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“A good stay, shame about the cold pools....” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Coral Reef Resort

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Coral Reef Resort
leigh on sea
Level Contributor
35 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
“A good stay, shame about the cold pools....”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 31, 2011

Got a 4 night stay here the day we moved out of our motel in Pass a Grill Beach, so were lucky with price and accommodation. Stayed on 3rd floor, basic kitchen, cosy living room and large executive bed with double sinks in bathroom. Good cleaners and very kind GEE at front desk. However this is why I am glad I don't have a timeshare here:

The pools looked great when we arrived...mostly empty, couldn't wait to jump in and swim to my heart's content. However only one pool is heated and that wasn't good enough because clients were allowed to save sunloungers early in the morning with towels even though a sign told them not to. Nobody appeared to want to enforce the "Don't hog the sunbeds" rule. The week we were there there was a largish lady with large children who not only hogged the chairs whether they were there or not; they hogged the swimming pools with their beachball tossing game so I couldn't do my laps nor would they move so I could swim back and forth and get some laps in.

Other than that: it was very nice to stay here. Didn't know til the hour I left that the laundry/drier are FREE so could have had a free wash before I flew back to London.

Another problem: the night before I left the party upstairs decided to turn on their TV at 12 a.m. and then at 1 a.m. decided to turn on their radio and at 2 a.m. the toilet flushed. Evidently no noise insulation between bedrooms on floor 3 and 4 and certainly no carpet in upstairs bedroom because I heard the channel changer clunk on the floor above...A noisy night and I had to fly the next night to London.

Other than that: nice place, great location and no wi fi reception in room worth speaking of. This needs to be sorted because carrying a laptop down to poolside or the office is not on when you just want to check out a restaurant.

Also a lot of little kids were allowed in the spa pool even though most health clubs won't allow kids under 12 into the spa. A lot of them were unsupervised.

Maids very pleasant.

Probably not again. I think St Pete Beach has priced itself out of the market, at least my market for awhile.

Room Tip: when you see the Walk-Ins Welcome, grab a deal
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
7 Thank catfingers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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154 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (35)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
33 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 28, 2010

A while back, I bought a timeshare week at an auction, sight unseen and am so glad that I did! We just spent a wonderful week there in a unit on the first floor. Those expecting the amenities of a gold crown resort will be disappointed, but anyone liking a self catering apartment will be pleased. We really enjoyed the place. It was very quiet and peaceful, as mostly seniors and a few young families were there this time of year. Totally uncrowded at the beach as well. The room was a fairly standard 1 bedroom with the bath, floor and furniture recently updated. Tons of drawers for storage and two bathroom sinks made it nice for a family. The one sleeping on the sofa bed said it was comfortable. Only 30% of the units have the "new" kitchens but they are all scheduled to be completed in another year. We found ours to very useful as we had not budgeted to eat out much. The grocery is a 15 minute walk or a quick drive and there is a handy dollar store next door for all that stuff you may have forgotten to pack. We were pleasantly surprised at being able to pick up a good wi-fi signal in our condo, although this is not true for the entire complex (one guy from another unit was trying to balance his laptop on his knee in the office on checkin day and it was a pretty funny site, but it was a bit too hot to sit out at the tables by the pool that day, so I see why he was in there) . The abandoned motel was hidden behind the vegetation as best as the condo association could and the old Bongo's was a real eyesore and needs to be torn down. We liked the huge swimming pool and best of all was the beach being only about 50 steps from our front door. We saw dolphins several times during our week long stay and watched the sunset a few times. My son enjoyed looking for shells. There was a once a day activity planned at the Tiki hut and I went to the Sangria party and the ice cream social, where I meet some of the staff and other owners and guests. There were some minor maintenance issues around the complex like the need for some touch up paint in places, but the staff was very responsive to anything we needed fixed in our unit (like lightbulb replacements). The remodeling on the floor above us was actually very quiet and the guys knocked off work fairly early in the afternoon, so it never was a bother to us at all. The staff at the linen exchange were always friendly and light housekeeping was done in the room midweek, on Wed, at no charge. The washer/dyers were also no charge and were not busy any of the times we used them except on Friday evening. This was just like other timeshares that we have stayed in, in that you take you trash out to the barrel at the end of the building and do your own dishes. On the last day you strip your linens and pile them on the floor. Those used to staying in regular hotels may not be used to this routine, but we find the privacy of not having a maid everyday in our room is nice.
We also experienced the lake in the parking lot that another reviewer mentioned and had to move our car during the storm. The problem seemed to be a blocked storm drain at the end of the lot. We did notice a few locals parking in the lot to access the beach - they seemed to know exactly when the security guard made his rounds and ran for their cars right before he got there!
St Pete Beach is a lovely place. I like the quiet small town atmosphere much better than Clearwater. Very relaxing, which is what I was looking for in a vacation. We went party boat fishing and on a sunset dolphin watch cruise while we were there, and both were a blast. Fort Desoto is worth a visit if you like historical sites. The weather was really nice this year for September, a little on the hot side but not as much rain as I expected for this time of year and best of all no hurricanes.
Overall we had a great stay and will definitely come back again.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
9 Thank KMcoloradofamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Level Contributor
58 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 92 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 18, 2010

