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“Most Memorable Experience”

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The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota
Ranked #3 of 49 Hotels in Sarasota
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Bradenton
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Most Memorable Experience”
Reviewed July 13, 2007

We were looking for a memorable experience and our friend recommended to stay at The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota. We had initially made arrangements through a transportation comapny to pick us up at the airport however they didn't show up and I called the Hotel Concierge and they said don't worry about it we will send you a driver. David McLaughlin came with a Mercedes Benz and he knew that it was our anniversary trip. He had fruits and juices in the car, he also provided us with a cold towel and our room keys were given to us. David gae us information about all we neede to know about Sarasota and told us about all what the property had to offer. Upon arrival at the Hotel, Deano gave us a warm welcome and already knew our name, that made us feel so good. A young fellow at the desk, I think his name was Chris at the desk was so accomadating and gave us an upgrade to a georgeous bay view suite as it was our special occassion trip. We were personally escorted by Jim who gave us a tour of the property told us all about the Members Beach Club, Spa, Golf Course and everything else the hotel had to offer. When we arrived in the room it was pristinely immaculate very comfortable beddings, great Bulgari ammenities, flat screen TV, coffee and tea in a mahagony box and there were plenty of fluffy towels. There was a personalised welcome note from Alexis, who had surprised us with chocolate covered tuxberries and champagne which we enjoyed on the balcony overlooking the calm and beautiful Sarasota Bay. Lily our Housekeeper checked on us on a daily brought us cookies and did a rose petal turn down in our room. When we came back to our room we were so thrilled with joy to see that the hotel went out of thier way to make our stay an extremely memorable experience. We took the beach club shuttle over to the Lido key and the driver was so informative about the St.Armands circle and the surroundings. The experience at the Beach club by Crystal who gave us a tour of the whole facility and it was truly a different world out there and we were able to truly relaxed and unwind. The servers were very attentiove and provided us prompt service. We were so sad to leave as everyone who we came to know at the Hotel were like family to us and kept on enquiring about our well-being. I would highly recommend this property for anyone who is looking for an unforgattable get away as the Ritz-Carlton knows how to make it a memorable experience.

  • Liked — Service levels
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed July 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank shuttle07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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English first
Lecanto, Florida
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed July 12, 2007

Visited Sarasota for 2 nights and stayed at the Ritz. Wonderful service and good location downtown. They do have a beautiful beach club, but you have to take a shuttle several miles to get there. The shuttle only runs once an hour, so transportation is limited. If you have a car, you must use valet parking, which was nice at first, but got old after a while. I like to have a choice. Rooms were clean and comfortable, the Ritz style. There were no DVD's in the rooms and no plasma screens here, which is nice when you have kids. Staff was very helpful and accommodating. I changed rooms after checking in due to some construction nearby with no problem.
Booked my stay through whatahotel.com, which provided extra perks, such as spa credits and free breakfast.
If you are looking for a beach resort with a beach view, try some place else, like the Ritz in Naples. Otherwise, this hotel is beautiful and highly recommended.
Also, my son left his ipod in the room when we checked out. I called several days later and it was found and returned to us.
Three cheers for housekeeping.

  • Liked — style of hotel (5 stars) and staff
  • Disliked — distance from the beach and no self parking
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank teresa r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed July 9, 2007

We had been here before in March 2007 for a couple of days, and had a wonderful stay, but this time was awful. Upon arrival, we were advised that our upgraded room wouldn't be available until the next night. This hadn't been guaranteed, so we were OK with waiting the one day, and it was late in the evening, but the room we were given had to be the worst in the hotel, right over the entrance.

When we got to our room, however, there was a nice note addressed personally to us indicating we were receiving a "Mercedes package'" during our stay, and that our room would be upgraded the next day. We thought this was a nice touch.

The next morning when we went for breakfast, they seated us outside on the terrace, about 75 yards from a major demolition project that was going on right next to the hotel!? The noise was extremely loud as you might expect. Noone had mentioned this when we checked in, or before seating us on the terrace.

Then we went to the front desk as requested to change our room, we were told the note was a big mistake, and that not only were we not getting the vehicle package, but we weren't getting the upgrade promised in the letter either, and the employee was quite rude about it, despite the fact we reminded him we'd booked a 9 day stay! There were a 100 things the Ritz could've done to make up for this, but nothing was offered.

At that point, we decided to take whatever they gave us on the other side of the hotel facing the bay at least, and to look for another hotel in the area the next day because we already had plans for that day. But it got worse! On Saturday morning at 6:30 am, the demolition project started up again in earnest 75 yards from our room! Noone had mentioned this would occur over the weekend.

