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“Thank you for making this family beach trip so wonderful and memorable!!”

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The Sandpiper Beacon Beach Resort
Ranked #6 of 48 Hotels in Panama City Beach
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 16 September 2010

This was our second visit to the Sandpiper Beacon and we loved it! The resort is so family-oriented; which was a major concern with us when booking our vacation. There was so many activities that kept my two children entertained--they were never bored! Outside of the pools and beach,my son especially enjoyed the balloon animals and inflatable waterslide. The food from the Tiki Bar was great and we enjoyed the convience of having the onsite grocery store and gift shop. There was virtually no reason to leave, which eliminates the "hetic factor" when it comes to vacationing {especially with kids!} I cannot forget the VERY entertaining karoke! Finally, the staff was extremly friendly and accomodating and I would like to personally thank an associate named Robert who assured that our stay was a pleasant one. My family cannot wait to go again!!! Thanks so much for making this a trip we won't forget!

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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1  Thank sweetnhonest697
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,566 - 1,570 of 2,062 reviews

Reviewed 11 September 2010

We traveled to the Sand Piper Resort over Labor Day Weekend. Lets just say I am a little pickey about where I lay my head down at night! I would recommend this place to anyone who has children. We stayed in a two room suite that over looked the pool and hot tub. The suites are a little smaller than what I liked but you dont go to the beach to spend they whole time in the room now do you!! There were so many things for the kids to do, with pools, lazy rivers, glitter tattoos, balloons, free tiki punch, games, water slides. You never needed to leave the resort. You have to wear wrist bands the whole time, which are a little annoying but I totally see why, they have so many free activities it would be hard to tell who should be there and who should not. You can tell it is a little older resort but they do a wonderful job keeping it clean. I was impressed at how they had staff every where cleaning and greeting everyone. The staff was very good with the children always smiling and coming up to them talking to them. Lots of things to do you never have to leave the resort. Right down the road is a Super Walmart and a Winn Dixie if you need groceries. You are close to Pier Park and all the little trinket shops. Lots of nice resturants if you want to go out. If not there is a small little grill there that serves some really great burgers and well worth the price. I am def going to take my family back.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled with family
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1  Thank MKlema
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 August 2010

We had booked 2 nights at the Sandpiper Beacon on our drive back from Disney. When we arrived I thought it was old, but had possibilities. And it was just for two nights. And my kids would have fun at the beach so it was OK if the room was old.

The first room we were put in had a king bed and a fold out couch. I was still OK with this, until we folded out the couch and saw black mold on it. And then then we noticed the smoke smell coming in from the smokers just outside the room. I have asthma, so this was not going to work even if the room was clean. On top of that, the TV got NO channels (try that one with a ten and seven year old). Though it was a nice flat screen TV.

They changed our room and the second one was worse. The beds looked awful (LOTS of visible lumps), and the room looked like it had recently hosted a frat party with the damage that was done to the furniture. Rooms aside, the pools had scum. I'm a firm believer that you can tell a lot about a place by how the pool is kept and these were pretty bad.

My son also tripped twice within minutes of arriving as we went to go see the beach. The walkways have a lot of small steps that are easy to miss. The armbands are ridiculously annoying. My kids and I were so upset about the condition of the hotel that we did not go in when my husband took care of things. So he had to come out into the parking lot with scissors to remove them. THAT was excessive and just added to the misery of the situation.

The staff did try and make us happy, but it just was not going to happen and we ended up with a full refund so they get points there. I just did not feel comfortable letting my children stay there. It's not that I'm picky, we stayed at a few older budget motels on our trip and at the value resorts at Disney.. but they were all very clean and well maintained and that was the difference here.

Do be aware that the refund is not instant. That made it tight for us to get back home. But we did get a refund within a week, so they did do the right thing by us there.

This could be a really great place to stay if it was maintained better. But right now it's just not clean enough for a kennel, much less my kids.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
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2  Thank Dallas_photochick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SandpiperBeacon, Manager at The Sandpiper Beacon Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 18 August 2016

We apologize for such a late response to your feedback. 6 years have now passed since you visited us, and we have been continually making changes and improvements since then. We are deeply sorry that you didn't enjoy your last stay more. We'd like to invite you to visit us again. We're confident that you'll be pleasantly surprised. Thank you for your feedback, it helped us improve.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 August 2010

