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South Seas Island Resort
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Reviewed June 24, 2010

My husband, our son (3) and myself ended up here June 15th to June 22nd after Spirit Airlines went on strike and we couldn't get to the Dominican Republic as planned. However, we are local and knew that this was a great place to stay (never been there myself) due to friends telling us how great it was. Check in was not an issue for us - neither was check out.

The place was super super clean! We stayed in a Tennis Villa - it's a little far from the other end of the resort, but was quiet, which was important to us so our little one would sleep (no loud music or anything).

There are many things to do! The kids club was great (we never left him unattended but played for a while inside and stuff). We rented a golf cart for the week and our son thought that was the greatest thing. You can take your golf cart all over and even about 3/4 of a mile outside the resort to local places to eat and shop.

I am a picky traveler and I honestly didn't find anything wrong with this resort, except the food or lack of choices. We ate lunch poolside at The Pointe...it was AWESOME! We also had the pizza at Scoops and Slices - it was just OK. We also ate at Holy Smoke BBQ - save your money. What a crock! Not enough food - it was terrible and expensive! Skip it.

Off the resort we ate at the Bubble Room - not just a place for dessert! It's amazing! Check out RC Otter's for lunch....YUMM YUMM the Mucky Duck was just OK - not worth the money - however perhaps the chef had an off night...who knows.

All in all - we had an incredible time here and are already planning our return! The staff was friendly. They have two main pools and 15 others in the resort. The beach is full of shells and gorgeous! We also did some fishing - which was nice - our son loved it - they have a 9 hole golf course and a spa (although we didn't use either).

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank TammyTravelsBunches
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2010

After reading reviews of South Seas for the last few months in preparation for our trip, I wanted to "report back" with my review in hopes it is useful to others as well... Overall, we had a wonderful time hope to return again next year. We stayed for 7 days. Our travelers included myself, my husband, our 7 year old son, and 4 year old daughter. Here are my tips:

1. When booking the type of room/condo really think about what your family will appreciate and how the locations will impact your trip. I started out by booking a lands end 2 bedroom and changed it within weeks of our arrival to a 2 bedroom beach cottage. I think both would have been very nice, but the beach cottage won out for us based on the immediate proximity to the beach and guaranteed sunset views (all beach cottages face straight west, lands end face all different directions). The lands end units looked very modern, a little "higher-end", and are conveniently located to the main pool, kids club, etc. If your family is the type that would appreciate being close to the action, I think lands end would be a great choice. However, we'd do the beach cottage all over again because we felt like we had enormous amounts of beach space all to ourselves right in front of our cottage. We watched half the sunsets right from or porch and half from the beach right in front of us. It was clean, reasonably modern and updated and worked great for us.

2. If you stay on the south end (beach cottages, beach villas, etc), consider renting a golf cart for your trip transportation. Getting into a scorching hot car is no fun. The convenience of the golf cart was a huge benefit for us. We took it to the north end of the resort frequently and used it to go off-resort for dinner most nights. Also, in my opinion, biking on Captiva looked way too dangerous (both within South Seas and off-resort). All the roads are very narrow and busy. South Seas has many blind turns. Splurge a little for the golf cart and you'll be very happy!

3. A negative - there seem to be a lot of "rules" at South Seas and the enforcement of these varies greatly. For example, my 38 inch tall daughter was using the water slide at the main pool 2 days with me at the bottom to catch her. Day 3, the monitor on duty said kids had to be 40 inches and wouldn't let her use it. Second example, there is a sign that beach chairs should not be removed from the 2 larger beach areas on the resort. With our beach condo being a few hundred feet away from the south beach, we asked one day how to obtain chairs for our area and a nice employee offered to carry some over from the south beach and set them up in front of our place. The next day, a different employee wouldn't let us take them at all and told us we would need to contact recreation and they would deliver for $5 per day per piece of equipment. Unfortunately, it was a half day later before we could get them. Not huge issues, but annoying.

