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“Huge Disappointment” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Arizona Biltmore, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

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Arizona Biltmore, A Waldorf Astoria Resort
4.5 of 5 Resort   |   2400 East Missouri Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85016   |  
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Ranked #21 of 174 Hotels in Phoenix
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Minneapolis, Minnesota
1 review
“Huge Disappointment”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

We have used TripAdviser but not contributed. When a repair person came to the room he left a card urging that we post a review. Here it is. This place -- and esp Occatilla "concierge" level -- is a ripoff and the hotel does not deserve to be Waldorf Astoria.

The grounds were nice. The room itself was ok. But the service was awful.

The small pool is supposed to be limited to Occatilla people. But people were coming from all over the place. No one was checking. People were coming from the rooms next door to the pool. Gates were even open/unlocked to allow people to walk directly from those rooms. One family boasted that they came every spring and stopped paying for Occatilla. They said their cheaper rooms offered better access to the pool. Once, people were charging drinks to a room numbered 2XXXX. Occatillsa rooms are all 6XXXX. The attendant did not challenge the others. I asked the attendant. He said they never enforce the rules. Its open to anyone. No wonder we couldn’t get chairs on a couple of days.

We thought the lounge would be nice. At checkin we asked for a morning newspaper. We were told papers were available in Concierge Lounge. Apparently they put out a few USA Todays and when they’re gone, too bad.

Ditto the food: The morning spread was just carbs – no protein (cold cuts, smoked salmon, etc). The Concierge Lounge was full of screaming children running around, playing with the cereal machine. They were often running out of coffee or juice or pastry. Staff worked hard, but too many people had access. On several days we could find no table and had to eat standing up. Shouldn’t this be adults only?

Midday there was nothing to snack on. Yes, there were pretty bowls of fresh lemons and limes, if you want. And a few small jars of nuts. No cookies. No cake. The coffee was cold (sitting on sterno heater). One day they had no bottled water. I heard a guest being told that it would be coming later that day. That’s water!!!! meanwhile the person who wanted water was told she could walk to the front desk and ask for some. Now that’s service!

Evening was worse. Cheap, barely drinkable, wine was free. Really cheap liquors for $10/pour. Some cheeses that were usually picked over. And terrible, soggy stuff in warming dish.

We would like to like this place, but we thought it was a huge ripoff – esp. the upsell to Occatilla.

  • Stayed March 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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240 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (66)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
New York City, New York
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

This Hotel was designed by Frank Loyd Wright and built in 1929, renovated just recently in 2014. It's very large but the way it's built, with several small units with their own pool, in addition to the main pool and central area with restaurants, fire pits, shops, etc. it actually feels intimate and private. If you're a design buff, this is the place for you, as there is a careful attention to design details from the open organic spaces characteristic of Frank Loyd Wright buildings to tiles designed by FLW, the wooden panels on the hallways, to the stained glass in the lobby. The tiles continue to repeat themselves throughout the building in the form of an accent, a lamp or in a wall diving spaces, reminding us of the brilliance of the genius of the architect. No wonder every President of the US has been a guest in this Hotel, from Eisenhower to Bush. The rooms are large, clean and updated, bathrooms are standard for Waldorf-Astoria Hotels. Complementary WiFi is all you need (don't buy the faster option if you're just navigating the internet and checking your emails) and works in the pool. The renovation respected the initial design and kept the spaces airy, with open floors, manicured flower gardens (some are original from the time it was built) , beautiful fireplaces in the main restaurant where we ate breakfast. Cleaning service is efficient, and since they have a lot of rooms to service, sometimes they got to our room a bit later in the day. That did not really change or interfered with our experience since we were out either doing activities around Phoenix or in the pool. There were a lot of friendly families with well-behaved kids in the Hotel, they were in the pool and playing together, my 10yo daughter had a great time with them. As for activities, there are many options including golf, tennis and a spa in the Hotel and they can also help you to book activities around the area outside of the Hotel. Their recommendations are spot-on perfect! The spa is well appointed, it has a separate entrance and facilities are very private so your rest and relaxation are assured. You must book in advance as all the spa offers book fast. I didn't have a chance of using the spa because of that. Several options of food are available throughout the Hotel. Frank&Albert Restaurant is the main restaurant with delicious breakfast buffet as well as organic options "a la carte", an outside garden area is available for seating where there are two big fireplaces with the tables around them. The Wright restaurant is a more formal option, where we savored an amazing Chocolate souffle and really great food. Most of the food in their menus come from local sourcing, they are organic and/or made from scratch in their kitchen (like the granola). Also there is a bar and a coffee shop which are more informal or fast options. Service is great everywhere, everyone is happy, responsive, and try to accommodate your needs. All the outside areas of the Hotel are kept well maintained including the beautiful gardens and trees, which you see people working all the time on them. Our family had a wonderful and relaxing time. I know that there are other Hotels in Scottsdale that may be more modern, with a bigger pool, and other amenities, but I wouldn't change this Hotel for any other in its category because of its understated elegance. It was overall a great experience.

