Blizzard cancels some flights but not Anna Maria Island hotel reservations

rdymond@bradenton.comFebruary 11, 2013 

ANNA MARIA ISLAND -- Storm Nemo didn't touch Manatee and Sarasota counties with high winds or two-foot deposits of snow over the weekend, but the storm did create some anxiety among hotel and motel owners and airport officials.

"Everytime the phone rang I thought it was a cancellation," Spence Romine, owner of Palm Tree Villas on Holmes Beach and Sunrise Garden Resort Hotel on Anna Maria Island, said Sunday.

But neither of Romine's hotels experienced a cancellation, although some guests called to say their flights into either Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport or Tampa International Airport were delayed, Romine said.

The Herald reached several front desk workers at hotels and none reported a problem.

"There really haven't been any cancellations, which has been a little surprising, "Romine said. "In fact, some customers just packed up their cars when they heard about the storm and left early. Of course, airline passengers couldn't do that."

When the snow had finally settled after Nemo, Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport reported roughly six flights cancellations Friday through Sunday, said an airline operations officer on duty, who preferred not to give his name.

The flights that cancelled Friday and Saturday were JetBlue and Delta Airlines flights departing from New York and Boston, the officer said.

By Sunday everything was nearly back to normal, with the exception of one JetBlue flight into New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport that was cancelled, the officer added.

"Everything here flowed smoothly with no real disruptions," the officer said of the weekend. "We didn't have people stacked up in the airport. We had typical bad weather cancellations to the northeast."

Nemo didn't hurt what has been a terrific tourist season, Romine said.

"We're booked solid through February and into March," Romine added.

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