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“Excellent location for a well earned rest”

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Resort at Longboat Key Club
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Longboat Key
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed August 2, 2009

Stayed here for the last 4 nights of our 16 nights in Florida, hoping for a well earned rest. We weren't disappointed. What a fabulous location ovelooking the Gulf and the white sands of Long Boat Key.
From the outside the buildings look old and dated but once inside the rooms, are light and airy and very modern. We had requested a Club View Suite and overlooked the Gulf and the pool. The king size bed was very comfortable - the teenagers didn't think the sofa bed was that comfy but it didn't stop them sleeping in it!!
The room was cleaned daily and for once there were enough towels for all of us! The kitchenette was well equipped and even had a dishwasher and washing machine.
The pool is very small and not really big enough for the size of the complex. The beach is well equipped with sun beds, umbrellas and kabanas. The lads on the beach are happy to set up the equipment for you. I would comment that they work very hard and many of the other holiday makers there treated them like servants - it isn't too much trouble to move your own towel and cup from the beach when you leave!! At the end of the day they collect all the umbrellas, sun loungers (and towels/cups) up before they leave.
There is a cold water/ice dispenser machine by the pool and you can help yourself as you wish - this was much appreciated. We didn't eat in the hotel but thought it looked a bit pricey.
We drove to St Armands Circle each evening where there is a good choice of restaurants. Try Hemmingways - you may miss it as it doesn't look much but the food and service was excellent. Also the Mote Aquarium is worth a visit.

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
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2  Thank Shadey_9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,633 - 1,639 of 1,792 reviews

Reviewed July 31, 2009

The building that is. 40 to 50 years old, the outside of the building reminds me of a "churched up" Soviet-style apartment building. The good news is that you'd probably be safe in a hurricane.

They've done their best to refurb the rooms. They are really nicely appointed. The beds are super-comfortable and the bedding, very plush. What gives it away is the old-style, worn sliding doors to the balcony and the other interior doors. Interior doors age is barely covered by subsequent coats of paint.

Our suite (I think all the "rooms" are suites) was on the 5th floor, facing the Gulf, as most of them do. Incredible, romantic, sunset west view rooms. "Ocean front, ocean view, ocean access" always mean different things. At this property, it means looking out to the Gulf waters (with pool below) from your room and balcony. The trip to the beach involves a short walk to the elevators, a very long wait for the elevators, a short walk to the pool area and just beyond, about a 50 yard walk on a boardwalk to the beach.

There are only two elevators. You are competing with the staff (housekeeping, etc.) for their use. While we were there, one or the other was out of service and someone had thrown up in one of them, so the "ride" was unpleasant. We took the stairs most of the time.

Back to the room. Completely outfitted with fridge, stove, sink, dishwasher, coffeemaker, (coffee provided), etc. Nice HD, large TV. Our room had a few "bumps:" one of the robe hooks (robes provided) was torn out and hanging from the wall, one of the window shutters was broken, and there was a sizable stain in the middle of the carpet. All in all, the goods things far outweighed the few glitches in the room. And did I mention the view? Fabulous.

I was there for a business conference and the breakfasts in the meetings were really good. Food in the restaurants (including Portofino restaurant in another part of the property) was expensive and so-so.

My wife and two teenage girls accompanied me (we put our two girls in the room next to us - no door in between rooms. For us, a good thing) and they had a great time. Never have understood why we go all that way to go to the beach and my kids always spend most of their time at the pool (salt water pool), but they had a great time. (A lot of screaming kids at the pool, that you can hear all the way at the beach. Some people's kids, huh? Not mine.) Wasn't that bad, just occasional.

It's a "cashless" resort. You just flash your room key card to pay for everything, including very refreshing frozen drinks at the bar right next to the pool. (The pool is refreshing in July compared to the ocean. The ocean is so warm it's close to "bathtub" warm.) Also, no "nickel and diming" for the extras. Chairs and umbrellas and wonderful cabanas on the beach are included. We camped out in the beach cabanas most of the time. (I called them "tents.") Even though the cabanas and chairs/umbrellas are "free," you'll be hard pressed to have any of the staff help you set up. You have to find them and ask. No offering. No matter. We went to the cabana pad bins, got a couple, erected our "tent" and were as snug as a bug. However, I really got the impression that the "cabana boys" hated their jobs. They could be seen doing nothing at their station and when asked by someone to help, they didn't seem to pleased. And, in the six days we were there, we only saw one server on the beach getting refreshments. Once. And she went by so fast, I couldn't get her attention. So, if you go, be prepared for "self-service" on the beach.

They have kayaks on the beach for rent. Look a lot more fun than they really are. I think my wife and I provided more entertainment for others on the beach then the actual experience was entertaining for us. Couldn't stay on. But, we finally figure it out. The way they are designed, if you keep your feet inside the kayak, you'll constantly fall off. (High center of gravity.) If the person in the back dangles his or her feet on the outside, you won't flip over quite as much. Now, I think the cabana boys who you rent them from know this, and could have told us, but as I said before, they weren't much help and they really didn't seem like they wanted to be there in the first place. Never saw one of them smile. Ever.

