We were completely unfamiliar with the accommodations at and in the vicinity of The Breakers Resort where the wedding was to be held in the central part of Myrtle Beach. After a lot of agonizing and deliberation and seeking input from folk familiar with what was available, we reserved a two bedroom / two bath suite at the Anderson Ocean Club and Spa which was represented to us as being upscale and indeed the hotel uses the term "luxurious" to characterize itself.
Upon arrival our first impression was not a good one. There was a general traffic jam in the drive through and parking area for unloading on the ground level beneath the rear of the building. Vehicles were backed up on Ocean Boulevard in both directions waiting to enter and with some drivers blowing their horns while aggressively trying to edge (force?) their way in alongside the queue which just heightened the problem. We later learned the occupancy wasn't very high which made us wonder what the heck does the hotel do in prime season - put a traffic director out in the street? For some of those rude drivers it probably would require an armed enforcer to make them behave responsibly. We'll leave it to your imagination what geographic area of the U.S. their license plates consistently identified.
The lobby was packed with people wanting to check in when their computer system crashed (were we having fun yet?). Unbelievably, the front desk supervisor was asking the crowd to go elsewhere and maybe come back in an hour or so when things probably would be much better. Basically no one budged. After about 15 minutes the system started to function again. We found it both hard to believe and annoying that it was thought a computer system problem was an acceptable excuse that should placate the hotel's customers. Our feelings on the matter are system reliability, including immediately available backup resources, is an essential ingredient of a well-run business operation. Saying "Sorry, our computer system isn't working" isn't good enough.
We next discovered the hotel's parking deck, which we erroneously assumed to be close by, was in fact a block away on Withers Street. There was no shelter from the elements when walking to and from the deck. We will say the deck itself was notably better than what we recently experienced at the Avista in Ocean Drive, but that's not necessarily a commendation. It definitely is not in the same league as the nice and much appreciated facility we enjoy at the Hilton and Royale Palms in Kingston Plantation.
Although it's of no real consequence we'll note that both the hotel and parking deck are painted in hues of an unusual, dark mustard color. Certainly makes them easy to spot when approaching.
We found our suite to be tastefully decorated and furnished with decent quality furniture and fixtures.
The kitchen area had attractive stone counter tops, decent wood cabinets, microwave, stove and range, dishwasher, large refrigerator, and coffee maker. A nearby closet housed a washer and dryer. There were no walk-in closets, but there was a fair amount of space in the ones in the bedrooms and in the entrance hall. However, it's questionable if they would have been adequate for two well-attired couples staying a week in the suite. The principal bedroom was a little on the small side, but acceptable. The bed was surprisingly comfortable other than the too firm pillows with no "give" which kept one’s head up at an uncomfortable angle. In the sitting area and the two bedrooms were mid-size flat screen TV’s which provided mostly decent pictures – they were not high-end models. The Anderson definitely gets good marks for the free Ethernet connection to the internet. It was no hassle whatsoever getting the connection to work properly, but after being accustomed to RoadRunner’s highest speed access at home this one seemed to crawl, though most definitely it was orders of magnitude faster than dial-up. The bathrooms were an OK size with stone countertops and full counter-width mirrors. BUT, trying to effectively use the mirrors was impossible. The lighting was woefully inadequate. There was a single small fixture above the center of the mirror with three tightly clustered 40 watt bulbs and there was a recessed ceiling light over the tub/shower. Oh yes, the walls were a dark brown color. It was very dark in those bathrooms. The towels and wash cloths were better than normal and there was always a good supply. Here’s a hint – take your own toilet paper unless you’re accustomed to and are happy with the super thin industrial variety. It was the same awful brand we found being used at the Avista.
The whole suite was clean except for a bad red stain on the brown sculptured carpet beside the dining table. That was pretty bad.
The wraparound balcony was unusually nice and afforded some good views from our 16th floor location.
The elevators were a good size and always worked extremely well.
This hotel bills itself as non-smoking which you may find an attraction. However, for those that do like to partake, be advised this place borders on being fanatical about the matter. There’s no smoking allowed on the balconies and any smoking detected will result in a $150 charge being added to your account. There’s also no smoking in the bar which is physically isolated from the rest of the building.
The adjoining beach looked very attractive and there were cabana type lounge chairs available.
There are no newspapers available on the property. It’s necessary to patronize the vending boxes at the next door Best Western.
There is a restaurant, Magnolia's at 26th, affiliated with the hotel and it is located across Ocean Boulevard. We'll comment on it in the section of this report dealing with dining.
The greatest challenge was deciding upon an arrangement for Sandra that could return home with her. Even when the flowers were being ordered days beforehand it was strongly suspected, and subsequently proved to be correct, that they would have to ride in the floor of the passenger side of the Z4. But Anne at Flowers On The Coast rose to the challenge and created a beautiful small arrangement that couldn't have been more perfect. They were waiting in the suite when we arrived, and were much admired and appreciated. Ed specifically requested the use of very bright flowers and the card which accompanied them read: "Bright flowers for Sandra who always brightens my days. Love, Ed".