We initially booked this room with the understanding that the Presidential Suite had a kitchenette. It did but the term does not mean it had an oven or stove. It did not. It had a sink, with a microwave and half refrigerator. We called to verify and the person at the hotel said that it had a full refrigerator. Long story short, we had planned on being able to prepare meals in the room to save money. This did not work out short of microwave meals. This was a disappointment.
The Presidential Suite was nice. It was not the Ritz but it was clean, comfortable and roomy. We had 2 adults and 3 children ages 8, 5 and 2. The Suite contained 2 bedrooms with a King Size bed in each and a pull out sofabed in the living room. We did not use the living room sofabed as the 3 kids fit in the one room just fine.
One big disappointment was that the bedroom on the far end of the Suite had an oversized door. Hence - the door would NOT close because of its size and the King Size bed being in the way. Whose bright idea was that? Someone had to realize that at some point and just shrugged - oh well. The big Oh Well is that the persons in this bedroom will get no privacy!
The Suite has a large and roomy bathroom with a Large Whirlpool Garden tub and separate shower. Very comfortable! Downside to this bathroom? The lighting over the toilet area is non-existant! If you like reading in the bathroom...better bring an extra light because the light from the vanity area and the one over the shower are not going to do the trick! Another problem in the bathroom - HARD WATER! If you like a fresh clean feeling stepping out of the shower - you will be clean but you will feel the minerals left behind. I realize this is Florida but come on Holiday Inn - get this right! Add a water softener to the water lines!
The beds were very good. I personally own a Sleep number bed so I am not a great person to ask about the comfort of the bed - nothing compares. But overall the beds were very clean and comfortable. They probably rate up there with Sheraton and Ritz.
The pool area and pool is exceptionally maintained! Very manicured and it gave the feeling of a resort. Too bad no one was serving drinks! They did a very good job at maintaining the chemicals in the pool.
The Fitness Center - VERY SMALL. Only a few machines and the room was very narrow. They really should rethink this!
Ice Machines are only available on Floors 1,2 and 3. Why not the 4th Floor? It was inconvenient to have to constantly go to the 3rd floor for ice.
They serve Ice Cream EVERY night between 8 and 10 pm. This was a very nice treat. Ice cream consisted of ice cream sandwiches, klondike bars, various flavors of icee, and several other varieties. Again - a very nice treat and a plus for the kids!
Upon arrival, they treat the adults to adult beverages of bottles of beer. Another nice treat especially after a long hot day of driving. Different varieties were available.
They do offer a full breakfast daily in their breakfast area. Each day was different. Some days were omelettes, others were scrambled eggs with bacon, biscuits, gravy. They changed it up every day. Cereal was always available as were pancakes. They actually had a machine that made fresh pancakes for you. Really a neat idea.
The only problem we had in the breakfast area was on Monday. The young ladies in the back were not keeping up with the demand for food in the dining area. They also were not keeping up with the garbage cans that were filling to capacity. I spoke with Lois at the front counter in the lobby. She immediately corrected the situation and it never occurred again during our stay. She was extremely apologetic and went the extra mile to make us happy. She provided an in room movie free on any night of our choosing. That was nice for the kids. It meant a lot that she checked up on us consistantly after that incident to make sure everything was going well. You don't find that kind of treatment even in 5-Star hotels very often!
Judy was another person we found extremely friendly and helpful. She remembered us by name. She even remembered our kids names! Who does that anymore? Kudos to both Judy and Lois for going the extra mile to make sure we were happy.
Overall? This was a great hotel to stay at if you are going to be visiting attractions in the Busch Gardens area. They are a Busch Gardens preferred hotel. It is a great hotel for Kids and business elites alike. It is a comfortable hotel at a good price. The hotel is well kept and you will like what you find.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Find out why New Tampa is the 'Place To Be' The Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites is closest in New Tampa to Busch Gardens and University of South Florida (USF). This beautiful Hotel & Suites is located in the pristine 'New Tampa' area of Tampa and is easy to get to at I-75 exit 270. The hotel is close to everything; yet it is nestled in a peaceful nature preserve area. New Tampa is exciting, clean, fresh and new with over 15 restaurants and 5 golf courses. From the hotel you can walk to the new 20 screen movie theater, restaurants and shopping.This Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites is recognized as having one of the best guest service ratings of any hotel in the country. It features a heated outdoor pool with lushly landscaped grounds, free high-speed Internet access in all rooms, wireless access in public areas, a business center, fitness center and the hotel s own putting green. The 27 suites also include a wet bar and 47" TV's. Executive suites & presidential suites feature Jacuzzi tubs, glass enclosed showers and multiple TV sets. This is the closest Express in New Tampa to Busch Gardens, USF-University of South Florida, DTCC, T-Mobile, USAA, Verizon, Coca-Cola, Achieve Global, Washington Mutual, JLM Industries, Telecom Park, Hidden River, Highwoods Preserve, Museum of Science & Industry, Moffitt Cancer Center and more. Pets under 35lbs are allowed in a limited number of guest rooms with a $50 deep clean fee. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Express Hotel And Suites New Tampa i-75 Bruce b. Downs
- Holiday Inn Express Tampa
- Holiday Inn Tampa