reviews for: listing #57894 - Santa Rosa Beach, Florida House rental

Closest OFV House to the Beach!!
  • bedrooms  3
  • pool  yes
  • type  House
  • baths  3
  • hot tub  no
  • community  Old Florida Village
  • sleeps  9
  • pets allowed  no
  • rates (USD) $150 - $250 /nt
    $900 - $1,700 /wk

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Guest Comment entered by owner


Review submitted: July 28, 2014   Date of arrival: July 19, 2014

Thanks for letting us stay at your house! It was great to be so close to the beach!

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Great time

Review submitted: July 28, 2014   Date of arrival: July 12, 2014

We had a great time at your home, Alma by the Sea. we love santa Rosa Beach.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Love your house

Review submitted: July 28, 2014   Date of arrival: June 13, 2014

We love your house and already are having the best vacation ever!

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Really enjoyed

Review submitted: July 28, 2014   Date of arrival: June 7, 2014

Really enjoyed our stay in Santa Rosa Beach.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Adorable beach home

Review submitted: July 28, 2014   Date of arrival: May 17, 2014

Thank you for letting us stay in your adorable beach home. We had a wonderful time.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Wonderful vacation

Review submitted: July 28, 2014   Date of arrival: April 17, 2014

We’ve enjoyed the location and convenience of your rental property. We’ve had a wonderful vacation here.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Enjoyed our time

Review submitted: July 28, 2014   Date of arrival: April 5, 2014

We really enjoyed our time at your house in Santa Rosa. Beach access was perfect and the house was exactly what we needed.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Great stay

Review submitted: July 28, 2014   Date of arrival: March 30, 2014

Thanks for a great stay at the Alma at the Sea house.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

We enjoyed our stay!

Review submitted: July 28, 2014   Date of arrival: December 29, 2013

Just wanted to send you a quick note to say thank you for accommodating us on short notice. We enjoyed our stay!

Helpful votes: 0 / 0


BEWARE!!!!! Owner is not truthful!

Review submitted: July 26, 2014   Date of arrival: July 5, 2014

Please find another location! You will not get what you are paying for. The pictures that are on the website are false and not what you will find upon arrival. I had to call numerous times to get the information to get into the house before arrival. She wouldn't answer emails or return phone calls. The day before we left she finally emailed the information. The house was extremely dirty. Like the other guests have reported... carpets are filthy, holes are in the walls, walls very scuffed and nasty, dried bloody stuff smeared on the living room walls, sand everywhere on the furniture, and bathrooms moldy. The owner will make you think it's your fault and doesn't want to return your cleaning fee. She will blame it on time and the fact that it stays rented. I didn't pay to stay in filth but I sure did with this winner. I took pictures before and after for proof. The furniture is uncomfortable and not appropriate for 7 people to sit in the living room at one time. Dishes are sparse and there is not a grill either. The walk to the beach is difficult for children. You have to cross a busy road and walk about 10 minutes to a public beach access. This owner doesn't deserve your business - look elsewhere and find something at least clean. Plus... deal with someone who has integrity, honest, and is in the area of customer service.

Owners response: I apologized profusely for the housekeeping issues encountered by these guests on arrival and tracked down the cause (a group that came to look at the house without being respectful of the fact that guests were arriving, and which was dealt with). As for the broad issues, the two sets of guests since this group had a wonderful time and loved the house, perhaps because they actually looked at the pictures, description and map on my listing, which clearly show the furniture, no grill and location of my house. As for specific complaints, I, my housekeeper and my mom did everything we could to resolve what these guests raised during their stay, including having the carpets steam cleaned on the spot (no easy or cheap feat). At the end of their stay, I had every intention of crediting the cleaning fee, until I learned that these guests had broken the law in my home and peed all over my bathrooms, in retaliation I suppose. So, no, I did not find it appropriate at that point to issue a refund.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0


Buyer Beware!

