Alden Suites Beachfront Resort Celebrates 50 Years Of WOW

Fifty years after Robert and Gennifer Renfrow purchased a small beachfront motel called the Alden, today, the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort celebrates its 50-year anniversary of ownership by the Renfrow family. To commemorate this major milestone the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort has launched a year-long Golden Anniversary campaign that invites guests to celebrate the many things they love about the Alden. Among the celebratory activities launching this month are an inspiring video series; a new social media campaign, #ALDENWOW50; a photo contest, a new mural and lots of special Golden Giveaways. It all leads up to the big Alden Family Reunion set for November 9, where longtime guests will gather from all over the world to celebrate the big anniversary.

Gary Renfrow, President of Alden Suites Beachfront Resort, shares: “So many families return to the Alden year after year to celebrate reunions, weddings, birthdays, and holidays. We’re inviting them all to join us in a big celebration, the ultimate Alden Family Reunion to celebrate 50 years of memories.” Live music, food and drinks, entertainment and special surprises will make for an unforgettable celebration on the beach.

“Here in St. Pete Beach, you can have a huge resort experience if that’s what you come here for or you can have a family run establishment for 50 years, and it feels like home. This is a slice of Old Florida, that is just cool in its own way that doesn’t even need description. And it’s something that’s vanishing. But the Renfrows maintain it, they keep that spirit alive. It’s a great value to us because look, you can build anything. But to preserve something like this and to keep it magical, takes a special energy and a special family and a commitment and a dedication. And for that, we thank you very much,” notes David Downing, President and CEO of Visit St. Pete Clearwater.

Tony Satterfield, Vice President of Operations of the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort, adds “At the end of the day, if we drive up and down this beach, we’ve all got great beaches, we’ve got great hotels here. What really makes the difference is the staff. I am fortunate to have an executive team, starting with the owners, that really has a commitment to customer service. If you take a look at our TripAdvisor reviews, you will see time and again individual employees and what they did outside of the norm to make our guests’ stays wonderful. We’re so grateful to our dedicated team of employees.”

The 50th Anniversary celebration begins in January 2019, and continues throughout the year, with a different element each month. Giveaways, charity highlights, contests, and exclusive vacation packages will bring the fun to each and every Alden guest, and to our local St. Pete Beach community. Here are just a few of the ways the Alden will celebrate the big 50th anniversary:

50 Years of WOW– Video Series
For the first time in the brand’s history, Alden Suites Beachfront Resort is launching a dynamic consumer video series, entitled 50 Years of WOW, to honor the official theme of its Golden Anniversary. Each month, vignettes will be released via various digital and social media channels, with every video showcasing our guests’ experiences over the years. The videos will highlight the perspective of different guests as they share the joy, fun, romance, and inspiration of their stays at the Alden.

Golden Giveaways
Throughout 2019, guests will be surprised and delighted by various forms of #ALDENWOW50 celebration. Golden chocolates, golden beach bags, and golden cocktail cups for the Cabana Bar will be gifted to guest as they check in during selected months. Random Acts of Celebration will randomly select lucky guests to receive free water sports, dinners, cruises, and more. All of the latest news about our monthly celebrations will be available on the www.aldenwow.com blog.

#ALDENWOW50 Contest
Between January 15 and February 28, 2019, a contest will be held for the best #ALDENWOW50 photo. The winner will receive a two-night stay at the Alden, a sunset sail on the Compass Rose from Dolphin Landing, dinner at Snappers, and their image on the Alden mural. Past and present guests are invited to join the #ALDENWOW50 contest by sharing photos and memories gathered during any stay at the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort and tagging them with #ALDENWOW50. Select user photos will be shared on the brand’s social media channels, in a display in the Alden Suites reception area, and in a video at the 50th Anniversary celebration. One family will be chosen to be included in our commemorative mural painting, becoming a part of Alden history for all to see. Alden enthusiasts who are not active on social media but who want to engage in the celebration can email photos or video messages to the Alden team at info@aldenwow.com. We look forward to sharing your vacation memories, and hope many of our longtime guests will join us for the grand celebration in November!

#ALDENWOW50 Contest Launches the Alden’s 50 Years Of WOW Celebration!

