We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“GREAT family stay” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach

Save Saved
You added Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach to your Saves list
Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 9 more sites!
Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1540 Ben Franklin Dr, Sarasota, FL 34236 (Formerly Helmsley Sandcastle Hotel)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #28 of 47 hotels in Sarasota
Rochelle, Illinois
1 review
“GREAT family stay”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2014

My family and I stayed 4 days/3nights. When we arrived, first time in the Lido Beach area, and I didn't know what to expect after reading some of the reviews. You won't get fancy fountains, elaborate fixtures, or fancy furniture. It is truly a Hotel frozen in time…reminded me of “Sunny Motel’s” from The Adam Sandler movie Bedtime Stories. The Beach is lined with high rise condo’s and right next door is the elaborate Ritz Carlton. But, this hotel is special. It is not filled with pretentious people. It was filled with families. Families who are there to enjoy the beach, eat breakfast next to the pool, and enjoy their vacation. We walked the beach several mornings and aside from the public beach areas, this is the ONLY beach property with PLENTY of beach front space for playing in the sand, building sand castles, and lounging in your chair WITHOUT being right on top of the person next to you.
We paid extra for the beach view, and it was worth every penny. GREAT budget conscious hotel. There are no nearby stores and very few places to eat unless you drive/walk over to St. Armand's Circle, for Shopping, Dining, Entertainment and much more. Stop at the Publix on your way in…there is a frig in the room (a feature that is hard to find.)

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

802 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
    225
    313
    168
    59
    37
See reviews for
232
296
16
23
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (221)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Millstadt
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2014

We stayed 4 nights. We enjoyed the breakfast buffet and a walk on the beach every morning. The room may have been a little less than expected, but we didn't spend much time there. Clean showers.The beds were like sleeping on the floor. We left single-digit temperatures with sleet and snow; walking barefoot on the beach was a delight. Close to shopping at St. Armand's Circle, and a great Aquarium. Lots of great restaurants, and some located on beach.

Room Tip: We had a nice room facing the courtyard and swimming pool.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
Eddie S, General Manager at Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach, responded to this review, April 4, 2014
We are happy you chose the Sandcastle Resort for your getaway from the snow and cold weather. We also hope that, in the future, you choose to visit the Sarasota area and stay with us again.

Thank you for the business.

Regards,
Eddie Sipple
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Milton, Massachusetts
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2014

Spent several days at the Sandcastle. First the best- the beach!!! Magnificent! Other beaches near by looked like "beach toupes" The breakfast buffet was wonderful and the staff worked very hard. Our room overlooked the pool, but the inside were really dated with chipped furniture, mold on the bathroom tiles and blankets that weren't fit for a hotel guests. Let's hope with a new buyer this older hotel will get a much needed update. We would return if the place gets an overhaul.

Room Tip: Choose a room overlooking the pool area or the beach.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 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.
Eddie S, General Manager at Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach, responded to this review, April 4, 2014
Thank you for staying with us at the Sandcastle Resort. We appreciate the comments and will work to fix the issues you had with your room.

We are working hard daily to make improvements to the property.

Regards,
Eddie Sipple
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2014

We stayed here for 7 nights 2nd week in March 2014, this was our 4th stay, already looking forward to our next one.
Firstly people say that the rooms are rundown or outdated, the rooms are fine. The furniture may not be brand new but in our room it was all in good condition. The room was always clean and had everything in it we needed. We asked and got a court yard room. Our personal favorite. Great for our 2 year old to play outside. Not that we spent too much time in the room as there is a very lovely beech just steps away, which is more important than the state of the room furniture.
The staff are all great nothing was too much, especially Chris the housekeeper and the 2 men with gray t-shirts on that were always around to help people. Sorry don't know their names, 1 I asked about the dog that used to live in the hotel, hope they get the praise they deserve.
St Armands is nearby and well worth a visit, nice shops and places to eat.
The overall feel of the hotel is very relaxed and we felt happy and secure here. Even the other guests were all very friendly. I would defiantly recommend this hotel to anyone.
You get what you pay for and I was very happy with what i paid.

Room Tip: The courtyard rooms are very nice.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 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.
Eddie S, General Manager at Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach, responded to this review, April 4, 2014
We appreciate your comments regarding your stay with us here at the Sandcastle Resort. We are glad you enjoyed your stay and do hope you bring your family back for a fifth time.

Again, thank you for the business.

Regards,
Eddie Sipple
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2014

You cannot beat the location of this resort. The beach is literally steps away and not super crowded. St. Armand's Circle is not too far away and the free Lido shuttle is quick and easy. Glenda in the dining room is a fabulous server. The beach crew is great. The pools are nice. Not so great - if one more person asked me for a tip, I would have screamed. That, and the phrase 'Not any more,' about old offerings vs. current offerings - take your pick of start time and free appetizers at the pool (started at 5 not 4 pm and NOT free), Luau's, house salad with entrees, paying entree prices for appetizers at dinner, gift shop closed for first 2 days, parking, etc. Apparently nothing is the same, but some staff don't know it and tell you the wrong information, or voice an opinion about how it hurts their tips. What was really NOT cool was the indoor water feature in our room when it rained, and hearing how old the hotel was and nothing could be done but offer some towels and an extra ice bucket to empty when the water fills up. Then having one person at the front desk telling us we'd get compensation, and upon check out hearing that the person who told us had no authority to give it to us. At least every guest we met was nice - whether family, couple, group attendee, return guest. Note about taxis - VERY expensive in Sarasota. If you can't find what you are looking for grocery wise in St. Armand and don't have a car, the Route 4 SCAT bus picks you up across from the hotel and drops you off there. If you take to 1st & Lemon, there is a Whole Foods right there. With traffic and neighborhood, best to go in the morning or early afternoon.

