We typically stay at the larger chain hotels, but decided last-minute to drive down to Sanibel for the 4th of July weekend. Most hotels were booked solid, and those that weren't were running at $350 or more per night.
Found the Kona Kai available - looked at the reviews on TripAdvisor, and booked a suite for the weekend.
You need to know that this is not a full-service hotel. Daily maid service is not provided, although fresh linens and towels are always available at the office, which is open 24/7. And when we checked in at 8 PM, the owner was frosting fresh cupcakes for the guests, to replace the cookies that were there earlier.
We were personally lead to our suite, which we found to be very clean and fresh-smelling. A/C was nice and cold. We always check bedding for bed-bugs first, and nothing in sight. The kitchen was well-stocked with complimentary bottled water, coffee, all dishes/eating utensils, paper towels, dish towels, and dish soap. There was a microwave, stove, range, toaster, coffee maker, and full refrigerator.
It was nice to have many of the comforts of home. Restaurants were crowded that weekend, so we stopped at Jerry's Grocery and bought breakfast and lunch supplies so we could eat in and be on our way for the day, instead of waiting an hour or two to be seated at the local restaurants.
There were just some nice touches at this place that made me feel welcome: They have a shell cleaning station outside, where you can clean your little beach "finds". There was an outdoor gas grill, and a couple of outdoor family-sized tables and chairs under the shade. There were beach chairs available for the taking, sandcastle and shell buckets, beach and rain umbrellas, games for kids and adults, as well as bug spray if you needed it - which we took (and replaced) after going to see fireworks at the local golf course.
Despite hot pool water - which is typical here in Florida in July - this was a great place to stay - the Gulf was nice and cool. Pool was very big and very nice with plenty of lounging chairs, but I recommend using it during the cooler months of the year.
We would definitely stay here again. The location is within walking distance to 7/11, food, bike rentals, etc. The staff/owners go out of their way to make you welcome. Sounds like there were former owners who garnered some bad reviews, but we were happy with this laid-back, cozy little place to stay.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Our inn borders the Sanibel river for our guests who love to fish or kayak. We are located directly on the bike path and are close to shopping, restaurants and attractions. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Kona Kai Hotel Sanibel Island
- Kona Kai Sanibel Island