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“one night was enough.” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Ponce De Leon Hotel

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Ponce De Leon Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   95 Central Ave, St. Petersburg, FL 33701   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #22 of 45 Hotels in St. Petersburg
Cape Coral, Florida
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“one night was enough.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2012

THE PARKING... is ridiculous! Upon arriving, my first thought was "there's no parking..." When we checked in at the lobby, the kid working told us that there's a parking garage not too far from the hotel that they advise the guests to park in. Literally said "It's only $3 a day"...WELL, when we left, (the following day), we stop at the parking garage cashier to pay for our parking, and she tells us we owe $12!!! I said "well, is there a special price for guests staying at the ponce de leon hotel, because the guy there told us it would just be $3/day?!" and the woman just looked at me like I had two heads. We only had a $50 bill (which she couldn't break) and a few singles. Long story short, we had to wait for her to go to the main office to break the $50 bill we had.

EVERYTHING needs to be upgraded. There were very few things in this hotel that didn't look outdated or hardly functioning. There are little random signs taped to things to basically say they're not working. The shower in the bathroom had a sign saying to wait for hot water. The public bathroom in the lobby had signs informing that the lock was "broken". Even the walls on the 6th floor looked like they were about to fall down. Hard to describe, but this place is super run down.

THE ROOM: Our room was disgusting. Thank goodness they didn't have carpet in the rooms, because (even with wood floors) it smelled so musty. The bathroom door was literally "see-through". Who puts a glass paneled door on a bathroom so that everyone can see you on the toilet, or undressing to shower? The bathroom was so small, they couldn't fit a sink in it. The sink is awkwardly placed right at the front door to the room, alongside a very old and disgusting microwave & a small fridge. The bathroom smelled like awful body odor. Straight up sweaty armpit scented. I had to hold my breath in there. And lastly, we had unwelcome "visitor" in the form of a pretty big gecko-type lizard crawling up the wall.

The ONLY good thing I can say about this hotel, is that the location is PERFECT. That's the only thing that made this trip bearable. So many places within walking distance.

Room Tip: Higher rooms (6th floor) offer a very nice view of Pioneer park, and of the water. Our view was pret...
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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227 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (63)
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  • English first
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English first
Phoenix, Arizona
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2012

Staff was nice, room was clean, and bonus for a small fridge in the room. The room was tiny, but worked OK. The TV was ancient, but worked. The bathroom was small, but fine. Sheets and towels were all clean. Great location. Hallways are too dark. It's tired-looking inside. I'm not sure "boutique" is the right word, I'd say more like "funky". But really, nothing bad.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2012

What's wrong with this place? The better question is what's NOT wrong with this place.

Upon Checkin, we had reserved the corner room for a higher rate but they tried to give us a standard room for the same price.

The room was filthy. The sheets weren't changed, the bed was horribly uncomfortable and the sheets were so thin you could see the mattress. There was no mattress pad.

The bathroom was so small you could literally fit one person in it. It was a converted closet! The sink couldn't fit in the bathroom. The shower had used soap where it wasn't cleaned. The shower head leaked so that the spray shot over the shower curtin soaking the "bathroom".

It was so loud as well. I don't think I slept more than an hour. There is a really popular restaraunt bar that is NOT part of the hotel, called Ceviche's that is located where the hotel is. They had people partying til 4:30 AM. And then the drunks started rolling in around 4-5 AM.

Walls are paper thin and you can hear everything.

Needless to say, if you stay here be prepared for the worst night of your life!

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orlando, Florida
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2012

Stayed here on a business trip in July. The hotel looked like it was undergoing some renovations. I picked it because I like the more boutique style hotels but this left me a little disappointed. The first clue was the very slow elevator to my room on the 4th floor and then emerging from the elevator to a dark corridor leading to my room. It felt seedy and I half expected someone to pop out of nowhere and offer me some drugs or even sex for sale.

Opening the door to the room left me more disappointed. I read a comment about IKEA furniture and that best sums it up. The room was fine for my requirements but would I return with my wife? Not likely. The bathroom was very small but I coped...somehow.

The best thing about the hotel was the location. Superbly located and very easy to get to everything in the city if you want to walk. I had an event at the Mahaffrey theater to attend and that took around 5 to 10 mins.

Parking could be an issue as I parked where recommended. The hotel will say it's $3 but beware of special events when that rate goes up.