I had read the reviews and thought I was prepared for the sight of the abandoned hotel. I wasn't, it is downright creepy and unfortunately, it is hard to avoid the sight of it. As others have said, the elevator area is shabby and the luggage carts are rickety. I also have to agree, as I live in Florida, that our salt air makes everything rust and corrode very quickly. However...

We had a one bedroom unit. We were quite comfortable. It was clean, with nice tile floors and granite bath counters. It was well equipped with a full kitchen. We had unit 503 and we had a nice view of the beautiful beach. The staff were friendly and there is visable security.

Here are my "heads ups:" This location is great, Publix a 2 minute drive, restaurants walking distance. (Hint, the liquor store by Publix is a LOT more expensive than the one closer to the hotel. ) Parking is not great. On the weekend, clearly the locals use it. One day it rained and the parking lot was a lake. The lot is about 40 yards from the hotel and it was not easy carrying a week's worth of groceries. If you don't want to use the rickety luggage carrier, bring a cart.

St. Pete Beach is awesome, wide, white sand. We saw a huge herd of dolphins one dusk, for at least at half hour. Beautiful sunsets. However, the hotel only provides access. They don't have beach towels or chairs on the beach. It is cheaper to buy a chair at Walmart than rent them for the day.

Notice I am saying "hotel." This is not a resort experience. They have a few activities. On Monday they have a Sangria Party. This is cheap wine or beer but it is free and they are generous with it. We are seniors and were a little uneasy about the heavily tatooed young couples there, but have to admit that we never heard so much as a curse word or a raised voice.

The pool is clearly old but it must have been a stunner in it's day, huge, free form with rock islands. It was clean and QUIET. No music playing, just a few people quietly enjoying the sun. There is a smaller, heated pool. The big one will be too cold in a couple of months. We enjoyed it. You just have to have tunnel vision as the old hotel looms over it.

There are no private balconies but on the cat walk in front of the slding doors you have a table and chairs. As we were almost always the only ones out there, this worked for us. The units have dishwashers with detergent, a bottle of dish detergent, enough coffe and filters for a day or so. They have ice-makers. I noticed the last day that the "lobby" (which IS a trailer) had books and games to loan as well as coupon books for local eating places, etc. There is also free laundry.

The resort info says it has free wi fi around the pool but I didn't have to think about that. We got free wi fi in our unit all week from the Tradewinds next door.

If I had reason to go back to St. Pete, I would stay here again. We traded RCI points and this was very cheap. I heard the old hotel is being torn down next spring. When they finish fixing this up, it has the potential to be quite something. Meanwhile, we enjoyed our unit and would recommend it to anyone who wants clean, quiet and good value. If you are looking for a true resort experience, you will be disapointed.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Debbie-in-Florida
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
uk
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 13, 2010

do not be put off by the run down place to the front of this place it has nothing to do with coral reef a sctsman owns it unfortunatly it does look it belong to c/reef but not so. had a fantastic time staying here our bed was superb condo was cleaned every day, pool was beautifully clean. I have read some bad reviews,but having stayed there ourselves i have nothing bad or negative to say our stay was all good good good, and hope to return nxt year.sila dents was a lovely place to eat we travelled right up the coast from st pete through to madeira beach reddington indian shores treasure island clearwater right up to caladesi island reccomend it oh so wish i was there now instead i have a long winter ahead in good old blighty start saving i guess.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank blondekat69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
La Plata MD
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 13, 2010

