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“great motel away from the crowds” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Gulf Beach Resort Motel

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Gulf Beach Resort Motel
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930 Ben Franklin Drive, Sarasota, FL 34236   |  
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Florida Resident Special
Ranked #18 of 48 Hotels in Sarasota
florida
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“great motel away from the crowds”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2014

Just returned from spending a night at the Gulf Beach Resort Motel. We loved it! It is quiet and calm in comparison to the tumult of the St. Armand's Circle area. It is close to downtown Sarasota: we went to the ballet last night. The staff is friendly. Our room was smallish but plenty large enough for two. It was nicely furnished with a full kitchen, granite counters, which we didn't even use. Best of all it is on the Gulf of Mexico and a brief walk out the door has you on the beach with your own books, snacks & whatever goodies you want for company. You really feel like you are stepping back in time at this motel (in a good way!!) Following shortcuts, you can walk to St. Armands. When in Sarasota, we will return here.

  • Stayed April 2014, 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
    • 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.
GulfBeachMotel, Manager at Gulf Beach Resort Motel, responded to this review, April 28, 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review about your stay at Gulf Beach Resort Motel. It sounds like this may have been your first visit with us and I am so glad you discovered us! Most of our units do have fully equipped kitchens which make it easy to keep beverages and snacks handy for spending the day at the beach or preparing meals to enjoy on your patio or at the outside tables. I'm glad you were able to attend and enjoy the ballet. Sarasota offers such a variety of cultural activities and events that our proximity to the downtown area makes it easy to participate and enjoy all the options. We are so happy that you enjoyed your stay and we look forward to having you return to stay with us again!
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127 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    4
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (48)
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English first
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2014

This is my second time staying at the Gulf Beach Resort. Last year I stayed with my husband and 4 yr old son. This year just my son and I visited April 15th thru the 22nd. I can not say enough great things about this wonderful treasure and so happy to know it is on the historic registry.

Yes, it is an older property but it adds to the vintage charm. You are so close to the beach that it is heavenly. You couldn't miss the beautiful sunsets if you tried. The rooms are clean and spotless. The staff goes out of there way to be friendly and helpful.

St Armands is right around the corner for great dining and shopping. Also the Lido Key Tiki Bar is a few steps down the beach.

Rooms are more than reasonably priced, especially for this exceptional location. We will definitely be returning next year. Thanks for another great vacation!

Room Tip: Wall unit air conditioners are a bit noisy while sleeping so be prepared.
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GulfBeachMotel, Manager at Gulf Beach Resort Motel, responded to this review, April 28, 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review about your experience at Gulf Beach Resort Motel. I am happy to hear that you enjoyed your stay last year and chose to return to visit with us again. Your comments about our property are very much appreciated as I know our all of our staff works very hard to make each guest's stay as comfortable and enjoyable as possible. It sounds like you took advantage of all the things our beautiful little key in Sarasota has to offer. We certainly look forward to having you return to stay with us again next year!
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Roanoke, Virginia
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2014

Amazing! This motel is truly a little slice of heaven on the Gulf Coast. We originally were to be there 2 nights, but we enjoyed it so much we took advantage of a cancellation they had and stayed an extra night. This is truly a throwback to "old Florida" as they call it. If you want glitzy, over-priced rooms with perks you probably won't use there are other places nearby. If you want to stay in a clean, comfortable room on the beach the Gulf Beach Resort is the best combination of excellence and value.

We were in Room 314 our first two nights and it was wonderful. From our balcony, we could watch the sun go down. There are several such balcony rooms (a shared balcony) where you can have this gorgeous view. The room itself was clean and more than adequate for our needs. The kitchen area was small, but generously supplied with cookware. The bed was extremely comfortable.

Our 3rd night was spent in room 309 which is an absolute gem. The view is unbeatable for the price. A very spacious 2-bedroom which was more than the two of us needed, but we were glad to spend the extra for another night at this wonderful, family-oriented resort. We were truly just a few steps from the sand.

We are already trying to figure out if we can get back down there this summer. Greg, Karen, and the all of the staff we met were gracious and accommodating. If you want a long laundry list of on-site restaurants, workout rooms, etc., this isn't your place. If you want to enjoy a great time at a beautiful beach I can't imagine doing better than the Gulf Beach Resort.

Room Tip: Ask about the rooms with ocean view balconies. They are just a little more than the ones further bac...
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  • Stayed March 2014, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GulfBeachMotel, Manager at Gulf Beach Resort Motel, responded to this review, April 14, 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review about your stay at Gulf Beach Resort Motel. All of our staff takes pride in making each guest's stay as comfortable and enjoyable as possible so I do appreciate your comments about the state of the rooms and your experience with our employees. It is nice to hear that you were able to enjoy our beautiful sunsets and beach. We do not have some of the amenities that some of the larger hotels have but we try to keep the property true to its original intent, to provide families with an affordable vacation spot. I certainly hope that you will be able to return to visit with us this summer. You may even experience a turtle nesting on our beach!
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Standish, Maine
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2014

I love the location and the low key nature of the motel. It is great to be able to walk out the door right to your car or the beach without having to go through a lobby and pass a lot of people. However, I would NEVER stay in Rm. 109 again. The mattress was terrible. My husband got back aches and I had trouble sleeping. We moved to Rm. 111 and it was SO much nicer for only $10 more. I loved sitting in the sunny screened-in porch in the morning, walking the beach, going to the tiki bar a few hotels over, kayaking in the bayou, walking in the nature parks, and visiting shops and restaurants; Louie's Modern in Sarasota was great and we love Tommy Bahamas at the Circle. We saw two dolphins on the morning we were leaving.