Review submitted: July 8, 2014   Date of arrival: June 28, 2014

Let me start by saying we were not happy with how dirty and I mean dirty the carpet was in this house. The bathrooms needed more cleaning and the shower curtain in the master bath had pink mold growing at the bottom of the curtain. The kitchen lack so many things. Not enough pots to cook in and the frying pans were all losing there non stick finish which is not healthy to cook in. There were no pot holders and no kitchen towels except for one. There was only 4 tall glasses to drink from the rest were juice glasses. There were not enough spoons for 8 people as well as cooking utensils were mostly spatulas. The decor is great if the house was in Alaska - pictures everywhere of penguins and such. On top of the fact they were hung to high or low throughout the house. The owner is a photographer and should know better how to hang pictures. The beach walk is not a straight walk out the door as made to believe - more like 10 minutes on a busy street. There was no grill also. The furniture in the living room is very uncomfortable and not suited to 8 people in the house since there is only one TV to watch in the whole house. I am very familiar to what is needed in a beach home which is being rented since my husband and I had one in Destin on a rental program for 17 years. The decor needs to remind renters they are at the beach not the North pole. The towels are colors and need to be white since they have white stains on them and can't be bleached if necessary. this owner needs a good dose of what good rental companies require before renting. By the way, my sister and her husband also run a large rental company in Destin so I know what is needed to provide a good experience for renters. I am a professional stager and organizer and I work with hoarders so I know pink mold when I see it. My recommendation is that this owner shut this house down and redo it for renters. Get rid of all the carpet and replace with wood or tile. Take down all of the pictures and replace with beach scenes and hang at the right height. I could go on and on but I think you get the picture. There are a lot of dirty people in this world since I know first hand from working with them and those people will probably be right at home with this house. I will not be renting from the HomeAway group again since I believe they don't really vet the properties as they should.

Owners response: Antarctica. There are no penguins in Alaska or the north pole; the pictures are from Antarctica. And yes, the house is decorated with pictures of my travels around the world because I dislike walking into a staged house full of beach scenes...when I'm already at the beach. If you are the kind of guest who visits a property, says nothing, then leaves a nasty review, and wants it to look like a hotel instead of someone's home, then HomeAway is indeed not the site for you. The furniture (which I love) and the walk are exactly as depicted in the many pictures and map on my listing. Since this review was the first I heard from this guest, we weren't given the opportunity to correct the correctable issues (versus matters of preference, with which I admittedly disagree, although I would never write a nasty review based on someone staging their home not to my personal liking). Unlike these guests, the following guest called me about the carpets upon arrival and, by Monday at 8am, my best housekeeper was there steam cleaning them. Unfortunately, it's not always possible to keep up with the state of white carpets in the middle of back-to-back rentals. That's no different from hard floors or dark carpets in any property, it's just more noticeable. To the extent other issues are true and addressable, we are addressing them as well, just as we would have if this guest had let us know during their stay that something was bothering them. Sometimes, I've found, people just want to be unhappy...if that's you, please pay to stay at the Four Seasons and I will be happy to host the dozens of guests who stay each year and love my home in your place.

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Good vacation

Review submitted: December 22, 2013   Date of arrival: August 30, 2013

Thank you for letting us use your house for our trip, we had a really good vacation at the beach! - Tara (Birmingham)

Helpful votes: 1 / 2

Guest Comment entered by owner

Lovely beach home

Review submitted: December 22, 2013   Date of arrival: May 22, 2013

We are very much enjoying your lovely beach home. - Angie (Atlanta)

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Great week!

