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“Fun, family friendly property... couple of very strange drawbacks” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Marriott's OceanWatch Villas at Grande Dunes

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Marriott's OceanWatch Villas at Grande Dunes
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   8500 Costa Verde Drive, Myrtle Beach, SC 29572   |  
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Ranked #2 of 214 Hotels in Myrtle Beach
Top Contributor
62 reviews 62 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
120 helpful votes 120 helpful votes
“Fun, family friendly property... couple of very strange drawbacks”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2013

Spent a week as a Marriott owner in this property over spring break. As expected, spring break is very busy here, although it's an upscale place relative to the surrounding properties, so no instances of drunken college students.

PROS:
- Property is in stunning location, with 5 pools and access to spectacular beach.
- Activities staff seem to run the resort - always friendly with tons to offer. They MADE this vacation work!
- Pleasant check-in process
- Unit is clean, well laid out, nice kitchen with all amenities, nice baths
- Playground is lots of fun for the kids
- Saltwater pool is cool new addition - serenity pool

CONS:
- If you get stuck (like us) in the back buildings (despite requests otherwise), it's a pain to haul chairs to the beach. Can wait on a golf cart ride.
- Strange as it sounds, the 2 large back buildings have no easy way to walk directly to the main resort area. You're forced to walk down streets and/or through a parking garage. It's bizarre- trust me. A layout snafu.
- There is no restaurant here. Again, bizarre. There's some sort of food service providing limited service to the main pool area, but there is no sit-down restaurant of any sort. Never seen this in a Marriott property like this one. So, if you want to sit in the one central area of the resort - the lobby of the main building - you can't enjoy a glass of wine etc.
- Located in the back buildings, we are closest to the "Woodsy" area between us and the main buildings/beach. This has a woodsy bar and grill- perfect for relaxing in the Woodsy area while kids play in pool or playground. EXCEPT - it was closed! For the season! This is strange for two reasons. First, we called in advance to make sure it was open - and was told it would be open for entirety of our trip. Second, the resort is at over 98% capacity - why not open the bar and grill?
- Compared to the very attentive and friendly activities staff, the guy running the pool bar (closes at 4pm???) couldn't have been less interested in being attentive or providing pleasant service.

Overall, I'd come back, but with expectations lowered. Did enjoy the trip and I do recommend the property!

Room Tip: Get in one of the three beachside towers - not the two back building that face the parking lot. If i...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
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600 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (197)
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English first
toronto
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2013

We just returned from a 5 day stay at this property and would definitely go back. The two bedroom oceanfront villa was beautiful. The villa was clean and very spacious. We have two children, a sixteen year old and a thirteen year old. It was great having two bathrooms, and two bedrooms. The washer and dryer came in handy for doing laundry. We stayed in the Conch building (one of the buildings closest to the ocean) The heated outdoor pools were amazing. The property also has many outdoor barbecues that can be used. There were at least 4 or 5 right by the conch building. The fitness centre had a variety of machines, and the indoor pool was great too. They also have shuffleboards, a basketball court, and ping pong table.

Room Tip: Our villa was on the first floor eventhough I requested a higher floor so we could have a great view...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Meriden
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2013

I really don't have one negative comment to make about this resort! I spent a lot of time looking at reviews on tripadvisor and looking at pictures before arriving and the pictures barely do it justice! The resort is so big, but not too big in a way that there's too much walking or that makes it inconvenient. When we arrived and went to check-in, our introduction to the hotel was so thorough, to the point that I was a bit overwhelmed, but by later that day I knew my way around the resort perfectly. I spent the first night exploring the resort. The whole resort is made up of 5 buildings. The main building, two on the side of that, and then two in the back. Although it would have been nice being in one of the front buildings, we were in the Maple building. I did request a high level floor so we had an amazing view & the walk to the main building was only 5 minutes. There is also pools/hot tubs right outside of the two back buildings. We utilized the main pool during the day ( there was a bar there and more going on) and after dinner we used the hot tub/pool right outside of our building. All the pools were absolutely amazing! Especially the serenity pool outside of our building. It's a saltwater pool & at night it lights up pretty colors, very serene! The villa itself is everything one could need! The kitchen is fully stocked with every utensil you would need to cook, we made many meals at "home". The bedrooms/storage space is extremely spacious. Every morning we had a message from a staff member telling us the activities going on that day, and it was also posted in the elevator and various locations throughout the resort. The views, the beach, the pools, the beautiful grounds, everything was perfect! One day when the weather was a little chilly (it was about 60s the whole trip, but in the sun extremely warm) we used the spa at the Marriott hotel, that's on the same grounds at the Ocean Watch Villas and that was also a flawless experience. All the bartenders at the Sand Dollar (pool bar) were awesome! An extremely relaxing vacation and I CANNOT wait to return!

Room Tip: Request a high floor, even the views from the back building was great!
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ontario
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2013

We just returned from Myrtle Beach and I want to go back!! I am definitely going back to this place without a doubt. We have two kids, one under a year old and the other is 7.