Room Tip: The rooms are all different. Look at pictures on website. Just don't select Rm 109. The mattress...
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
    • 4 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.
GulfBeachMotel, Manager at Gulf Beach Resort Motel, responded to this review, April 14, 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review about your stay at Gulf Beach Resort Motel. It sounds like you were able to enjoy a lot of the activities that our area offers. There are so many areas for kayaking that people seem to love exploring. Our proximity to St. Armands Circle makes it a popular shopping and dining spot without having to go very far. I am sorry that you had a bad experience with the bed in your unit. We will definitely investigate the condition of the mattress and make every effort to correct the situation. I certainly hope that you will return to visit with us again!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dallas, Texas
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2014

As advertised, this motel is a throwback to the 60's. Room was small, but super clean. Everything worked. Guests were quiet and friendly. What's great about this place is it's location on the beach. Not across the street, or over a long boardwalk, or behind the dunes. It is right on the beach. Awesome.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GulfBeachMotel, Manager at Gulf Beach Resort Motel, responded to this review, March 22, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write a review about your stay with us at Gulf Beach Resort Motel. We love the fact that our guests are so friendly and happy to be here. We've seen a lot of friendships formed among guests that have lasted for many, many years. So much so that they plan their vacations to all be here at the same time. It's also fun for the staff to see people return year after year. One of our best features is that our property is right on the beach. Guests can walk out their door and feel the sand beneath their feet not far from their unit. I appreciate that you chose Gulf Beach Resort as your vacation destination and we look forward to having you return to stay with us again!
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pittsburgh
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2014

Stayed here for the second year in a row in the same room. Greg, at the front office, was friendly, efficient and welcoming. The beach was so close and the pool was exquisite. Very clean rooms and maids were so nice. Had dinner at the beach at sunset, truly a memorable experience. Our mattresses were a little lumpy compared to last year so we may try another room next year. We will be back!

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
GulfBeachMotel, Manager at Gulf Beach Resort Motel, responded to this review, March 10, 2014
Thank you very much for taking the time to write a review about your stay at Gulf Beach Resort Motel. I'm glad you were able to enjoy our beach and heated pool. We've had some ups and downs in our weather this winter but for the most part we've had plenty of sunshine! I appreciate and thank you for your comments about our staff. Every staff member takes pride in their work and wants to ensure that each guest has an enjoyable and comfortable stay. I have taken note of your comment about the lumpy mattresses and have contacted the owner to have them replaced. We are so glad that you chose to return to stay with us a second time and look forward to many return visits!
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loveturquoisewater
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2014

We stayed here three nights in early February. We love hotels that feel like you're stepping back in time and this is a good one! We stayed in apartment/room 310 and while we felt it could use some updating for sure, it was clean! Friendly check in, safe location, convenient parking right outside the rooms, and of course the beautiful beach is mere steps away. We were on the go each day exploring all the the area had to offer, but we did enjoy the beach each morning and for sunsets. We ate at the mexican restaurant in the circle area about a mile away-best fajitas of my life! We also drove to Holmes Beach one night and ate at the Beach Bistro for a celebration dinner. It was amazing too! We didn't use the pool, but it looked nice and were were told it was heated. I can't think of anything negative to say about the property or staff. We wouldn't hesitate to stay here again! On second thought, one minor negative thing...If we were there during warmer weather we would have gone in the water or if we had used the pool we would have needed to dry off and no beach towels are provided. You're not permitted to bring your bath towel out of your room. For those who arrive by plane and are packing lightly it is extremely challenging to find room in the suitcase for beach towels. It seems like a minor expense for a beach property to provide towels and could be deemed as a huge inconvenience for some people/families. Otherwise, an awesome stay!

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
GulfBeachMotel, Manager at Gulf Beach Resort Motel, responded to this review, March 10, 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review about your stay at Gulf Beach Resort Motel. It sounds like you were able to enjoy all the activities that our area has to offer. The beach is a great gathering place at sunset and many guests return year after year to connect with people they have met during their stay with us. I appreciate your suggestion about providing beach towels for our guests. We have always tried to keep our rates as affordable as possible and as a result we have chosen not to incur the cost of supplying the beach towels. It is definitely something we re-consider from time to time and we will re-evaluate this particular request again. I would also like to thank you for acknowledging our staff. Every one that works here puts forth their best effort to make each guest's stay as enjoyable and comfortable as possible. I am so glad to hear you enjoyed your stay with us and we definitely look forward to having you return to visit with us again!
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Additional Information about Gulf Beach Resort Motel

Address: 930 Ben Franklin Drive, Sarasota, FL 34236
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Southwest Gulf Coast > Sarasota
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #18 of 48 Hotels in Sarasota
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 49
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located directly on Lido Beach in Sarasota, Florida. Private beach and heated pool. Most units have fully equipped kitchens and private screened in porches. Each unit is uniquely decorated and we offer a variety of choices to suit your needs. We are within walking distance of renowned St. Armand's Circle shopping and restaurant district. We are the perfect place for family and class reunions, weddings, family vacations or just to get away for some special time with each other. ... more   less 

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