Review submitted: December 22, 2013   Date of arrival: April 27, 2013

Thank you for opening up your home to us. We had a great week (minus a little bad weather)! You were so accommodating, and the house met all of our needs. We are hoping to make Alma at the Sea an annual trip! Thank you again. - Lauren (Atlanta)

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Incredible time

Review submitted: December 22, 2013   Date of arrival: March 23, 2013

Thanks again for renting your home to my group. We had an incredible time and your place is beautiful. - Andrew (Houston)

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Great stay

Review submitted: December 22, 2013   Date of arrival: March 10, 2013

Great stay and place was perfect for our family. Thanks again, we will be coming back! - Deann (Dallas)

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Worked out great

Review submitted: December 22, 2013   Date of arrival: April 16, 2011

The house work great for out family and my inlaws. The three bedrooms worked great and provided plenty of space everyone including our three teenage daughters. The neighborhood was very nice and the pools were within easy walking distance. We mostly walked to the beach but there was always parking if we need to haul beach equipment. - David (Missouri)

Helpful votes: 0 / 0

Guest Comment entered by owner

Wonderful time!

Review submitted: December 22, 2013   Date of arrival: March 26, 2011

We had a wonderful time! The house was perfect for our large group (9). It was also casual and child friendly - we had 5 children from age 1-13. They had a great time in the bunk room - like a long slumber party! We loved the cute neighborhood and 2 pools. The weather was wonderful and we loved the location...short walk to the beach and short drive to Seaside. Cute St. Patrick's day parade! - Katherine (Birmingham)

Helpful votes: 0 / 1


Dissapointing owner

Review submitted: July 17, 2013   Date of arrival: March 30, 2013

House was dirty upon arrival, trash over flowing, each bathroom had only 1 bath towel not enough when owner was told there would be 8 people. Bunk beds in kids room were unsafe so kids had to make beds on the floor, the bed in the downstairs master bedroom also broke keeping us up past 2AM, as we noticed that it was already rigged with towels holding it up which owner said held for over a year...dresser was unusable in master bedroom as well. Shower curtain and curtains in kids room were very cheap and not installed properly with rods bent. We contacted owner per directions on contract immediately following each problem. When owner finally responded to our complaints we were told it was a holiday and she'd have to pay extra to send somebody so we had to borrow bath towels from friends staying down the street, husbands went to the store and used tools they had to tighten beds etc. On a vacation you don't expect to have to work or have kids sleep on the floor. When she did send a housekeeper or maintenance person we weren't there and they entered. After departing we were told we wouldn't get our deposit back due to a broken window in the master bedroom, which we didn't notice because you couldn't get to that window with how the bed is set up we suggested it be possible the person who tried to fix the bed could've broke it as we went no where near the window. We contacted owner regarding every issue we wouldn't ignore a broken window and if we broke it we would admit to that as well. Owner stated she would contact us with a price of the window being fixed to see if any deposit could be refunded, however we never heard back from her nor would she respond to calls or emails. Reading other reviews it seems to be how she gets items fixed up is by keeping deposits. Very unprofessional owner to deal with and if you stay you can bet she will find a reason to keep your deposit!

Owners response: Out of dozens of guests who stayed at my home this year, you will see that this was only one of two who left a negative review (understandably, it's harder to get people to take the time to leave positive reviews...which is why I've added some privately e-mailed comments I've received to the site). This was also only one of two who had their deposit withheld...because they each caused significant damage. In this case, the guests broke a window in the downstairs bedroom. I tried to get a quote for fixing it as quickly as possible, but sometimes vendors can be a bit slow in the area on non-emergencys due to the amount of work, especially during high season. Before I was able to get back to her, the guest posted this review. To the extent this guest raised issues during her stay, they were promptly addressed. My housekeeper was out of town for Easter, so I found someone else who was able to come by to look at the issues that had been raised, including fixing one dresser drawer that had come off the tracks (the rest of the dresser was perfectly usable, as were the beds). And I gave the guests the code to the master owners' closet so they could help themselves to as many extra towels as they needed (which they did). As always, I did everything in my power to make sure that this guest had a wonderful stay. I only charge a guest's deposit very reluctantly and most often waive any minor issues. But in this case, there was significant damage that had to be repaired. Had these guests been otherwise respectful and waited until I received a response on the repairs, we probably could have worked out a middle ground.

