Holiday Inn Club Vacations Galveston Beach Resort is all about being close to Galveston Beaches and the Galveston area as the name implies. I have worked with a company that did storm shudders, and gutters in the area supporting their SEO efforts online. So, I have read about the area but have never been so I am excited to see it all firsthand.
Video by Jasper’s Journey
Day One Travel & Arrival at Holiday Inn Club Vacations Galveston Beach Resort
The trip to Galveston, Texas for me started with a short flight of over 5 hours, mostly due to the connecting flight and slight layover. I tell you Atlanta is a giant airport. It even feels larger than it is thanks to the monorail and using that from one terminal to another. It had been more than a year since I had been to this airport. It just seemed like flights from my area tend to go more through Charlotte recently.
But a single connecting flight later and I was in Houston just a short drive from the resort. I did arrange to rent a car for this trip. Being new to an area, I will typically rent a car to see more of the area. In future trips, if I determine that I am better off without a rental, then I will opt out.
If you take I45 from Houston, you will find the drive less than an hour if you are not at the peak traffic time. Galveston is interesting in that it is so close to a major city. On the East Coast, you do not find major beach areas that are close to a large city. Most of the time they are 2 hours or more away from major cities.
On the island of Galveston Beach, you go right once you hit the beach road Termini-San Luis Pass Rd. It is just a short hop to that right once you get off the bridge. This beach is interesting because you see no development on the other side of the beach road, just the ocean side here. This makes finding the resort very easy. It is also the only resort in the area it is in. There are many large homes that look like monster summer rentals, but not a great deal of large commercial resorts or hotels near this resort.
I time my arrival to be at the resort at check-in time. This worked out very well, and I was only about 15 minutes early. I just walked up and started the check-in process without looking at my watch. The staff would have been fine to tell me I was a few minutes early, but they must have had things ready because they just started getting me sorted.
My two-bedroom villa here was impressive. I got in and put my bags down and looked around before I did anything else. The room had a nice balcony overlooking the beach and the ocean. It connected to the master bedroom and the living room. Which was amazing. The views here are impressive. The villa has a full nice sized kitchen. This made me think that one of the first things to do would be to fill the fridge with a few snacks and some breakfast items, as well as beer. This view, with a nice beer in my hand in a comfortable chair on that patio, was what the doctor ordered.
- Cable TV
- Coffee Maker
- Ice Maker
Then the resort itself offers all of these options.
- Free WiFi
- Outdoor Pools
- Business Center
- On-Site Restaurants
- Fitness Center
First I unpacked, then showered and changed. Next, I was off to a local grocery store for my supplies. Now the professional move would have been to stop at a store on the way in, but I was excited to get checked in first. That and I had been in the air or traveling now for over 6 hours and chilling out some first, getting a shower and so on was high on my list.
Just back up the beach road a bit, there is a Kroger, which is a solid grocery chain that we have back home as well, so that is where I headed for my supply run. Since I did not get any ice cream or something that would spoil fast, I then stopped for dinner at a local spot. Cajun Greek Seafood the food was great and the service even better. If you check out their website, look at the pictures of the food. It is like food porn or something. They really do a great job with their menu by showing a photo of each item, even the apps, and deserts. Hats off to their web designer and photographer, this was done very well.
After dinner, I was back to the resort to put away my groceries and test to see if one of the beers was still cold.
Perfect location. No worries crossing the Seawall, you’re already there! Everything you need is provided in the condo, including laundry facilities. The pool is clean and great temp in late April for us. Restaurant/Bar next door with umbrella & chair rentals.
wonderful relax hotel
I love this hotel, a would pass brings you directly to the beach, quiet, and clean. I took so many beautiful pictures in the early morning.
I enjoy staying at this location because they allow you to keep your car there while on a cruise. The staff is very polite and helpful. I always enjoy my stay with them. My view was at an angle, and I would prefer a full view of the gulf, but I’ll request that next time.
Great suite with easy access to the beach. Beautiful view of the beach from the balcony. Highly recommend if planning a trip to the beach.
Great stay in Galveston
Had a great stay here in Galveston. Looking forward to my next stay.
The hotel is steps away from the beach. All rooms have a view of the ocean. The staff is most accommodating and cheerful to interact with. Have stayed here multiple times over the past 2 years. The only issue is the poor Wi-Fi seemingly on all floors, and you have to re-connect every day.
Great views and wonderful service.
Nice rooms with great views of the beach. The pool was very nice. Sandy at the front desk was wonderful and very helpful. Other than that, a very clean hotel.