Overall, this hotel could do better. It has an elegance and it could do much better if a) the staff were more attentive and b) the owners decided they really were in business to service guests.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
oakland, ca
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2012

My wife and I were here in June. The setting is cool, the building itself is neat with a bar and restaurant downstairs. Our room was furnished by IKEA with enough room for 2 on the 4th floor.

the cool thing was how close we were to the water to watch the 4th of July fireworks. Also, it was an easy walk to the very active downtown - food, drinks, lots of folks. Kind of a 20 year old pick up scene.

We caught the shuttle to see a ballgame which was easy, and walked back after the game. Kind of a long drive to a nice beach, but overall a nice spot.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dunnellon, Florida
Top Contributor
89 reviews 89 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
65 helpful votes 65 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2012

When staying in St. Petersburg and wanting a room that is clean and inexpensive with access to all of the local events, this is a good hotel.
The front desk staff was pleasant. The room was clean, the bed was comfortable.
The elevator is slow.
One of my very favorite spots for Sunday morning is right in the same building - The Ceviche. It is super close to the Pier and about a 15 minute easy walk from the State Theatre and Local 66.
Halls are dark and dingy - Parking is across the street in a pay lot.
We were there to see a band play so it was PERFECT.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Seaside Heights, New Jersey
Top Contributor
144 reviews 144 reviews
53 hotel reviews
Reviews in 79 cities Reviews in 79 cities
283 helpful votes 283 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2012

This is like a nice dorm room rather than a quaint hotel. There are many other hotel properties nearby. I would choose them first.

I was in Tampa for a large convention and all of the other properties were sold out. I had read the Trip Advisor write ups prior to my arrival so I did know what I was in for.

I did request a high room as to avoid the street noise. I was on the top level (6th floor). I did not hear a lot of street noise but you can hear everything in the hallways. It reminded me of the college dorm living experience.

The elevator was broken during much of my stay so I did get a work out climbing and descending the 6 floors in the 90+ degree Florida summer heat.


My room had a very musty smell when I first arrived. It seemed to go away during my stay. The AC units are a bit noisy.

There was no dresser in my room but there was a small couch. I spread my clothes out on the couch for my stay. There was a coffee maker, refrigerator and microwave in my room. There are not any quick breakfast restaurants close by so if you do stay here I would recommend you bring some breakfast foods with you. There is a small restaurant in the hotel building for a sit down type breakfast. There are no fast food type places close by.

The bed was OK but not that comfortable. The towels are nice and fluffy. The staff was friendly.

The hotel still uses metal keys. I found it odd that they give you a key with the room number taped onto it. There is no key chain. Also, for security reasons it felt weird having a key. It was a bit of a retro throwback.

My stay was ok because as I noted I was in town for a large convention and all of the other properties were sold out. I was thankful to have a place to stay.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled solo
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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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Additional Information about Ponce De Leon Hotel

Address: 95 Central Ave, St. Petersburg, FL 33701
Location: United States > Florida > St. Petersburg
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #22 of 45 Hotels in St. Petersburg
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Ponce De Leon Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 75
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Built in 1922, The Ponce de León Hotel is a Spanish Mission Revival building of great historic interest. Located at 95 Central Avenue and Beach Drive, one might notice that this hotel is only one block away from Saint Petersburg’s beautiful and vibrant waterfront and in the heart of downtown. The Ponce de León Hotel is at doorstep to the most popular restaurants, museums and music venues in the city. Some of which include; the Salvador Dali Museum, Janus Live, the Mahaffey Theater, Tropicana Field, Vinoy Park, and much, much more!Boasting 74 modern rooms, and home of one of the city’s most popular and award winning restaurants, Ceviche Tapas Bar & Restaurant. You can unwind with a drink or dine at the hotel bar & restaurant while you enjoy nightly live entertainment. They make their dishes with locally sourced ingredients for the freshest and finest taste. From the moment you walk into the hotel you will be impressed by the style, décor and air of calm professionalism. Ponce de León Hotel is perfectly located in the heart of St. Petersburg’s most popular recreational and business districts, offering convenience, effortless style, and affordability to leisure and corporate travelers. The Ponce de León Hotel combines impeccable service and comfortable accommodation with spectacular views of the waterfront and downtown St. Petersburg. Be delighted by incomparable value harmonized with everyday amenities, service, plus all the attention you expect from a boutique hotel. ... more   less 
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