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“Looks good on paper but details might ruin your stay”

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The Inn at Little Harbor
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Ruskin
Toronto
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
“Looks good on paper but details might ruin your stay”
Reviewed 15 March 2012

We, family of three, have chosen this place because of the travelzoo's promotion. We generally don't care about being in the thick of things during vacations, therefore we didn't mind the secluded location.

The property. Upon the arrival, it took was awhile to find the check-in and after that, the room. It didn't help that we were given property map was either from the future or the past, picturing a number of non-existing buildings. The satellite photos you can get online are way more accurate that this map. Overall, the resort seems unfinished, with the mix of nice and odd and ugly areas, with a concrete skeleton of unfinished townhouse in the outskirts and a roughed-in parking lot as a centrepiece.
On the bright side, there is plenty of wildlife in and around the resort - we saw manatees, dolphins, two varieties of ray (stingrays including, I think) fish around the fishing pier, all kinds of birds and small lizards.

The room. We had a harbourside suite with a nice Western view.
The room was not very spacious, just large enough for us. Generally clean, in a good shape. There was not much of the balcony which unexpectedly created a problem. The guests are asked not to hang towels etc. on the balcony. Inside, there is nothing provided to dry your stuff either which forces you to needlessly jump through the hoops.
The bathroom door didn't have a working lock. The towel hanger bar in the bathroom was installed improperly and was falling off easily (with a bang!).
The room has a well equipped kitchen but no suitable dining area. Some of the provided glasses and plates were dirty. There is a coffee table and a counter beside the kitchen. The counter is cramped with a phone, radio, blender - not well suited for dining. The floor outside the kitchen is covered with a carpet, which makes for a stressful meal time. As there are couple suitable areas with seating and tables outside, in front of the hotel, one evening we decided to take our dining there for the sake of comfort and peace of mind.
As somebody else mentioned, ceiling fans were acting up. The fans would stop spinning, the light was switching on without being asked.
The TV. A number of channels to choose from but crappy analog setup with a poor and distorted picture makes it barely watchable.
There was a safety box sitting in the closed but it wasn't installed and we had to use one at the front desk.

Amenities. The beach is probably man-made, but looks quite nice. The sand looks identical to Lido beach we have visited. Deeper in the water, the floor is covered with vegetation. Fishing pier is a nice place to watch pelicans in action.The washrooms beside the beach are a serious bottleneck. Almost always, there is somebody outside waiting for its turn. The bar on the beach on evenings has live music albeit played by older musicians for even older patrons.The area around the hotel was nicely landscaped, with a pool, hot tub, BBQ and sitting areas. The pool and hot tub are way too small for the number of users they serve, which immediately became evident when a batch of families with children arrived over the weekend. I seems that one there was a playground on the property in the past but there isn't any now, which is a pity as for the little kids, there isn't much to do on the resort, apart from water activities and playing with the sand.

Dining. We bought an option with breakfast for two adults included. As the children are not covered, we chose to use some of the vouchers to cover breakfast for our kid. The breakfast is served in the restaurant which is beside the beach fair distance away across not so nicely looking part of the property from the hotel. The breakfast was nothing fancy but allowed us to efficiently fill out stomachs so we could keep going with our day activities pretty much until evening without being bothered by hunger, which we think is money well spent. Few gripes here, too, however. Inconsistent service - the way you're treated depends on the waiter that works that day. No juice included (not every child is a morning coffee lover!!). We were surprised to learn that on Sundays there is no breakfast but a brunch instead for which our breakfast vouchers don't work that well. The restaurant staff on the matter wasn't accommodating. The front desk person during check-out wasn't interested in the issue either, which I found insulting. And one more thing - watch for dirty plates!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank duok
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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706 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (239)
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English first
Fleet, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 March 2012

The Resort and Club at little harbour is the scene of the worst holiday we have ever had in the USA. The staff were the mopst unhelpful I have come accross anywhere in the world, having worked for an international airline for over 30 years.

There are no facilities in the immediate area and no decent resturants within a 20 mile radius.

