We stayed at the Holiday Inn Harbor Side in Indian Rocks Beach (IRB) from Feb 2 – Feb 6. I’m going to review the hotel and the area as when you stay here you are also choosing the area in which you’re spending your vacation.
Room: Our room was a Villa. At first glance, the room was breath taking. It had a full kitchen, a dining area, a living area, an upstairs bedroom with a view of downstairs, a bathroom with a shower and a Jacuzzi tub, and a great view over the bay. The furniture in the room was up to date. It was cleaned daily and we were given fresh towels. The staff even ran the dishwasher for us.
The beds were nice, and I didn't have a problem with the pillows although my girlfriend did not like them. There was a foldout couch down stairs. It had a blanket inside of it that was good for cuddling on the love seat or to use if sitting on the patio. The deck was also very nice. We got groceries at the Publix and cooked our own breakfast every morning.
There was a lot of closet space and some empty nooks and crannies. This seemed to be wasted space. It would have been nice to have at least a half bath downstairs instead of having to go upstairs. Also, the kitchen did not have a real knife, spatula, or scrubbing sponge to clean pots/pans. Also, our room had a layer of gunk on top of the shelves in the closet so if you want to put some clothes on the shelves in the closet you may want to put a towel down first. None of that was really a big deal and I realize that I am being a bit nitpicky =).
There are a lot of conference rooms in the hotel and there were several conferences going on while we were there. It was not a rowdy crowd. The hotel along with the area was quiet, but not quite dead.
Amenities: The hotel had a nice feel. It had a workout room, and a gift shop with an arcade. There was also a mini golf course spanning the main floor. It looked like it was free, but I think it was close to $10.00 for adults. The hotel also had an adult pool and a separate family (kids) pool. However, the kids pool was closed due to construction. There is construction on the south side of the property. It was scheduled to be completed in early 2014…….but doesn't seem close to being finished as of early Feb 2014. They are building more rooms and a water park.
The two restaurants/bars on property (Jimmy Guana’s and Rum Runners) were nice. The staff was friendly and helpful. I had the key lime pie and several drinks, it was good. There was nightly live entertainment – singing. On Wednesday we were the only ones sitting out near the live entertainment from 8:30 – 10:00 ish so it was like we had our own private show. The entertainer was good and asked for our requests. He had us sing some choruses with him. It was a good time.
Location: The location is ideal. It is very close to the beach, a CVS, a post office and several good restaurants. (Crabby Bills was okay, Aqua Prime was great. JD’s had good food, as did Slyce. If you like Sushi there is a very good sushi bar on the northeast corner of Crabby Bill’s). A lot of these restaurants have outside seating and live entertainment, so they can double as bars/clubs (JD’s was crowded every night). The beach was very close as well. It’s an easy walk for pretty much anyone that can walk. The beach had a lot of shells. The water was not clear and don’t expect to be able to see your feet at any point when you’re in it. Even though we had near a record high for February (83F), the ocean was still not warm enough to swim, and there was no one swimming. You can the beach for miles in either direction. There was seaweed on it, but I didn't see any trash.
The average age of patrons around the area seemed to be 60+. We are early 30’s without kids. Not exactly what we were expecting, but we still had a good time. It seems that younger people hang out at either St Pete’s Beach (south), at Clear Water Beach (North). Both are a short drive away. It seems that the IRB area encourages smoking as there is outdoor seating everywhere and ash trays. You can smoke at the bar! This was a big deal to my girlfriend as she said she hadn't done that since the 1990’s.
This was my first beach vacation that wasn't an all inclusive resort in the Yucatán peninsula or the Dominican. I would have rather went there, but this was good too. I would come back to the area if the price was right. Also, it is a nonstop flight from my rural airport, so that is nice. There are two airports in the area, Tampa and St. Pete/Clear Water (PIE). PIE is a nice, small airport, so it makes travel easy. Feel free to contact with any questions. A direct email to drteddydc at aol will typically yield a quick response.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Welcome to the Holiday Inn and Suites Harbourside Clearwater South! Enjoy your family vacation, business meeting, wedding, or social gathering at our 15 acre tropical Key West style waterfront resort. We are centrally located between Clearwater Beach and St Pete Beach, directly on the Intracoastal Waterway, in the heart of the quaint and charming community of Indian Rocks Beach. We are a short walk to the pristine beaches of the Gulf of Mexico, shopping, restaurants and nightlife. We are conveniently located next door to Splash Harbour Water Park and do offer discount tickets and packages for the water park. Boaters, fishermen and vacationers alike, enjoy our 50 slip marina where you can dock your boat, rent a boat, go on a chartered fishing trip, and dolphin and sunset tours. Unwind with a tropical drink and a great meal at Jimmy Guana's Waterfront Bar and Grill, where you can enjoy nightly tropical drink specials and live entertainment. Family's love our miniature golf course and game room. We have suites for every budget and size, from economical courtyard rooms, convenient studios, sunset and marina view suites to luxury 1200 sq. Ft. Condo villas. Connecting rooms, long term rentals and group rates are available. Our Key West Conference Center is the perfect tropical location for events, weddings and meetings with over 4,000 sq. Ft. Of flexible space for functions up to 250. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Hotel And Suites Indian Rocks Beach/Clearwater
- Holiday Inn Clearwater
- Holiday Inn Indian Rocks Beach
- Indian Rocks Beach Holiday Inn