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“Buyer Beware”

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Ponce De Leon Hotel
Ranked #24 of 42 Hotels in St. Petersburg
Fort Myers, Florida
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Buyer Beware”
Reviewed March 25, 2014

My wife and I stayed here because it is across the street from the St. Pete Yacht Club. But so is the Hampton Inn & Suites (I didn't know that). I've stayed at "boutique" hotels, and many are quite charming. Not quite so here. A little charming, but not quite there yet. First interesting thing is that on 6th floor you only get one key for the room, no matter how many are staying there. Since when did multiple keys for a room become a luxury? Remember, they are charging north of $150 a night, and they can't afford more than one key. Second irritating thing is that gopher tortoises move faster than their elevator. If you're going down, take the stairs. I will say that the staff was friendly, although English is a second language for all of them. The beds are quite comfortable. But the final jab in the ribs was the $24 surcharge that appeared on my credit card for the drinks in the fridge that we took when we checked out. I thought these were loaded into the fridge by my wife. PdLeon will claim that we were notified, but checking in with a full cooler, why would we drink their drinks for $24? Were those drinks theirs or ours? We had a frustrating stay in St. Pete, by no fault of the Hotel, but the things mentioned above did not help. We had friends stay at the PdeLeon while we were here, and when they returned from a day on the town at 4 pm the room wasn't made up. They took the slow elevator down and were told that it was too late for maid service. They said, no problem, just comp the room. Sullenly, the staff arrived to clean the room.
If I had to do this again, I'd seriously consider the Hampton.

Room Tip: On the 6th floor you only get one key.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Carl S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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650 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (170)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
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English first
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level 6 Contributor
99 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
Reviewed March 24, 2014

I'll keep it simple. I have stayed here three times in the last 120 days. I will only stay at the Ponce De Leon when I visit the St. Pete, FL area. That's how much I love this place. First, the service starts with the Manager Michael who has assembled a great team and who himself is most personable. The staff is warm, courteous, and customer service oriented. You will not find a better waterview hotel value with the convenience of The Ponce anywhere. Funky decor, waterfront, restaurants, shops....I love Boutique hotels and this gem of a find is my all time favorite. Please don't try to book my favorite waterview room 502. It's reserved only for me :-)

Oh almost forgot, there is even a Sandy Beach steps away at the Pier. Wow !!!

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a waterview which I believe is the south side.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Donn D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Myers, Florida
Level 6 Contributor
119 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
Reviewed March 21, 2014

My wife and I recently stayed here. Before making reservations I read the reviews here and was amazed how reviewers went between loving it and hating it. So, I decided to see for myself.
We stayed for two nights. The location is perfect if you want to be downtown and near shopping, eating and entertainment. We stayed our first night on St Patrick's Day ... Loads of Irish bars very close and those were full of people celebrating. Great Fun.
Our room was New York City Hotel small ! We had a friend on the 6th (top) floor with a "suite" , that was two of the little rooms made into one by knocking a hole in the ajoining wall and putting in a door. The room has the bathroom sink in the room. The mattress was pretty uncomfortable. The shades on the window were very old twist style plastics and couldn't be closed all the way with one of the slats falling off. To the good the place was pretty clean.
Our second day we were gone from mid morning and returned at 5:30 pm . Surprise ! The room hadn't been made up. A quick call to the front desk and we were told the housekeepers had gone for the day but we could come down to the lobby and get fresh towels. This isn't fun when I come back from a long day! We strongly suggested that if the room couldn't be fixed that the charges for that night needed to be waived. The lady at the front desk and what I presume to be a maintenance person appeared and made the room up.
OK, so now I know why the bouncing reviews .... the Hotel is in serious need of updating, afterall it was built, I believe, in the early 1900's. The staff was helpful
If you are looking for a higher end place do not go here.
BTW, the Restaurant attached to the place "Civeche" is Great!