2019 is a banner year for us here at the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort. Fifty years after Robert and Gennifer Renfrow purchased a small beachfront motel called the Alden, this year the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort celebrates its 50-year anniversary of ownership by the Renfrow family. Over the past five decades the property has grown exponentially, with two new all-suite towers and several top-to-bottom renovations. It has evolved from a small motel into a full-scale beachfront family resort with two pools, a hot tub, two tennis courts, and a Cabana Beach Bar.

To commemorate this major milestone the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort has launched a year-long Golden Anniversary campaign that invites our guests to celebrate the many things they love about the Alden. The 50th Anniversary celebration begins in January 2019, and continues throughout the year, with a different element each month. Giveaways, charity highlights, contests, and exclusive vacation packages will bring the fun to each and every Alden guest, and to our local St. Pete Beach community.

And to kick it all off, we’re inviting YOU to participate in our #ALDENWOW50 Contest. Between January 4 and February 28, 2019, we are holding a contest for the best #ALDENWOW50 photo. The winner will receive a two-night stay at the Alden, a sunset sail on the Compass Rose from Dolphin Landing, dinner at Snappers Sea Grill, and their image on the Alden mural.

Past and present guests are invited to join the #ALDENWOW50 contest by sharing photos and memories gathered during any stay at the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort and tagging them with #ALDENWOW50. We’d especially like to see photos from years gone by, to show the history of our guests’ vacations at the Alden.

Select user photos will be shared on the brand’s social media channels, in a display in the Alden Suites reception area, and in a video at the 50th Anniversary celebration. One family will be chosen to be included in our commemorative mural painting, becoming a part of Alden history for all to see. If you’re not active on social media but you want to engage in the celebration, feel free to email photos or videos to the Alden team at info@aldenwow.com. We are so excited to see your photos, and will be sharing more news soon about the big #ALDENWOW50 celebrations!

Garden WOW! All about Landscaping at the Alden

Here in the Sunshine State, we are blessed with a subtropical climate that allows us to grow so many beautiful plants that would never survive the winter up North. The Gulf Stream keeps our temperatures moderate all year long, and we have rainy summer afternoons and dry, sunny winters. Our guests often tell us that one of their favorite things about staying at the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort in the wintertime is all the green plants and flowers that we have, even in the middle of January!

We are very proud of the amazing job that our Facilities team does every day to keep our pools pristine and sparkling and our gardens blooming all year round. We use rocks for landscaping throughout the property, since they keep the plants nice and warm and always look neat.

Our gardening team likes to go beyond the basics, getting creative with dramatic plants that please our guests. Let’s take a look at some of the pretty garden areas that we get to enjoy every day here at the Alden.

One of our favorite garden areas is the courtyard between the bungalows, just behind our lobby area. We completely re-did this area when we remodeled the bungalows, with nice gray pavers, curved grassy lawn areas, and lot of bottle palm trees, foxtail palm, robellini palms, and tropical foliage. We put in some dramatic landscape lighting to make this area both dramatic and inviting, day or night.

In the area between the pools and the parking lot, we have a nice stone fountain surrounded by variegated vines and foliage. We love how the rippling water sounds enhance our feeling of relaxation at the pool.

Right behind the lobby, in the courtyard, we have some nice ginger plants, cordyline fruticosa and tropical philodendrons. One cool thing about Florida is that we’re able to grow plants like poinsettas and monsteras outdoors, while in the rest of the country they’re only useful as houseplants.

Right outside of the Grab ‘n Go store, we have another water feature, a blue tile fountain that creates a nice soothing environment. The two hisbiscus trees that flank the fountain are over 10 years old!

Speaking of plants with history, one of the benefits of owning a hotel for over 50 years is that our palm trees have had some time to grow! Royal Palm trees can only be grown in warmer subtropical climates, since they can’t handle cool nights. This one must be happy, since it’s been here for over 20 years and now towers over our three-story building!

Our backyard lawn is home to some other plants with history. This 30 foot tall wall of seagrapes has taken many years to become a beautiful backdrop for party photos, and we love how it frames the space. Our guests love it too!

It’s our pleasure to keep our gardens blooming here at Alden Suites.  It’s one of the ways we offer a real Florida experience to our guests who are living with snow and brown grass for months on end up North. We hope our flowers make you smile and delight in the Florida climate. What’s your favorite place to enjoy the gardens at the Alden?

