Depends on what you're used to... A review of Ocean Landings Resort
Went to FL for Disney and then a beach break. Initial reservations in Cocoa Beach were for Holiday Inn but the reviews scarred me. Ended up choosing Ocean Landings. Hard to find pics of the "resort" because they'd probably scare you off if you're a 4 or 5 star resort person. Pulled up to the front entrance and saw the 1 story rooms behind it with the air conditioners sticking out of the windows so we drove around back and parked to take a walk. The one story buildings appear very old and run down. I really hate to say it, because it's not, but the single story units really looked to us like a roach motel. There are 2 five story buildings way in the back. We walked to check out the beach. Those 5 story buildings are not attractive either but I read that they were all renovated in 2000. Also spoke with a guest who said they they're nice.
Didn't want to spend any more time looking for another place to stay so we checked in. Room was great!! - ocean view, clean, nicely furnished, comfortable bed couch, full kitchen, kitchen table, nice bar stools etc. Paid $135 - secured that rate over the phone from Disney directly with OL. Walked down to the beach for some afternoon sun/swimming and enjoyed the time with my wife and 3 kids.
If you want 5 star - the rooms in the 5 story buildings are nice. (Not 5 star, but clean and spacious.) But the "resort" appearance is closer to a 2 star. So if you can get past the low-income ambiance, you can have a nice time.
On the ambiance - to be fair, if you're not used to "spring-break alley" along the coast, most of it is pretty old and beat up anyway.
Ocean Landings probably used to be classifiable as a resort. I'd hesitate to call it that now because it's definitely not what I'm used to. It's more like a bunch of condos with 2 small swimming pools, a large patio area with grills (which looked great if we were staying longer). and a racquet-ball court.
Couldn't find my room key at check out time so they charged me $15. Went down the road to get gas and found it. Came back within 10 minutes and couldn't get a refund. That was unprofessional -- period.
I travel a lot and have not checked out at the front desk in years. They did not tell me this at check in time - but if you're not at the front desk to check out at 11:00 a.m. they charge you an additional 1/2 day. They gave me a "break" and only charged me $25. Even though the cleaning people had come in while I was leaving and said they'd have no trouble cleaning since it was obvious that everything was out of the room. I went back to hang at the beach with my family and returned the key around 1:00. (They sent the chair police guy after me.) Read on...
They charge you $6 per 2 hours for 2 items. So if you get 2 chairs for 4 hours its $12. (Extra if you want a beach umbrella - that's 3 items.) We found this out in an interesting way. Went to the beach and nestled in to 2 hard plastic not-so-comfortable-but-better-than-the-sand chairs. They were sitting down by the beach, empty. So gee wiz, we sat in them and got as comfortable as possible. The chair patrol let us sit in them for about 45 min to 1 hr then came up and wanted to take them unless we paid. Another felling of being a tourist and being taken advantage of. Kind of like a sneaky care sales trick called "the puppy dog close" where they have you take the car home for a couple of days to let the family try it out. We had him charge it to our room.
Their beachfront is nice - but then as you get out on the beach you can see hotels/resorts lined up in either direction for miles. So it's definitely not a rare commodity. If you're not familiar with Cocoa, it can be difficult to zero in on the internet but there are a zillion places to stay along North Atlantic Ave. Most are older properties but there are some very nice looking places to stay.
So my $135 room became $135 + beach chair fees + nonrefundable lost key fee + late check out fee for a lot more than $135 - plus tax, came over $200. Really felt like highway robbery / take advantage of the tourists stuff. Not a nice way to end a vacation but that's life right?
The natives told me that Ron Jon has a hot new resort in Cocoa Beach and it's the place to stay right now.
Had dinner at Bernard Surf, which is not too far from Ocean Landings. Awesome Sea Bass dinner for me. It's a more expensive restaurant, but we all loved our meals and felt it was appropriately priced.
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