by Hilarey Wojtowicz
The new West Bay Beach – A Holiday Inn Resort opened in November 2013 and offers families accommodations right on the shores of Grand Traverse Bay. With more than 170 rooms, including KidSuites, guestrooms designed for families with children, the Michigan resort allows families to enjoy both the city and the beach while on vacation. Choose to stay in a standard guestroom, an executive club room or a suite. All come with king or double bed options. Every room also comes with an in-room mini-fridge, as well as Internet and flat-screen, High-Def televisions.
Resort activities include beach sports, water sports, two pools, a game room and more. Dine at one of the two onsite restaurants, The Bistro, which serves breakfast and dinner, or Shimmer’s On The Bay, which serves lunch and dinner, or head downtown to one of the local restaurants, just minutes from the hotel. Enjoy free onsite parking, pet-friendly accommodations for just $15 per pet, per night and live entertainment daily.
Our Editor Loves
- KidSuites - guestrooms designed for children
- Pet-friendly accommodations
- In-room refrigerators
- Water Sports
- Free Breakfast
- Free Wi-Fi
- Game Room
- Onsite Dining
by Carol R
My daughter’s wedding and reception were just celebrated at West Bay Beach in Traverse City. Each staff member we interacted with was thorough, pleasant, and attentive. The servers and bartenders helped create a very relaxed, warm feel to the reception. Many guests complimented us about the friendly and helpful staff.
As an added bonus, the food was GOOD!
Absolutely everything was first rate.
I’ve stayed at this property for several years both solo, and with family. This hotel was a Holiday Inn property that is in transition after being purchased by a resort company. I feel they’ve definitely got some transitional issues to deal with.
I’m writing this review at 12:22 local time Sunday morning, after being kept awake with a DJ spinning tunes at a wedding reception directly beneath my newly renovated room. (Congrats to the new couple BTW). “Newly renovated rooms” need to include soundproofing. As it is, they are in violation of Traverse City noise ordinances. Wholly unacceptable. Save those blocks of rooms for the wedding parties. This will help alleviate the condition until soundproofing can be accomplished. Additionally, during the receptions, the entire west entrance of the hotel is “shut down”, and guests have to walk around the entire hotel in order to get in. You‘re welcome to put up any signs you want, but if you charge $400 a night for a hotel room, and then tell your guests they can’t use an entrance (which also happens to be an emergency/fire exit) because there are people using it that paid money for it, you’re gonna have some understandably upset guests. If there’s a safety reason I can’t use an entrance or exit, fine. If a wedding guest gets upset because there are hotel guests in the way at a wedding reception booked AT A HOTEL, well...
Breakfast dining and buffet situation is hideous and needs to be resolved. My colleague and I received breakfast coupons good towards breakfast ($15 dollar max value). The first few days of the stay drinks were included with the buffet, as they are at virtually every other buffet-graced hotel on the planet. Then halfway through the stay, we were notified that we were to be charged for any drinks “not on the buffet”, including coffee. I will write that again, in caps, because it needs the proper emphasis: IT WAS EXPLAINED TO US THAT COFFEE IS NOT INCLUDED ON THE BREAKFAST BUFFET! If you are in management at the West Bay, I challenge you to name another hotel that does this - anywhere in the known universe. I’m not talking lattes and cappuccino, this is brewed coffee. Wait staff needs to be increased and kitchen trained properly. There is an OUTSTANDING waiter at the restaurant named Giovanni, that should be promoted. He has a FANTASTIC grasp on customer service and relations, and the rest of the staff at the restaurant did as good a job as they could, but you could tell they had likely very little support from the management team.
Overall, I think the new hotel ownership has the chance to make some needed updates and improvements, but I also think that the owners need to recognize they are first and foremost operating a public hotel, not a private event center. Take good care of your guests (especially the ones without wedding invitations), and good things will happen.