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“Sandcastle/Scumcastle...read this before you go there. DO NOT STAY HERE !!! July 11-17 2010, Never again.”

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Best Western Plus Sandcastle Beachfront Hotel
Ranked #5 of 109 Hotels in Virginia Beach
Certificate of Excellence
North Tonawanda, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Sandcastle/Scumcastle...read this before you go there. DO NOT STAY HERE !!! July 11-17 2010, Never again.”
Reviewed July 18, 2010

My wife, two children and my brother and his three children stayed here from July 11-17, 2010. This place was highly recommended by a co-worker, I guess he doesn't like me. After a warm ride in the non-air conditioned elevator we arrived at room 610 which greeted us with a musty basement smell. A quick look around and I realized this place was a dump. Being in 610 we were near an ice machine that almost never had ice. Not every floor has ice machines so they get emptied very quick in the morning by beach goers. On day 2, I move one of our bags which made the electric outlet angry because it shot sparks at me, I call maintenance and it was fixed quickly. The bathroom was gross, the drop ceiling was torn, sagging, and caulked to hold it together. The caulk around the bathtub was moldy all week. The mini-fridge was rusty and spray painted over. The balcony railing had very loose screws securing it to the concrete. The pool was green and some kid pooped on the floor (not the Sandcastles fault). One heater above the pool was broken. The outdoor breakfast area had broken flower pots and junk lying around all week. The headboard above one of the "queen size" beds fell off, almost hitting my wife and daughter. The dresser had a big ring of missing laminate on the drawer front. The old A/C unit enclosure on the balcony has warped cardboard covering it. Parking area doors were chocked open so any one could enter the hotel. The elevator was slow, probably because one kept breaking, the doors opened and there were repairmen standing on top of the elevator car. A picture is worth a thousand words (or the $1100 I wasted staying there) so do yourself a favor and look at my pictures on photobucket.

http://s925.photobucket.com/albums/ad94/boatparts/VA%20Beach%20Sandcastle/

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
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Helpful?
5 Thank vabeach2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Roanoke, Virginia
1 review
Reviewed July 7, 2010

This hotel was ok I guess. The room was rather small. The AC didn't work anywhere but the room (not in lobby, elevator, breakfast room, etc.). The pool was a funny color. And the elevators...we would wait for 5 - 7 minutes for the elevators to come to the floor we were on. The location was good and the staff was friendly enough though. For $134/night I had hoped for a little better.

Would I stay here again? Not sure.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank jcroragen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Annandale, Virginia
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed July 3, 2010

we stayed in a room on the eight floor. the elevators broke down and had to hawl all my beach gear along with my kids up and down the freaggin stairs from the eighth floor.
The room was okay, neat and clean. The bed was actually quite nice.
If it weren't for the daggon elevators, I would've given them 3.5 out of 5.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank kchoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
dcboo, Manager at Best Western Plus Sandcastle Beachfront Hotel, responded to this review, July 28, 2010
We apologize to our guests who may have stayed during this time. There was a mechanical malfunction with the elevators that, unfortunately, took the elevator service company some time to locate and ultimately fix. The elevators have since been repaired and are in perfect working order.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
victoria
1 review
Reviewed June 30, 2010

When we first got to our room there was a problem with both our sheets and the refrigerator , and after calling the front desk the problems were taken care of within minutes. The room itself was clean and thee breakfast was great and the breakfast area was clean. The least liked was the water pressure from the sink and having to go two floors down for the ice machine. We liked the idea of being able to stay for just one night.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank chase08
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Richmond, Virginia
1 review
Reviewed June 28, 2010

Cory, the front desk rep, and Mac, the hotel service technician, could teach customer service classes -- they really care about their customers. Today, they both went out of their way to help us. We had accidently locked ourselves out of our van while loading up after checking out (and our van was still running!). We asked Cory about local lock companies and we were about to call one, but he said to first let him check and see if the hotel could help. He asked the hotel's service tech, Mac, about it and Mac was able to get the van unlocked for us -- saved us travel time and money -- and he wouldn't even accept a tip from us. Thank you again Cory and Mac! All of the staff that we dealth with at the hotel were friendly and accomodating.
Our room, micro kitchenette, was very roomy and big enough for our son, who's in a power wheelchair to comfortably get in and out of the room.
Location of the hotel between 13th and 14th streets on the boardwalk was convenient to everything.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank sdfle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Macungie, Pennsylvania
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed June 25, 2010