During the planning of our first vacation together as a married couple, I researched seven different hotel/resorts. Sandpiper being at the top of the list mainly because of the attractions and the fact that it has what is advertised as a grocery store. Having Celiac Disease, food options and restaurants are limited, so having a kitchen in the room really was a benefit. They also offer the dolphin tour which caught my eye right away. So we booked it. They gave me a price three days prior to the stay and the night that I booked it they offered me two night free which somehow ended up being the same price as before. How that works is beyond me. We drive 13 hrs to this place. The outside image of the place is NOT at all what we expected, but stayed positive. I go in to the front desk area. Also not what you'd expect. After getting a description of where our room is located and a run-down of everything the guy insists he put an armband on me. I asked if I could just take my husbands and give it to him since he was in the car in the parking lot across the street. We were very tired. He refused and said that he had to put them on himself. Hubby wasn't very happy about this armband we HAD to wear 24/7 to be able to walk around the premises. We walk to our room (after being given the wrong receipt after final payment) and are still positive. We walk in...I look around and I break into tears. TINY, VERY run-down looking and not what the pictures look like online. We go out onto the balcony where the light doesn't ever turn off (wth?) and try to admire our view of the ocean - which is obstructed by the balcony light and also by a beach littered with a playground...so it's not at all a good view. I say, "I don't think I can stay here for an entire week, baby!" So by this time we decide to head down to the dolphin bar to play pool. Kids are running around IN THE BAR throwing pool balls around - playing star wars with the pool sticks as if they are light sabers. They have karaoke, but they only play country music. I tipped the dj 10 bucks to play FIVE rock songs after karaoke was over and he put up the biggest hissy fit and then only played five hair band songs! By this time, it's been an hour since check-in and we're very displeased. We start thinking of ways of getting some sort of refund and checking OUT and going somewhere else. We head to bed around 12am. Just as soon as we get into the room, we notice next door there are several toddler-aged kids with at least two adults. The kids are running back and forth, banging on our walls and the adjoining door. The adults are yelling and carrying on. The walls and floor are VERY thin. We don't complain once. They keep us up till 3am. 6am I am woken by the same thing. I'm not very happy about it. But I don't complain. That day things just got worse. I go down to this "grocery store" and it's smaller than a bootlegged gas station. NOT a grocery store. I was expecting eggs and some breakfast material. Your local gas station convenience store has more items than Sandpiper's "grocery store". I was hungry, angry, and sleep-deprived. I broke down again. So off we go for the day to do stuff. We come back later in the evening and decided to have a few drinks. We'd purchased our own liquor and mixer. We needed ice. We go on a small scavenger hunt and landed back inside the grocery store. We asked the lady in there (who is super-nice, btw!) and she informs us that you have to PAY for the ice. PAY! I've NEVER stayed at a hotel where I have to insert quarters into the ice machine to get a small bucket of ice. The bucket of course is complimentary as well as the coffee machine, but no free ice or free coffee like at other "resorts". We're really annoyed. For the price we paid for a 6-night stay, we're extremely dissatisfied. The Days Inn is the same price and you get better quality. So we're seriously thinking of leaving and saying screw the refund because losing that much money and going and staying somewhere else seemed like a better idea. We go purchase a bag of ice to keep in the freezer. We make some drinks and go down to play pool. We meet two bouncers - Cam and Damien (You guys rock!!) and we head back to the room roughly around 1am. We turn on the tv. After a few minutes while I'm making a sandwich to eat, I see something so disturbing on tv I let out a loud "EWWW!" nothing more, nothing less. Our loud neighbors from the night before decide to beat on the adjoining door. 10 seconds later, an employee is at the door knocking to inform us that our neighbors have complained. I tried to explain the 3 hours of sleep I got the night before and that all I did was say EWWW and there was no reason to complain. His response was "You should have complained last night" and to "calm down and stay quiet". Really? This dude was not trying to hear our side and jumped to conclusions. So things got worse. I shut the door and went over to the adjoining door and banged as many times and as loud as she did just a few minutes prior. 30 seconds later there is a knock at the door. We don't answer. I gave her a legitimate reason to complain. The phone rings. Theres a knock at the door, another time the phone rings. So do we answer the door or answer the phone? LOL...really...this is insane. I answer the door. It's management who not ONLY was very rude when talking to me, he wouldn't let ME talk, and threatened to call the police as if we were being irate. We did absolutely nothing wrong and the lady next door made it out 10x worse so that something would get done. He said to me "You have two options, move or leave!" I told him if we can get a four-night discount, we'd "leave this dump" and so that's what happened and we went down to Days Inn and paid only $57 over the refund amount from Sandpiper. Our room was clean, no carpeting so no bugs, has FREE ice and nice employees (shout out to Carla! Thank you!!). It has an AWESOME view of the ocean and white sands AND THE WAVE RUNNER RENTAL AND DOLPHIN TOURS ARE CHEAPER THAN THE PLACE AT SANDPIPER. Their pool is amazing with two waterfalls on either side. Place at Sandpiper was $100 for a two-hour dolphin tour and then $85 per hour to rent a jet ski. The place behind Days Inn was $80 for a two-hour dolphin tour AND only $80 per hour to rent a jet ski. The place behind Sandpiper boasted that they were the cheapest on the beach. Wrong.