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Rich062
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bowling Green, Kentucky
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed March 20, 2014

I was looking for a place close enough to walk most places & this place filled the bill. I was within walking distance of Beach Dr. where there were numerous great restaurants, shopping, & museums. The hotel has a wonderful Tapas restaurant & bar attached.
The staff was friendly & helpful.Each room has its own distinct character. The room was small but clean & the price was great. If you are looking for an inexpensive place with a great location, this is a great choice. Even though the place is old, they are in the process of remodeling.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a view of the bay.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank sallyb1010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Level 6 Contributor
133 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
Reviewed March 19, 2014

The super location, the delicious and ambient restaurant and the fairly low price are the 3 best reasons to stay at this hotel. The staff at the front desk are very helpful and friendly, too! But if you're looking for luxury and a roomful of amenities, you may want to expand your search or book early somewhere else. You can park in the loading zone right in front while you are checking in and carrying luggage to your room. Then you have to move your car, and for 2 nights we paid a total of $18 across the street. We never moved our car and spent our days walking around the harbor area, sampling the wonderful bars and restaurants and visiting the Dali Museum. Bed was comfy; shower ample; bathroom small. No weird odors or noises, and we had a pleasant view of the harbor from the 6th floor.

Room Tip: Ask for the highest floor you could get. (6th is at the top).
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank saba888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
Reviewed March 19, 2014

Terrible service, the ladies at the front desk took it so personal after explaining a problem. They kept saying it's not MY fault, and that's true but your at the front desk and your representing this hotel. The problem was check in was at 3pm which is already pretty late however after arriving back at the hotel at 5:30PM, the room was an absolute mess! We were followed into the room by the cleaning staff who asked us to but our bags in the closet and give them time to clean it-.- This actually happened. Regardless, after all that nonsense was cleared up at around 6PM I was finally able to get in my room. The manager, who I had to find myself, even though the ladies at the front finally agreed to leave a note for him, did let me check out at 1 instead of 11. I left at 11:30. Rooms were clean, old, with small TVs but my room did have a semi cold fridge and the shower water was pretty hot which is rare in hotels, hotel was in an awesome spot, walkable distance to almost anything good.

  • Stayed March 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JayHarvey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Slidell, Louisiana
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed March 18, 2014

An older hotel, remodeled some years ago in an attempt to convert it to a boutique hotel (i.e., funky, but cute). Lots of tourists, especially foreign. No room service. No parking. Price isn't bad for downtown St. Pete. Front desk staff pleasant, Would probably stay there again.

Room Tip: Noisy at night from street, if you like to keep the windows open. Rooms quite small but adequate. No...
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank greenfld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ponce De Leon Hotel

Property: Ponce De Leon Hotel
Address: 95 Central Ave, St. Petersburg, FL 33701-3930
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > St. Petersburg
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #24 of 42 Hotels in St. Petersburg
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Ponce De Leon Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 75
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Built in 1922, The Ponce de León Hotel is a Spanish Mission Revival building of great historic interest. Located at 95 Central Avenue and Beach Drive, one might notice that this hotel is only one block away from Saint Petersburg’s beautiful and vibrant waterfront and in the heart of downtown. The Ponce de León Hotel is at doorstep to the most popular restaurants, museums and music venues in the city. Some of which include; the Salvador Dali Museum, Janus Live, the Mahaffey Theater, Tropicana Field, Vinoy Park, and much, much more!Boasting 74 modern rooms, and home of one of the city’s most popular and award winning restaurants, Ceviche Tapas Bar & Restaurant. You can unwind with a drink or dine at the hotel bar & restaurant while you enjoy nightly live entertainment. They make their dishes with locally sourced ingredients for the freshest and finest taste. From the moment you walk into the hotel you will be impressed by the style, décor and air of calm professionalism. Ponce de León Hotel is perfectly located in the heart of St. Petersburg’s most popular recreational and business districts, offering convenience, effortless style, and affordability to leisure and corporate travelers. The Ponce de León Hotel combines impeccable service and comfortable accommodation with spectacular views of the waterfront and downtown St. Petersburg. Be delighted by incomparable value harmonized with everyday amenities, service, plus all the attention you expect from a boutique hotel. ... more   less 
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