My wife and I, with our two boogie-board fanatic sons (ages 8 & 6), stayed at this hotel on Daytona Beach (yes, ON the beach) on Sept. 18-20. The hotel is conveniently located far enough away from the usual Daytona Beach Boardwalk attractions to not get the loud partying college-aged nonsense, but close enough to drive and be there within 10 minutes.
There is an underground parking garage underneath the hotel, which allows your vehicle to avoid the sun and ever-present beach sand while enjoying your stay. However, the garage is cramped, so be careful while driving out of it...once, we had to make a 3-point turn just to exit.
When we checked in, we were quickly attended by the desk manager while the flat-screen TV entertained our sons with the Florida-Tennessee matchup. We were given an ocean-view room on the 9th floor, complete with 2 queen beds and a kitchenette. The room was very clean, especially the bathroom, which is not a common thing for a hotel directly on the beach. The refrigerator was spacious (lots of room for beer!!), but the ice-maker did not work, and there were no ice machines anywhere near our room. I had to go to the lobby and request ice, but no one minded at all, and the young gentleman that filled my cooler was very friendly about it...if there had been beer already in it, I would have given him one!
Our room also had a small balcony, which gave two adults enough room to sit comfortably. Although the smell of cigarette smoke was pervasive from the adjoining balconies, the room did not smell of smoke at all. With the southeastern exposure, it was delightful to sit on the balcony before 7AM with my cup of coffee (brewed in-room), read the local Daytona newspaper (delivered outside the room every morning), and watch the sun come up with the sound of the surf below. Quite the idyllic setting!
Also to be enjoyed are a decent-sized pool and jacuzzi (I liked the water temp, my wife thought it was too hot). It can't be stated enough that this hotel is directly on Daytona Beach...just walk out of your room, catch the elevator down to the lobby, walk out the back door and around the pool, and you are literally wading into the Atlantic Ocean! Next to the hotel is the entrance for cars to drive on the beach (if you're not used to this, beware!! Don't put your chairs, umbrellas, etc., in the middle of the car lanes!! It gets REALLY fun when the tide comes in...), but "Speed Limit:10MPH" signs are posted in close proximity. We never had an issue with a "cars vs. kids" moment...I was more concerned about the 9th-floor balcony railing than the on-the-beach traffic.
There are many nearby restaurants for whatever food you crave: seafood, Italian, American cuisine, bar & grill, etc. There are also two supermarkets just south of the hotel (Winn-Dixie and Publix). The Boardwalk area, less than ten minutes north, offers some arcades, a pier (closed at night, apparently), taffy and ice-cream shops, and t-shirt souvenier markets. Salty Dog and Maui Nix surf shops are down that way, too. We chose to eat at Racing's North Turn on Daytona Beach Shores (near the southern end of the island, close to the Ponce Inlet Lighthouse)...can't say that we were impressed, but that will be another review. There are also three quality mini-golf places south of the hotel (toward the lighthouse): Congo River (closest, but most expensive), Hawaiian Falls (2 courses, and a $3 re-play rate!), and Pirate's Island Adventure (didn't even call this one). My two mini-golf enthusiasts both enjoyed the experience at Hawaiian Falls.
There were minor issues with the room, but they didn't take anything away from the convenience or cleanliness of the hotel, or the friendliness of the staff. 1.) There was not much water pressure in the shower, so to feel completely sand-off-me clean, it was a good idea to use the cold water shower by the beach before going back to your room. 2.) The hotel offers a free continental breakfast, including all cold items (bagels, croissants, cereals, fruit). The fruit was not very fresh, the coffee was pretty weak, and the orange juice was slightly sour. The kids loved the cereal and the Sweet Sixteen powdered white donuts, though! 3.) There is a daily Happy Hour between 5:30-6:30, but the service is apparently so slow that my wife and I never got to partake. I stood in line on Saturday afternoon for five minutes, and the line hardly moved. 4.) The parking garage is pretty awkward to navigate with a mini-van. 5.) From the 9th-floor balcony on the south side, one can see the rooftops of the adjacent motels, one of which looked closed except for one door that remained open the entire time we were next to it...for all we know, a family of squatters could have been living there...there were NO vehicles in the parking lot of this place.
One final note: when we got in the swagger wagon to depart for a family night out on Sunday, we realized that our car battery was dead (the interior lights were left on when we unpacked the evening before). Not only did the staff find jumper cables for us, they even used the hotel's own truck to charge our battery, and THEN let us take the cables with us for the evening in case we need another charge somewhere later!
It's the little things. We will be back to this place. The waves were great (as opposed to Gulf Coast beaches), the location was perfect, and the price was right!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.