My wife and I were coming to Tampa for a cruise but decided to come a few days early to explore the city, I haven’t been in Tampa since I was a child and I love exploring. We arrived at the airport and phoned the hotel for a pick-up as they don’t have regular shuttle service. A shuttle was dispatched and arrived about a half an hour later. The hotel is actually more of a motel but is clean and generally well kept for a budget accommodation. There are some signs of wear and tear and the walls are thin, but you can’t expect the Ritz for $67 a night. The mattress was average, not fantastic but not uncomfortable either. There is a complimentary hot continental breakfast provided that is more than would be offered at most hotels, fresh waffles, sausage, hot and cold eggs, cereals and fruits etc. Breakfast was so plentiful that we didn’t need a lunch. The pool is also very clean and heated to eighty, wonderful to have after a long day. Unfortunately for us the air temp dropped to the low fifties when the sun went down on the day we utilized the pool. We didn’t notice the change until we left the water; it proved to be a cold run back to the room. The staff was very friendly and helpful. Dave our shuttle driver pointed out lots of good places to eat and places for my wife to spend money, I must thank him.
I picked this hotel because it offered a Fly and Cruise package and was more centrally located than the other hotels that also offered the package. When I arrived the lady at the desk hadn’t heard of the package and said that they only offered a park and cruise package. I had the confirmation letter that was emailed to me to show that they did offer it when I booked. After discussing the situation with the manager on duty I decided that it was more financially beneficial to me to pay the sixteen dollars to the hotel for transit to the port for my wife and I, and then taking a cab on my own to return to the airport than pay $134.39 ($119 +tax) for the package. By doing it this way it will cost me $108 with tax including a $25 cab ride. I just have to fight the other passengers for a cab now.
The hotel is located in an area that has lots of dining choices within a ½ hour walk. Unfortunately Tampa is not a pedestrian friendly place. Terrible sidewalks if there are any, next to no cross walks and the hotel is not very close to most shopping, here the car is king. My wife and I did walk everywhere we could but the saving grace is the bus service is cheap and close to the hotel. An unlimited day pass is $3.75. I was able to get a transit map and timetable at Westshore plaza. I tried to not rent a car but it would have been much more convenient if I had. If I come back I will rent a car.
There are two grocery stores very close to the hotel but they are very expensive. The recession definitely didn’t hit this area. The Fresh Market (I guess it is like a Whole Foods) next door to the hotel actually had an organic gallon of milk for $16. I would like to see what kind of cow makes $16 milk. The Publix across the busy road was a little better but not much. A dozen cans of coke were on sale for four dollars. Where I am from I pay five for two dozen on sale and I thought I was being over charged.
All in all it is an acceptable place to stay before a cruise or if you are looking for reasonable accommodations in an expensive town.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Our hotel is just minutes away from Tampa International Airport, Tampa's Downtown, Cruise Terminal and the Westshore Financial District. One of the closest to MacDill Air Force Base, we are the home to many of our nation's troops and their families while they visit the base. Three miles to the west, you will find a beautiful nine-mile walkway along Bayshore Blvd. Over 200 restaurants nearby, many within walking distance. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Quality Inn Airport Hotel Tampa
- Quality Inn Tampa
- Tampa Quality Inn