The Sandcastle was in a great location – right on the beach/boardwalk, near the pier and entertainment.
The appearance from the outside looks a bit dated but not revolting. The main desk area looked professional and had coffee and drinks near by (I assume they were available all day, although we never utilized them). There was a large fish tank with several impressive fish (blowfish was pretty cool). The parking deck was tight but I was able to maneuver my Maxima around just fine. The deck only had five levels but the hotel had nine room floors – our room was on the seventh. We parked on the fifth floor and took the elevator to the seventh. The hallways and elevator are not air-conditioned. It was hot and humid in the hallways – not all that bad of an idea since it almost ensures no loitering in the hallways! Upon entering our room we were immediately hit with a wall of musty/mildew order (reminded me of a wet towel sitting around too long). Fortunately after about 30 seconds we were acclimated to the smell. Had we stayed there longer then two nights I would have requested a room change (when we go to the beach, the room for us is merely to sleep, shower and change – we don’t hang out in the room).
The furniture in the room was dated and used hard (the table clearly collapsed at some point and was repaired while one of the chairs was stained). The beds however looked newer and were comfortable and clean. TV worked well and alarm clock looked new (I wondered if anyone had been in our room for some time since the clock was more than two hours off).
The balcony overlooking the ocean was a nice feature. It was a little disappointing however since it looked like the rooms individual HVAC unit or vent was removed and replaced with a plywood board that no one bothered to cleanup the duct tape as it was just hanging off and generally unsightly (I think there was some plastic there protecting from leaks or cold weather). We didn’t use the balcony that much anyway.
The bathroom included the toilet and shower together with the sink just outside the door (kind of cramped). The shower was clean and looked recently updated. Water pressure was good and we had plenty of hot water. The shower included fixed soap and shampoo dispensers but not sure if the worked since we brought our own.
Our room had an old old old air handling unit but it worked.
The FREE continental breakfast was very good. They did upgrade the breakfast and included HOT waffles (you had to make them – very easy and not a big deal – just had to be careful as the irons were hot). The quality was a little better then I expected for a FREE breakfast.
They did have several treadmills but we didn’t use them. Nor did we use the pool. It was small but it looked nice enough (max capacity in the pool was 22 people).
We did not experience any extreme delays with the elevators but some of the other guests were complaining about long delays (there were only two elevators for the nine floors).
All the staff we encountered were friendly and nice.
Internet connection was slow.
I think the hotel has some good stuff going for it and I would stay here again – might not be my first choice but I would consider it for sure (I’d just ask for a different room if I stayed longer).

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 5PATravelers5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Phoenix
Level 3 Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed June 23, 2010

