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“Not all we expected” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Tawas Bay Beach Resort

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Tawas Bay Beach Resort
300 East Bay Street, East Tawas, MI 48730 (Formerly "Holiday Inn")   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in East Tawas
Detroit Metro
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Not all we expected”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2011

Are tripped began with a few simple questions over the phone. Pet policy, Drinks on beach etc. we were given answers of " I think so, or maybe?" This should have clued us in on what to expect.

The hotel has a great location and has alot of potential to be a great resort. It is need of some renovations of the rooms and decor. The staff seems to be trained with the very basics to get by. Their knowledge of the actvities and policys are no so great. and the little things like putting down the hundred dollar bills your examining in the open while a customer waits to check out!

The Place

Our room had torn bits of wallpaper a mess of caulk in the bathroom with barely any ventilation. The windows were secured so You could only take in 4in. of the wonderful bay breezes? The fishflies were hatching and daily a young man would spray the entire building down. For some reason He skipped the sidewalks whered the hundreds of fishflies freshly cleaned from the walls now lay waiting to be tracked into the building and through the carpeted hallways. You can Imagine the smell You encounter when first walking into the hallway from the parking lot! The pool was high in chlorine and the sauna didnt function well maybe reached 100F. You have to sign for Your cheap sandpaper towels at the front desk and must return them there. Apparently they get alot of towel thieves?

The service

While I can understand the lack of information and unsure answers of the front desk staff I could not forgive the food and beverage experience we encountered. The only thing that truly makes this a "resort" is they have a wonderful restaurant a bar right on the beach and a bar inside that has a service window to the pool area. We decided to have dinner our first nite at the hotel we were not greeted at the door and had to wander in aimlessly and were sat by a waitress whose attention we caught. The dining room was for the most part empty. A 2nd waitress came up and took a drink order 10 minutes after staring at menus. Then the drinks were delivered by a 3rd who apologized about the wait and let us know they were short a girl. We placed our orders and I decided on a glass of chard which I never received! the wait was horrible it was 15 to 20 minute intervals between each course or check up. it was a good 30 min. before getting the dinner salad or app. another table had a better idea and left before even having the chance to order as they too waited a ridiculous amount of time with menus. in all it was an hour and a half dinner at a restaurant with 4 tables including us! Breakfast was much better as we were the ONLY ones Dining! Food was great even at dinner but service was horrible. I also ordered 2 top shelf margaritas from the bar the second day and they were disgusting all sour mix and even after trying to fix them with more tequilla I would have rather saved 8 bucks and had 2 beers. This type of place should have a real bartender and know how to make good drinks with the beach atmosphere..

Beach

The beach and Beach bar has a smelly outhouse to enjoy as You enter. The volleyball courts had nets that were out of whack. The shoreline was full of dirft wood and not groomed. Luckily we were hanging out at the public beach when a man posted a sign warning of high ecoli bacteria levels in the water. The hotel had no such postings!

In summary we enjoyed the proximity to downtown and the park next door, and the views of the bay are great. Just didnt enjoy the smell of the place, the service, the drinks (if You get them) Food was ok just dont hold Your breath.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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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146 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    28
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (43)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Minster, Ohio
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2011

We stopped at the Tawas Bay Resort for the 1st night of our 3 night motorcycle trip. I was pleased with this hotel. The rooms were very clean and the front desk staff was helpful and friendly. We did not require any special services, but did request bay view rooms which we were given. The view out of our room was beautiful. There was a very nice sized beach where several couples were relaxing in the provided chairs and we saw a couple younger people rent jet skis from the little hut right on the beach. I do not know the cost of this rental, but it was very convienient.

We did decide to stay at the hotel and eat dinner. The service, meals, and drinks were excellent as were the appetizers. The prices for all of the meals was very reasonable and we very much enjoyed our dinner out on the patio right outside of the bar.

Checkout in the morning was quick and friendly.

Room Tip: Fun little shopping across the street
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
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Belleville, Michigan
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2011

I grew up in Tawas, and worked at the Chamber of Commerce in the 90's, so I know what accommodations are like locally. This hotel was spectacular when it was built, but it is starting to show its age. You have to remember that there are very few "resort" choices in Tawas, so if you are looking for an indoor pool and on-site restaurant, this is it. Our room was clean and the jacuzzi tub was beautiful. The view is amazing, and the beach is sandy and nice. The restaurant has a new manager, and he is trying very hard to provide good food and service. Our breakfast food was great and the service in the morning was much better than the service in the evening - which is too bad, since the prices are very high for the area for dinner. Wine choices were excellent and the whitefish was ok, but not great. Our visit was during Memorial Day weekend, so I'll bet they hit their stride in a few weeks and the service will be much improved.

Tawas is an incredibly beautiful place. I love it! If you haven't been there - you should go! But remember it is a small town, so don't expect Las Vegas style service and choices. Look at the lake and relax!

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
owosso
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2010

I stayed two night with 2 friends and we enjoyed our stay very much. Tammi at the front desk was great and always with a smile. She changed our room for us to get a better view of the water quickly with a smile. Our waitress in the resturant {Chrissy} was great and very friendly and helpful. the food was good and the view from the resturant is great. the room was very clean and spacious. I would not hesitate to stay there again

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Hayward
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2010

After reading the reviews, we were hesitant to stop but none of the hotels in the Tawas area had good reviews. So we stopped and were very impressed with the lobby cleanliness and friendly staff. Checked out the room and it was large, modern, very clean, spacious, had a refrigerator and coffee maker. A microwave would have been nice but they offered use of the one in their lounge. Beautiful beach too.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Livonia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2010

My husband and I had a great time in Tawas...The Tawas Bay Beach Resort was very nice! Great bed...clean...great food in restaurant,,,pizza is good...
great views....September is great time to getaway and go!
desk gives you coupons for $$ off meals, pizza, and drinks..

We stay here every year,,,will go again!
thanks

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Munger
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 22, 2010

We had stayed here a couple times before even though the hotel is overpriced has alot to be desired but the beach is beautiful and the lake nice for the kids. This time the weather was going to be bad so we decided to cancel since we wouldn't be able to use the only good thing the hotel had to offer. I called 3 days in advanced and after the phone rang about 20 times someone answered, couldn't find the reservation and then finally told me I was all set. Problem is I was still billed. The manager Tracie is very unprofessional and I was advised first by a message and then by a letter -- She didn't even contact me by phone -- that her staff is throroughly trained in cancellation procedures and under no circumstances did her staff make an error. I called her and went round and round with her and am now disputing it through the credit card company. My advice is stay somewhere else and just use their beach facilities, since it's open to the public.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Tawas Bay Beach Resort

Address: 300 East Bay Street, East Tawas, MI 48730 (Formerly "Holiday Inn")
Location: United States > Michigan > East Tawas
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in East Tawas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 101
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are a full service resort on Lake Huron. We have 101 rooms, a beach bar with live entertainment in season, a restaurant and lounge open year around, and 600 feet of clean sand beach. We also hold beach weddings and receptions and many business meetings each year. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tawas Bay Beach Hotel East Tawas
Tawas Bay Beach East

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