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“Do not recommend Tween Waters for weddings”

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'Tween Waters Island Resort & Spa
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Captiva Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 24, 2006

I contacted Tween Waters in May 2006 as a potential site for my destination wedding to take place in 2007. I live in CA, my parents live not far from Captiva, and most guests are traveling from international or transcontinental origins. I have traveled extensively, stayed at the best (and worst) of places, and certainly know service, quality, and value. I was looking for a beach resort in Southern Florida that guests could enjoy themselves during their vacation, quaint, classy, and that offered options for about 100 people. Tween Waters website appeared to have that. I also contacted South Seas, but I initially thought they were over our budget.

I had been in touch with Sherri, the manager/wedding coordinator. It seems that everything was additional charge, down to charging for the number of chairs for the beach wedding. Cost was therefore not as transparent as it first seems. I was quite surprised that there was not any type of room discount with over 100 people, nor a comped room for the bride and groom on the wedding night. Room rates were also quite expensive- especially when you see what you would be paying for.

My parents visited the site first in May and met with Sherri. I asked my parents to hold off on putting a deposit down until I could visit the venue personally in June. (Thank goodness!) I had tentatively lined up a band and a few other vendors for our date in May 2007, and we asked Sherri that if she received any requests for our date, to let us know immediately and we would work something out or arrange the deposit prior to my visit. Sherri was aware that I was traveling from California on a particular day a few weeks later to finalize the details, and I had no plan B at that time.

We show up early on a Saturday morning in June, and the first thing that Sherri says to us is that our date we had requested was already booked. There was no phone call, no email prior, nothing. Just some BS excuse that it was her boss that requested that date and her hands were tied.

She did us the biggest favor! She advised us other dates that were available, when they could squeeze you in. Granted, that sometimes happens with popular venues, however when I toured the facilities, viewed the rooms (Sea Grape- ugh! disgusting!), spoke with other staff and guests, realized this is a 2 star place at best. There is no personal service- they are rude and in buddy-buddy with their vendors, and low class. Tween Waters just turns out weddings like a factory. You line up on the beach and have to be off a certain time for the next one, they book up to 3 a day, and it isn't a large property either. Their website is very misleading, especially when you see it in person.

We drove over to South Seas just to see it right after our disappointing visit at Tween Waters. Immediately it was day and night, even with us just dropping in without an appointment. Rooms are less expensive- and our suite is comped on the night of our wedding. They are recently renovated, high design, many amenities, and service so far has been outstanding. Reception cost is not much more than Tween Waters, if at all, and the difference is all the more worth it. They are bending over backwards to make our day special. Granted they are also getting themselves situated and establishing their reputation again after being closed, but it has been a joy to work with them, unlike the bitter and poor attitude at Tween Waters. Tween Waters acts like they don't want your business, because they don't need it. (Sherri's comment regarding the difference between South Seas and Tween Waters (she worked at South Seas prior) was that they were 'too corporate.' She should take tips from their professionalism) It was a blessing that Tween Waters booked our date, and it has been a joy to work with South Seas, even with some of their re-opening pains. We are confident of the job that is being done, and I would not have felt that way if I had left our wedding up to Tween Waters.

If you want class, service, and to feel your wedding is your special day, I would highly recommend another location than Tween Waters.

  • Stayed: June 2006, traveled with friends
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8  Thank sd_globetrotter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,804 - 2,810 of 2,913 reviews

Reviewed September 3, 2006

We stayed 8-25 to 8-27. We had a dog with us and had to move to a room that allowed dogs. Eventhough we booked on Travelocity a hotel that allowed dogs...we thought....it's only certain rooms. So it cost us more. And we got less. For the kitchen we only had a frig and coffee maker and the sitting area was a table and 2 chairs. The bathroom was small. Warning I purchase 2 cans of coke out of the vending machine for $1.50 each and both expired on 2-06 and had an awful taste. Breakfast was a continental and good. Lunch is only served at the pool. Which was ok. Grilled food and mixed greens with the grilled food on it. For dinner we went to other restaurants off the property. The beach was across the street. You have to pay to sit on chairs on the beach eventhough you are a guest. We will be back to captiva but will stay somewhere else.