4. What to do about food - we opted to stock up on breakfast and lunch items at Jerry's in Sanibel. Then we ate out for dinner each night in Capitva (PS -plenty of choices for great dinners in Captiva!). This strategy worked great for us as we saved some money eating out only once per day and we wanted to make breakfast and lunch quick so we could spend more time on the beach. We ate breakfast in, spent the mornings on the beach, came back inside for lunch, and then often to the main pool or a kids activity in the afternoon. By 5 pm, mom and dad were ready to let someone else wait on us!

Overall, don't go with an expectation of a high end ritzy resort with pampering service every time you turn the corner. Understand that doesn't really fit the Captiva Island spirit anyway! South Seas is a stunning location with facilities that are very nice. The employees seem to aim to please, but don't be afraid to ask for what you want. I'd highly recommend and can't wait to return myself!

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled with family
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6  Thank BusyMom042
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 15, 2010

Stayed for a week beginning of June after 2 hectic weeks doing the Orlando parks. Was just what we were looking for and expected. No great surprise that on a small island getaway everything was expensive and there isn't loads to do. But we wanted a chilling out week and thats just what this place offers. Great beach and a fab pool complex for the whole family. Jet skis, parasailing etc available at extra cost(charged to your room) if you want. We did a weeks shopping at Publix in Fort Myers on the first day and self catered. We ate out a couple of times, once at the Bubble room (expensive, over rated and a bit bizarre) and twice at the Mucky Duck which was cheaper and FAR better with great sunsets and ring toss for the kids. Brits may not have heard of this, but believe me, kids love it and you'll be setting it up in your own garden when you get home! Went on the Captiva cruises dolphin trip and were not disappointed. Our beach villa was by far the nicest I have ever stayed in with gulf view and minutes to the beach. If you are considering this place all i can say is it is an island where you could spend an absolute fortune eating and entertaining yourself for a week. However, a huge shop at publix solves one problem and what more entertainment do you need - there are manatees, dolphins, a beautiful beach and warm ocean. Sorted! Any questions please feel free to get in touch, particularly if your're british and have queries I can help with.

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled with family
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5  Thank jayner17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 13, 2010

We've been going to Captiva since the early ninties, staying at South Seas about 10 times. For this Summer's vacation, my wife and I took our college aged son.

We stayed in a two bedroom Condo on Redfish Pass. This is a point at the North most tip of Captiva where the Pine Island Sound bay area connects to the Gulf of Mexico. We were a very short walk to the beautful beach. From our room we saw: dolphin, rays, manatee, magnificent frigate birds, great blue heron, osprey, great and snowy egrets, ibis, and Moor Hens -- lots of wildlife focused on this area, because there's lots of fish going through Redfish Pass.

This trip was in the middle of May, earlier than we usually go, and we were delighted with the baby osprey living near our condo. There were two osprey nests near our condo, each with a mommie, daddie and baby osprey. The baby is nearly as full grown as the parents but they still need their parents for food -- the babies cry a loud "cheap, cheap, cheap!" Our whole trip had osprey fly by our condo all day, carrying fish back and forth. It was wonderful! We joked that we needed an osprey air traffic controller.

The SouthSeas Resort main pool was nearby. We always rent bikes and ride over to the pool. We have a tradition of having lunch by the pool our first day there. It's really nice and we love the newly remodeled pool that seamlessly overlooks the waters of Pine Island Sound.

My son and I golf. We like the SouthSeas 9 hole golf course. It is a par 3, 9 hole course. It only takes 1.5 hours to play, nice and quick. The course is beautifully maintained. Flowers, landscaping, lakes, water features -- really plush. But much to our surprise, we found as much wildlife on the golf course as any other part of the island. We joke that the Golf Course is the birdie break room.

My wife and I like to kayak. We first learned how to kayak at the Tarpon Bay nature area next to the Ding Darling nature refuge in Sanibel. For the last several years, we've rented kayaks from the Captiva Kayak rental service at McCarthy Marina, just a short drive from SouthSeas Resort. The kayaking on Captiva is fantasic, and the rental service has really nice sea kayaks well suited to the Pine Island sound water.