We only had one night to see the Atlantic Ocean from a short stay in Richmond, so we booked the Sandcastle. I was unable to find a hotel in Virginia Beach that would accommodate two adults and four kids in one room, so we had to book two rooms. Sandcastle was just about the cheapest right on the beach at $100 per room. They do not offer adjoining rooms, but our rooms were right next to each other. I was able to book that rate over the phone, we arrived a few hours later. I was quite surprised that they used the old paper deal where they rub your credit card imprint on the paper. I also had to read, sign and initial several disclaimers on a one page policy paper - about having too many people in the room, no smoking and no pets. Check in took only a few minutes. Parking was included in the rate. The hallway carpets were pretty dirty & dingy, the elevators were old, a bit scary, and crammed with people. One family had brought a bunch of beach chairs and their kids had bikes too, all crammed into the elevator. Many people had 12 packs of beer, heading up to their rooms. I was afraid that I would have to go back and cancel the room. The rooms smelled musty, but looked clean enough for one night. The toilet had a paper strip that said “sanitized”, I guess so we knew it had been cleaned. The very thought that they had to use the paper was a bit scary. The bathroom was small. The toilet was clean, but there was hairs along the base boards. They had automatic soap and shampoo dispensers right in the shower, but there is no conditioner. A big negative for a bunch of girls. The tiles in the ceiling of the bathroom had some water stains and needed repair. There is a very small sink outside the bathroom. The room had two queen sized beds, the bedding was old. The comforters were platsicy polyester, and the blankets were nebbish and scratchy. There is a balcony with a beautiful view overlooking the Atlantic, big enough for two plastic chairs. The room also had a mini fridge and small microwave, and a small table with two chairs that were stained. The furniture was old with many scratches and stains, the drawers in the dresser were warped and didn‘t pull out all the way. There was old Capri Sun Straw wrappers next to the bed, so the housekeeping staff needs improvement. They had the old TVs, but had some cable channels and a DVD player. They also had a small free standing safe. We went for a quick stroll after we checked in and there was a kidee ride carnival right next to the hotel. I was worried about the noise, but it was fine. We wanted to walk out onto the pier right next to the hotel, but it was $2 per person, so we skipped that.
We got to the free breakfast about 8:30 am, and barely got a table. They had Sarah Lee bagels, mini donuts, a few cold cereal choices, make your our oatmeal, bananas, and make your own waffles. The cream cheese tasted bad, it was clotty, like it had been frozen. The actual food area was clean, but nobody was wiping down tables. There was a big sign that prohibited taking food out of the breakfast room, so everyone had to come down and get breakfast before it shut down. I overheard the food ladies yelling at a few kids that they needed shoes to be in the food area, and were kind of rude about it. Most people were in their bathing suits, so it seemed pretty silly to be worried about shoes. After breakfast, we headed to the beach. There are a few shops on the main floor of the building that sell snacks, beer, beach towels, t-shirts, and bike rentals. If you forgot something, they probably had it. Out on the beach, there were vendors trying to rent you a beach chair for $12. Since we were out on the beach by 9am on a Thursday, there was still plenty of sandy areas, so we just put our own towels out. Good thing we had gotten there so early, because all of the stacked beach loungers and tents were soon spread out over the beach (most of them still not rented, but the people selling them had spread them out), and by 11am, the beach was pretty crowded. I imagine it is super crowded on the weekend. Check out is at 11am, and the kids were still in the water, so I asked for a late check out, and was pleasantly surprised when the guy at the front desk gave me until noon. My husband headed up to the room at 11:55 to take a shower and housekeeping was already cleaning the room. Without too much pushback, she allowed him to take a shower in 5 min, but it was good that our bags were already out of the room. Anyway, we played at the beach until about 2, and I had hoped that we could change out of our wet bathing suits in the hotel bathrooms before our car ride home. Unfortunately, our keycard wouldn’t open the bathrooms by the pool because we had checked out at noon. After a bit, one of the housecleaning gals was passing by, and she let us into the bathrooms. By the way the indoor pool was on the 2nd floor. It had an attached small kidde pool for toddlers. For $100, right on the beach, this hotel was just fine, but it’s more like a motel than a hotel. It’s definitely not a resort!

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank azstout
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Best Western Plus Sandcastle Beachfront Hotel

Property: Best Western Plus Sandcastle Beachfront Hotel
Address: 1307 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA 23451
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Virginia > Virginia Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Virginia Beach
#7 Business Hotel in Virginia Beach
#8 Romantic Hotel in Virginia Beach
#13 Family Hotel in Virginia Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Best Western Plus Sandcastle Beachfront Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 144
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to the BEST WESTERN PLUS Sandcastle Beachfront Hotel located directly on the world famous Virginia Beach boardwalk. Our guest will enjoy world class service, easy access to the beach, and spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean. The BEST WESTERN PLUS Sandcastle Beachfront Hotel offers several types of accommodations to choose from. We offer you amazing views from 146 rooms with private balconies, two queen beds, or one king bed. All of our rooms offer you microwave and refrigerator, while our suites will provide you with a kitchenette. No matter how you must stay connected we offer free local calls, long distance access, and wireless high speed internet access. In addition, we have an on-site fitness center that overlooks the beach, on site laundry facilities, and complimentary business center. We are happy to provide you with conference rooms and meeting space for up to 150 people is perfect for your personal or professional functions. The Virginia Beach oceanfront is host to some of the best festivals and events you will find on the east coast such as; American Music Festival, Patriotic Festival, East Coast Surfing Championship, Neptune Festival, North American Sand Soccer Championship and the Boardwalk Art Show. Other nearby attractions includes Naval Air Station Oceana, Fort Story, Damn Neck Naval Base, Cape Henry Light House, Virginia Aquarium and Marine Museum, Virginia Beach Fishing Pier, and Ruddee Inlet.After spending the day enjoying Virginia Beach or working come back and enjoy the comfortable and spacious lobby or enjoy a great dinner at Pier 14. We look forward to seeing you soon! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandcastle Oceanfront Hotel Virginia Beach
Sandcastle Resort Va Beach
Sandcastle Oceanfront Resort Hotel

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