Needless to say, we checked out that morning and had a wonderful stay thereafter on Longboat Key for the remainder of our vacation. The one positive thing we can say is that the dinner we had at the Ritz was superb.

I must say from the Ritz, we found this level of service shocking.

Stayed July 2007
Helpful?
10 Thank chance07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Surrey, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
138 reviews
55 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 195 helpful votes
Reviewed July 1, 2007

Stayed at the Ritz Carlton for 5 days in June 2007. I was over from the UK, working for 2 days and the rest as R&R. I selected the Hotel based on other Trip advisor reviews and was generally not disappointed. My partner came with me and so she spent a few days around the pool. We had a room at the rear of the hotel, which faces onto a small man made harbour. You can also see the keys across the inlet. The view was very pleasant to say the least. At the other end of the harbour is the Hyatt. To the left is three apartment blocks and low rise homes. To the right was business and apartment blocks, but these were being demolished as we arrived. On asking, the whole site is being re-developed and may take up to two years. Work started quite early (0730 hrs) and went on until about (1700 hrs). It could be quite noisy, but to be honest was also quite interesting watching the buildings torn down. It may put some people off, we like our peace and quiet, but it did not cause us any problems.

The quality of the hotel was very good. The ambience is very up-market with marble entrance and high levels of decoration through out. Our room was nice, with a balcony and couple of chairs so we could watch the sun go down. One quibble was that we wanted to use the fridge in the room for our own water etc. It was stocked with there own over priced mini bar so I asked for it to be cleared. They advised there was a $25 charge to empty it. I agreed as we wanted to use it and I couldn’t be bothered to argue. On checkout, the charge had not been added. I thought that house keeping may have been trying to put us off, but be warned you may be charged.

One other gripe was that we used the wine glasses and tumblers in our room every day, but house keeping would just leave the dirty glasses. I had to ask every day for them to return to change them, rather annoying. The beds were made up every day as you would expect, but not to the standard of some hotels I have been to. A bit casual for a hotel of this class. Don’t get me wrong, it was always clean, but you had to keep asking for them to do things rather than them just doing it (replacement toilet paper etc) which was a bit of a pain at over $200 a night room only.

The hotel has one pool on site, at the rear. It has some very pleasant small gardens either side of the pool. They were very well manicured and added to the quality feel of this hotel. Pool attendants were a little patchy on consistency Some days they would come around passing out ice water, other days the staff would change and you had to track them down for a drink. Alcohol and food prices seemed reasonable to us (but the exchange rate was nearly $2 to the £1), similar to London prices. Not cheap, but not a rip-off either. A steak burger and fries-salad around the pool was about $14. Bottle of beer was about $5. Evening wise you could eat casual in the bar area/balcony area or in the a la carte restaurant. Prices ranged from about $25 for a main course in the a la carte. Food we ate in the hotel was of a good standard. We did have one small problem though when the waiter took it upon herself to provide us with a large salad ($12) and fries ($9) when we only ordered one small portion of each. She was not happy when we refused to pay for the salad when the final bill came!

For two of the days we went down to the beach club. If you are not aware, the hotel has a club down at the Lido beach. A free bus takes you there/back, running once per hour. The beach club was also up to the same standard as the hotel. Pool was great, but again waiter service could be a bit patchy. A bucket of six beers was about $20. The beach was fab and the club provided loungers/chairs for you out on the beach and parasols. Best beach I have been to, can walk for miles and sea was great temperature.

Parking is valet only, and a charge of $19 per day for parking is added.

Over all it may sound like I am complaining a bit to much. The hotel itself is a very pleasant place to stay, just let down “slightly” by a lack of consistent staff quality.

  • Liked — Quality of decor and surrounding gardens. Beach club location and quality
  • Disliked — Inconsistent service around the pool and house keeping
  • Stayed July 2007, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Fordy105
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rockport, MA
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed June 23, 2007

Very diappointed. Bellman never got luggage -called twice finally wen to gewt it myself. Room made up at 3p.m. with turn down service offeered at 5:30 p.m. told to return later-never did.
This is a 3 star hotel.

  • Liked — Nice room
  • Disliked — Service
  • Stayed May 2007, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank tvbob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
williamsburg, virginia
Level Contributor
63 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
Reviewed June 20, 2007

Stayed at this hotel from June 17-20th and booked the "Keys to Luxury" package which included a club executive suite and use of a 2007 Mercedes SL550. Our check-in experience was excellent and the front desk staff were quite accommodating in ensuring our suite did not overlook the demolition sight (several buildings are being demolished next door). The hotel ambassador, David Finn, warmly welcomed us and assisted us with obtaining the beautiful car for our use during the 3-day stay. He also went way above and beyond "the call of duty" in obtaining a special tie for my husband.

