2506 N Ocean Boulevard
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
we visited here May 2011
The Best Western Plus Carolinian Beach Resort in Myrtle Beach raises expectations for Best Western hotel experiences. If you read my article on what you need to know about Best Western hotels, you'll discover that The Carolinian Beach Resort rises above the norm:
Amazing view: The view is spectacular. The south corner rooms (room numbers ending in "33") have two-wall panoramic windows. The front "wall" is a sliding door to the front balcony overlooking the ocean. The side "wall" provides a view down the beach and, with our room high up on the 17th floor, across a wide span of forested Myrtle Beach. At night the new Skywheel, with its ever changing kaleidoscope of colors, can be seen several blocks down the beach. These units even have a second balcony that is accessible to both bedrooms of a two-bedroom unit. I would purposely schedule my visit to Myrtle Beach to coincide with availability of one of these "33" numbered units and their panoramic views.
Breakfast: In place of the tiny room used for a light breakfast at some other Best Western hotels, guests here are given two passes (and discount coupons for other guests) to Magnolia's, a southern cooking buffet restaurant that is a short walk across the street from the sister property next door. There you'll be able to fill your plates with fruit, biscuits and gravy, grits, oatmeal, two varieties of real scrambled eggs, meats, and a variety of other breakfast foods. And yes, they still have Belgian waffle makers.
Miniature Golf and other amenities: Your family can play all the miniature golf they want at no cost between 1:00pm and 7:00pm at Lost Mine Miniature Golf across the street from the hotel. During prime season guests enjoy free entrance and transportation to Wild Water and Wheels Theme Park. The Carolinian also provides you with access to amenities at their sister hotels as well as discounts to a large list of activities and restaurants in the area.
Very friendly staff: I've always been impressed with the friendly attitudes of the staff at Best Western hotels. That is highly exemplified here. All of the staff at The Carolinian, including the cleaning and maintenance staff, went out of their way to be friendly and helpful. The first person we met when checking in, Shelline Ayres, has a beautiful smile and took the trouble over and above checking us in to let us know about special things we may have been interested in. Richard Graham, the evening manager, and the front desk person on that shift, Maria Garcia, were particularly helpful and personable whenever we needed anything during their shift, as was Beka Seals later. It's always risky to mention people by name since someone deserving is invariably left out, but I was pleased with the assistance and helpful information provided by Michelle Cantey at the Oceana Resorts corporate offices.
This article is intended to be a straightforward account of my personal experience as opposed to marketing literature. Visit their website for other information, but it is worth summarizing here that this hotel offers:
- One-, Two- and Three- Bedroom Suites
- Oceanfront Location
- Complimentary High-Speed Internet Access
- Fitness Room
- Business Center
- Game Room
- Free Local Calls
- Cable TV with FREE HBO
- Children Under 18 Stay Free with Parents
- Oceanfront Heated Pool
- Lazy River and Kiddie Pool
- Hot Tub
- Steps from the Beach
Our Unit (#1733) was (is) a two-bedroom suite, each with two double beds. Other bed size/number combinations (and number of bedrooms) are available in other units. Both bedrooms have doors to an additional balcony on that side of the building—a very nice amenity. The beds are comfortable including good quality pillows. The pillows at the hotel we had just come from were thin and lumpy, so it was a relief to get a good night's sleep again.
The master bath has a huge bathtub (whirlpool sized, albeit, not a whirlpool tub, and a big relief over the water coffins so many hotels provide), but what really impressed me was the water pressure. I've not enjoyed that refreshingly high water pressure at a hotel in a long time. And some information I doubt you'll get from any other review: for reasons I don't understand, Best Western Plus hotels go to extreme lengths to ensure that the roll of toilet paper is behind you on your left side, right up close to you. You have to be a contortionist to get to it. By nature of the room layout in this bathroom, the left side wall angles away from you, so the TP is in easy reach. Sometimes you just have to appreciate certain kinds of relief.
The kitchen is a comfortable working size and comes with most of what you need. However, hotel kitchenettes are not stocked like a beach rental cottage.
A full size stacked washer and dryer comes in the unit—a very welcome amenity at the beach.
The living area has a dining table that seats six, a couch, coffee table, and a large flat screen TV (no DVD player) with clear cable reception (I mention clear because the previous hotel had satellite service and many of the channels were grainy). My wife discovered an information book on the coffee table that impressed her enough to talk about—it contains a wealth of information that is attractively presented.
Did I mention the incredible view? I am most excited about the windows and the beautiful vista that is always there for you. Open the balcony door and get the restful ocean wave ambiance (ok, plus the periodic Harley rumbling down the street) to go with the two-wall view of the ocean, beach, and local environs. The view of the beach and waves—ocean front—is one of the main things I love about being at the beach. I am frankly astonished that only a tiny few hotels offer such corner room views. The big windows here are not tinted but there are sheer curtains to break the sun when you wish. Our "wide screen high def" window view gave us front row seats to a spectacular wee hours electrical storm show. We also love those at the beach.
Parking: Covered parking is provided in an access-controlled multi-level parking deck...two streets back. That appeared to be a common practice for Myrtle Beach hotels, reserving the beach front area for more living space. It wasn't a problem for us because we did not leave the hotel much, and valet parking is available.
Minor imperfections: Since we go a Carolina beach at least once a year, I am aware of the wear that comes to beach properties from the weather, the salt spray, and tracked-in sand in addition to normal wear and tear. Yet I was pleasantly surprised at how little of that was in evidence here. The biggest things I noticed in our unit were a carpet that was worn in places and an accordion closet door that had been pulled down so that it was a bit difficult to close. Otherwise our unit was very well maintained and even had better and more comfortable furniture than the Seaside that we stayed at in North Myrtle Beach. This hotel was the second one in the area in which we entered our unit to a high intensity cleaning fragrance. Maybe that is the common practice in this area. Unfortunately, some strong chemical and floral scents can be debilitating for a surprisingly large number of people. Fortunately the fragrance went away in just a few minutes with the balcony doors open. Also fortunately, the elevator smells were normal. At our last place the fragrance in the elevator was also killer strong and didn't go away. And there's no avoiding the elevator when your room is on the upper floors. So we were relieved that this was not a problem here. In fact, it was another pleasure to have elevators with a window to the outside.
Fall in Myrtle Beach
I love the off-season at Carolina beaches. The crowds are light, prices are lower, and the weather is still great. We thoroughly enjoyed North Myrtle Beach last spring. Now we know that fall is a perfect time to come to Myrtle Beach.
Oceana Resorts has a variety of hotel and condo properties in the area. I look forward to discovering more low friction high enjoyment places to stay at Myrtle Beach.