resort is very quite, romantic and comfortable. The employees were helpful and nice. There may be "nicer" places on Sanibel & Captiva Island, but none I bet as nice for the price as the Waterside Inn. You really can't get more bang for your buck than the Waterside Inn. Also I would recommend anyone who hasn't been to this region to definitely spend an afternoon on Captiva Island, it is beautiful and the beaches in my opinion were a little better (less shells than Sanibel).

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Waterside Inn on the Beach

Property: Waterside Inn on the Beach
Address: 3033 W Gulf Dr, Sanibel Island, FL 33957-5609
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Florida > Southwest Gulf Coast > Sanibel Island
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Sanibel Island
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Sanibel Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:2 star — Waterside Inn on the Beach 2*
Number of rooms: 27
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Are you searching for that true Olde Florida charm and style? Look no further than Waterside Inn! You?re just steps away from the beautiful beaches of Sanibel. Amenities include a heated pool, beach loungers, on-site bike rentals, and BBQ grills. Come to relax and unwind in one of our small inns or cottages. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Waterside Inn On The Beach Hotel Sanibel Island
Waterside Hotel Sanibel Island
Waterside Resort Sanibel Island
Waterside Inn On The Beach Sanibel Island, Florida

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