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“Better than Disney!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Clarion Hotel & Conference Center

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Clarion Hotel & Conference Center
2.5 of 5 Hotel   |   2701 E Fowler Ave, Tampa, FL 33612-6274   |  
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Choice Privileges Points
Ranked #88 of 162 Hotels in Tampa
Orlando, Florida
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Better than Disney!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 28, 2012

It is sometimes easier to gauge the value of a place by comparing it to another. This is what I plan to do here.
My son and I were planning to attend Busch Gardens and happen to choose this hotel. I was arriving a little later so I had my son (age 18) check in for us. They politely verified that he was, indeed, 18 to be able to check in. He was treated with all the respect and courtesy shown to veteran business travelers. He was their guest. They were bound and determined to show him just that fact.
I arrived a few hours later. The room was spacious and extremely clean. It was furnished with large, comfortable beds, a refrigerator, microwave, coffee maker, safe and much more. Wifi reception was available free, as were internet connectivity and business and fitness centers.
The pool was huge. It even had an elaborate pool area with a kids' play area theme. It was located close to Busch Gardens itself, as well as other points of interest.
The hotel provided a hot breakfast for its guests the next morning, consisting of sausage, eggs, grits and much, much more. This came in handy as we knew Theme Park food was going to be expensive. It was nice to get a "free" meal to get us started.
The room rate was listed as $69/night, but was discounted because of Choice Priveleges.

Here is the othe sider of the story: My company was hosting a summit for all of our (international) engineers. They held it at the Walt Disney Swan and Dolphin Resort. The listed price was $219/night per room (we all had our own). Our people had nothing but complaints the entire time we were there. They booked one of our Vice Presidents in a room where the toilet had overflowed (and hadn't been cleaned up) and had soaked the carpet. (There was still a puddle.) At least a third of our group complained they couldn't get any sleep because the walls were too thin. In many cases the eleavtor was heard opening and closing all night. The Swan didn't really have access to much of a pool. You had to hike over to the Dolphin if you wanted to take a dip.
The morning breakfast consisted mainly of bagels, bread and muffins. There were no hot items at all (unless you toasted a bagel yourself!) By the second day, my nickname for the Swan as a "Bread and Breakfast" caught on with almost all of us.
Wifi was not free. It was something like $50/night.
I realize that the Clarion and the Swan are in different cities. But there is no doubt in my mind that if they were both located in the same area for the same price I would pick this Clarion over the Swan everytime! There was no comparison at all to the sheer amount of amenities and friendly service. You were looked at as though you were a true guest at the Clarion. At the Swan you were looked at as though you were a giant credit card that they somehow had to try to scan and drain as much as possible before you left.

The Clarion: Three times the hotel as the Swan for one third the price!
Every trip I ever take to Tampa for whatever reason will always start there!

Room Tip: Try to ask for a pool view if you want one. Hotels will generally rotate the rooms they rent. They...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Kenneth C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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546 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 (163)
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Fort Mill, South Carolina
Level Contributor
44 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2012

First off, this property offers a military discount. thank you for recognizing and appreciating my service. The price was more than fair. The room was fine and the bed comfortable. Although crowded, the night was quiet. I did not take advantage of the complimentary breakfast.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank richard h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
28 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012

Stayed overnight after an evening at Skippers Smokehouse. Rooms need to be deep cleaned but bed is comfy and bathroom/shower good with plenty of hot water. Breakfast is convenient and acceptable quality. Request poolside rooms as I believe this will put you on the interior of the hotel rather than facing the outside

Room Tip: poolside room
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank John A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vero Beach, Florida
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 7, 2012

The pool was really nice for our other children to use while we visited USF. The hotel staff was very accomidating and pleasent. The breakfest buffet was good, I was hoping for waffels but the muffins and homefries were tastey. The hotel rooms were clean and there were plenty of towels. Whne we checked in , other families were checking in as well and I was concerned that the rooms may be noisy, but that was not an issue. The landscaping Jaround the property was lush and in good condition. The price was right and I would definitley stay here again.

Room Tip: second floor was nice and seemed more view of pool
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Katherine G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jacksonville, Florida
Level Contributor
34 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2012

I stayed here, thankfully only ONE night, while attending a business meeting in the area.

The staff are friendly, and the breakfast spread was nice, but that's about it.

My room was on the second floor. There is no elevator. Finding the staircase was challenging, and it was narrow and dark. Hauling my suitcase up and down two flights of stairs was not ideal.
Don't expect a bellman.

The tile in the room was cracked (see photo), the baseboards and grout in the bathroom were covered with mold (see photo), and the bathroom door paint was scraped (see photo). In addition, the shower rod was hung higher on both ends, so that the curtain would not stay closed on either end, it automatically slid to the middle, so all during my shower there was an irritating cool breeze.

Good internet service, nice folks at breakfast, but other than that, for $15 or $20 more, you could find something a little nicer on down the road.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank FloridaMom2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Tampa hotels

Gulf Shores, Alabama
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2012

Appreciated the friendly greeting when we arrived and loved the extra money off for being a hospital patient during the month of October. Good Breakfast, usually friendly staff, and great prices. REALLY appreciate the discount for being a Shriners patient. : ) Like the rooms but they need more deep cleaning. Pool is AWESOME and heated. It is a kid friendly place. Great location for us!

Room Tip: We always like being pool side.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank janeehj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toano, Virginia
1 review
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2012

I am a Choice Hotel Privileges member - currently Gold Status, in past Diamond and Platinum status (the latter 40 stay nights a year). I had stayed at this hotel in the past, with mixed results, but as this was 1 night, and it is close to Busch Gardens, my destination, I chose it. Big mistake. The hotel has gone downhill big time. Needs paint, carpets stained, huge cracks in grout in bath, etc. The entire look is shabby. When I called it a night and tried to sleep, no luck. Intoxicated yahoos on the breezeway were well into a party. Front desk was no help at all. So I got dressed, packed up, and left for a nearby Sleep Inn, quiet, clean and nice. Ate the points I was assessed for the room. On checking out, I advised the front desk clerk why I was leaving, and stated I would likely never return. The reply? "Uh, whatever". I had a Clarion room booked for the following night in Orlando, but even though it was too late to cancel without losing my points, I also ate those points and booked into a Marriott. I am finished with Clarion. But then, uh, whatever, they don't care do they? By the way, do you have kids? Signs are taped to the front window of the hotel and in the pool area that Tampa police have the right to request people leave the premises or face arrest for trespassing. Hmm, think that might be because non guest troublemakers have been a problem there? I do. Posted by a retired naval officer who travels on leisure trips for 20 to 50 hotel nights a year.

Room Tip: Stay in another hotel.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Robert John W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Clarion Hotel & Conference Center

Property: Clarion Hotel & Conference Center
Address: 2701 E Fowler Ave, Tampa, FL 33612-6274
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Tampa
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #88 of 162 Hotels in Tampa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Clarion Hotel & Conference Center 2.5*
Number of rooms: 255
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Clarion Hotel And Conference Center
Clarion Tampa
Clarion Hotel Tampa

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