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“Great place to relax!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Waterside Inn on the Beach

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Waterside Inn on the Beach
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3033 W. Gulf Dr., Sanibel Island, FL 33957   |  
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Ranked #7 of 27 Hotels in Sanibel Island
Indianapolis, Indiana
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Great place to relax!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2013

We stayed at the Waterside Inn on the Beach for 4 days and really enjoyed the area! We stayed in the Breakers West A2 condo, it had 2-bedrooms and each BR had its own bathroom. One bedroom had a large king size bed and the other room had two twin beds. There was also a fold out sofa. The kitchen was nice and had all items you would need to make meals. The condo also included a washer and dryer which came in very handy. Condo also included free WIFI. You could also rent umbrellas from the front office and they had beach chairs and towels you could use for no charge. The beach is very nice, lots of shells if that is what you are looking for. The area is very quiet and relaxing. This is not a party island! There are lots of great restaurants in the area and lots of small shops to get souvenirs. There is also a small grocery store and liquor store close, but I would suggest stopping in Ft. Myers at Walmart or other larger stores to get groceries and all your needed items before going to Sanibel Island. Overall we had a great time and the weather was wonderful!

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sanibelblondie, Owner at Waterside Inn on the Beach, responded to this review, November 13, 2013
Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experiences here at Waterside Inn. You gave everyone reading some valuable information about Sanibel and the surrounding area. As you mentioned, there is a large grocery store (Publix) right before you travel through the toll booth. Many of our guests will stock up on food/liquor/beach toys or tolietries before checking in here at Waterside. Don't worry if you forget anything though as we have two grocery stores on the island as well as drug stores, pharmacies, and liquor stores.

Once again, thank you for your review. We have a wonderful community of people that come back year after year. We look forward to having you join this group as well.
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315 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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 (63)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Gainesville, Florida
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2013 via mobile

The location itself is fantastic . If you stay in the lodge itself stay in pineapple room 121 or 128. They both have fantastic views of the gulf . Room 121 is on tge lower floor and would be best for people with mobility issues as there are quite a few stairs to climb to get to room 128 which is the room we stayed in and I'm betting is the best view on the property. There are also cottages to stay at also and the cottages do accommodate pets. The prior reviews I read were concerning the need for upgrading the cottages and the lodge and it looks like they were in the process of doing this during our stay . It is not fancy and is a very beach casual place but that is what we wanted. We wanted to walk the beach and collect shells and relax. We were not looking for luxury and spas . This charming island is the perfect place to relax and unwind .

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sanibelblondie, Owner at Waterside Inn on the Beach, responded to this review, November 11, 2013
Thank you so much for your review of Waterside Inn on the Beach. We are so please you had a pleasant stay and look forward to your return.
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Suffolk, Virginia
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2013

We reserved a cottage for seven nights and were assigned to the kiwi! Wow! I guess we were punished for having two dogs 10 lbs each! Oh btw we paid $80 for each dog to stay! The cottage may be fit for (junk yard) r dogs but it was horrible. Bed was the only good thing.....entire apartment including many dishes were very dirty (I fully understand the sand and would expect a little grit but it was piled in corners!). Bathroom was so small and in desperate need of renovation. Tub did not drain, toilet was not properly seated and rocked, pots and pans were just lain gross, front door dragged and was very hard to open, window air conditioner was very loud! Oh, not to mention being full of ants. My brother came over for a day and stayed in the pineapple which was very nice however, No pets allowed.....we asked the women the next day about moving to a cottage with a screened patio and were "told" we picked the kiwi when we made our reservation online and if we wanted another cottage, we would have to move three times! NO actually we were assigned this room when we made our PHONE reservation in sept! Finally we spoke to a young man later that day who agreed that the kiwi was their worst accommodation and said it we could "tough it out" for one more night that the blueberry was available for the remainder of our stay. We did move the next day in an effort to give the Inn another chance and the blueberry was much nicer! This was what we expected the first time around for the price we were paying except for the invasion of ants. THEN they charged us an additional 20$ a night for the blueberry cottage!! WHEW.... I could continue but won't! Sanibel was beautiful but our anniversary celebration was dampened by this place! There are far too many pet friendly places to stay! Wish I knew that before we went! What a lesson! Boycott this place! Not worth the hassle!.... Then I came down very sick and we had to leave a day early. We informed the owner two days before that we had to leave early however, when we checked out, we were charged for the additional night! Holy cow! We travel all over the world and we have NEVER had management be so uncooperative!!
They do have lounge chairs, many of which are in a very ill state of repair which we could drag to the beach daily rather than having them available on the beach like many resorts.... They advertise having bbq it's available for guests however, they (2) are far from the majority of the cottages, chained to a palm tree. There is not one picnic table anyway near them. As far as the shuffle board, you can play if you first clean it off for the three inches of sand first and walk to the front of the property and check out the poles/pucks and carry them......

