Below is a review I did regarding this property that was posted in the Sight Seeing forum. Overall. I enjoyed my stay and the location, but would not put this hotel in the same class as the Orlando World Center resort. There are not a lot of options near the beach in the Tampa/St.Pete/Clearwater area. I stayed on the top floor, which had recently been remodeled and the furniture was fine. The pool area is nice, but small. Chairs are 'reserved' by 10am, but this is becoming a problem at all resorts. I have read positive reviews for the Residence Inn on Treasure Island for a beachfront vacation, and I enjoy my beachfront MVC timeshare on Singer Island.
submitted: Mar 29, 2009 11:16 AM
I just completed a trip to the Clearwater and Tampa areas, including a 7 night stay at the Clearwater Beach Marriott Suites. This is really the only hotel in the Marriott chain in the Tampa Bay area that is located near the beach (across the street), and the water views are magnificent. My overall experiences at the hotel were positive, and I will likely return. As a platinum member, you should request a room on the 10th floor, which has recently been renovated and has the best views. Below is a summary of my experiences at the hotel:
Positives: Great service overall, comfortable suites with separate seating area, small refrig., microwave, balcony with nice views, adequate pool, free self parking, close to several restaurants, breakfast vouchers for healthy start breakfast Mon-Fri ($5 upcharge for full buffet), very helpful concierge, personal greeting and tour by staff upon arrival, overall good service in the restaurant (with one exception), hotel area not as crowded (Spring break) as main Cleawater Beach area
Negatives: no concierge level, I had to settle for 2 double beds rather than king unless I was willing to stay on 5th flr.,fitness room had very nice cardio, but very limited weight training equipment, pool is a little small, but adequate
I had two dinners at the restaurant in the hotel. I had excellent service for my first visit, but was very disappointed with the arrogant, condescending attitude of the waiter during my second visit (used a two for one platinum dinner certificate, and waiter was clearly not happy about it). Recommended : crabcakes, filets, key lime pie.
Other restaurants in the area that are worth a visit include Guppies (have concierge make a reservation), and Bonefish Grill (even though a chain). There is an excellent coffee shop for breakfast and lunch (great Cuban sandwich) on the boardwalk next to the hotel.
Straight-up? BEWARE, the Sand Key is NOT worth 30,000 points per night. You'll get MORE value at the Residence Inn Treasure Island. At Treasure Island it's 25,000 points per night, so if you book the Pointsaver offer, Redeem 4 Nights get the 5th Night Free, you stretch the value of your points to get 5 nights including complimentary breakfast, complimentary evening reception Mon-Wed and save 20,000 points.
With your Platinum status, request a complimentary upgrade to the 1 bedroom 1 bath king suite. The living room has a full size pull-out sofabed. You have the benefit of a balcony with sweeping views of the beach, a living/dining room with HDTV, a fully-equipped kitchen for 4, in-room safe, complimentary parking and complimentary towels for use at the pool and beach. Wifi is $9.95 but there are at least 3 wifi networks that offer free access.
The Residence Inn Treasure Island also offers 2 and 3 bedroom suites, BUT they are not available for redemption with points. I've not stayed in these rooms, but many people have and posted their experience on TripAdvisor.com I can tell you that the views from the 1 bedroom suites is better. Treasure Island is also a smoke-free property and it is strictly enforced.
I recently returned from the Suncoast, May 3. Although we have been to Orlando and the beaches on the Atlantic side, we were really unfamiliar with the Suncoast. After much research here, TripAdvisor and personal referrals we decided to explore and booked reservations at 3 locations including the Marriott Suites Clearwater Beach Sand Key, the Renaissance Vinoy in St. Petersburg and the Residence Inn Treasure Island. We canceled at Sand Key - the beach is a quarter mile away across a 4 lane highway. (Visualize crossing Ocean Parkway at Jones Beach, Field 6 w/o a pedestrian tunnel but having to walk to Field 4.) For a cosmopolitan hotel with the amenities of a resort in a downtown area and a marina, the Vinoy is simply outstanding. But if you're objective is to spend a week ON the beach, the Residence Inn Treasure Island gets TOP rating. For a glimpse of paradise, see Postcards from Treasure Island, Florida