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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Sandestin Beach, Florida / Hilton Golf Resort & Spa

resort view from beach
corner suite on right
November 2011, Weekend, Guestroom #1216 - King Jr. Suite Beachview 

Status perks
I had reserved a king beachview room with points, and we were upgraded to a king Jr. suite. We received continental breakfast coupons (as is requested on my Hilton profile), although I did not receive any bottled water like I usually receive at Hilton properties.


I thought the guestroom was fabulous! It was a corner room with a wrap balcony. There were twin bunk beds by the guestroom entrance with a small flat screen TV. The bathroom, a second sink/vanity outside the bathroom, and a closet, which contained a safe, were located off the long hall, which connected the bunk beds to the main area. The main area contained a microwave, small fridge, chair, king bed, second TV, armoire, nightstands, couch, coffee and end tables, and sitting table with two chairs. There was not a sink in this area. There were four chairs and two small tables on the balcony.

guestroom balcony
The bed and entire guestroom was supremely comfortable, cozy, and quiet. We enjoyed the balcony and slept very well. The only thing I thought was missing from the guestroom were Hilton bathrobes. Near the end of our stay, I observed guests on their balconies with robes, so I wondered why there had not been any in our guestroom. We went to another Hilton property after this one, and again there were no bathrobes in the guestroom. After I called the front desk at that hotel, I was told housekeeping could bring me a robe to use, so it appeared that we needed to request bathrobes at the Hilton hotels in this area.

view facing south from our balcony

Food & Beverages
The sushi and beverages in the lobby lounge in the evening were excellent. Our continental breakfast coupons came with the option to upgrade to a complete breakfast for $7.49. We thought that was kind of pricey to add eggs and hot meat to our meal, so we went with the continental breakfast. The continental breakfast included coffee and juice, cereal, fruits, yogurt, and bread/pastries. It was acceptable, although it was nothing to rave about. In fact, for a higher class property, I thought breakfast was kind of disappointing.

Pool, beach, & public areas
The two outside pools were clean, and the property was beautifully landscaped. The hot tub was warm, although we would have preferred it hotter, since the air temperature was quite cool. There was also a good sized inside pool and hot tub. The beach in front of the resort is beautiful, and chairs are available for rent during peak season--our visit was during the off season.  We liked the outside fire on the patio that evening. It was warm and there was plenty of seating around it. The pool bar was not open during our stay.

In addition to the perfectly manicured landscaping, the inside plants were well cared for and magnificent looking. 

Even though this was a rewards night stay, we were still charged $10 for overnight parking, which we were aware of before our visit.

Baytown shopping, dining, and entertainment complex is across the street from the resort. There is a tunnel under the highway, so that pedestrians can walk back and forth. This resort sits back quite a ways from the road, so it's about a 3 to 4 mile walk one-way. We were interested in walking out to the area in the evening and talked with the concierge about our options. When we learned how far of a walk it was one-way, and she did not provide any information about a shuttle or return ride, we decided not to go that evening. The next day, we drove to the area and walked around after we had checked out of the hotel. When we did, we learned there had been live entertainment in some of the businesses the night before, and we saw a Sandestin Beach Golf Resort shuttle driving through the area! I was quite disappointed that the concierge did not make us aware of this option when we questioned her about transportation to and from the complex. Even if it had not been available the evening that we talked with her, we would have used it the next morning, if we had known. I did not learn the facts of how the shuttle ride works. If this is something you're interested in, I suggest you specifically ask about it. It was not a bus; it was a golf cart pulling a covered wheeled wagon with several bench seats.