Helpful votes: 23 / 23


Disappointing Owner

Review submitted: June 24, 2013   Date of arrival: May 29, 2013

I had quite a few issues with the cleanliness of the house, but was not going to out the owner on the internet, but rather send a private email making some suggestions, until I received an email from the owner, 15 days AFTER we left the property, saying that we had broken a vanity mirror, and she was trying to get a replacement cost to bill us!! What? The house had been rented the entire time after we left, we DID NOT break her mirror, and to let me know only 15 days after we left is ridiculous. So I told her I was not paying for the mirror. She said I was rude to her housekeeper upon arrival, which is untrue as well. All I asked her was when the 2 heaping trash cans, that were sitting in the driveway from the previous renter, were going to be picked up. She said she did not know, and I was not very happy at this news.She also accused me of leaving a 26c tip for her housekeeper, with a note saying "for housekeeping". This is also untrue. At this point I was sure she had the wrong renter, as it had already been 2 weeks. We checked out 30 minutes late, as I was trying to make sure that I followed all the departure procedures, stripping beds, starting laundry, running dishwasher, turning everything of etc. She also accused me of not following departure procedures????? When she realized that she was not going to win the mirror story, she then said she was going to charge me a full nights' stay for my late check-out! Really?? My cc company would not dispute the charge for me, as I had authorized the initial deposit, so I am out one nights stay for 30 minutes.... Now for the house. The white carpets were black with filth, the tiles so dirty that you had to wear shoes so as not to end up with black feet. The windows were dirty, the windowsills filthy, the doors to the patios were so hard to open. The dishwasher door inside was so dirty I had to wash it before use. The paint above the shower in one master bathroom was peeling, and there was mold. The walls around the house were marked and dirty. The house smelled badly of fish for 3 days, causing us to have to go buy air freshener. There was no soap in the bath/shower, which there has been in every other house I have ever rented.The one outside trash can had no lid, but the rental contract specifically said to keep lids on trash cans. The furniture and appliances are not new, except for the washer/dryer. I felt very disrespected by this owner, and accused of things that I had not done. Beware....

Owners response: This was the second of two guests, out of dozens that stayed this year, that broke something. And, accordingly, the second that wrote a negative review once I would not refund their order to replace the broken mirror. My housekeeper sent me pictures upon their departure and I immediately tried to get competitive quotes for fixing it in order to refund as much of the deposit as possible. After spending hours on the phone going back and forth with them, and them refusing to wait until the quotes came in for us to discuss settling the deposit, I finally just charged them for their late checkout, which is clearly stated in the contract, but I've waived as a courtesy for every other guest with whom it's been an issue (because they generally have otherwise been respectful of my home and my representatives). These same guests left a 26 cent tip for my housekeeper (of which I have proof, despite the denials in the review) and steamrolled over her upon arrival, after I expressly told them they were welcome to leave their stuff, but to please be mindful that my housekeeper would still be working as this was a one day turnaround. During their stay, they consistently raised issues that turned out not to be issues (for example, sending an e-mail that the trash had not been picked up, when it turned out that the waste management truck simply had not gotten to my house yet). And then they checked out late, forcing my housekeeper to wait for them before she could get in to clean and have the house ready for the guests checking in later that day. This was all especially unfortunate because I had given these guests a generous last minute discount, so in all, they still came out ahead. Meanwhile, I've had to pay for the broken mirror on top of absorbing the consequences of an untruthful review. As for the house itself, we deep clean it four times a year, including carpet steaming as needed, and thoroughly clean between guests. If guests encounter any issues during their stay, I'm always happy to ask my housekeeper to come by to address them. I promptly responded to every question from this renter during their stay and they never once raised any of the concerns outlined below, which appeared out of nowhere only for this review. I travel a lot and so I understand and do the best I can to maintain a home that is clean and inviting. To the extent I receive constructive feedback, it's always addressed. Happy to answer specific additional questions.