  • Stayed: August 2006, traveled with friends
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3  Thank goodfod
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 21, 2006

My family and my husband's family booked a trip to the Tween Waters Inn for our wedding. The property seemed to have everything we needed, a spa, on-site restaurants, more private accommodation (their individual cottages) and a reasonable wedding ceremony package for a small intimate wedding. The remodeled cottages were very nice, but when we first arrived I found mice droppings on the top of the comforter in one of the rooms. The staff replaced the comforter with a new one immediately but that's not something you want to see when you first arrive. Any of the accommodations towards the gulf side of the resort are great, but anything near the marina is less desirable due to the fishy smell. The pool was big and really fun to hang out at. The complementary breakfast in the Old Captiva house was great! We also took a day cruise to Cabbage Keys and an awesome sunset cruise through Captiva Cruises (located right down the road from the resort) that were both a lot of fun! The lady organizing those trips for us at the cruise place was really helpful!

We had several spa treatments done while visiting at the resort. The receptionist at the spa is very unfriendly and not very welcoming when you arrive. The billing process was disorganized even though it had been explained several times how we wanted to be billed for things. After emailing back and forth with the spa's owner several times (who was very friendly but some what disorganized and unavailable a lot) about our appointments there was still confusion and they were missing several of the scheduled appointments when we arrived. The spa is very small and quite cramped if you have more than a couple people in there at the same time. They scheduled too many nail appointments in an allotted period of time and we were almost late for our rehearsal dinner due to these appointments running past their scheduled times. The hair up do's where not what we wanted due to limited space in the spa and lack of equipment (they are working with only three curling irons, they didn't even have a blow dryer on hand). We were supposed to have three make-up appointments but even after I left a message with the receptionist (he said he would call back if there was problem with the appointments) only one was scheduled. The lighting in the spa is not appropriate for doing make-up so when I walked outside my face was orange and their were streaks all over my face and my neck (I didn't ask for it be fixed because I was just tired of the whole situation at that point). What I can say for the spa is that their massage therapists and pedicure lady are awesome, so I would recommend getting a massage or a pedicure there.

Last but certainly not least would be the very unfriendly and unaccommodating wedding planner, Sherri. She was very short over email and even ruder in person. No where in our contract, in their wedding policies online or in any of the emails between us was it ever explained to me that if they booked the Old Captiva House (the fine dining restaurant on the property where we planned to have our dinner after we got married) at any time for a private party that we would be automatically bumped into the Crows Nest (the less expensive - bar and grill on property). One week before our wedding they sold out the Old Captiva House to a corporate group and bumped us out. The Crows Nest is not a comparable alternative to the Old Captiva House and the wedding planner Sherri was not at all helpful in this situation. I asked her where this was explained to me and she kept avoiding the question. I asked for pictures of the Crows Nest and she never sent them to me. Included in the wedding package is a cake and champagne toast and since we decided to go off-site for our wedding dinner (at the Thistle Lodge in Sanibel - very wonderful place, excellent service and unbelievable food) I asked if our champagne and the cake could be delivered to our cottage so we could enjoy it when we returned from dinner. Sherri responded by saying that to avoid a deliver charge and because her staff wouldn't be in until 4:00 p.m. and would be very busy with the private party in the Old Captiva House we should arrange to pick it up ourselves. I guess I just figured after being bumped out of our reservation they could have at least delivered the cake and champagne at no charge. Sherri's exact words written in an email were, "To Tween Waters and myself all of our Brides are special, small or large wedding. We try to accommodate each Bride and her guests."
I felt that our group/wedding was a secondary annoyance to them. I did not feel special at all. If anything all interactions with Sherri were unpleasant and unaccommodating.

