I've stayed at this hotel before and it seems that the lobby has recently been remodled. The check-in is quite quick, and if you are a Hilton Honors member (may need to be a Gold level- I'm not sure), you have free parking and wireless internet. Parking is tight, so if you have or are renting a large vehicle, I'd recommend parking at the top level of the parking garage. If you do so, know in advance that there is no elevator in that garage and will have to go down about 3-4 flights of stairs (keep that in mind for luggage reasons).
The rooms are spacious, and I believe they are all suites that include a bedroom, kitchen (some are kitchenettes), and an livingroom type space. Some have a separate office area. Many but not all rooms have been recently remodeled, but all rooms have the latest in terms of mattresses and are very comfortable. The only odd event that I came across was the fact that when I came back from a day of work (around 5:00 p.m.) All of the drawers in the suite were open. Not just a little open, all of the way open. It was a bit disconcerting, but I'm guessing this is a cleaning technique (to wipe down the insides of the drawers and keep them open to dry), but it just felt strange. I felt nothing in terms of "having my stuff gone through" because I rarely put my items into drawers. I worry that I'll leave something that way, and I am always leery of bedbugs. I diligently check mattress seams in all places I stay to inspect for evidence of bedbugs. Unfortunately I have found those in my travels and opt to stay elsewhere in those cases. I have never seen that problem at this hotel.
The manager reception is (as always) exceptional. Drinks (simple beverages with a few alcoholic) are free, as well as finger foods. The staff is wonderful and truly do everything they can to make your stay pleasant. The excercise room is well equipped and the pool in well maintained. The pool is an outdoor one. Most of the rooms facing St Pete (west) side have small balconies. I do not believe the end rooms have them.
In terms of what is nearby. You can walk to a small mall across the street. It has dining and the usual mall-type shopping. A good place to go to kill some time. I will say that I have brough many shoes that need repair to the Westshore Mall because they have an excellent shoe repair store inside.
Down the road is a monsterous shopping center (north, and close to the airport)(5-8 minutes away in traffic). To the south is MacDill AFB, so if you have work there it is fairly easy to find (15 minutes away in traffic).
I have stayed here on many occasions and I have to say that generally, the service is improving with each stay (but it was always consistently good).