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sanibelblondie, Owner at Waterside Inn on the Beach, responded to this review, November 11, 2013
Thank you for your stay at Waterside Inn on the Beach. I’m sorry your experience did not meet your expectations. As you can see from the hundreds of other reviews, this is certainly not the norm. I am so disappointed that you chose to post false statements concerning your experience. Allow me to address your statements.

You phoned our office and explicitly asked for the Kiwi cottage since we had no other vacancies. This was after you had checked it out online, looked at pictures with descriptions, and then decided it was a good fit for your small limited budget. It was explained to you when you called that we charge a fee for pets and the price was disclosed and agreed to by you. This should not have been a surprise to you as all our rates and policies are clearly written on our web site as well as your confirmation that was emailed to you.

Upon your arrival, we were surprised that you were unhappy with the cottage. Since we were fully booked and had no other openings until the next day, you agreed to spend one night in the cottage that you reserved. We asked you if you would like to upgrade to a more expensive cottage the following day and you pleasantly agreed to forgo the difference in money and move to the Blueberry cottage. At this point, you said nothing derogatory about the unit you reserved, only that you were unhappy with it and wanted to move. You approached me (the owner) the following day and told me how you were unhappy with your initial reservation. I then said I would compensate you the Blueberry cottage for the Kiwi rate – a difference of $42 per night. I felt this was a more than fair compensation and at the time, you were more than happy with that discount. To say we charged you an additional $20 a night is an untruth.

Never once in our conversation did you mention problem with ants or messy housekeeping. We are contracted and serviced with a nationally know pest control company. Should you have had a problem, and told us, we would have immediately been able to eliminate any issue on the spot. As far as your comment on the cleanliness, we wish you had notified the staff of this at the time of your check in. Although both of these incidents are highly unlikely, it would have been addressed immediately had you discussed this with us. We pride ourselves on our high standards of cleanliness. In case you didn’t know, our hotel has been awarded the highest reward in housekeeping cleanliness from the Small Superior Lodging – The White Glove Award. For you to say this in a Trip Advisor review one week after the fact is totally unfair on your part.

Lastly, if you read our cancellation policy, you would have known that if a cancellation is made less than 7 days prior to your arrival there will be no refund unless all dates can be filled with a substitute rental and all rental proceeds realized. Additionally, there is a $30 handling fee for any cancellation.

Again, I am very sorry you had a less than positive experience and hope that you can find a vacation destination that better suits you.
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Louisville, Kentucky
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2013