Day Two Seeing Galveston Beach
I wanted to check out the area today as well as spend some time on the beach. Then my goal was to be back to the room and my killer balcony for sunset. Being right on the gulf, the sunset here must be very nice.
When you are on the gulf of Mexico, it is hard not to look out and mentally think of the ocean versus a giant gulf. You will even find me writing that way by default. Nothing, when you are here, tells your brain you are on a gulf. It is too immense to think of it other than the ocean.
I woke to a little haze that was burnt off by the sun quickly this morning. I often like to eat breakfast on vacations for at least one day or so, but today I wanted a big breakfast. For breakfasts on the island, there are many options. I headed for the Gumbo Dinner and I had their Big Beach Breakfast, which was 3 eggs, bacon, grits, and a pancake. That was a great start to the day. They open at 8 AM at the Gumbo Dinner and I made it by around 9 AM.
After breakfast, I spend an hour just driving around and getting the lay of the land and seeing some of the spots. This is an amazing area. In some areas like those near the resort, there is less development and then in others, you will find more. It looks like they get enough storms in the area that they develop cleverly in areas of the island that are more stable in case of hurricanes and other issues. So, spots that are undeveloped are likely more prone to flooding and overwash.
The island is a neat spot. Galveston is an interesting area historically for Texas. There was a major hurricane in 1900 but before that Galveston has the second richest city in the entire USA. After that major hurricane, they constructed a seawall to protect the island that still stands today. Galveston was the first city in Texas to have artificial light in 1856, and electric light in 1883. To put things into perspective, New York City did not start to get electricity until 1882 just a few months before Galveston.
The first bakery in the state of Texas was opened here on the island in 1938, which somehow seems odd that there was not one anywhere in Texas before that. Maybe they just ate too much steak and eggs to worry about freshly baked bread?
Galveston also had the first medical college in 1891 and later a nursing school in 1894. The city also had the state’s first telephone in 1878. Galveston was a major port city in the 1800s. The main product imported and processed here was cotton.
The local history museum here is located in the county courthouse since the original site was damaged by Hurricane Ike. It is small but as you can already tell from my list interesting. This is much more than just a beach town. Historically, it is the most interesting of just about any I have visited.
On the Beach
The beaches here are very nice, but likely none as nice as right here at the resort. Again, the location is great because other than this resort there are not a ton of large properties in the area. This means you can find a spot on the beach easily and get comfortable quickly.
The resort itself is on the sand, so you step out the beachside and you are almost in the gulf. There is more than enough land here, do not get me wrong, it is just a great location for beachfront access.
The waters here are very clear on the gulf compared to the East Coast. I find that wherever I go on the gulf of Mexico, the water is crystal clear and I love that about it.
Day Three Checking Out Houston
People from Houston must think I am insane for leaving the beach to check out the city. I have never been, however, and Galveston is so close that it makes sense to at least spend part of the day and check the city out.
There is a Holocaust Museum in Houston but I have been to the one in D.C. and was even an early donor and supporter. So, I was not going to pull myself through that today. But if you are in the area for a week, and can handle it they are important museums to see. Man’s inhumanity to man must never be allowed again.
There is also a NATIONAL MUSEUM OF FUNERAL HISTORY, but even though I love history, that topic does not interest me much. I will never quite understand the 1800s fascination with some things from that period.
I chose to do a city tour with a charter group I chose because I thought they would know the things best to see, then I could go back to anything that stood out if I wanted to. The tour was 2.5 hours, so good for my timeline today. I could do that, then go to a location for lunch and then head back for some more time on the beach and sunset.
You’ll hear Houston’s history, cool stories, and fun facts from Houston Insiders on a visit to the elaborate River Oaks for the “Lifestyles of Rich & Famous tour as well as Buffalo Bayou, Sam Houston Park, George Bush Monument, Theatre district, Market square, City Hall, Tranquility Park, Discovery Green, Astro’s Minute Maid Park, Rocket’s Toyota Center and more.
I decided to check out the zoo because I like a good zoo. The Houston Zoo is huge by anyone’s measure and had many great animals. There are many discount tickets you may qualify for, so check the website, but even regular tickets are cheap. I think the last zoo I was at was San Diego, so this was much cheaper in comparison. My ticket was like $8 for some discount reason, and I was a happy camper. Happy to support the zoo but also save some money at the same time. They even let college students with valid ID in free.
Getting back to the resort just in time for another sunset was a pleasure. The sunsets on the gulf are special even from this angle. I was on the beach until the sun went down, but with my room view, I could have been on the balcony as well. I just opted for the direct beach view.
If you want a great stay at the beach near a major city with things to see and do on a grand scale, this is an amazing location. Just make sure to book with Tzort.