Helpful votes: 32 / 32


A stunning gateway!!

Review submitted: May 20, 2013   Date of arrival: May 19, 2013

Myself and a friend arrived here and were blown way, by the space and the ammenities that we recieved for our bucks!
The house is beautifully decorated, we esp loved the photographic art work that was taken by the owner of her own travels ( which had now given some more adventure ideas.). Lovely big tv and entertaining area was great when we had some other friends who were staying near by over.
One of the other reviews mentioned the beach being too far away! The beach is a lovely 5 minute walk away and if that is too far for the unfit among us, there is a pool a minute walk in the other direction. Not to mention another pool 3 minutes up from the first pool.
We will definately be back again, esp as the owner was so helpful and gave us some great tips regarding what to do and where to eat.

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, people with disabilities, families with teenagers, girls getaway, sight seeing, tourists without a car, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 0 / 7


Family Wedding

Review submitted: April 17, 2013   Date of arrival: April 11, 2013

We stayed at this lovely, spacious, clean beach house to attend my cousin's wedding in Seagrove which was a short drive away. In the mornings we walked/jogged to the Gulf Place coffee shop which is only a few blocks away (since we couldn't get the coffee pot to work) for coffee/breakfast. The community was very quiet and peaceful. We layed out by the pool one day and met some very nice people from Canada. On our last night we ate at the restaurant, Goatfeathers across 30A. The service was a bit slow for it not being very crowded, but the food was good. The owner was very accommodating with our rental terms especially since it was SPRING BREAK week. Most places required a 7 night minimum stay, but the owner worked with us and our schedule which was most appreciated. I would recommend this vacation home to families with children since the third bedroom upstairs has two sets of bunk beds (sleeps 5) and it's own bathroom.

Recommended for: families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway

Helpful votes: 1 / 5


Truth in Advertising

Review submitted: October 29, 2012   Date of arrival: October 5, 2012

We (six of us, average age 65) rented this house in early October 2012. The steps from the beach measured 4/10 of a mile by my car odometer. There were no gulf views from the highest point of the house, so I believe the description of location to be very misleading. Spacious description for bedrooms is a bit of a stretch. My wife and I stayed in the downstairs bedroom with kingsize bed that had to be up against front wall to allow door to open, a large chair, chest of drawers (one of the drawers front pulled off), small table and closet, all of which made walking about the room very tight. Large for kitchen also a bit of a stretch, unless you are used to efficiency apartment. My wife and I arrived early and cleaning lady was not done. We left to do some shopping and returned to find more dirt/dust than one would expect. The couple staying in the room with bunk beds moved a matress to the floor because of discomfort on the bed. We did not expect the Ritz, but were disappointed with location relative to beach, general condition, and furnishings. I have never written a negative review on any place I've stayed before, but felt the listing was inaccurate enough that I felt compelled to advise other potential renters what to expect.

Owners response: Everything about my home is as described on my listing, which includes many pictures (so you can judge for yourselves whether it is spacious certainly is for me) and a map showing exactly where the house is in proportion to the beach. In addition, I always answer specific questions raised by guests such as "how far is the walk to the beach" before they book. This guest did not ask a single question before booking. The guest also did not raise a single issue during his stay, which made this review a shock - all the moreso because I did not charge his group for a very late departure, even though this was on top of them being extremely rude to my housekeeper when they arrived before the agreed upon check in time. As for the downstairs bedroom, it's no secret that I have a kingsize bed in that room, which many guests appreciate. If you prefer a queen size bed with more floor space, there are plenty of properties that provide that. And upstairs, I guess it's a matter of preference because I personally love the mattresses in the bunk room (and sometimes choose to stay in that room because they're so comfortable), which are the highest quality mattresses that were available. I value such things after many years of traveling and staying on uncomfortable beds myself. I guess the best reflection of this guest would be his own words...after I sent him an e-mail addressing and expressing disappointment at not being notified of these issues prior to the review, the reviewer's brother-in-law sent a response, to which the reviewer sent a "reply all" (clearly not intended for me) stating, "you are one mean dude! WELL DONE!" Someone like that is going to leave a negative review no matter how hard I try and I would ask that if that's you, please don't book with me. I like to create a positive environment for positive people.

