Date of Stay: Saturday, July 20 - Sunday, July 21, 2013
Length of Stay: 1 Night
In a nutshell, the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota is in a truly beautiful location and is the prime example of the customer service experience that the Ritz-Carlton is known for; this truly is the place to stay if you want a relaxing beach or pool experience!
Now, for my detailed review:
I wanted to surprise my wife with a romantic last-minute weekend trip; the hotel was fully booked, but the Management was excellent in helping to accommodate my surprise plans. I must say, the staff -- or, as they are known, the "Ladies and Gentlemen" -- at this property are a true example of the excellent service that Ritz-Carlton is known for. We had an absolutely AMAZING stay, and we will definitely be back in the very near future!
First, I want to comment on some of the other reviews on this site; I have noticed that many people claim that this property is not on par with other Ritz-Carlton properties or that the rooms are small and in need of renovation. These reviews are completely inaccurate! The rooms at this property are absolutely beautiful and the service and amenities are fully on par with other Ritz-Carlton properties. Take a look at the many photos attached to this review to show how excellent the facilities at this beautiful property are.
From the moment you drive up the aptly named Ritz-Carlton Drive in Sarasota, you will be amazed at the beauty of this property. You approach the property by driving toward a truly beautiful fountain, after which your car is immediately greeted by truly superb valet staff. This property only has Valet Parking, but the cost ($24) is entirely reasonable for a downtown property, especially when you consider the superb "ladies and gentlemen" who quickly handle all aspects of parking your vehicle!
We have never stayed at this property before, and we truly were amazed by the beautiful fountain as we drove up, and the Valet Staff was by far some of the most friendly and efficient that I have ever dealt with. They Valet Staff greeted us, and radioed ahead to both the Bell Staff and the Front Desk so that they were all able to greet us by name. One wonderful aspect about this property, like most Ritz-Carlton properties, is that the "ladies and gentlemen" truly take the time to get to know you and your names and you will be greeted by name throughout your stay.
The Valet opened the front doors for us, allowing entry into a truly beautiful Main Lobby; the first thing that I noticed were the beautiful chandeliers. All aspects of the Main Lobby epitomized the luxury of a Ritz-Carlton. As we approached the Front Desk, we were greeted by name, and the Front Desk Agent took the time to explain all of the amenities of the property to us. Within a matter of moments, we were introduced to an absolutely amazing Bellman, who gave us a full property tour and escorted us to our room. The tour from the Bellman is classic Ritz-Carlton service, and we truly appreciated all of the excellent information that he shared with us.
This property has three elevators, each of which seemed to be quick and efficient, so we never had to wait long for an elevator -- unlike many downtown properties. Within moments, the Bellman had us at our room on the 6th Floor.
We were in awe as we entered our room, Room 607; it was a truly excellent King Bedroom with a Water View. The first thing that we noticed was the beautiful view out over the water! This property truly has views that cannot be beat -- make sure to book a water view room, it is truly worth it! The room itself was classic Ritz-Carlton excellence. As enter, you walk through a small entryway, equipped with a large "coffee box," featuring a high-quality single-cup coffee maker -- and the box was complete with a classic Ritz-Carlton Lion. Directly to your left is a stylish Ritz-Carlton bathroom; a beautiful full marble bathroom, with top-notch bath amenities. To the far left of the bathroom is a separate toilet room. Then, in the center you will find a luxurious marble double vanity, complete with ultra-plush towels. Finally, at the far right you will find a good sized tub/shower combo. As you continue into the room, you will find a truly heavenly feather bed, complete with feather duvets, goose down pillows, Egyptian cotton linens and Italian wool throw blankets. Directly across from the bed is a high-definition television, next to which is a large writing/computer desk. Then, at the end of the room you will find a comfortable lounge chair and a large balcony. One truly wonderful feature of this property is the fact that all guest rooms offer large balconies with sweeping views of either Sarasota or the Water. All-in-all, the Water View King Bedroom was a spectacular room, offering amazing views and elegant furnishings; please see the photos attached to this review for additional information regarding this room.