Please reconsider staying here. It's not a resort by any stretch of the imagination. Not the spot for a 28 yr old married couple looking to have both relaxation and fun. We're also military - hubby's been gone for 90% of the year and we really were expecting a lot different of this place. We're not wild party animals. This is definitely better for kids, however the quality is poor. Nothing complimentary at all, not even the ice or coffee! No complimentary breakfast either. Pay an extra $50 to stay down the strip somewhere else and get more for your money. Had I known I could attach photo's to this review I would have taken some of our room so others could see it for what it really is.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank sixpackjeanie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SandpiperBeacon, Manager at The Sandpiper Beacon Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 18 August 2016

We apologize for such a late response to your feedback. 6 years have now passed since you visited us, and we have been continually making changes and improvements since then. We are deeply sorry that you didn't enjoy your last stay more. We'd like to invite you to visit us again. We're confident that you'll be pleasantly surprised. Thank you for your feedback, it helped us improve.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 August 2010

My whole experience with the Sandpiper was great from the phone conversations with David about reservations to check-out. Our check in was very speedy (Thank you Oksana!) and we were given a map with a schedule of the weekly activities. We stayed in a two room non ocean view on the 3rd floor (room 380) of the tower. The room was not luxurious, but very clean. We didn't come for a fancy room any way---we came for the BEACH and all the fun things the resort offered. Our wrap-around balcony was absolutly fabulous with 3 doors to get to it. Our view was of the pool with the slide which turned out PERFECT since our 11 year old son and his friend wanted to stay there a lot! We could just watch them from our balcony. The air worked great in both rooms.
We only left the resort to deep sea fish and to meet friends for dinner....I didn't want to leave then! There are so many things to do and so much going on that you wont want to miss out on anything! If you go with children (or even without) take advantage of the family game times at the Tiki Bar. These were held every other day from 1-4. My son and his friend participated in so many fun games and won some cool prizes. The tropical waterslide was AWESOME!! I was skeptical of the Polynesian Dance and Fire Show and thought it'd be a few minutes of dancing then be over. Boy was I wrong!! It was top notch! The dancers and the show was wonderful and had fun with the audience.
The buffet at the Luau ($12 adults/$7 children) consisted of pulled pork, brisket, coleslaw, baked beans, potato salad and bread was really good and all you can eat! The onsite deli was a big hit with the boys since they had cheeseburgers and chicken fingers and it was reasonably priced. Drinks were a little expensive at the Tiki Bar--but there were tons of specials and HAPPY HOUR!!
The only complaint I had was that there were a lot of children at the TIki Bar during the night. It worked out OK since there weren't many 'really drunk' people and nobody got out of hand, but if the kids are going to be there during Karaoke--maybe they should have family friendly hour then move onto adult only time.
I'd have to say this was one of the best vacations ever!

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Thank McIntyre_fam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Sandpiper Beacon Beach Resort

Address: 17403 Front Beach Rd, Panama City Beach, FL 32413-6023
Region: United States > Florida > Florida Panhandle > Panama City Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Panama City Beach
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Panama City Beach
#9 Family Hotel in Panama City Beach
Price Range: ₹ 3,169 - ₹ 14,165 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 199
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Also known as the "FUN Place!" The Sandpiper Beacon Beach Resort & Tiki Bar offers year-round fun, activities, and entertainment for all ages. Located directly beachfront on Front Beach Road, the Sandpiper is a family-friendly resort-hotel with planned activities and entertainment, waterslides, multiple indoor/outdoor (seasonally heated) swimming pools, free WiFi, indoor lazy river ride, on-site Deli, Ice Cream Shop, Gift Shop, Restaurant, Arcade and more. Offering 24/7 resort services, including housekeeping, guest services, and maintenance. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Sandpiper Beacon Beach Hotel Panama City Beach
Sandpiper Beacon Beach Resort
Sandpiper Beacon Beach Panama City
Sandpiper Panama City Beach

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