The room, or the villa I should say, was awesome. It was a spacious 2 bedroom condo like apartment basically. Our room (master bedroom) was perfect, spacious, deep tub, separate shower/toilet area, double sinks, large window and lots of storage space. The "kids" room was also quite nice...there were 2 beds, 2 windows in the room, a big dresser and a good sized closet. Plenty of floor space for toys or in our case a playpen. Their room linked to the 2nd bathroom which also opened to the hallway. There was a washer/dryer in the villa too, individual use powder tide was provided. The kitchen is fully functional, fridge, stove, microwave, dishwasher. Dishwashing liquid and dishwasher soap were provided. The cupboards are fully stocked with plates, cups, wine glasses, bowls....anything and everything you need is there. The finishings were very nice and look just like the photos. Our balcony was a great size and there was a patio table out there too. We got an Oceanview room and were on the 16th floor of the maple building - it was awesome! We had a great view. I found out after the fact, but you can request a high chair and crib/playpen for your stay. I didn't research that before we left and we brought our own. We could have saved that space in the trunk for shopping!

Services at this hotel are perfect. We used the Kids Club several times during the week. My youngest was sick a couple of days so it was really nice to have the kids club right there so my 7 year old could still have fun. They have daily activities for all age groups up to adults. The activities offered will keep you busy, you don't need to spend extra on local attractions because you don't really need to leave the hotel. Once my youngest was feeling better, he went to the kids club too, they have lots of toys for little ones there and some you can even sign out which is handy. In addition to MANY activities there, don't forget about the heated pools, hot tubs, fitness centre, spa and the beach of coarse. There is a splash pad for the kids, a water slide, a big tree house play area for the kids too. The main building has a little market that has some food and starbucks.

We were sort of cornered into signing up for the timeshare sales pitch but we ended up cancelling our appointment and were not bothered about it again. So there was no pressure. We just had too much to do in too little time to go to it otherwise I might have gone to it.

All of the staff were very friendly all the time, we didn't have any problems at all with service, from start to finish they were very hospitable and friendly and professional.

We didn't get out to see much in the myrtle beach community but I do know that this hotel is close to a grocery store, gas station, pharmacy, medical centers. It's not far from bigger shopping areas like Toys R Us and Target. Also it's a fairly short drive to the Boardwalk area. The Market Common was a bit farther but a nice area to wonder around it.

The only problem we had is that 1 week was not enough time! Next time we book, we'll be going for at least 10 days. Also the weather in March is a little hit and miss, some days were nice but other days were kind of cold. Maybe booking in April or May would be better. I'm sure there was LOTS of people there but it never felt crowded.

For food, we bought groceries and ate several meals in the villa. For dining out, there are soooo many restaurants to choose from. A couple of the best were in Market Common, the names escape me.

I think this is going to be a yearly trip for us! I had all the comforts of home but with an ocean view.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grand Forks, North Dakota, USA
Top Contributor
99 reviews 99 reviews
53 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2013

We've never stayed at a timeshare but if all Marriott Vacation locations are as good as this one, we'll definitely return. We had an oceanside villa with 2 bedrooms (1 king, 1 with 2 queen beds) and 2 baths which was great for privacy. The king bath also had a jetted tub. Daily activities by the hotel staff and heated indoor and outdoor pools made our stay even better. There's plenty to do in Myrtle Beach so we were able to have fun both on and off the property. The only issue we had was finding a palmetto bug (common to the South) in the room. The staff quickly came up to spray and we didn't see any more for the remainder of our stay.We had a great few days at the beach and we'll definitely be back.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
maryland
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013

We have stayed at 6 different Marriott Vacation Club Villas. We own in Lake Tahoe and Newport Beach. This property had the best villa, room amd view of any we have used. We were oceanfront and the beach is about 50 yards over a dune from the front of the building. The activities in March worked for us, with Yoga and Zumba classes and the concierge getting me a discount on a couple of golf courses. The weather was chilly about 50 but we still had a wonderful time.

Room Tip: Try to get oceanfront. They are all good.
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  • Stayed March 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fredericksburg, Virginia
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013 via mobile

Perfect family vacation. Total relaxation. Our kids (2 and 5) loved the tree-house and other activities. Only two things were bothersome: Non kid-friendly furniture in the condo. Healthy restaurants hard to find, especially breakfast and lunch.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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 Marriott's OceanWatch Villas at Grande Dunes

Address: 8500 Costa Verde Drive, Myrtle Beach, SC 29572
Location: United States > South Carolina > Coastal South Carolina > Myrtle Beach
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Myrtle Beach
#2 Romantic Hotel in Myrtle Beach
#3 Family Hotel in Myrtle Beach
#26 Business Hotel in Myrtle Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Marriott's OceanWatch Villas at Grande Dunes 3*
Number of rooms: 374
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Also Known As:
Marriott`s Oceanwatch Villas At Grande Dunes Hotel Myrtle Beach
Marriotts Myrtle Beach
Marriotts Oceanwatch Hotel
Marriott Myrtle Beach

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