We drive from Kentucky which is 16 hours away every six months to come to Sanibel island and every time we stay we go to the waterside inn. During our most recent visit my mother became ill and we will never forget the kindness that they showed us. we love the staff and know them by name. Lynn Debbie and Eric are friendly as they can be and will do anything to make your stay better if you inform them. I've recently have read some bad reviews about the place and frankly I think they are ridiculous. The cottages and pineapple lodge is right on the beach and you can take the beach chairs to the beach but bring them back how hard is that? if my fanily knows anything its that the waterside inn cant be beat when you go to Sanibel island. Sand, no see ums and humidity is part of the experience. Great place quiet and right on the beach what more could you ask for. If you don't like that then you need to vacation somewhere else.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sanibelblondie, Owner at Waterside Inn on the Beach, responded to this review, November 3, 2013
We were so sorry to hear about your Mother, but more than happy to help you out. You have been great customers of ours.....just like all our return visitors. We know we will see you again soon and look forward to a "healthier" stay next time. Take care...we'll miss you both!
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Coconut Creek, Florida, USA
Top Contributor
138 reviews 138 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013

Awesome room. Full equipped kitchen. Extra fresh towels and paper kept flowing in every day of our stay. Nice quiet spot on the beach, which was walking distance. Staff was very friendly and wasn't intruding. It was basically like staying in someones apartment. Had a patio, laundry room, living room, dining room, 2 bathrooms and was decorated very nicely. Also had Xfinity with a ton of channels to take a break from the sun. Loved it. If the price wasn't so high we would stay/visit more often.

Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sanibelblondie, Owner at Waterside Inn on the Beach, responded to this review, November 3, 2013
Thank you so much for the kind review. We love to hear great reviews and experiences that our Guests have had here at Waterside Inn on the Beach. Our returning guests are like family to us and we always look forward to seeing each and every one of you year after year. We hope to see you someday again as well. I hope you travels home were safe and your memories here at Waterside linger on!
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Syracuse, United States
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2013

My wife and I wanted the perfect beach vacation for our 35th wedding anniversary and we found it at Waterside. While there are many great places to stay on Sanibel, after much research on line , Waterside was "spot on perfect". How can you describe perfect charm, character and a great romantic setting right on the beach. From the moment we arrived we were thrilled with the place. The views are great, the colors are fun and everything else just makes you relax, unwind and say ahhh! We were blessed with great weather, warm ocean, moonlit nights and total relaxation.
We met the owners and some of the great staff on day 1 and they went out of their way to make our anniversary stay special. On top of that, they have thought of everything here and if you need something, they have it or will help you get it. We could go on and on.
This place is special, we did not want to leave. We will return. Thank you Debbie and all at Waterside for really providing the means for our perfect beach vacation on our anniversary!
Don and Barb

Room Tip: Gulf front is of course the best view
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sanibelblondie, Owner at Waterside Inn on the Beach, responded to this review, October 22, 2013
Thank you for choosing Waterside Inn to celebrate such a special occasion. We are so happy that your enjoyed all that Waterside Inn had to offer. Sometimes it's hard to get our Guests to leave us reviews because they want to keep Waterside Inn a secret! Our goal is to bring you back again and again. With that being said, we're so pleased that we'll be seeing you again! By the way, next time pull up a beach chair and fish with us!!
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Coral Gables, Florida
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2013 credit card Amex Card Member Review

Love this place and it accept small dogs!
The cottages on the beach are the best places to stay!!
BBQ at night and great location for heading over to captiva.
My dog loves coming here and is welcome on the beach!

Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sanibelblondie, Owner at Waterside Inn on the Beach, responded to this review, October 22, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to review our resort and sharing it with others. Our beach view cottages are very popular for our families that want to bring along their little furry friends. Nothing like having the whole family together for a memoriable beachside vacation. We're so happy you enjoyed a wonderful stay at Waterside Inn and as always, look forward for your return.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Waterside Inn on the Beach

Address: 3033 W. 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 Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Best Value Hotel in Sanibel Island
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Sanibel Island
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Sanibel Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 27
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
An intimate Olde Sanibel beachfront hideaway. All units recently refurbished including our romantic honeymoon cottage. Small pets welcome in selected units. Lush landscaping, two heated pools and stunning sunsets. Paradise awaits... just for you! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Waterside Inn On The Beach Hotel Sanibel Island
Waterside Hotel Sanibel Island
Waterside Resort Sanibel Island

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