I would like to make a note that Nan, our officiate, from Romantic Island Weddings, who also arranged our flowers was top notch. She did an excellent job with my flowers and was just a very positive nice person to be around right before the wedding. She also helped my husband arrange a special surprise of flowers and champagne for me back at our cottage. I would recommend her services to anyone!! We also had a really great photographer, Nick Adams, from Impact UK Photography. It started raining right after our ceremony and Nick stood out in the rain to get pictures of us. He also worked out an hourly rate since we only needed about two hours of photography for our small group. I haven't seen our pictures yet, but I'm sure they will be great! I would also like to thank, Stacy, the food and beverage manager at Tween Waters who really stepped up at the last minute and did deliver our champagne and the cake at no charge to try and make up for the way the whole thing was originally handled by Sherri. Stacy was very apologetic and helpful and I sincerely wish that we could have dealt with her the entire time.

So to sum things up, the resort itself is a nice place especially the cottage accommodations. Some of the staff were really rude, disorganized and not very helpful, but we did run into some folks that really know what customer service is too. I wouldn't suggest the Tween Waters Inn for its wedding services, but just for a vacation spot it’s a pretty nice place.

  • Stayed: April 2006, traveled on business
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9  Thank TravelsTravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 23, 2006

We stayed at TWI from July 20-23. We stayed in an efficiency unit overlooking the beach.

The property is ideally located with access to the Marina and Beach within easy walking distance. We took out boat down with us to do some fishing. The beach was great... very little effects of any red tide at all.

The bay side was in pretty bad shape when we got there, but seemed to be cleared up by the time we left. I ran North to Boca Grande on Friday and saw TONS of dead fish... mostly baitfish, but an occasional large redfish or snook.... very sad sight to see. The water up around Little Gasparilla seemed to be fine bait and fish everywhere. On Saturday afternoon we stayed closer to home and actually caught snook and redfish just south of South Seas... very encouraging sign.

Back to TWI... the restaraunts are o.k on property... free breakfast is free so no complaints there. The Oasis pool bar was good for drinks... not so good for the food we had. We ate at the Captiva House and had a nice dinner with a free bottle of wine. Crabcakes were delicious. The pool area was very busy with mostly families and lots of kids... we left ours at home and spent most of the time relaxing on the beach... Much quieter there.
Rooms were fine with adequate space, service etc... Not a 5 diamond resort, but that is not what we were expecting or paying for. Spa services were great, both of us had massages while we were there. Crows Nest was toooo much fun on Saturday night. Great band.. vintage vinyl playing 80's music.


Other food reviews...
RC Otters - touristy with average food. Should have gone to Key Lime Bistro from what we found out.

Sunset Grille - Great place to watch the Sunset... Best meal we had on the tripp. Sunset Grouper was delicious.

Dolce Vita - Great dinner up until the last bite... my wife ordered the Snapper special and everything about the meal was perfect, but there was a lone shrimp on the dish and it was rotten... she took a bite and immediately ran to the restroom. Fortunately she was ok. I could not belive the horrible smell from the shrimp. The waiter came by and I had him take back the dish and have the manager and chef smell it. They took her dish off the bill and were very aplogetic... but I can't believe a shrimp like that made it on to a plate. We left quickly and went by Doc Fords to get some drinks. Great spot with many locals there.

All in all a great trip and will definitely go back... The water on the beach was ice blue on Sunday as we were leaving and very minimal red tint over the bridge back to Ft. Myers. It was a very dark brown color when we came over on the 20th.

Stayed: July 2006
9  Thank redfish45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Long Island, NY
796
Reviewed June 26, 2006

My husband, 3 year old daughter and I stayed at the Tween Waters for 1 week. It was our first time on Captiva and we fell in love with the island - it's a tropical, peaceful paradise! We found it to be very different from other parts of Florida in that it does not have any tall buildings, fast food, neon signs, crowds, etc. We loved all the wildlife, the gorgeous sunsets, the shells, the laid back attitude. It was simply wonderful!

Regarding the Tween Waters: its' location is great - the only drawback is that it's a little too far to walk into town with a small child. But the proximity to the beautiful, uncrowded private beach can't be beat. We stayed in the Mangrove building. The view of the bay from our screened in porch was beautiful. The room itself was fine but I'd say the Mangrove is the least convenient building in regard to the resort's amenities (pool, food, laundry). We plan on staying in a cottage next time.