The bellman and valet staff were exceptional and couldn't do enough for us. The lobby, conference facility and grounds are lovely and well-maintained. The Club Lounge food presentations were superb and late afternoon/evening staff were exceptional in providing service. The morning and lunch Club staff, were another story and seemed to spend more time surfing the net and conducting personal phone calls instead of serving customers.

Our club executive suite (with a beautiful view of the Sarasota Bay), however, did not meet our expectations. It was smaller than most RC club suites from our previous experience in other hotels, the mattress was not of premium quality, the sofa and chair were musty and stained, the carpet was stained in many places and there was a musty-odor throughout the suite. Housekeeping was never able to remove the odor and my allergies prevailed. I felt as if I was staying in a lake cottage instead of a premium hotel.

Upon check-out (6:30 a.m), the front desk was sorely understaffed and there were no bellmen available for assistance. We waited over 10 minutes before being attended to as we had an erroneous charge on our bill. While waiting, I noticed a plaque in the reception area that recognized the hotel as a 5-diamond for 2007. I was shocked at this recognition given our experiences and condition of our suite. Having stayed at many 5-star hotels, I would say there was no comparison.

Bottom line- great grounds, location, lobby, front desk reception, top-notch bellman and valet, hotel ambassador far exceeded our expectations. However, if I stayed in the Sarasota area again, I would most likely choose another venue. Given the money spent, I think we could have done much better.

  • Liked — location
  • Disliked — condition of room
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank joy1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dallas
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed June 14, 2007

I recently got married here and all I have to say, is DON'T ever think about subjecting what is supposed to be the greatest day of your life to this place. They ruined my wedding. They provided me a wedding coordinator, who "conveniently" forgot that I ordered chair covers and chair ties for my reception, amongst other things. Who in the world would want standard ballroom chairs for their reception?? She had to run out at the last minute and get ugly faded black polyester chair covers that didn't match any of my other linens. The chargers ordered for the table must've been ordered late because she approached me right before the ceremony to tell me she had to run out and buy two other chargers because two had been broken. If she had ordered them in time, she would've noticed this and had time to re-order. Instead I got two plastic gold chargers from Bed Bath & Beyond that didn't match my clear glass, gold beaded other chargers... how tacky. They sell their pastry chef, Daniel Mangione, as having one The Learning Channels wedding cake decorating contest.... a drunk blind man could've decorated my cakes better!!!! On top of the fact that they wanted to charge me for 50 bucks a cake! They were about 6 inches hight by 4 inches wide!!!! Then to top it all off, right before I am about to walk down the aisle, a manager of the Ritz comes over to me and tells me that I am not allowed to take pictures!!!!! That I have to have permission from their PR department! I go into a tirade. Who are you to tell a bride on her wedding day, minutes before the ceremony that she can't even capture the one moment in her life that she's been dreaming of since childhood??? I kindly relayed to him that the wedding coordinator they so obligingly provided me had 7 months to do that and it certainly wasn't my job!!

I had to fight to have a room in which to get dress and ready in before the wedding, something my wedding coordinator promised me months before the wedding. She tried to put me in a ballroom with some benches and a mirror. They did not comp us for our room that night, like their website and my coordinator had claimed. And, because we wanted to have the leftover cakes sent to our room after the wedding, they charged us a fee because they put a refrigerator in our room to keep the cakes cool. This place is a rip-off. The make-up services in the spa are a joke, also. A pre-pubescent teenage boy could put makeup on me better. I was highly disappointed in this establishment as a hotel and a venue. I was offered no compensation or formal apology. And to make things worse, my father signed the reception food/drink tab the night of the wedding due to a cc mix up and this place had the audacity to go ahead and charge EVERYTHING to this cc, despite the fact that a authorization sheet was never signed.

STAY AWAY!!

  • Liked — Nothing
  • Disliked — Everything
  • Stayed June 2007
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank anhp25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota

Property: The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota
Address: 1111 Ritz-Carlton Drive, Sarasota, FL 34236-5594
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Southwest Gulf Coast > Sarasota
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Green Hotel in Sarasota
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota 5*
Number of rooms: 266
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience a resort where the casual Gulf Coast lifestyle meets the sophisticated, cosmopolitan excitement of the city. Featuring exceptional dining, a luxurious spa, championship golf,off-site Beach Club nearby, lavish accommodations and sweeping bay and city views, The Ritz-Carlton in Sarasota, Florida, provides guests with a relaxing escape from the everyday. While you're visiting, be sure to enjoy the sandy beaches recently named the 2011 "Best Beach in America." ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota Hotel Sarasota
Sarasota Ritz Carlton
Ritz Sarasota
Ritz-Carlton Sarasota

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