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“Son loves it...” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Surf-Style Flowrider Indoor Surfing Wave Machine

Surf-Style Flowrider Indoor Surfing Wave Machine
311 South Gulfview Boulevard, Clearwater, FL 33767
+1 888-787-3789
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Owner description: The FlowRider Indoor surf machines let surfers practice without subjecting them to the dangers of strong undertows, jagged rocks, and sharks that denounce the value of a college degree. Amid Surf Style's cavalcade of retail shops, the rushing tides of the FlowRider artificial surf machine lures thrill seekers of all ages. A combination of surfing, snowboarding, and skateboarding, FlowRider, which has been featured in the St. Petersburg Times, challenges wave gliders to balance atop surging currents reminiscent of Mother Nature's towering waves. A soft riding surface absorbs inevitable wipeouts, and windows flank the sides of the surf center, allowing onlookers to peer in during each radical carving session. Catering to experienced boarders and rookies alike, FlowRider affords enough riding space to practice tricks, hone skills, and pump veins with more adrenaline than the amount that results from making friends with a T-shirt cannon.Free parking is available inside Surf Style's sprawling garage, which touts a 44-foot-tall marine mural crafted by Guy Harvey. Although not included with today's Groupon, visitors can also take advantage of the beach emporium's retail shops, restaurant, and convenience store.
Top Contributor
138 reviews 138 reviews
31 attraction reviews
Reviews in 48 cities Reviews in 48 cities
85 helpful votes 85 helpful votes
“Son loves it...”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013 via mobile

Reasonably priced... Fun for the kids and adults. Surf style struggles with their reservation system every time. The employees are not trained and often hang out waiting for it to fix itself. Lines are long and help is slow. All in all a nice beach experience.

Visited March 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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81 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
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English first
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Awesome indoor surf and beach store!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

This is a must! Everyone in the family will love the beach store, and if you want to try indoor surfing (body boarding), there is a great Flowrider wave machine!
I personally love the beach screen tees, hoodies, and all the bikinis!

Visited March 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Surf Stlyle is so fun.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 27, 2013 via mobile

At Surf Stlyle they have indoor surfing that you could watch and do. It is very cool they have surfing you can do on your belly or standing. I would go back again.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, Florida
2 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“A lot of fun”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2013

The best thing to enjoy surfing without the cold and salted ocean's water! Plus Im terribly afraid of sharks, so for me that is perfect!!!!

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orlando, Florida
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
13 attraction reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
“Buyer Beware”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 21, 2013

This is the kind of place where your experience depends on factors out of your control – such as how many other people (or kids) are “surfing”, the age of the surfers in your group, and whether the staff feels like playing or doing their jobs. Since we ended up spending so much time here – not by choice – we got an opportunity to observe several half-hour sessions.

One session had a mix of adults and kids, and it seemed like the staff spent a good amount of time showing off their skills instead of helping the surfers. Maybe they do this to attract more business or to show how much fun it can be when you master it, but it eats up the time other surfers paid for, and based on the looks on the kids’ faces it seemed to accomplish nothing but frustration, because these kids couldn’t even get up on their knees on the board without wiping out.

In another session (which we were scheduled for but missed – see below), one staff member seemed pretty good, helping the older kids when they tried to stand up, and laying on the back of the board with the younger kids to help control the board so they would not go flying into the wall.

Unfortunately, this guy must have worn himself out, because his help really diminished for a session that consisted roughly of kids all the same age, and no staff hot-dogging. The kids seemed to have the most fun when they just belly-boarded, without trying to stand up and surf. This attraction really isn’t for kids under 5 and/or kids who probably weigh less than 40 pounds. I noticed that some of the kids did have some trouble controlling the boards even on their bellies and would just float straight into the wall, where they’d have to kick off to get back onto the middle of the ride, or if they got stranded, they were just told to go get back in line while other kids took a turn. But everyone did seem to have fun, including our kids, who wanted to go back in for another session.

This is when things got interesting. Our kids were drying off in the waiting area and there were no people other than staff getting ready to surf, so we tried to pay another $20 per kid to go back in for another half an hour session. However, the bored cashier told us to return in half an hour, while the surf staff started having a great old time with our kids pressed against the glass, watching them. It was a bit like watching the kids peeking into a locked candy shop, pathetic and ridiculous. We left and they lost the additional $40 they could have made on us.

Here is what they don’t tell you and why we missed our originally scheduled session – the half-hour sessions start on the hour, and if you don’t go in at your assigned time, too bad. Forget about politely waiting your turn because neither the staff in the surf area (nor the staff you literally just paid) will tell you to go in at your time. They give you a wristband with a time printed on it: one staff member told us it was the start time, while another said it was the end time. We (foolishly) thought the staff (someone? anyone? Bueller?) was monitoring this and would tell us when to go in. But then a couple of teenage girls entered the surf area about ten minutes before their scheduled time and were allowed to join the group plus stay for their 30 minute session, and when our kids followed, they were stopped by the staff, told that they missed their scheduled session and would have to be re-scheduled - for an hour later. We were re-directed to the boneless cashier who could not have been less concerned about helping us. A nice couple saw our frustration and told us that you just have to go in at your assigned time, which is 30 minutes before the time printed on the wristband.

All in all, the kids gave it a 3 out of 5 stars, hence the rating above. Personally, I would not have been so kind. You can stand on the demo board they have in the waiting area, but it’s not like being in the real thing (see YouTube videos). The shop validates your ticket, but be aware that the validation is only for a certain amount of time, and/or only if you purchase a certain amount of merchandise/services. Apparently there is a Groupon for this attraction, and there are also coupons for the shop that can be applied toward the surfing, but they do not advertise that.

I concur with the other reviewer about the unusually large-busted mannequins. A veritable feast for the eyes for the pubescent set. And probably most guys in general.

Visited January 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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