The free breakfast was plentiful and the Crow's Next and Oasis had great burgers and sandwiches. We also attended the crab races at the Crow's Nest which were great fun! The grounds were pretty, lots of tropical flowers and trees, but could be cleaner. Our only real complaint was that a lot of the staff were unfriendly and some of the staff was downright rude. This doesn't apply to everyone though - we had some great service and warm greetings from a few. But we saw one staff member being rude to almost everyone!

That being said - we definitely plan on returning to the Tween Waters. We checked out all the other accomodation and still found the Tween Waters to be the best for many reasons. We plan on booking our cottage for next year very soon!

  • Stayed: May 2006
    • Value
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17  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2006

Tween Waters Inn is a well maintained older resort in a prime location with clean rooms, an above average array of resort amenities, and a pleasant staff. I did notice a few reviews complaining about this and that (small bathrooms, room decor, service) but for me, I feel that the property was above average given it's 3 star rating.

ROOM: We had a King bedded efficiency guestroom in the Palmetto building. It had a convenient kitchenette with a 2-burner stovetop, micro, medium-size fridge, and large sink with pots, pans, utensils and dishes. Everything was very clean and functional. The bathroom was small-ish, but fine. The King bed had a pillow-top mattress in excellent condition, plenty of over-sized pillows, and decent linens. There was a small sitting area (2 chairs) in the room and a screened balcony with table / 2 chairs. All rooms in the Palmetto building have bay views from the balconies (good sized) and were totally private. There were a few signs of age to the room, but nothing that indicated neglect or poor maintenance -- it was just the normal wear you would expect from a moderately priced resort. I would agree that the artwork and drapes were a bit dated, but nothing objectionable.

AMENITIES: We never left the resort. We rented a powerboat, chartered a sailboat, (the Marina is right at the resort -- very convenient), lounged and swam at the pool, had drinks at the pool bar (they had burgers and such poolside as well), rented a beach cabana (nice stretch of beach -- crystal clear water), and basically just relaxed and ejoyed the weekend. Honestly, I think the resort had about as much as you could fit into the available space.

SERVICE: I thought everyone was friendly and helpful. Pool service, housekeeping, check-in / check-out all went fine with plenty of smiles and no problems whatsoever.

OVERALL: I would recommend this property. Of the negative reviews, my feeling is that the expectations were not realistic. I think Tween Waters was worth the price and a well managed property that provided an enjoyable place to relax and enjoy the beach / bay in Captiva.

  • Stayed: June 2006
    • Value
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9  Thank ScottStPeteFL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2006

I have been trying to plan a wedding at this hotel and have had the most appalling experience. Sherri, the manager, either needs more help or should look for a new job because she is rude and evasive on the phone - that is if she calls you back!! I have not had this bad of an experience with any other place in the entire state of Florida! Well news flash Sherri and the Tween Waters Inn you are NOT the only resort on the beach on the gulf coast of Florida that does weddings and I am taking my money and my guests somewhere that cares about what it means to plan a wedding!

Stayed: January 2006
17  Thank cindylou75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about 'Tween Waters Island Resort & Spa

Address: 15951 Captiva Road, Captiva Island, FL 33924-6014
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Southwest Gulf Coast > Captiva Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Captiva Island
Price Range: $171 - $445 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — 'Tween Waters Island Resort & Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 137
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to the legendary 'Tween Waters Inn on beautiful Captiva Island. Shouldn't every day be this good? Here, across 13 gorgeous Gulf-tween-bay acres, you can enjoy 137 quality accommodations including historic one, two and three bedroom seaside cottages, suites, studios and guest rooms. Miles of sugar-sand beaches. Olympic-size pool, hot tubs and children's wading pool. Day spa. Marina for launch, dock or rental. Fitness center, tennis, kayak and eco-adventures. Award-winning dining and nightly entertainment. Plus ballroom, boardroom and banquet facilities, indoors and out, for business, weddings and special events. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tween Waters Hotel Captiva Island
Tween Water Inn
Tween Waters Inn
Tween Waters Captiva Island
'Tween Waters Island Resort & Spa Captiva Island, Florida

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