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“This place really is on "island time" (for better or worse)!” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Sanibel Inn

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Sanibel Inn
3.0 of 5 Resort   |   937 E. Gulf Dr., Sanibel Island, FL 33957   |  
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Ranked #11 of 27 Hotels in Sanibel Island
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“This place really is on "island time" (for better or worse)!”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2013

Pros (but should be standard/expected for Sanibel Island):

-Short walk to a nice beach
-Decent sized, heated pool
-Free parking
-Free wi-fi
-Full kitchen and laundry in unit (2-BR)
-Cable TV
-Family friendly

Pros (nice extras):

-Nice screened-in porch
-Free NY Times (except Sunday)
-Close to bridge to/from the mainland/Ft. Myers
-Bikes for loan on site
-Not too crowded/noisy
-Two tennis courts

Cons:

-Run down and dated
-Expensive for what you get
-More like a serve yourself rental than a beach resort
-Mediocre to non-existent service at every turn: food, housekeeping, beach/pool. (But friendly, if that makes up for anything.)
-Beach/pool towel rationing (seriously, folks!?!)
-They run out of basic stuff, like fruit, ice cream, Piña Colada mix , mac and cheese, and hot water for showers.
-No hot tub
-No gym

Warning: When the entire staff wears shirts that say "I'M ON ISLAND TIME" in large block letters, that gives you a good idea of what the service is going to be like. If you don't know what "island time" is, you are in for an education!

If you are used to the level of service you get from major hotel brands, like Hyatt, Starwood, Hilton, Marriott, et al, this is not that. Not even close. This isn't even up to Hampton Inn or Radisson levels. I suggest you not use those kinds of places as your frame of reference, otherwise, you're setting yourself up for major disappointment. (If you are looking for that, then perhaps Sanibel Island is not for you.). Ignore all of the stuff they say on their website. This is more like a service apartment rental than a full-service beach resort. You get a decent sized room that's close to a nice beach, which is probably the main reason you are booking a Sanibel Island vacation. Everything else you get are either nice extras if you were not expecting much, or mitigating factors for the stuff this place is lacking if you were expecting a lot more for your money. IMHO, when you are paying almost $700/night for a 2-BR suite on the Gulf side of Florida, you should be getting a lot more.

This was our third spring vacation in this area in the past seven years and, while we had a good time, this is not a property we would return to or recommend to our friends or relatives (well, maybe certain relatives). Next time we are down here, it's Casa Ybel or bust.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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850 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (221)
Date | Rating
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English first
Muncie, Indiana, USA
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2013

Staff did not seem to care.
Room had hair on floor in bath room that was never cleaned by staff, even after it was pointed out to them.
Stayed at this facility because it was a sister property to Song of the Sea where we have stayed for 10 years, but not have nearly the same level of service.
Very disappointed.

Room Tip: Gulf view suite is best location.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2013

Great spot, clean updated attractive condos. Quiet, has a pool bar with food and great resturant on site. Need more beach chairs and bikes are only drawback. This is second time and and surely would return.

Room Tip: All seem good with ocean views
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Festus, Missouri
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2013

My fiance and I were looking for a place to relax and take in the the beach, Sanibel Inn provided all we needed to accomplish that goal. The room were clean and updated. The staff was very helpful and friendly. Can't wait to come back soon.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glen Arbor, Michigan
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2013

Sanibel Inn is an excellent option for the first-time visitor to beautiful Sanibel Island. The rooms have been recently refurbished with good quality. The Inn is very functional with friendly, helpful staff. The location on the island at the end of the causeway is excellent.

Room Tip: Beach side rooms may be the most quiet.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Urbana, IL
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2013

This little property takes care of almost everything you need to enjoy some island fun. The staff are very helpful, the rooms were well-maintained, and the property is clean and quiet. When we arrived the room we were given was musty so we were moved to a condo. The screened-in balcony had a beautiful view of the ocean with nice table and chairs. The condo had a beautiful kitchen, a nice living/dining area and the bedroom was spacious with a beautiful walk-in shower. There was also a stacked washer/dryer that was very nice to have in the kitchen.

The property provides a pool that looks out onto the beach, a little beach bar where you get drinks and can order food from the kitchen. The lobster bisque was delicious and the salad was always fresh greens with carrot curl topping. There are bikes you can borrow and we had a great time bicycling around on the bike path system that is very popular. They also offer kayaks, beach chairs and umbrellas. There is an daily fee for these things, but it is well worth it. We made use of all these amenities.

The beach is beautiful with thousands of shells washing up, many birds, and dolphins frolicking right off shore with baby dolphins in the group. The overall experience is a slow-paced, family-oriented one that is perfect for relaxing.

There were some minor issues with house-keeping as some staff were apparently temps, but the management addressed them and even gave us a gift certificate for the restaurant. The restaurant is not fancy but the food we had was good. We really enjoyed our stay and will return.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hudson, OH
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2013

Recently visited March 17-21, 2013 and had a great time! Property grounds were beautifully in bloom and quiet. Staff made us feel comfortable, and we enjoyed our stay. Loved the bikes and the screened in porch. Great location on Sanibel Island. Can't wait to return next year!

Room Tip: We could see the ocean from the first floor, but view would be better on the second floor.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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 Sanibel Inn

Address: 937 E. Gulf Dr., Sanibel Island, FL 33957
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Southwest Gulf Coast > Sanibel Island
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Sanibel Island
#7 Top resorts Hotel in Sanibel Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Sanibel Inn 3*
Number of rooms: 93
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Immerse yourself in nature at Sanibel Inn. The Inn offers a wide variety of accommodations and amenities surrounded by beautiful gardens and tropical palms. Come to Sanibel Inn to discover why Sanibel Island was just ranked #1 Favorite Worldwide Destination by Arthur Frommer and #5 Top US Beach by Trip Advisor. Just like the tropical flowers in the gardens, Sanibel Inn reflects the colors of the island. From the brightly painted exteriors to the warm soothing interiors of the guestrooms and suites, Sanibel Inn provides a relaxing and comfortable beach hideaway in one of the newly renovated guestrooms and one bedroom suites. Sanibel Inn also offers two-bedroom condominiums that are perfect for families or larger group of friends who wish to stay together. The Sea Star Café is located at the Inn and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner with traditional café fare with an island twist. Sanibel Island is all about nature. Discover nature up close by bike via the 22 miles of paved bike and walking trails. Visit J. N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge to see a variety of migratory birds and explore an undeveloped mangrove ecosystem. Take a walk on the beaches and find rare shells such as the Junonia or 200 other species of shells. Take to the waters of the Gulf by kayak for a different point of view. Feel like a friendly tennis match, Sanibel Inn has a newly refurbished court on the grounds of the Inn or visit The Dunes Golf & Tennis Club. Sanibel Inn guests are also invited to golf at The Dunes where the greens wind through 75 acres of natural lake view fairways and Audubon Cooperative Society wetlands. After a morning of exploration, unwind by the pool and bathe in the warm Florida sun. Just steps away, the Beach Bar offers cool libations and poolside snacks. Sanibel Inn offers a gateway to the various activities on Sanibel and the perfect spot for a relaxing day in the sun. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sanibel Hotel Sanibel Island
Sanibel Island Hotel
Sanibel Island Resort
Sanibel Inn Beach Resort
Sanibel Bed Breakfast

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