We will NOT be back

Room Tip: Do not go to this resort. choose somewhere else
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
7 Thank david503830
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bowie, Maryland
2 reviews
Reviewed 12 March 2012

Found this unique gem on hotels.com at a fantastic price. When I arrived, I was upgraded to a junior suite because my reserved room type was not available. Great room with a comfy bed. Enjoyed the private beach with beverage service available nearby at the outdoor bar. Good service from the staff. Would highly recommend it! Location is a little off the beaten path, but that's what rental cars are for!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank MarylandGirl41014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Orlando, Florida
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 March 2012

****Would not recommend staying here to anyone.******

We booked a room for a 3 night getaway in the suites section of the club. Driving through Ruskin to get to the club should have been an indication that we were in for an odd experience; there is absolutely nothing to do in Ruskin; no shops, no restaurants, no nothing. A friend of ours from Tampa later told us that Ruskin is known for tomatoes and not much else so that speaks volumes of the area.

The building where the suites are located was very nice as it was 5 stories with waterfront views and seemingly nice pools. When checking in, we drove by the Inn section of the club which was a two story motel looking facility which I assume has typical hotel style rooms but didn't look all that appealing. On top of these locations there are 3 story town homes/timeshares that have a number of permanent residents. You will absolutely love this hotel if you are over the age of 60. Being in our mid20s we felt extremely out of place as we were the only young couple there; the other folks there seemed nice but genuinely shocked to see us, one lady even stared at us for a good 5-10 minutes in the most creepy fashion ever. So we avoided going to the pool after that. We tried the beach at the club, except it wasnt much of a beach - more that they dumped sand and dirt into the bay to make it resemble a beach. It was probably 100 feet long and 10 feet wide - definitely not what we were expecting at all. Upon our return from the pool/"beach" we were welcomed into our room with an extremely creepy looking baby crib. We are not with child nor have a baby so this was extremely odd as we did not request it. Pushed it out into the hall where it sat for the remainder of our stay. We never saw a staff person on our floor; come to think of it we never saw or heard anybody on our floor.

The room was pretty decent; full kitchen, queen bed, couch and sitting area, flatscreen tv. Pillows were a bit hard and sheets felt plasticy and of very low quality. In order to stock our fridge with food for 4 days (the club doesnt offer any complementary meals and the restaurant on site was rather price and full of seafood) we had to drive a good 20 minutes to Sweetbay - there was one about 5 minutes away in Ruskin, but it was very sketchy looking. We spent our trip driving to st pete beach and siesta key since we wanted to make the best of our trip, and used our room as a sleeping and showering location.

We were very unimpressed with our stay and we were absolutely fed up with the place when we were rudely awoken at 6:30am the morning we were set to leave by the ceiling fan light above our bed turning on. Thought it wasn't a big deal so we turned it back off, only for it to turn back on 20 minutes later freaking the crap out of us as nothing natural turned it on. Called the front desk and they didn't even know there was a light above our bed. So we packed our things and checked out at 7:30am since we wanted nothing else to do with the place; it was certainly the low point of our trip.

After staying there, I have absolutely no idea why ANYONE would want to stay here when there are a bazillion other places in amazing locations such as St Pete, Clearwater, Tampa, Siesta Key, Sarasota, Bradenton only an hour away.

Room Tip: Stay somewhere else - like tampa, clearwater, st pete, sarasota, or bradenton
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Jay A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rockford, Illinois
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed 11 March 2012

We had reservations for three days and left after two nights. The building we were in was dated and dirty. The hallway was not vacuumed for the entire length of our stay -- dental pick remained on hall floor from a Saturday until Monday when we left. There was a do not disturb sign on the door at the end of the hall with the same newspaper in front of it for three days. Hopefully someone finally checked the room. I did check the sheets in our room and they were clean or we would have left on the day of our arrival. The building was quiet -- that was the only plus.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ruth M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ann Arbor MI
Level Contributor
89 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 March 2012

Our little travel group (four of us in our 50s) agree this was a very nice place, and truly an excellent value. (About $80/night/room). We debated how to rate it, though, because of some odd anomolies. The excellent included: Two rooms with two queen beds each that were large enough to comfortably add a rollaway, and which had lovely private balconies that were deeper and wider than the usual postage stamp variety. Essentially all of the furnishings were quite new, including all furniture, the kitchenette (small fridge, microwave, and sink outside the bathroom), and the bathroom's marble counter and floor tile. There was a large closet, and the water pressure in my shower was excellent. The lobby is very attractive and the staff were very nice. The landscaping on the entire property is very well-maintained, as were the dock, beach, etc.