The property is definitely not a "high-end" resort. However, the price/value/location equation is favorable. If we go back to the area, we'd probably stay again, regardless of the bunker-style building exterior, the minor irritations, and the "less than stellar" beach staff. Our "convention rate" was $199/night. Much higher, and I might look to see what else is available.

In terms of airport accessibility, it's great. Just about 10 minutes from Sarasota airport to the property. On the way to Longboat, you pass through St. Armands. It's a "circle" ringed with shops and restaurants. Mote Aquarium is just down the street from the property and worth seeing.

In closing, I'll mention the view again. Spectacular offshore cloud formation scenery with the passing storm clouds. Tropical blue and green waters and sun on the beach contrasted with dark, ominous storm clouds offshore. So, given the sincere attempt with the interiors, the location, and the view, this property gets a "thumbs up."

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled on business
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2  Thank Pramstroker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 29, 2009

We stayed at LBK for 8 nights at the beginning of July. We also had our wedding there which was absolutely perfect. Many of our friends and family also stayed at
LBK and the resort was very accommodating to everyone.

There are five guest room buildings at the resort. Building one was closed for repairs but is directly on the beach. Buildings two and three are on top of the pool and close to the beach. Building four is also close to the beach, but is away from the pool noise and traffic. Building five is the furthest away from the pool, main building, and beach, but it over looks the golf course. Each room has its own AC unit and hot water tanks, large flat screen TV, and balconies. We stayed in Building 4 on the third floor with an ocean view. Our room number was 4305 and it is a club suite. This includes a full kitchen with a dishwasher and a washer/dryer (no oven). It can sleep up to four adults with a king bed and a pull out couch, both very comfortable. The suite also had a large bathroom with his/her sinks. The balcony was also very large with a table.chairs and beautiful ocean view.

The resort is located in a gated community. When you arrive at the resort they give you a parking pass for your car. We did however, have family visit the resort several times and they were never given a hard time about getting in. Valet parking is free of charge, but gratuity is recommended. After you check in at the front desk, a bellman will help you with your luggage and show you to your room. The elevator in building four is slow and broke down on our last day.

Following the arrival to our room we decided to check out the resort. There are several boardwalks to the beach. On the beach are chairs with or without cabanas and chair cushions. Umbrellas are available and beach resort staff are always around to help you set-up. There are waitresses on the beach to order drinks and take-out food from Barefoots. The ocean was extremely warm, 93 degrees, but very sea-weedy. The tide was a little strong for smaller children, but the water depth stayed shallow for quite a distance. Right off the beach is the pool area, where they have a pool store. There you can borrow towels and purchase floats/water toys. The pool is small for the size of the resort. It was hard to find available seating near the pool.

There are several restaurants at LBK. Some restaurants close during certain months of the year. These are listed in the resort newsletter once you arrive. Barefoots is there "beachfront" restaurant, although you are beside the pool. It still has a nice atmosphere. Barefoots is open for breakfast and lunch and can be reserved for private events at night. We had our rehearsal dinner there and it was perfect. Sands Point is another restaurant at the resort in the main building. It is more of an upscale french cuisine. We did not eat there. Portofinos is an Italian restaurant on the harbor side (three miles down the road) of the resort. This was delicious but pricey for a family. We also at at Cafe 21 for breakfast which is also on the harbor side of the resort. This was inexpensive and good as well. We did not eat at any other restaurants on the resort, as they appeared to be closed.

If you are planning a wedding both Cloe and Bonnie are fabulous. At first, we had Bonnie as our wedding coordinator. three weeks before the wedding Bonnie handed us over to Cloe. At first we were a little nervous about the change but Cloe turned out to be wonderful. We couldn't of asked for a better wedding planner. Our ceremony was on the beach and our reception was at the island house. The service and food was top notch. All of our wedding vendors were from the area.

DJ: Fitz Otis, Jay Goodly Entertainment http://www.jaygoodley.com/ (great)

Photographer: Ralph Clemments http://www.sarasotaphoto.com/ (phenomenal)
Great guy to call if you are looking for inexpensive family portraits.

Florist: Beneva http://www.beneva.com/
Originally we planned to do business with Tiger Lily Florist because they were recommended by the resort, but after months of little to no communication or progress we changed to Beneva. Beneva's flower arrangements were beautiful.

Hair/Makeup: http://www.avictorianbride.com/
We had Ashley for our hair and make-up. She was fantastic and comes to the resort to fix you up.

There is plenty to do in the Longboat Key/Sarasota area. If you would like to rent Jet Skis, we suggest you make a reservation. There was only one company able to accommodate us without reservations, which was : www.coolbreezeboatrentals.com. This place was great but a little farther from the resort than other companies. You can also charter boats for deep see fishing. We chartered a boat with Captain Rob out of Tight Lines. This was worth the money and convenient because the company docks right across the street from the LBK Club. Siesta Key Beach is another good spot to try if you like the beach. Voted as #2 beach in America it has plenty of soft white sand leading to the warm Gulf waters. There are bathrooms, snack bars, and chair/umbrella rentals available at this beach.

