This was our first experience at any Best Western property. While not a member of their frequent guest program, this will be our #1choice of places to stay on future Daytona vacations. (I have other favorites in the Miami area). Our 3 night stay was timed to avoid the Spring Break weeks and bike weeks, so it was quiet and relaxing. We arrived late, were thrilled to have free parking onsite, checked in to our Ocean View room, which is a little different I found out, from Ocean Front. We were over the parking lot yet had a wonderful ocean view. The other side of the hall faces the pool, which if you want the easiest access to the pool and beach, select ground floor on the pool side. A few rooms on the far end directly face the ocean ("oceanfront"). I'm guessing our rate didn't include that :) Anyway, the design of the hotel pretty much ensures that most if not all the rooms have some water view, and it was heavenly to sit outside taking in the sounds and sight of the waves. A sign posted in the room reminds guests to keep the sliding door closed so the salt and moisture don't cause damage, so we complied with that, and also with the other sign about closing the drapes at night so the lights don't confuse sea turtle hatchlings making their way back to the ocean. The parking lot lights noticeably face away from the water while still illuminating the lot. I did wonder how the sea turtles fared with occasional fireworks on the beach....
But, back to the Aku Tiki. I enjoyed each and every staff member we came in contact with. They were so refreshingly noncorporate - pleasant and low key. The demeanor sort of matched the casual atmosphere of the area, yet there was clearly a lot of attention to detail in that the property was so well kept. Hallways were always vacuumed and the pool area was clean and inviting. They also have a generously sized toddler pool adjacent. Off to one side is a guest laundry with 2 washers and 2 dryers, 8 quarters each to operate. Beach access was easy, follow the sidewalk leading from the pool. Upon returning, there is a hose available for rinsing off sand. Loved that! Rooms are large and comfortable. One slow elevator, unfortunately. Our room had a minifridge, coffee maker and microwave. Breakfast is included in the room rate. I'm not a huge fan of most hotel breakfasts but for those who are, this will be perfect. The usual assortment of hot and cold items. I'm just there for the coffee, which was fresh and plentiful. The staff greets you on arrival and records your information, which is about the best idea I've ever seen for hotels offering free breakfasts. There was none of that sense you sometimes have at properties where it appears many people not staying at a hotel, are joining a hotel guest for the free breakfast. At the 530-630 happy hour, hotel guests are given one free drink and children receive either a lemonade or fruit punch, depending on the day. Again, kudos to them for noting the room key. it helps keep the rates reasonable. We got our drinks/lemonades, tipped the bartender and took the drinks up to our room to enjoy on the balcony. As far as housekeeping, from our point of view everything was perfect. I have a routine that consists of checking everything on arrival, wiping down all surfaces with cleansing wipes. After that no housekeeping needed for the duration of the stay, still leaving tip on departure. We placed the do not disturb sign on the door and no one ever so much as knocked, although they were in the hall attending to other rooms. We also bring shampoos and such so we don't need to get anything other than maybe a bar of soap. I've become one of the "green" converts and hang up towels to dry, but have no judgments either way, and for those who want the daily housekeeping, it is there. In the closet there was a good sized safe, big enough to hold a laptop plus a DVD player and 3 phones/chargers. A note about the area and the beach: We were strictly there for the beach experience and did not explore the town. The restaurant onsite did have some interesting reasonably priced specials, that some folks in the elevator were raving about, which is a good sign, I just can't comment directly because we didn't eat there. The hotel next door also had a small cafe that looked nice enough. There is a 7-11and IHOP directly across the street. We did have a couple meals there, something I will only do while traveling. Also across the street and one more block over, is a Winn-Dixie, a full service grocery store where we got some takeout food items. The Aku-Tiki has a lovely picnic area in back of the pool overlooking the ocean. Other than that, you'd likely need to drive to find other dining options. Daytona Beach: The beach itself was different than Miami area beaches in that vehicles are permitted, which seems odd, and is not quite as odd when you experience it, but still different. There were good waves to play in and I was able to wander out far enough to feel the rip current. It's not much of a beachcombing beach, almost no shells and only tiny ones, but nice for building sandcastles. Had awesome long walks along the shore at sunset. Area authorities are, in my opinion, a little unnecessarily militant in kicking everyone off the beach during inclement weather, but I know there are many arguments in favor of that. I will always believe that avoiding getting hit by lightning should be my own personal responsibility. So, this was our Florida beach vacation, and we will be certain to visit this hotel again. If you found my review to be helpful please vote yes below!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Stay at this family owned and operated Daytona Beach, Florida hotel located on the "World's Most Famous Beach".Welcome to the newly-renovated Daytona Beach, Florida hotel located directly on the white sand beaches of Daytona Beach. This family friendly hotel offers the best in customer service for both business and leisure travelers. Guests will be conveniently near the Ocean Center Convention Center, Daytona International Speedway and the Embry Riddle Aeronautical University. The BEST WESTERN Aku Tiki Inn proudly offers 132 spaciously appointed guest rooms each complete with cable satellite television with HBO®, microwave, refrigerator and high-speed Internet access. Guests will enjoy dining at Traders, the onsite full service restaurant. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Best Western Aku Tiki Hotel Daytona Beach
- Best Western Daytona Beach
- Daytona Beach Best Western