Helpful votes: 31 / 35


Great location

Review submitted: August 30, 2012   Date of arrival: August 19, 2012

We really enjoyed our stay here! Great house for a medium to small sized family. The neighborhood was very family friendly and having a pool in walking distance was a plus. The bed in the master bedroom was extremely comfortable. It was a terrific location being close to the beach, Publix, and lots non-chain restaurants. We'd recommend Stinky's for lunch or dinner. Also, there were tons of outlet stores about 15 minutes away, we enjoyed this on a rainy day. This was our first visit to Santa Rosa Beach and we plan to return as soon as we can. Our trip will diffidently be remembered in our favorite vacations!

Helpful votes: 5 / 8


10 Happy Days in Santa Rosa

Review submitted: February 6, 2012   Date of arrival: January 18, 2012

My husband and I rented this house for 10 days to get away from the cold weather in North Georgia. The house was a perfect size for us. I was very impressed with the laundry facilities (new LG equipment). My husband loved the big flat screen TV and great cable/HBO/etc. golf matches or football games missed!

The house is very comfortable, well maintained and in a good location. Very near good restaurants, seafood markets and a nice Publix (I'm a cook, so that made me happy), golf courses, and outlet shopping. We really enjoyed the Santa Rosa area. It's close to Destin but not nearly as crowded or busy. This would be our choice when we come back to this area again.

The owner was very responsive for any problems or questions we had and easy to work with in setting up the rental. I would recommend this place to any couple (or maybe 2 couples) looking for a nice getaway.

Helpful votes: 7 / 9



Review submitted: June 3, 2011   Date of arrival: May 13, 2011

Alma by the Sea is amazing! The house is in a great location and the community it is situated in has two pools for you to enjoy! Swanky decor really makes you think you're in Miami. Totally booking here again. :)

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 7 / 9


Alma at the Sea

Review submitted: May 24, 2011   Date of arrival: May 20, 2011

My daughter and I stayed at "Alma at the Sea" over the weekend and had a wonderful stay. The house is very nice and well stocked. It is in a location that is convenient to the beach, shopping, and restaurants while being very quiet and laid back. Good place for any age as there is plenty to do.

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, sight seeing, tourists without a car, romantic getaway

Helpful votes: 6 / 8


Great Location and Feel

Review submitted: April 26, 2011   Date of arrival: April 19, 2011

This house was bright, had lots of room and we could walk to the beach from it. What more could you ask for?! We spent all day on the beach and then took advantage of everything the house had to offer. We made great meals, drank wine and coffee on the decks, the kids played on the internet and watched the tv in their room. (I watched some sports on the large high-def TV in the living room, but not TOO MUCH.) The beds were comfortable and the neighbors were quiet and friendly. The beaches were so beautiful that we didn't even use the pools right there, but others did and seemed to kids want waves though.

Santa Rosa Beach is a very quiet community with no major stores/hotels to take away from your peace, but Destin and all it's shopping Haven were only 10-15 minutes away by car.

We already want to plan another trip here. Oh...the owner had GREAT communication with us from start to finish and we thank her greatly for that as well.

Recommended for: adventure seekers, age 55+, families with young children, families with teenagers, girls getaway, sight seeing, tourists without a car

Helpful votes: 6 / 8


Review submitted: May 13, 2010   Date of arrival: May 13, 2010

The most wonderful family vacation came to an end. We loved to stay at the beautiful house and the gorgeous beaches that made us having the best family vacation we ever had.

Helpful votes: 8 / 12


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