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Hotel suggestions for Tampa


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if you are staying in Tampa but leaving pot Canaveral: During the week I would reccomend at least 3-4 hours if no more just to get to Orlando hoping for no major accidents. If its during the weekend you can hope for a 2 hour trip to Orlando leaving real early might get you there in 45 mins to 1 hour depending on how fast you are comfortable driving :D I have not been to Port Canaveral in many many years so I gave approximations between tampa and Orlando which is where you encouner most traffic.

 

If you like to bar hop and club scene, Ybor is your choice. This place will have the biggest mix of people. If you like your bars a little more "yup yup" I would suggest the SOHO district it has more vespas, popped collars, and 18 year olds in BMW..:D. Ybor is ultimatly closer to the port, but either or is near by.

 

Liquor: has your cabbie where the closest hard liquor place is or ask your hotel desk. Both will know this answer. Tampa goes dry at 3:00am and St. Pete seems to go dry around 1:00am. If you are looking for ultimate selection there is a place caled TOTAL WINE AND SPIRITS on Dale Mabry. Imagine the size of a Rooms to Go, but filled iwth liquor, because thats what it is. Nice wine selections, and decent Vodka selection. Also no interest here, but if you like a nice local sipping Vodka like I do we have a new distillery. Its called TOUCH Vodka, look it up limited avail, good stuff, smooth. Run you about $40.00 for 750ml.

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Signman - We are booked for the Eastern Med Cruise, 14 days, out of Civitavechia. It goes up into the Black Sea. Our sailing date is 10/27/06. Looks like we might pass each other in the terminal.

 

Ken

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Kracker Ken, I've checked out the Chase Suites. Thinking we might book there. My question is, are there any stores to buy beer within walking distance of there?

 

You have been very helpful, thanks.

 

Tina

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I will be going to Tampa next March precruise. We will be arriving on Thursday afternoon, going to Busch Gardens on Friday and sailing out on the Legend on Saturday. With those things in mind which area would be the best to stay at? We may be renting a car. Could you tell me if there is a car rental that has a drop off at the port?

Thanks for you any suggestions!

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We have never sailed out of Tampa before. Have always done Miami or Ft Lauderdale. Can someone give me some names of hotels close to the port and how far from the airport is it to the port. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I booked the Legend today for Jan 2007.

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Hey Ken,

Did you check out that thread on the Connie Penthouse Suite. It's sweet.

 

I can see this starting all over again. Folks seem unwilling to look through this thread to find the wealth of info you and others have provided for them. Sorry if you might think I am out of place ...but...I remember your post a couple of months ago about this.

Did the recent TA cruise calm your nerves ?:rolleyes:

Jeff

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  • 3 weeks later...

Jessmon - I don't think we have ever went this long without a question about Tampa. I suppose everyone is finding all their answers in the thread (they are certainly there if folks look). Of course, if there's something new that hasn't been answered, we can always help out.

 

Lots of crazy stuff going on over on the Celebrity board. Pod problems with Summit (and folks throwing a fit about it), alledged problems on Mercury. It's always something...

 

I'm still working on the ton of pics I took while on the Century Trans-Atlantic. I'll let you know when I'm done with the pics and have them posted.

 

Ken

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Hey Ken,

Bet this thread starts right back up. People seem to want to ask a question instead of researching. If they want to know almost everything they ever wanted to know about Tampa...this is the place....:cool:

Noticed that there have been more than one questions lately about Tampa on new threads. Not the best answers though.

 

Can't wait to see your pics. Let me know when they are up and running. Wife and I are just waiting for our Christmas Cruise on the "Zenith".;) You aregoing a few weeks before us...right?

 

Talk soon.

Jeff

 

PS: You are right about the "X" board...nuts. Seems all people want to do there anymore too is gripe. I prefer to read the positive posts and the informitive ones. I also though busting stones on the negetive ones.

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We are 2 families totaling 9 who will be getting off the Miracle in Tampa in June. We have 7:25 pm flights out of Tampa. Any suggestions on what we could do in Tampa that day? We are not particularly interested in the aquarium. Do we have time for Busch Gardens (and is it worth it - we live near Cedar Point in Ohio so we get our fill of thrill rides) or do we have time for a Tampa Bay baseball game (they are in town that afternoon) or any other suggestions ? Also any idea where we could store our luggage if we decide to partake in any activities? Thanks.

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Hey Ken,

Just noticed your favorite pics of "X" ships...cool.:cool:

I have a great one of the "Horizon" but I have to have it saved from the hard drive in my old laptop. Gives me a reason to go have it done.

Jeff

PS: We still need to meet up one of these days.

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Hello. As several other posters have said, this is an amazing thread, but not being from the area, I too am overwhelmed with the volume of info. So I'll post my specific wish list:

- Pre-cruise hotel for 8/26 (we are sailing on the Miracle on 8/27)

- We like NICE 4* hotels, but if the value is there (a great deal), we will go Hampton Inn type

- We have 4 people -- 2 adults, 2 kids -- 12 & 16

- They like having a nice pool (as we are from the Northeast, and pools are premium!)

- We might visit a local college, as we are starting to do that, since he will be a junior next year -- perhaps Univ of So. FL -- if that's the case, we may rent a car, depending on where the college is.

- If not, we will need an airport shuttle

- We will need a shuttle or taxi to the pier -- if one is included, that is a bonus

 

OK, experts -- what do you recommend????

Thanks!

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Hello Cinderellie,

I know this thread can be a little mind boggling. It is a wealth of info.