We tried many restaurants off the resort while at LBK.

Chart House: Located just outside of LBK Club's Entrance. This is an upper class restaurant with great food, especially prime rib and seafood and fantastic service. Ask the concierge to make you reservations. http://www.chart-house.com/

O'Leary's Tiki Hut: Located in the same lot as Marina Jacks of Sarasota. This is a great harbor side restaurant. You order your food and rink inside and then take it to your seat outside in the tiki hut to enjoy. Live music nightly, good place for children, great fish finger basket. ($10-20)
http://www.marinajacks.com/olearys.htm

Dry Dock Restaurant: Located across the street from the LBK Club. Enjoy outdoor or indoor dining alongside the marina. fantastic grouper sandwich ($15-30)
http://drydockwaterfrontgrill.com/

Portside Deck and Restaurant at Marina Jack's: Located in Sarasota. This is a good place to stop for lunch. They offer covered, outdoor dining overlooking the marina. They have an excellent selection of sandwiches and wraps. ($12-15)
http://www.marinajacks.com/portside.htm

Buddha Belly Donuts: Located on Main Street in Sarasota.
Great Place for breakfast. They offer home made donuts and egg selections.

Columbia: Located in St. Armand's Circle. Great Spanish and Cuban food
http://www.columbiarestaurant.com/

Venezia: Located in St. Armand's Circle. Italian Restaurant. We had the pizza, which was delicious.

Overall, LBK is a great place to stay with plenty of things to do and see! We plan to return next year.

5  Thank JRCB0709
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2009

This place is GORGEOUS! We stayed in a large suite with a small kitchen. The staff are all very helpful. The pool is lovely and the private beach is just steps away. Cabanas, loungers, and towels are all provided.

Perfect location and within a 5 min drive of a Publix for self catering and St Armands circle for shopping and restaurants.

My only gripe would be that empty drinks glasses were left on the tables around the pool all day which didn't look too nice. The bar tender and the pool attendents could have cleared these away rather than waiting until the end of the day to do so.

All in all though, a fab stay and try the spa, it's got a great range of treatments.

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
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Thank SamCUk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2009

The hotel was situated in a great location. We had a club level suite with an oceanview and the room was fantastic. My one complaint is that I think the food and drinks are overpriced (particularly at the pool bar).

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank J M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 7, 2009

It was our 2nd visit to a club suite at the resort, we were joined by our best friends first timers to U.S. We have been back in Blighty now for 3 weeks and are still depressed at having to come home! My family and I are 'lucky' enough to have gone to some truly wonderful places all around the world but WOW this place is just THE BEST !
From bar staff to concierge, from maids to the beach guys, FANTASTIC!
All this without any real stuffiness.
Just a pity the price doubles when we want to go back in Novemeber, so we'll be slumming it at the Ritz-carlton.
Our friends are truly smitten by this most beautiful place.

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled with family
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Thank Etoetoeto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2009

My husband, college aged daughter and I checked in to this gated resort conveniently located close to St Armand Circle on June 17th after a disappointing one night stay at nearby Lido Beach Resort. Instantly I knew that we had found the perfect spot. The reception staff was friendly and very accommodating, even showing us the suite before we checked in. Our beachfront one bedroom suite was on the 3rd flloor of building 1 with a fabulous view. The suite itself was recently updated with elegant and comfortable furnishings - granite counters in kitchen and bath, LCD TV s in bedroom and living room, comfortable king sized bed, queen sleeper couch in living room, two closets, plenty of built in storage, even a small washer and dryer. The kitchen was full sized and well equipped.
We had a separate access to the beach as well as being located close to the pool. Our only criticism is of the pool area which has only one pool. It would be well served to have a separate pool for adult use only as well as an outdoor hot tub.
Though this hotel is on the pricey side, it was well worth it, and I would definitely stay there again

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled with family
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Thank Wyndfaller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Resort at Longboat Key Club

Address: 220 Sands Point Road, Longboat Key, FL 34228-3910
Location: United States > Florida > Longboat Key
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Longboat Key
Price Range: $261 - $752 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Resort at Longboat Key Club 4*
Number of rooms: 225
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
AAA Four-Diamond private beach front resort just off the coast of Sarasota. Elegantly appointed suite accommodations feature a kitchen, washer/dryer, private balcony and twice daily housekeeping. On-site amenities include six restaurants, championship golf, all new Tennis Gardens, Spa, fitness center, marina, year-round Kids Klub and miles of white sand beach. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Longboat Key Club And Resort
Longboat Key Club Hotel Longboat Key
Longboat Key Resort
Longboat Key Hotel
Longboat Key Club Resort

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