Best Selfie Spots in St Pete Beach

St. Pete Beach is a great place for fun and great shots of you and your loved ones. Whether it’s by the beach, on a cruise, or with a dolphin, there’s always a great backdrop for super selfies. Here are just a few of our favorite selfie spots here at Alden Suites!

The Alden Suites Dolphin

Everyone loves taking selfies with our aquatic mascot Suite Alden. He is the perfect picture partner!

Parasailing Over the Gulf

What’s better than a selfie you can snap while floating high above the Gulf of Mexico? Book a trip on a thrilling parasail from our beachfront Suncoast Watersports kiosk and take a selfie that soars above the rest.

In front of the Alden Suites Event Board

The Alden event board is a great place to take a group selfie if you’re attending one of our many events. It’s great to get a shoutout for your event whether it’s a blogger bash or family reunion!

Sunset Cruise

The Sunset Brews Cruise by Suncoast Watersports is the perfect place for a stunning selfie. The sunset is in full view and makes for super shots.

Alden Beach

Our little stretch of pristine beach is an excellent place for a classic beach selfie. With all the colors of the sunset and water, it is a perfect backdrop for a fun photo op!

These are some of the best selfie spots in St. Pete, but there are many more. If you have any special spots to add, please leave a comment!

#AldenWOW is in Full Effect at our First-Ever Blogger Bash!

This September, the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort family grew by a few dozen people, as we welcomed travel writers and bloggers from all over Florida to our first-ever Blogger Bash! Watch what happened as Florida’s finest bloggers experienced our beloved Alden Suites for the first time.

The party started with a gathering on our beachfront lawn, where Chris and Dave served up delicious drinks from the Cabana Bar Cart, and bloggers dressed in festive tropical attire enjoyed fresh seafood prepared by Dan Casey, the owner of Snapper’s Sea Grill.

We were thrilled to be joined by David Downing, the President and CEO of Visit St. Pete Clearwater. He shared his favorite reasons why “The West Coast is the BEST Coast” and inspired our guests with some exciting news about the many fun things to see and do in St. Pete.

Our new blogger friends were hard at work throughout the evening, capturing their best shots of our gorgeous beachfront property. Chris and Dave kept the tropical drinks flowing, delighting our bloggers with a strawberry and tequila punch he created just for the event.

Then it was All Aboard for sunset on the water. Our group walked right from the beach onto the gorgeous new Compass Rose party boat from Suncoast Watersports. We lucked out with a gorgeous sunset, and Bob Schlesinger of Tropical Focus Photography did an amazing job capturing everyone’s magical time on the boat.

We rounded out the night with some snacks and drinks at the Cabana Bar, and then everyone tucked in for the night (after some hot tub time, of course!).

Sunday morning, the bloggers gathered to meet our Mascot, Suite Alden, and the kids were delighted to choose their favorite pool floats to enjoy. All day long, our guests enjoyed Suncoast Watersports jetskis and parasailing, splashed in the hot tub and pools, and checked out our property with their families. We rounded out the day with a lunch of Publix fried chicken on our BBQ deck, and everyone went back home suntanned and happy.

Mary Ann Renfrow, Director of Community Relations for the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort, says: “I really appreciated the opportunity to work on this event.  For me, it was a labor of love.  I am so very proud of all of our staff who make us shine every day, and raised the bar even higher for this special weekend.  We love sharing our family resort and our beautiful community with others.  Thank you, AdGals, for connecting us with this group and their followers so that we can expand our reach to make many more Alden friends.”

Read what our blogger friends wrote about their visit to the Alden:

My Boys and Their Toys

Celebrity Chef 4 U

Digital Nomads in Love

Cheshire Kat Blog

Orlando Em Revista

My Sweet Zepol

Sequins and Sea Breezes

Mousesteps

Simply Today Life

KatyWidrick.com

AuthenticFlorida.com

Forty Years at the Alden… A Longtime Guest Shares Her Story

One of our favorite things here at Alden Suites Beachfront Resort is welcoming generations of families who stay with us year after year. As children grow up and become parents themselves, they return to savor the St. Pete Beach experience and enjoy our hospitality. We are so thankful to our longtime guest Jennifer from Naperville, Illinois for sharing her Alden Suites experience!
 
