I'm just at the end of a 2 week stay here.I came with an open mind,as I always do,but my visit turned out a lot better than I imagined it would.
HOTEL: The staff have been fantastic and can't do enough for you.The room is very comfortable and clean.Love the fact that there is an iron and board in the closet plus a coin laundry in the hotel if people need it.I knew that there were complimentary internet connections in rooms but didn't realize that there are 2 PCs for guest use in the business centre at no charge.I wouldn't hesitate to return.I know alot about hotels as I worked in the tourist industry for 15 years.
YBOR CITY:As I was a woman travelling alone I was a bit concerned that perhaps Ybor might be too dangerous.I can honestly say that I've had no problems at all.As long as you keep to busy streets and don't stay out really late you shouldn't have problems.Logically,don't carry valuables and put your bag across your body.
Ybor itself has great character.It is full of great bars,restaurants,vintage and ethnic shops,tattoo parlours and cigar shops.You see all types of people here so if you love watching the world go by it's the place to be.You can feel the strong latin influence.
If you want to learn more of the history of Ybor a trip to the museum on 9th Ave is a must.Make sure you take the guided tour around the casita(cigar worker's house).There is a Saturday morning art and crafts market across the street from here.
FOREIGN CURRENCY EXCHANGE ; Although I have a credit card I always prefer to pay cash.However when it came to changing currency I had afew problems.None of the hotels offered this service plus banks required you to have an account with them before they could do it.Thank goodness there was the YBOR SUPERMARKET on 7th Ave who do money exchange,otherwise I could have had problems.
FOOD:Overall I enjoyed the food in Ybor and Tampa.I have to mention Gaspers,Shrimp and co and the Tampa brewing company as my favourites.If you're on Channelside a meal in the Thai restaurant is a must.Try the Thai donuts to finish...I've never tasted anything quite like them...to die for.
SHOPPING:I was surprised that there were not more shops,especially in downtown Tampa.I'd recommend the malls if you want to go on a spree!
TRANSPORT: I didn't have a car but found getting around not too difficult.There is the old fashioned TECO street car which runs from Ybor to Channelside and downtown.There is also a frequent service of HART buses that run through Ybor city.The number 8 goes from downtown Tampa to Brandon mall (a great shopping mall 40 mins away).Tickets can be bought before from machines or on board with the correct change.Taxis are not too expensive and are metered.
PLACES TO VISIT:If you have a car the list is endless.I went to the Florida Aquarium(great),the Henry B Plant museum(also interesting) and the Tampa History museum.(V good).I did also go around the Art museum in downtown.I felt at $10 it wasn't worth it.
No visit to Tampa could miss out Busch gardens.I took a taxi from Ybor $24 each way.Some great rides and some lovely animals and gardens to look at.
Unfortunately I didn't go to Clearwater or St Petes..mainly due to it's location and the fact that the weather wasn't so good during my stay.
DOWNTOWN:Easy to walk around the centre as it's not too big.Apart from the riverwalk and museums there's nothing else for tourists here.It's mainly made up of banks,offices and grassy areas.
Overall I've had a lovely stay here and would like to return one day.
Try to get a room at the end of a corridor.During the week the hotel is full of businessmen but the...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.