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“Good value for money” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Plantation on Crystal River

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Plantation on Crystal River
Ranked #3 of 9 Hotels in Crystal River
Certificate of Excellence
Denmark
Level Contributor
27 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Good value for money”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 29, 2008

We arrived on a Saturday one day before planned. Hotel was almost sold out but we managed to get a standard room. The room was nice and clean and generally in a very good shape.

Next day we moved to our booked Garden side patio which we had for two days. Again the room was in a good shape but the area around the windows and the door to the terrace was a bit run-down.

The employees in both reception and restaurant were friendly and accommodating.

Area around the pool was great with the sun beds a big exception. All were broken making them uncomfortable to lie on.

Good place to stay for the manatee tour. We took the Sunshine River tour which was departing only 5 miles from the hotel. Also there is only 10 miles to the beach on the golf coast

  • Liked — Pool area
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Langejan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
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Florida
Level Contributor
39 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 2, 2008

this place is very run down, it looks like in its hay day it may have been nice, food was very expensive, and nun of our meals where anything to write home about, we will not return, but this is a very nice area to vist , we will return to this area,

  • Liked — location
  • Disliked — run down
  • Stayed May 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Guy125
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
37 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 27, 2008

Our office had a retreat at the PI this weekend and really enjoyed our experience. We stayed in a relatively new wing of the hotel and the rooms were beautiful. The bed was comfortable, the bathroom nice, and we didn't feel like the walls were thin like some of the other posters have stated. (It's possible that they're thin in one of the older wings.) Our room faced the river and was on the first floor and we had a small patio to sit on.

We ate a couple of meals in the hotel restaurant and enjoyed the food and the service was ok. Not great, but not terrible either.

While out on the property, near the golf course, we saw a family of manatees. It was really exciting to see a mama and baby so close!

We rented pontoon boats from the PI Dive Shop on property and they were very helpful in helping us get wet suits and snorkle equipment. We also saw a couple of manatees while we were out on the river.

The Inn is beautiful and has good prices, particularly during the non-peak season (anytime except Feb and March).

  • Liked — Being so close to the manatees.
  • Disliked — The closest major airport is more than an hour away.
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank RedbirdFL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Inverness, Florida
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 23, 2008

Needs alot of work. Facilities are there, but service is not. Service is mirrored by area locals. The physical plant has an incredible amount of potential. Has yet to be seen if management can make it happen. As a family who has extensively traveled , it was a disappointment. The little details make a BIG difference. Lets see what happens in 6 months.

  • Liked — Newly rennovated rooms
  • Disliked — Inconsistent service
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank nekkerwannabe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
E. coast
Level Contributor
19 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 20, 2008

ROOMS – . Based on a quick ride around town, I agree with comments below that this was the best place to stay in Crystal River. Prices reasonable – wireless internet available for an extra fee. Stayed in the new section which was nice and clean, friendly staff, well-equipped exercise room, but sleeping room walls were very thin. Had same experience as described below with other people talking loud and slamming doors.

DIVE SHOP – Definitely the best part of the facility. Very convenient, super friendly and accommodating staff, both trips were reasonably priced (Manatee Snorkel and Rainbow River Snorkel) and exceeded expectations… more details in this review below.

SPA – This new facility had a very nice and accommodating staff. Enjoyed wine from adjacent bar while waiting for treatment. Had the couples massage – one stone massage and one Swedish massage. Both very professional and relaxing. Relaxation room had hot tea, lime water, dried fruit and snacks.

ON-SITE RESTAURANT - Don’t order room service for breakfast – “fresh fruit” was a half of a strawberry and one thin round slice of orange. Plantation breakfast was one egg and missing the hash browns entirely – way overpriced and not very tasty. Drinks in the night-time lounge area also overpriced. Based on these experiences, we did not eat dinner at this facility. Went to a restaurant referred to as best fresh seafood in town (a few minutes away in Homosassa Springs) – Margarita Grill… was not disappointed! (see Trip Advisor reviews for this restaurant). Also ate at the well-recommended Pecks Old Port Cove (see Trip Advisor reviews for this restaurant, too – be sure to try the tasty bay oysters).

BEACH – Continue driving west on the same road as the Plantation Inn towards the ocean. You will pass through scenic and pristine salt marshes and find a white sand beach with covered picnic tables and a fishing pier. There are wild palm trees, mixed with evergreens and trees with Spanish-covered moss along the drive.

GOLF COURSE – We did not use this part of the resort.

POOL – the pool is outdoors and we did not use it while we were there.

MANATEES - One thing to be aware of with any manatee experience is that it’s very important to go with responsible outfit, like the Plantation Inn Dive Shop. Everyone wants a good experience with the manatees, but be careful the guides (such as those from some of the other operations) don’t interfere with the manatees or harass them to ensure that experience. For example, using their boats to block the manatees into a small shallow area, allowing divers to circle them to the point of undue stress, and petting the ones trying to sleep after a busy and active morning.

The trick to seeing the manatees is to go when it’s cold outside, since that’s when the manatees travel back to the warm springs (72 degrees year round). I saw the video on the website of a manatee interaction and thought that was a rare experience that must have taken quite some time to photograph. Boy, was I wrong! There were plenty of manatees that were playful and chose to approach the boat as soon as we arrived.