“I have been staying at the Alden since 1975. Four generations of my family have vacationed at this resort, nestled on beautiful St. Pete Beach. Despite the older buildings, the management at the Alden works to make continuous improvements and updates to the resort. I am certain the buildings take a beating between the salt air, the heat, and humidity and wear and tear from the guests. I cannot fathom the amount of upkeep and maintenance a beach resort may require.
 
With that said, I feel like the staff at the Alden work to provide a clean, comfortable and safe resort for all its guests despite the required attention to detail and upkeep the resort demands. It is super family friendly and great for relaxing. I have seen weddings, family reunions, girls trips, family trips etc.. over the course of my years visiting the Alden. I have referred friends and family and nobody has been disappointed with their vacation stay. Its charm is what sets it apart from many of the other resort options on the beach. The welcoming family vibe is present throughout the resort.
 
The rooms are very clean and the front desk staff are kind, courteous and responsive. I have always felt very safe at the Alden. Now having two young children of my own, it’s a pleasure to watch them bounce from pool to pool to hot tub to the ocean with ease. I have much joy reflecting on my own childhood vacationing at the Alden through the eyes of my children who now enjoy the same thing!
 
From relaxing in your room to taking a walk through the beautiful landscape which runs from the main office area, passed the “Fungalows” and the pools..it is such a beautiful, tropical relaxing walk to the beach. I also love staying on the Gulf Front buildings…I love staring out at the ocean. Unless you are atop Hurricanes at Pass-A-Grille for dinner, I dare think you could have a better sunset view on the beach than from the Alden. The resort’s beach is THE BEST on St. Pete!
 
The Snappers Oasis Food Truck tucked next to the Cabana Bar serves really good “fast” food. The Haddock Nuggets do not disappoint, nor do the fries or chicken tenders. In fact, I was in line to order my food and a server from the Don CeSar came over to order food and he said that he actually refers guests from the Don’s pool area down to the Alden to check out the resort and try food from Snappers Oasis! I loved hearing that! Take a step back to yesteryear with the charm and delight of a cozy vacation spot on the beach with modern amenities and comfort. The Alden is a gem!

Top 10 #ALDENWOW Moments!

We’re halfway through 2018, and it’s been an amazing year so far at the Alden Suites Beachfront Resort! We’ve unveiled our newly renovated beach bungalows, introduced a bar cart for drink service on the beach, and launched our #ALDENWOW campaign for our guests to share their favorite moments at the Alden! Let’s take a look at some of our top guest photos from 2018, shall we?

  1. There’s just nothing cuter than a baby merman on the beach. Big thanks to Mermaid Elite for sharing this photo!

2. Alden guest Donna Corwin captured this magical shot of the flames from our Cabana Bar fire pit mingling with the sunset colors!

3. We just love how Elza Fan Winden centered the setting sun inside of our little beach hut!

4. We love to see our guests of all ages smiling ear to ear at the Alden! Thanks to The Cliv for sharing this cute snap.

5. Kelsey, aka idobedoobie gives our new mascot Sweet Alden his moment in the sun!

6. Who wouldn’t jump for joy at an #ALDENWOW sunset? Great shot, Jodi’s Cabana!

7. Look at all those cute happy faces peeking out at the pool! Summertime fun at it’s best, captured by Kristin Beckowitz.

8. Sunset weddings on the beach at Alden just make us all so happy. Big congrats to Leslie McCoy for a beautiful wedding day!

9. Happy towhead kid. Bright blue muscle car. Our retrolicious Alden logo. Love, Love, Love this shot by Marcus Kreig!

10. And of course, we’ve gotta end with a sunset! Alden guests have shared hundreds of sunset shots, and it’s hard to pick just one! But Sondra Walters Yaukey takes the cake with this colorful photo.

We would love to see and share your photos as well, all you need to do is post publicly on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter using the #ALDENWOW hashtag. Keep sharing and soon we might feature YOUR #ALDENWOW photo right here on our blog!

Alden Suites & Renfrow Family Donate $25,000 to Celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Tampa Bay Watch

Here at Alden Suites, we treasure Tampa Bay and do all we can to protect it. For many years now both the Alden Suites and the family that owns the resort, the Renfrows, have donated to support Tampa Bay Watch’s vital efforts to protect and restore the Tampa Bay estuary. 2018 marks the 25th anniversary of Tampa Bay Watch, and we are thrilled to announce our donation of $25,000 to this essential effort.