As for your leisure and relaxation, this property cannot be beat. First, if you want to merely relax poolside without going anywhere, the resort has an excellent on-site swimming pool with ample comfortable seating and shade umbrellas. Additionally, for a truly amazing pool and beach experience, the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota has something that no other property in the area does -- a private "Beach Club." This is a separate facility, located a very quick shuttle ride from the main resort out on Lido Key. At the "Beach Club" one will find a large heated pool, with amazing poolside service and extremely comfortable pool lounge chairs. When one exists the free shuttle and enters the pool area, one is immediately greeted by an attentive pool attendant who will get towels for you and your guests and will help set you up in the perfect poolside lounge chairs. Additionally, should anyone you are with want a shaded spot, your pool attendant will get a large umbrella to provide you with shade. And, your pool attendant will bring you a large ice bucket and keep that bucket stocked with complimentary bottled water to keep you hydrated throughout the day -- no other property in the area offers such a service. Should you want to go to the beach instead of the pool, you can continue out the two private walkways from the pool area to a private "Members Only" section of the beach, where the Ritz-Carlton has set up comfortable beach chairs and umbrellas specifically for its guests. From such a private section on the beach, you get the same amazing poolside service -- including water and food/beverage service -- that you do by the pool. All-in-all, the "Beach Club" is one of the best features of this property and will provide you with a true heavenly retreat in which to relax during your trip.
And, should you wish to spend extra time at the "Beach Club" after you have checked out on your final day, the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota encourages you to do so; simply check-out at the front desk, leave your account open, drop your bags with the Bell Staff and take the free shuttle to the "Beach Club." At the end of your day, you can use the "Beach Club's" luxurious Shower & Locker Facility -- equipped with soap, shampoo, conditioner, plush towels and all of the bath amenities that you could possibly need -- to shower and get dressed to head home. This is one of the most amazing features of this property, as no other property in the area has such facilities nor allows you the continued use of such facilities on the final day of your stay after you check out.
One additional fact regarding the free shuttle service to the "Beach Club." It is on an extremely comfortable shuttle, which departs the main resort on the hour and returns from the "Beach Club" on each half-hour. Additionally, it does make a stop each way at the beautiful St. Armand's Circle, which offers a vast selection of high end shopping and dining options should you wish to eat off property.
But, you likely would never need to leave property to eat, as the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota has absolutely amazing food options!
First, at the main property, one can find "Jack Dusty," featuring absolutely amazing service and cuisine. We dined there for dinner and then breakfast again the next morning. Dinner was truly exquisite, with some of the finest seafood offerings that we have experienced at a resort in quite some time; try the scallops, they were to die for! Additionally, the service could not be beat, and the cocktail selection was very enticing. As for Breakfast the next morning, service was equally good and one could chose from either a menu or a full buffet; we opted for the excellent buffet. I must say, many properties overlook the items on the buffet, but we found everything to be quite tasty; make sure to try the fresh yogurt, as it was truly spectacular! And, the prices at "Jack Dusty" are quite reasonable compared to many other resorts in the area.
Additionally, at the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota "Beach Club," one can find the "Beach Club Grill." We did not have time to dine in the actual restaurant, but we did walk around it and it looked absolutely amazing. We did dine poolside at the 'Beach Club" on both days; I have to say, it was some of the best poolside food that we have ever experienced! Many resort properties with excellent pools tend to overlook the poolside food options, but this is not so at the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota -- the poolside food was absolutely amazing! Additionally, the drink service was some of the best that we have ever experienced -- the poolside services are extremely quick and efficient, and the bartenders make excellent drinks! Finally, the poolside food and drink are actually very reasonably priced; unlike many properties, the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota does not inflate the cost of poolside food and drink.
All-in-all, the "ladies and gentlemen" of the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota are some of the most friendly and professional resort staff that you will find in the area; they will remember your names and cater to your every need. The resort itself is in a truly perfect location, offering excellent views and dining options that cannot be beat. Additionally, the private "Beach Club" offers amenities that you cannot find anywhere else. Based upon all of that, the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota is truly the place you should stay on your next trip to the Sarasota area!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Experience a resort where the casual Gulf Coast lifestyle meets the sophisticated, cosmopolitan excitement of the city. Featuring exceptional dining, a luxurious spa, championship golf,off-site Beach Club nearby, lavish accommodations and sweeping bay and city views, The Ritz-Carlton in Sarasota, Florida, provides guests with a relaxing escape from the everyday. While you're visiting, be sure to enjoy the sandy beaches recently named the 2017 "Best Beach in America." ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota Hotel Sarasota
- Sarasota Ritz Carlton
- Ritz Sarasota
- Ritz-Carlton Sarasota
- The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota Florida