The best thing to do at the start is to skim this thread. It is full of hotels, places to eat, locations, shuttles, taxis and everything you might want to know about the area.

Make a few notes, pick a few places and we can help you refine it from there.

Jeff

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As promised, we are just back from our cruise. We stayed at the CY Downtown and it waspretty much as reported here. Nice hotel, not much of anything other than businesses surrounding.

 

 

We got to TPA late, like 1 am. So we just needed a decent place to sleep. I used my Marriott points to get a free room and only had to use 10,000 points as opposed to the 15-25,000 that the other Marriotts in the area required. There is no airport shuttle to the CY Downtown, but that was not a concern becasue of our extremely late arrival since most hotel shuttles shutdown at 11 or 12. It was a $20 cab ride from TPA, we found a cab easily & it was bout a 15 minute drive with no traffic.

 

Checked in with a not too attentive desk clerk who didnt bother to even tell me the room #!!! Luckliy, he did write teh room number down and I found the elevators (which were not pointed out either) easily. We took our own luggage up on the cart which was no big deal.

 

The room: Very nice and clean. We even had a jacuzzi....I do not know if this was standard or not, but I did not request this when booking. It was welcomed after a long day (son graduated from high school, hosted a lunch prior to graduation, left immediately after grad to drive 2 hours to ATL, changed gates 5 (yes, FIVE) times prior to the flight (and yes each gate was at the end of ther terminal and we even had to change terminals twice!!), caught the red eye 11:30 flight to TPA.) So the jacuzzi was welcomed and used at 1:30 am!

 

I did hear a bit of road noise that most people probably would not notice when trying to fall asleep. We live in a rural community, so I would've noticed any type noise. My husband never mentioned this. Had a VERY sound sleep though, awoke at 8:30, dressed, my husband made him a small pot of coffee and we decided to just wait until we got to the ship to eat anything, forgoing breakfast. I did not notice any cont. breakfast offered on the website; however, it did appear that they had some type breakfast fixin's, but I did not check it out.

 

We caught the free shuttle to the port, which was probably 5 minutes away. I called the front desk to ask about the shuttle, they said to come on down. After talking to the shuttle driver, we found he had a list of people that he was to take to the port. The driver said it was no problem that he did not have our names. QUick drive and we were at theship. They were just letting people into the embarkment area, but the driver did tell us that he could drop us across the street to avoid being turned back.

 

All in all, a nice stay adn what we were looking for in a hotel room for the night!

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starketcher - Thanks for the review. It's nice to see someone coming back to the thread to tell us of your experiences. Us locals tell y'al about the hotels and such, their locations, and something about the area, but (needless to say) we don't stay at those places since we live here. By the way, most of the Courtyards have a full breakfast buffet, but you have to pay for it. It's good, and awful convenient for business travelers, which are their main target clientel. These hotels are on the approved lists for business travel where I work, and I stay in them from time to time. They have improved their mattresses a lot too.

 

Ken

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Ken -

 

We are sailing on the Legend of the Seas on January 27, 2007. I've just found out that it's the same day as Gasparilla. (which explains why so many hotels are already full!) We're flying in the day before. Is it going to be tough for us to get around? I'm looking at the Hampton Inn Airport/Westshore on W. Laurel Street.

 

And I'm sorry for not remembering, even tho I've read the whole thread, but are there any restaurants in the area?

 

Thanks!

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Susan in Maine - The area of the Hampton Westshore is almost all business district. Relatively safe, and (other than aircraft flying over from time to time) should be quiet at night. There are places to eat at the International Mall to the N. on Westshore, and to the S. on Westshore at the Westshore Plaza Mall. There are some places to eat on Boy Scout Blvd in front of International Mall, one (LeRoy Selmon's BBQ) is reasonable, the other two (Flemings Prime Steakhouse and Roys) are kind of expensive. There's a Chuck's Steakhouse on Cypress just E of Westshore, not too far from the Hampton. Across the street from the Hampton, and a block or so to the N there's a restaurant (used to be Houlihans, but it changed names), and there's a Ruth's Chris Steakhouse within a block.

 

As for Gasparilla Day - One word describes it: MESS! Or, how about "Chaos." Hopefully you will have a cab and they can put up with the driving issues. I have lived in the area 53 years, and I have never been to the Gasparilla Parade. Nothing wrong with it (it's good fun), just a big pile of people and cars to deal with. The cruise terminals are on the SE corner of the downtown area, but things could be hectic in that corner too. A cab driver should know the ways to get around the mess and get you to the terminal. If you happen to be driving yourself to the port (God help you!), let me know and I'll get technical with some possible ways to get there with the least worry.

 

Ken

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Ken -

 

Thanks so much for the help. I feel much better about the hotel.

 

Is Gasparilla Children's Day just as crazy? It's scheduled for the 20th. If not, I may just reschedule my cruise.

 

We're traveling with my parents - my father is 73, blind and wears hearing aids in both ears. He tends to get pretty tense. My schedule is pretty flexible, so if the week before isn't crazy, it could be easier to just to earlier.

 

And Ken, you've done a wonderful thing with your posts in this thread. It's a big help to so many of us. Thank you!

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Susan - That day won't be nearly as bad as the main Gasparilla Day. The crowds of people streaming into Tampa, and around town within Tampa are very heavy on the main Gasparilla Day. The children's event doesn't have the same draw. Still, staying out in the Westshore Business District gets you out of the middle of things, in any instance. On a Saturday morning (a normal Saturday morning, that is), the ride from the Westshore area to the port is rather quick and trouble free. Thank you for the compliment.

 

Ken

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