Alden Suites is making a donation of $15,000 and Gary and Mary Ann Renfrow are personally donating $10,000 to jump-start Tampa Bay Watch’s $25,000 for 25 years campaign. The funds will be used for shoreline restoration efforts and for education, teaching Tampa Bay kids about the local ecosystem and how they can help preserve it.We encourage our friends and colleagues to join in and support this nonprofit as they keep our gorgeous beaches beautiful!

Peter A. Clark, President of Tampa Bay Watch, Inc., notes that due to community support and involvement in Tampa Bay Watch, “water quality is best in the bay since the 1950s, seagrass has recovered 20,000 new acres since the 1980s, and fish and wildlife are returning to the bay as a result of these improvements.” This is all done through true grassroots efforts. Local businesses donate oyster shells that Tampa Bay Watch volunteers use them to build oyster shell bars and oyster domes to promote oyster growth along man-made and altered shorelines of Tampa Bay. These oyster reef enhancements attract live oysters, who filter the water of Tampa Bay naturally.

Tampa Bay Watch also provides education to school children in the Tampa Bay area, allowing them to experience the ecosystem for themselves. Clark’s vision for Tampa Bay Watch in the coming years emphasizes bringing young people into the fold: “While involving the community in bay protection activities 25+ years ago was the seed of our institution, addressing the critical need for the next generation to experience and understand the value of a healthy bay is essential. Join us as we begin the next chapter of our organization — as always it will be the community that truly makes the difference.”

 

Mary Ann Renfrow shares: “Gary and I consider ourselves so fortunate to have had the opportunity to spend most of our lives right here on Tampa Bay and the Gulf Beaches. This is where we have raised our beautiful daughter, Stephanie. This is where we have built a successful business on the Gulf, the Alden Suites. This is a place where we have lived our lives, boating, swimming and walking the shores … a place we call home. We recognize that we are so privileged to have this in part because of the dedication of Tampa Bay Watch​, its staff and volunteers, who have worked diligently to restore, preserve and protect Tampa Bay, as well as continue to educate those young people so that they will become stewards of Tampa Bay for generations to come. This is the legacy of Tampa Bay Watch. Gary and I consider supporting Tampa Bay Watch as a part of our legacy. In sincere appreciation and to honor 25 years of serving the Bay, we are proud to extend our gift of $25,000 to Tampa Bay Watch from our own family, and our business family, the Alden Suites.”

Big News at the Beach Cabanas: Drinks on the Beach!!

If you’ve visited the Alden before, you know all about our signature beach cabanas. These bright yellow hideaways provide shade from the sun, and each come equipped with two comfy lounge chairs and a table. They are included for free in our Florida Resident Special package, and can also be rented for $25 a day from the beachside Suncoast Watersports hut. And now, cabana life is getting better than ever!

We are thrilled to announce that we’re extending our Cabana Bar beverage service to the beach! Cabana guests can now order their favorite beer, wine, sodas, and mixed drinks right from the comfort of their lounge chairs. Our bartenders will bring you a fresh, icy beverage to enjoy while you relax and enjoy the sunshine and our white sandy shore.

 

After many years of planning and negotiations with the City of St. Pete Beach, we were able to make this wonderful addition to our cabana service. We customized a beverage cart with special wheels for beach driving, and stocked it with all your Cabana Bar favorites. Cabana-side service is now available Fridays-Sundays from noon-5pm, and we may expand this service in the future. Snap a pic and post it with the #aldenwow hashtag to let us know how you like our latest enhancement to life Alden-style!

It’s Happy Hour All Day Long!

Now you can enjoy happy hour pricing all day long when you purchase an Alden Suites Happy Hour glass from our beachfront Cabana Bar. Talk about tasty treats!

This 14-ounce beauty comes in a variety of beachy colors, fully stocked to you with your choice of domestic draft beer, house wine or mixed well drinks — for only $6!

So whether you’re staying a few days, a week, or visit us every year, you’ll be smiling all the way to the bank (and the beach!) when you pick up one of our Happy Hour glasses! Be sure to enjoy responsibly as you enjoy our pristine beach, sunshine and spectacularly famous Alden Suites hospitality!