In the water, they rubbed up on us, looked at us in the eyes, rubbed their big huge whiskered noses on ours, and after a quick gentle scratch on the back from us, they rolled over to expose their bellies for more rubbing. If we stopped, there was a flipper tugging our arm, pulling us back towards the belly. And several times, I got a two-flipper hug.

The water is fresh water, crystal clear, and in fact bottled for the drinking water brand “Zephyr Hills.” The dive shop provides snorkel, fins and wet suits for an additional fee. The wet suits were very warm and the 5mm thickness kept us afloat with a lot of buoyancy. We arrived at the resort the night before and when we visited the dive shop, we were able to watch the manatee etiquette video and get our wetsuits to try on in our private and warm room that night. That way we were able to get on the water early in the morning first.

After snorkeling around the first dive site, we were taken to another area that had shallower water and a mom with her baby. This area has a rocky canal that we swam into by pulling ourselves along the rocks while the current pushed us backwards. And then it opened into the most beautiful fresh water pool. The edges were shallow and the center spring was deep and crystal clear. There were many types of tropical fish to be seen and apparently there is a big turtle that likes to hang out here, too.

The pontoon boat was covered for a relatively warm ride home, with much appreciated complimentary hot coffee and hot chocolate. However, the most important lesson we learned was how much more conservation and protection these wonderful manatees deserve. Additionally, the Plantation Inn Dive Shop instructors demonstrated the correct way to interact with the manatees, which resulted in a profound and wonderful experience. Highly recommend this dive shop.

RAINBOW RIVER – This was at KP Hole in Dunnellon, so we followed in our car the trailer-ed boat about 20 minutes to the dive location. We paid a $3 fee each for the state park entry, changed in the restrooms at the facility and traveled by boat upstream. This river is a popular tubing spot, and all we needed to do was lay flat with our snorkels and masks in the water, to be gently carried downstream over a 3 hour period. The water was crystal clear and fresh water, and the boat followed us downstream to warn other boaters that we were in the water, as well as provide us guidance during our experience (where to see certain types of fish, the springs, etc.)

  • Liked — Manatee interaction - they come up to the rivers at the hotel !
  • Disliked — thin walls
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank frequent-traveler3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leesburg, Florida
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 18, 2008

We stayed at the Plantation Inn for our anniversary and couldnt have picked a better place at Crystal River! The room was spottless with updated decor. I felt like i was in five star resort. The grounds/pool area were beautiful. It was so nice sitting by the river at the pool. Everything was so clean and looked brand new. The staff was very friendly and had a lots of knowledge of the area. We rented a boat to go out and see the manatee. This was so much fun. We will be going back next year. It was not over crowded and very relaxing. A++++

  • Liked — The whole experience was wonderful.
  • Disliked — The drinks at the tiki bar were a little pricey...but expected.
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank zipper21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Florida
Level Contributor
41 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 28, 2008

Plantation Inn is probably the best hotel in tiny Crystal River, but expect only ordinary accommodations. By all means, avoid the new addition which has all the charm of poorly-designed public housing. It should never have been built. The grounds around the main building are very nice. Head straight for the water, see the manatees, and explore the incredible spring-fed estuary. The waters are crystal clear. Drive out west to the gulf and see some pristine sawgrass marsh, plus a very nice, but small, beach.

  • Liked — Location.
  • Disliked — New addition is very poor - avoid.
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Florida_traveliers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Plantation on Crystal River

Property: Plantation on Crystal River
Address: 9301 West Fort Island Trail, Crystal River, FL 34429
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Crystal River
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 9 Hotels in Crystal River
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Plantation on Crystal River 3*
Number of rooms: 196
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Plantation on Crystal River A hidden gem located on the Nature's Coast of Florida and the Gulf of Mexico, our beautiful 50-year-old eco-friendly and green luxury resort hotel's surrounded by the natural springs of Kings Bay. This bay, in Crystal River, is one of the largest spring systems in the state and home to more than 500 West Indian Manatees that migrate each year to the warmth of the springs. We sit on 232 acres of lush preserve land with emerald greens and grand oaks, and house hundreds of birds and wildlife that include: Osprey, Sandhill Cranes, Blue Heron, Red-Bellied Warbler, Yellow-Bellied Warbler, Neotropic Cormorant, Great Egret, Eagles and Grey-Horned Owls to mention a few. OUR HOTEL IS THE PLACE TO STAY & PLAY IN CRYSTAL RIVER, FL Centrally located from Tampa and Orlando, we are a great location for your next • Florida vacation • Corporate Meeting or Retreat • Florida golf vacation • Incentive Group • Florida Wedding • Family Reunion • Fraternal Groups Should you have frequent business in the Citrus County, we have corporate rates available. We have over 12,000 sq. ft. of flexible indoor meeting space and beautiful outdoor locations with water views a great backdrop for your special occasion, team building event, or to simply relax and take in the Florida Sunshine and perfect weather. Remember to visit Spa Bleu at Plantation while staying at the Resort to experience a moment of wellness at our first class Aveda Spa. Offering facials, massage therapy,body treatments, Vichy shower, pedicures, manicures, and a full hair-care Salon. And don't forget we are a world class fishing destination as well. Our Adventure center offers guided fishing charters as well and many other water based activities. Including our Trip Adviser top rated "Swim with the Manatee tours". We are the place to play and stay! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Plantation On Crystal River Hotel Crystal River
Plantation Hotel Crystal River
Plantation Resort Crystal River

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