The not-so-excellent and odd: While the large area rug in the lobby looked very clean, the carpeted stairs and hallway on the second floor were as dirty as I had ever seen in a hotel: the stair treads were almost black and there were several stains in the upper lobby/hallway area. I'm thinking that perhaps it is scheduled for replacement soon. (The one man in our group never noticed)! And while the bathroom looked essentially new, the tub, shower surround, and faucet were clearly much older. The rollaway bed we asked for was quite old with squeaky springs and a pretty thin mattress. Overall the entire property looked great, and a maintenance guy was making a list of rooms to inspect when we were checking out, but there were several minor things that made us think management might be a little lax: Two of the eight lightbulbs in the bathroom fixture were burned out, the hair dryer wasn't attached to the wall very firmly, clothes left by a previous occupant had not been cleaned out of a dresser drawer, and the water pressure in the second room's shower was not good.

We think if the hall carpet hadn't looked so disastrous, we wouldn't have blinked at any of the rest of it. We really do recommend that you stay here if the location is right for you.

The restaurant and Tiki Bar on the property use the same menu. We ate there twice and our meals were very good both times. The little beach and dock are also nice. We spent an hour one morning on the dock watching the pelicans dive for fish just a few feet away.

It's true that this resort is several miles from any other restaurants, but we found that to be a non-issue. We either ate on the way "home" at night, or ate on-site. (The "Fish House" just down the road is open only Thursday-Saturday. It offers only take-out food but was really hopping the evening we we drove by. Looks like a great opportunity for local fish to take to eat by the dock some night).

Room Tip: Ask for a second floor room if you can handle the stairs. The first floor rooms are entered motel-st...
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Lisa L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Clearwater Beach, Fl
Level Contributor
34 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 March 2012

Great place....recommended for couples or families.

  • Stayed February 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank mgeremia1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Inn at Little Harbor

Property: The Inn at Little Harbor
Address: 611 Destiny Dr, Ruskin, FL 33570-3019 (Formerly The Resort & Club at Little Harbor)
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Florida > Ruskin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Ruskin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — The Inn at Little Harbor 3*
Number of rooms: 55
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to your Caribbean-style island resort on the South Shore of Tampa Bay - The Resort & Club at Little Harbor. This unique resort and residential village provides a harmonious blend of Anglo-Caribbean architecture, lush tropical landscaping, island style hospitality and the natural wonders of a waterfront resort.Conveniently secluded between Tampa and Sarasota, The Resort & Club at Little Harbor is a full-service, AAA Travel Guide, three-diamond, resort hotel and conference center situated on 124 acres, completely surrounded by the tranquil waters of our harbors, marinas and Tampa Bay. No matter how you choose to spend your time, we have an option for you at The Resort & Club at Little Harbor. Relax and enjoy our half mile stretch of secluded, white sandy beach. Take a dip in one of three heated pools and two Jacuzzi. Feeling competitive? Shoot hoops, play beach volleyball or play tennis on one of our five tennis courts. The entire family will enjoy themselves on our 250 foot fishing pier shuffleboard court horseshoe field or in our two fitness centers or enjoy our watersports including kayaks, jetskis, hydro bikes or paddleboards.Boaters arrive in paradise with deep-water access, 330 wet-slips, 220 high and dry slips, on-site fuel dock, bait and tackle store, fully stocked ship’s store, and boat trailer parking with near-by flats and deep sea fishing.Dine at one of two waterfront restaurants, The Sunset Grill or Sunset lounge and our beach-side Tiki Bar. Choose from a selection of steaks, sumptuous seafood, stacked sandwiches open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with live entertainment outside on Friday Through Sunday evenings.The Resort & Club at Little Harbor offers a vast array of guest room accommodations perfect for individuals, couples, families and groups desiring a resort destination. Guest accommodations include our standard, deluxe and Junior Suites along with our brand new studio, one, two and three bedroom suites and town homes, all offering breathtaking water views of Tampa Bay or our marinas, harbor and nature preserves.All guest rooms have been completely renovated to provide you with the necessary conveniences to ensure your comfort. An iron and ironing board, hair dryer, coffee maker, microwave and mini refrigerator are standard items in every room. A spacious work desk area with ample lighting, direct dial telephones, free high-speed internet access, 32" flat screen color cable television with free premium channels. Individual climate control air conditioning and heating, private bathrooms with granite counter tops and private balconies or patios. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Resort And Club At Little Harbor
The Resort & Club At Little Harbor Hotel Ruskin
Hotel At Little Harbor
Resort At Little Harbor
Resort Club Little Harbor
The Inn At Little Harbor Ruskin, Florida

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