This year, we went to our favorite restaurants: Pool side at the SouthSeas Resort main pool (The Pointe), Mad Hatter, Mucky Duck, Sanibel Steakhouse, Lazy Flamingo, and Cheeseburger, Cheeseburger.

Our room has a really nice kitchen and we stocked up on breakfast and lunch foods from the Sanibel grocery store, Jerry's. We got treats from the Starbucks and bought T-shirts and sandals from the shops on the SouthSeas property.

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank jkozik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 13, 2010

We had a great time in Captiva Island, very relaxing and laid back. The only thing I would probably do different, is go at a different time of the year. It was so, scorching hot! I knew it would be hot in June, but I figured we would be swimming almost the entire trip, so it wouldn't be a factor. It was so hot, it was hard to breath outside and you couldn't be very active, unless you got up bright and early in the morning. We were planning on playing tennis quite a bit, but it was way to hot! Golf was out of the question. The water wasn't even refreshing in the pools or ocean. We had the three bedroom beach villa. I am very particular about hotel rooms and I can say that this villa was fabulous! Very clean and updated with nice decor, granite countertops, and nice comfortable beds. We had 4 adults and 4 children with us and there was plenty of room. The only slight disappointment with the villa, was that when it said "beach villa", I assumed we were right next to the beach. I would consider the beach villas more "oceanviews". We had a beautiful view of the ocean, but we were about 100 yards or more from the ocean. We had a pool directly below our room with a grill. The resort was beautiful and well kept. Beautiful landscaping! We saw alligators, dolphins, stingrays, crabs, and manatees close up! The dolphins would swim and play so close to the beach area and the manatees swam all around the marina. There were also some very different, cool looking birds all around the property. The big pool and waterslides were located by the marina and they had a beautiful view of the ocean. We rented bikes for the week for $5/day per bike, but glad we did because it is about 1 1/2 miles from the entrance to the marina/scoops-ice cream parlor, big pools, and restaurant. They have a trolley, but it seemed to take awhile to reach each stop.

A couple things that we didn't like about the resort and I guess captiva in general was that everything closed so early. It was like after 9pm the small island would shut down, including the resort. The big pools, overlooking the ocean, closed at sunset, which was about 7:40 each evening. The restaurants in captiva also closed fairly early. Also, the staff were not very informative on "things to do" on the island. All we really wanted to do was go on a nice dolphin excursion and go "shelling" on a nice beach and find the best time and place to do these things and it was like "pulling teeth" to get any info. So, we just looked the info up ourselves and talked to some locals at the grocery store. Everything is expensive. Drinks at the pool were $10 a piece, restaraunts were expensive for average food, grocery store food was way overpriced, especially on South Seas property. We rented a car for one day and went into Sanibel to do our grocery shopping, but it would probably be even cheaper if you went somewhere in Ft. Myers.

We ate at the Harbourside on property, Greenflash, and the Muckey Duck. Harbourside probably had the best food, but very pricey! They all had great views and atmospheres. The Muckey Duck was our favorite because they had picnic tables set up in the sand with a bar and live music playing beach music by request. And beautiful sunsets! The kids enjoyed dancing to the music.

We went on the Wildlife and dolphin cruise. Very disappointed at first, we saw more dolphins right on our beach then on the cruise. But then towards the end, all of a sudden dolphins appeared and they were racing the boat, jumping out of the water and playing. Very cool! My husband and 8 year old son went on a fishing tour. They were supposed to catch tarpon, which was the game fish for that area. All they ended up catching was thirteen sharks! They went out into the bay, the deepest area was 10 feet. The biggest shark was 6 foot long. They had a great time! Just a little cautious in the water when they returned!

We loved our trip and South Seas was very nice. Making memories!

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled with family
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Thank stephvaca
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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