Room Tip: Definitely get an ocean view room. Ask for one toward the middle of the resort - the rooms on each...
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 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.
Eddie S, General Manager at Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach, responded to this review, April 4, 2014
I am sorry to hear of your experience while staying here at the Sandcastle Resort and want to apologize for our lapses in service. The resort is addressing the items you mentioned and will continue to work at upgrading our property as well as our service levels.

Again, I do apologize and hope you will give us another try.


Regards,
Eddie Sipple
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Isle of Man, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2014

We checked in middle of the evening, it was dark, having just flown over from Dublin, via Newark. If we had stayed here 20 years ago it would have been fantastic. Have they spent any money on it since then, I doubt it. It is a run down property that we think was going to be sold to be developed or rebuilt into apartments. Staff were at their best - average, food from the bar or in the restaurant again - average, Pool Bar - not even average! However its position on the beach - wonderful ! Our room, at the back overlooking the car park. Could have done with a room overlooking the beach and maybe one with a balcony, had it been offered. Would have gladly paid the difference. Upon enquiring the following morning, told 'we are full' what a load of Bull. Thankfully we were only there for 5 nights, before heading down to Miami and a cruise on Ncl through the Panama. There are many restaurants nearby, not within walking distance though, thankfully we had a car. Would we stay there again? I don't think so. However would we stay in the same area again, a big definite Yes!

Room Tip: Check out the rates for a front, upstairs, balcony rooms. They are the best.
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 2 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.
Eddie S, General Manager at Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach, responded to this review, April 4, 2014
I am sorry to hear of your disappointment in our property and I do apologize for that. We are working on upgrading the property, as well a the service levels; so we may have a product you can be happy with and would consider visiting us again.

Thank you for the business and again I do apologize.

Regards,
Eddie Sipple
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ellicott City, Maryland
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2014

OK, look, this property is old, but its not run down. My mom is old, and she's not run down either.....just old. My kids say I'm old, I am....I'm not run down tho.

Here is what you get, a clean property, decent staff who seemed to care, on the beach, like right on the beach, two heated pools, lots of chairs, a restaurant, a bar, a small basic out door bar, clean rooms, a basic lobby, free wifi everywhere.

Here is what you don't get. You don't get fancy, you don't get wow, except the beach view, you don't get over priced drinks or food, you don't get wild night life....oh and you don't get great access to the one computer in the lobby. My only complaint. The one computer to print out boarding passed has full internet access, so guests will sit there forever looking at the internet. I would suggest they put the software on there that only gives you access to airline check in sites. This was annoying and no one from the hotel monitored this. I finally gave up and set my alarm for midnight and went over then to print my boarding pass.

And someone said no shopping? Well that's correct because this place is on the beach, and shopping is just down the street at St Armand's. Yes they are quaint, boutique shops...I sure don't want all the chain stores I can get back home. And the "traffic problem", well coming into Lido Beach there was never a problem, only on Saturday between 4 and 7 was it packed trying to get out of Lido Beach.

There are not many options here, oh someone said Holiday Inn. Its not on the beach. I paid $215 a night, which included taxes at the Sandcastle.

Room Tip: A pool view room is nice.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, traveled solo
    • 3 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
    • 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.
Eddie S, General Manager at Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach, responded to this review, March 24, 2014
Thank you for the comments regarding our resort. I will share them with the staff so they can see how you rated your stay with us. We do appreciate you taking the time to write a review.

Again, thank you, and we hope you will visit us again.

Regards,
Eddie S.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Been to Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach

Address: 1540 Ben Franklin Dr, Sarasota, FL 34236 (Formerly Helmsley Sandcastle Hotel)
Location: United States > Florida > Southwest Gulf Coast > Sarasota
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Sarasota
#10 Romantic Hotel in Sarasota
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A tropical paradise at the Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach in Sarasota, FloridaSandcastle Resort at Lido Beach has a relaxing sunny resort flavor, with a storybook seaside setting on a 600 foot strand of private, natural white sand beach on the Gulf of Mexico.Sun. Sand. Swaying Palm Trees. And Great Service, Too. You'll be treated to thoughtful touches, such as a morning newspaper and a small refrigerator for chilling beverages and snacks. Free wifi is also available throughout the property. Plus the pleasures of outdoor dining for both breakfast and lunch are virtually right outside your door. What's more, our recreation staff can provide personalized sailing lessons. There's a convenient Gift Shop on premises and we're within easy walking distance of popular St. Armands Circle, with its fine shopping and entertainment attractions. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Booking.com, Tingo, Otel, Travelocity, BookingOdigeoWL, Priceline, Hotels.com, getaroom.com, Amex and Venere so you can book your Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Helmsley Sandcastle Sarasota
Sarasota Helmsley Sandcastle
Helmsley Sandcastle Hotel Sarasota

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.