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Accommodations for one person

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Accommodations for one person

I'm the caretaker for my 95-year-old father and am finally able to get away again since I was in Sanibel in 2000, and vowed to return. It'll only be a four-night stay in late October, and I've been surfing the net looking at properties for days now. I emailed the West Wind Inn twice and never got an answer. I'm also looking at the Best Western. Any other suggestions for a single person who wants a lot of isolated time, walking the beach and shelling? I'd love to have a room with a balcony and view of the Gulf, since I'm from the midwest and ocean deprived, but the prices are $200+ a night. Thanks!

The Bakery
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1. Re: Accommodations for one person

Take a look at Island Inn [www.islandinnsanibel.com] The Matthews Lodge and Kinble Lodge as well as Gulfside cottages.

Also Tropical Winds which is a bit more removed from the crowds as it's up off San-Cap Rd. They have on beach view and off-beach units.

Beachview Cottages may suit you as well. See http://www.ssl-leeislandcoast.com/sanibel.htm Not all cottage complexes are on the beach, so pay attention.

Though I'm not a fan, you can try the Holiday Inn as well. You could check out some condo complexes that rent nightly. I think most Gulf Front units still are 1 week mins, but Gulf view allow 3 days min. Go to www.sanibel-captiva.org and look thru Where to stay - Condo Associations.

The Best Western is now Sunset Beach Resort and you can find them in www.sanibelcollection.com

Your problem with the West Wind is not uncommon.

Unfortunatley, nightly rentals is the MOST expensive way to rent as there are so few units and they are in high demand. The rates refelect the view more than the unit quality or size. An equally nice condo would rent for less nightly, but does require a weeks stay. Off season, some owners will take less than 1 week rentals, but with cleaning fees and whatnot, you may end up pay more than you might think.

Please pay attention to notices about red tide and other water quality issues as well. Red tide is very unpredictable and can suddenly pop up - and just as suddenly go away.

West coast of...
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2. Re: Accommodations for one person

Thanks for all the info!

>Take a look at Island Inn [www.islandinnsanibel.com] The Matthews Lodge and Kinble Lodge as well as Gulfside cottages.

Also Tropical Winds which is a bit more removed from the crowds as it's up off San-Cap Rd. They have on beach view and off-beach units.

This looks a tad too upscale for me.

>The Best Western is now Sunset Beach Resort and you can find them in www.sanibelcollection.com

I'm inclined toward the Sunset Beach Resort because of its location, but its room decor (pictured on the site) is not up to the standards of the other 4 properties. In fact, it's awful. Very "motel" looking. Is the shelling as good on the beaches on East Gulf Drive as on West Gulf Drive? Is it as quiet?

>Your problem with the West Wind is not uncommon.

Does this mean you don't recommend the Inn or its services, or that they're just not internet savvy?

>Please pay attention to notices about red tide and other water quality issues as well. Red tide is very unpredictable and can suddenly pop up - and just as suddenly go away.

Does this mean there is bacteria on the sand and the shells? That you should stay away from the beach, period? Or just not swim? Is it recommended to bleach the shells before you take them home?

Sorry to ask so many questions!

West coast of...
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3. Re: Accommodations for one person

>>Take a look at Island Inn [www.islandinnsanibel.com] The Matthews Lodge and Kinble Lodge as well as Gulfside cottages.

Also Tropical Winds which is a bit more removed from the crowds as it's up off San-Cap Rd. They have on beach view and off-beach units.

>This looks a tad too upscale for me.

Oops, I meant the Island Inn looks too upscale.

Thanks again.

The Bakery
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4. Re: Accommodations for one person

West Wind has an excellent rep with those who stay there. They just don't seem to do well with email requests - or even some phone requests if too far in advance. One of our UK members has stayed a number of times and has had issues booking January for the last 2 years. Similar comments have cropped up from others over the same period. That is all I know. I think it's a bit pricey for what you get, but that's me.

The beach is fine for walking and is unlikely that the bacteria issue will hand around. Red tide is a bit more problematic. It was bad for about 4 weeks, went away, and then suddenly was back along the Tarpon Beach stretch of beach. Now it's better, but the fish kills take time to clear out. Sometimes just one tide takes it away. Other times it stinks for days. It looks to be settled down now around Sanibel, but as I said, red tide is NOT predictable.

Never collect clams or other shellfish to eat during a red tide. They are toxic. Always eat your shellfish in a restaurant or buy it in a fish or grocery store.

I always soak my shells in a 50/50 bleach solution before bringing them home. A lot of bacteria live on the shells and when they die they start to smell really bad. The chlorine bleach solution kills them off. There are detailed shell cleaning instruction in a GoList on the Sanibel main page here. Always soak and clean shells outside so you can throw the sandy water on a land or other unplanted area. This keeps sand out of the traps in the rental units.

Unfortunatley Sanibel is expensive, as are other barrier islands. A combination of increased taxes due to escalating land values, insurance costs thanks to the hurricanes, increased costs in fuel and tolls for staff, cost of hurricane repairs and just about anything else you can think of. Beachfront is about as expensive as it gets. Don't expect a lot for your money are do look at www.sanibel-captiva.org and click on Where to stay and Daily Vacancies and look for discounts. You can often get 10% off which helps offset the tax on the room.

West coast of...
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5. Re: Accommodations for one person

Re shelling: I would never EAT what I collect. It never occurred to me. :)

Does the Visitor's Center at the entrance to Sanibel have good deals on accommodations? Would it be risky to wait until I get there? Or can one dicker a bit in October?

I appreciate that owning property on Sanibel is expensive. People keep trying to sell me on other parts of Florida, but I just want to go back to the islands.

Thanks, Tourmaline, for all your help.

The Bakery
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6. Re: Accommodations for one person

Sometimes you can get a deal for 4 nites at a condo, but beachfront is always in short supply for 4 days. On the upside, you can be sure the water is fine and look things and then ask for a discount anywhere and October is usually quiet and there's availability. It may not be exactly what you want, but there is always availability at that time of year.

Unless it would break your heart to not be directly gulf front, I'd wait and get a beach front complex for the 4 nights when I arrived. Or start calling around a few days before and see what kind of deal you can get. The folks at the Visitor Center will really help if you arrive with no reservations.

Good luck and I hope it all works out for you! Maybe Sue or Rainstorm can offer some additional options for you.

West coast of...
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7. Re: Accommodations for one person

Thank you, Tourmaline. :)

Tampa, FL
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8. Re: Accommodations for one person

We are staying at Beachview Cottages for an extended weekend in October for our anniversary. Although I have never been there - they were recommended to me as they are quaint, quiet and a bit of that old Florida Charm.....and are right on the beach! Our cottage is $145 a night and they threw in the 3rd night for free. So we will be there Friday - Monday.

9. Re: Accommodations for one person

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