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“Great Beach, pool, ocean view,” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach

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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 46 Hotels in Sarasota
A TripAdvisor Member
“Great Beach, pool, ocean view,”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2006

I went with my family, wife and two kids (11 and 7). Stayed on the fourth floor ocean view / corner room. View was great and pool was fun. Kelley was great at the pool bar, and she even cried when our family had to leave. Weather started out cool/windy but ended better 75-82 degrees. Hotel could use some upgrades on the outside, but the inside rooms were good size and clean. all staff was great. A bad policy is that they charge the guests of the resort $2 dollars for using a beach chair. For this money per night you should definitely get a complim. chair. Overall good time and liked the beach house rest. the best.

John O
From Chicago

  • Stayed January 2006
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 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.
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987 reviews from our community

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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
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A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2005

we went to the sandcastle in 2004 then went back again in 2005, not for the hotel alhough it was very nice and staff were friendly but we loved the beach. the hotel is right on the beach and the beach is gorgeous.the lida key area is very nice aswell with a good choice of shops and resturants.the hotel needed a bit of updateing but it was a very nice hotel and i would definitley go back again.

  • Stayed August 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
March, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2005

We stayed here for 4 nights end Oct due to Wilma. We had a room overlooking the beach what sunsets wow'''.
Room nice size but a bit outdated the air condition is operated by the hotel not by each room and the doors have louver's would have liked air con instead. Very clean we had a big fridge, table and chairs plus easy chairs. Food a bit on the expensive side and the bar was a bit on the quiet side, service was very good. The two pools were very nice the beach was really good you could hire chairs ect., Plenty of parking at hotel. This is a good hotel in the area as many of the beaches are private and you have unlimited access to a white beach and blue sea. The Hotel needs a bit of updateing.

Stayed November 2005
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2005

The hotel its self was ok, my door had to be forced in to close, other than the the outside of the room the inside was nice. We went to breakfast one morning there and it was so bad, first the hostess gave us adittude about how they only has 3 servers and no matter where you sit you wil have to wait, and then he spilt water on me and did not say the simple I am sorry. The waiter was also in a bad mood and touch me with the HOT food covers and again did not say I am soory. DO not get the pool side view or the garden view they both are bad.

  • Stayed October 2005
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stourbridge
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
11 hotel reviews
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2005

Driving down through Sarasota I had concerns about the area, but after crossing the bridge to Lido Key, they started to subside.

The Helmsley itself is more of a motel than a hotel.

We upgraded to a beach fromt room, the room initially offered was facing and overshadowed by the garage parking. But the rooms were tasteful and if you want to rest and relax than this is the place for it.

Staff were friendley and not in your face. Pools were nice, beach right on your doorstep.

Not a lot to do arounnd Lido Key, any shops and restaurants are a drive away.

Overall very pleased.

  • Stayed September 2005
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shropshire UK
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
14 hotel reviews
109 helpful votes 109 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2005

After 10 hectic days in Orlando my stay here was intended to be a chill out r & r session. That is precisely what it turned out to be.

I can only reiterate the positive content of the other most recent reviews. The Location virtually on the beach was superb and the rooms perfectly clean and well decorated with all the essential equipment.

Staff were polite and friendly at all times, although apart from check in and check out we had little contact.

Upon arrival I was a little apprehensive at the external appearance of the bedroom blocks which look dated but are in fact quite tidily maintained.

My 10 year old daughter kept herself entertained in the two pleasant pools playing with some of the other kids. I would say this is fine for families just as long as they do not demand too much action and adventure.

We took breakfast on the patio each morning and found the food and service to be perfectly acceptable. We did not use the restaurant in the evening as rightly or wrongly we took a look inside and did not fancy eating there as it just looked a little uninspiring. Instead we used the guide books supplied in the room to identify some local eateries and had a great deal of success in doing so. It should be said that a car is required as there is nothing in the way of dining opportunities in the immediate vicinity of the hotel.

One slight negative - We arrived just after Katrina had swept up the Gulf and found the beach littered with dead fish some of which were very large. Whilst the stretch of beach outside the hotel was cleaned daily, further along it was not. As you can imagine shell collecting amongst festering fish carcasses in 90 degree heat was not altogether pleasant. Although this may have been a one off, someone should have that kind of thing covered. One thing is for sure, people are unlikely to return to a dirty beach.

This is a very quiet location with little to do other than relax. Granted, there are various boat trips, concert venues etc. within a short car ride but on Lido Key mainly residential property. A sound hotel and good value room rates especially when you consider the cost of real estate in the area.

  • Stayed August 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lancs Uk
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
12 hotel reviews
90 helpful votes 90 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2005

Our visit to Sarasota was a two night break away from Disney and the Helmsley Sancastle was just the place to go. We booked a Gulf View Room for ourselves and our two kids (6 and 9) and drove from Kissimmee taking the scenic route via the keys taking 3 hours.

The Hotel has "outdoor" corridors and staircases mainly surrounding the two nice clean pools and Restaurant area. Our room was spacious and very clean - the view of the Gulf from the 3rd floor was fantastic. The room had a small fridge, table chairs and two double beds. Air con worked fine (and quietly). The balcony was shared with the next room, but you could look all the way along the balconies anyway so sharing wasn't a problem. The bathroom was compact with bath, shower over etc and also hairdryer.

We tried the candlelight Restaurant the first night and although the food was fine, felt a little neglected as there was a large party next to us who were quite demanding of the staff. Breakfast wasn't included in the price but was good value and you could pick and mix or have the buffet.

The beach access was great - you can walk out of your room and be on the beach within 10 paces. Considering the hotel was busy, not many were on the beach, preferring the pools instead for some reason. Parasol and lounger hire at $2 each for the day made our day on the beach complete. We are now the owner of a small surf board from the shop which also sold crisps (oops I mean chips!) biscuits, postcards and the like.

A short drive to St Armands circle gave us the opportunity to try eating out and there were lots of very nice shops - home made ice cream/toffee etc.

Then it was back to Disney.......

  • Stayed August 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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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:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#10 Romantic Hotel in Sarasota
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Sandcastle Resort at Lido Beach 3*
Number of rooms: 179
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 
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Also Known As:
Helmsley Sandcastle Sarasota
Sarasota Helmsley Sandcastle
Helmsley Sandcastle Hotel Sarasota

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