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August 11, 2010
October 29, 2005
This is by far the best hotel in the whole Tampa Bay region. The service is outstanding, the facility is gorgeous, and the rooms are luxurious. Their two pools are outstanding, and the location is great -- very close to the airport, and yet you never hear airport noise.
Their restaurants are GREAT. A few details about the hotel to tell you why I thought this was such a wonderful place to stay. I was waiting for a friend to meet me at the hotel, so I went down to the lobby. It's such a beautiful, grand lobby, with many places to just sit back and watch people go by. I noticed they had a bowl of mints and took a few. They were incredible - very high quality mints, better than any I've tasted before. It seems a little silly, but the mints are a symbol of the quality of the Grand Hyatt - even down to the finest detail, they care about quality. As I enjoyed my mint and waited for my friend, I saw they had free coffee available (Godiva no less). However, all they had was caffeinated, which I can't drink. One of the hotel employees saw me by the coffee and asked if he could serve me. I told him, "No thanks, I need decaf coffee." So he went into the restaurant and got me a cup of decaf - I was so delighted and shocked, for this type of initiative and goodwill is almost nonexistent in the "service" industries these days.
My favorite part of my stay was visiting the secret little nature preserve on their property. I say "secret" because it feels like a secret (even though it's not) - it's so quiet and undisturbed, you really feel as though you're out there with nature. Since the hotel is right on the bay, you can take a boardwalk back among the mangroves, out to a gazebo on the water. I sat there with my niece for a long time -- we watched the dolphins play in the water right in front of us.
From journal Fantastic Getaway to Tampa/Clearwater/St. Pete