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Wednesday, February 10, 2021

The Karol Hotel Gracefully Pays Tribute to its Namesake: Legendary "Miss Florida" and "Weather Girl", Karol Bullard

In 2021 Florida's Saint Pete Beach takes not only the title by TripAdvisor of number one beach in the United States, but is also rated fifth in the world. When you've been a integral part of the Tampa Bay and St. Petersburg culture for over 50 years, you've seen a lot of changes in your city but one thing is for sure: you know what your guests are looking for: service, comfort and experiences. We've stayed at many boutique hotels over the years, some of which have bore witness to absolutely amazing events, like the Southern Hotel in Covington, Louisiana, and The Karol Hotel is another that represents a completely different experience: Sunshine State Nostalgia. But don't be fooled by the salmon-hued velvet lobby furniture, the Karol represents true Florida nostalgia via its namesake.  It doesn't get any more Florida orange than Karol Bullard who, just to name a few, was the Florida Citrus Queen, Miss Florida, and Florida's first female meteorologist!

With its grand reopening in late 2019, only to be closed for several months due to Covid, the Karol Hotel began welcoming guests again in late 2020 to relax in a beautifully-appointed establishment, with personal service and attention to detail that makes for an unforgettable stay.  The Marriot Tribute Portfolio hotel does not spare on the comforts and luxury, with a signature bar & bistro as well as a rooftop bar and a ballroom, in addition to the 123 guest rooms. Hotels in this collection are each boutique-style with their own palette and personality, but closely integrated into their communities and meant to help people connect.

This was an exciting trip for LTD! Not only did we participate in the Tampa Bay Frogman Swim, but we could immerse ourselves in part of Florida's history during our stay at the Karol Hotel. This was one of several ventures away following the COVID-19 pandemic that caused a worldwide shutdown of most travel and our experience was all we hoped for!

1. Location

The Karol Hotel is adjacent to a hidden gem in St. Petersburg, Feather Sound, another community achievement of the Bullard Family.  Feather Sound is safe, quiet and isolated but yet located near both the St. Pete and Tampa airports, restaurants, downtown St. Pete and beaches.  Access to all of these locations is simple via nearby interstate 275. That is the beauty of it. For any visit to the Tampa/St. Pete area, it's hard to find a more centralized location to explore all of it. 

Spotlight on St. Petersburg, The Sunshine City and Experience a Hidden Florida Gem

2. Check-in

We were greeted promptly and checked in without difficulty from very accommodating employees wearing masks appropriately. The entire staff is eager to engage you and tell you about the hotel's namesake, Karol Bullard.  They are proud of the hotel and it shows in their enthusiasm. Since it is a Marriott-affiliated property, we were greeted and treated appropriately for our Marriott status. The staff oriented us to the hotel and the surrounding area. Once we were informed about COVID policies, we elected to receive daily room cleaning and received this without any problems whatsoever. A nice touch was that we could request the time of housekeeping service and generally it was performed exactly as we asked during our stay (see below).