The abandoned hotel and restaurant/bar will scare the living bejeebers out of you when you enter the premises. BUT...When you finally get to the Coral Reef you'll find it to be more than adequate. Very few can stay at the Coral Reef so you have the pools designed for the Reef and the other (abandoned place) all to yourself. Rooms are not fancy at all. We stayed in unit 606. A 1 BR w/sleep sofa probably about 500 sq. ft. and found it very clean and more than sufficient to have an enjoyable stay. The bathroom was granite and tile w/new cabinetry while the kitchen was quite dated. WHO CARES in was clean and it all works hey...you're in florida!! Why spend that much time in your room anyway? The staff were mostly pleasant, with exception to the night security man but I guess everyone can have a bad day. Enjoyed a very good and very real conversation with Danny and his co-worker from N.Y. (didn't get his name unfortunatley) Thanks guys!!

Coral Reef was very quiet. I'm used to mingling with others and that didn't happen much. No gathering place i.e. no grills to cook on, the bar/gazebo you see in the middle of the pool is permanently closed, no organized activities. The only amenity is the pool. AND WHAT A POOL. A huge free form and a small salt water. There is a parasailing, wave runner rental and dolphin watch boat trips ton the beach next door to the Coral Reef. Cool stuff.



The Coral Reef is on a WIDE, WIDE BEACH. I mean HUGE beach. Good restaraunts near by. Silas Steakhouse was HORRIBLE. Crabby Bills for dinner (Walking distance) and The Frog Pond for breakfast were our favorites. Parking at the Reef can be tough. Too many locals use it for beach access. Maybe if the night security guy was as rude to them, the folks that pay to stay there wouldn't complain so much. There's my dag pal.

Jeff H.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
7 Thank JHnLP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Winter Haven, Florida
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 1, 2010

One thing I feel compelled to mention is that out of state visitors may not realize that resorts right on the coast are subject to extreme salt water deterioration. (Hurricanes unfortunately create havoc on our beautiful Florida coast.) It is no easy task, and extremely expensive and labor intensive, to keep rust from affecting buildings this near to the water.

We exchanged a timeshare for the Coral Reef and, being Floridians, and well acquainted with the Florida climate, were extremely satisfied with our stay. When you stay on the beach in Florida, unless the resort has been through a renovation fairly recently, you will most likely encounter evidence of rust and corrosion. However, I doubt you'll find many resorts as nice as this one for the price you'll pay here. That is our experience, and of course, others I'm sure have had other experiences and opinions, and that depends on your personal expectations, however we will definitely return to Coral Reef.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank BLN13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CT
Level Contributor
30 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 21, 2010

I may be biased here since I have been coming here since I was 3 years old (I am 28 years old now). My dad has time share and almost every summer I visit this place. I love it here! It's my summer vacation spot. I love the full kitchen. Saves you money to cook breakfast and sometimes dinner in the room rather than having to go out to eat. But if you do decide to go out to eat there are tons of restaurants down the strip. There are also shops within walking distance. The Publix supermarket is not even a mile away and right next to it there are sightseeing tours! We booked a dolphin tour and saw dolphins! My favorite part of this resort is the pool! It is HUGE. I also love the huge beach! Plenty of room to walk and the water is always so warm. I love the sunsets there and walks on the beach at night is wonderful! Every day the maids leave clean towels and empty the trash. The furniture may be outdated but that's ok, no one is asking you to live there! The resort may look a little old but they are working on fixing it up. The only thing I didn't like was the card keys to get into the room. One time our card didn't work and we had to go to the office to get a new one. Luckily there were open otherwise I have no idea how we would have gotten inside our room! My advice is to bring BOTH cards in case that happens. But other than that it's a great resort with friendly staff and decent rooms!

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank cheetahangel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Coral Reef Resort

Property: Coral Reef Resort
Address: 5800 Gulf Blvd., St. Petersburg, FL 33706-2252
Location: United States > Florida > St. Petersburg
Amenities:
Kitchenette Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 13 Specialty Lodging in St. Petersburg
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Coral Reef Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 64
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Coral Reef Hotel St. Petersburg
Coral Reef Beach Resort

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