Room Tip: Try to stay at the Ocatilla building. WOW! Absolutely beautiful interior, gorgeous rooms, Salvatore...
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  • Stayed March 2015, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tucson, Arizona
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
79 helpful votes 79 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

The Arizona Biltmore has been publicizing its recent renovations but we didn't see much evidence of that on our stay. What we did encounter were painfully long waits at the front desk, a dated bathroom, one-star level restrooms at the pool, and a hellish scene at all the pools.

We were hoping to check in around noon, which of course is at the hotel's discretion since check-in time is officially later in the day. I called at 8 am and was told the adjoining rooms we reserved were vacant and they would put a rush on cleaning them. Upon arrival at noon the rooms still hadn't been cleaned. The front desk said they would call us when they were ready. About an hour later I called the front desk but on four occasions when the operator tried to connect me to the front desk there was no answer at all. Eventually I walked from the pool to the front desk and found two staff members serving two angry long lines of travelers. A hotel of this size needs a much larger front desk staff. After enduring the lines I found out that one of the rooms was ready. Who knows if they ever would have had a chance to call me given the bedlam at the front desk.

While we would have liked to reserve rooms in a higher category, we needed adjoining rooms and the only ones available were in the main building. The rooms were large and there was evidence of some upgrades, like the TV and granite surfaces, but the bathroom was cramped and the toilet seat looked like it had been in use since Arizona's Territorial days. The worst feature was the HVAC system, which made a loud cracking sound every time the fan came on and off. I didn't notice this until after our kids went to sleep so at that point I wasn't about to contact the front desk and initiate a room change. It was a completely sleepless night for the grown-ups.

There is an unfortunate trend among Phoenix resorts to open up their pools to the public on weekends for a fee, and the Biltmore is no exception. The pools were wall-to-wall people, with some forced to sit on the grass due to not enough chairs. The afternoon featured a DJ blasting music. There was nothing relaxing or enjoyable about the pool areas. The restrooms near the pool were ancient and filthy and my five--year-old son slipped on the slick floor.

I can't argue with the Biltmore's beauty and history but the hotel failed to deliver on the most basic aspects of a hotel stay: service, comfort, and ability to sleep. And all that was at a price that was averaging about $369 for the most basic room. Oh and wifi is not free.

  • Stayed March 2015, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

It's been 10 years since my last Biltmore stay. We suggested it to our friends when we all weto Phoenix for baseball spring training. It was a happy choice for us. The Biltmore exceeded my memories of it being a grand hotel with spacious grounds. Frank Lloyd Wright was a consulting architect on the creation of the Biltmore in the late 1920s. His influence resonates throughout down to the mission furniture and the exterior building blocks with geometric designs. Throughout its 85 year old history, various owners have added and updated while being true to the Lloyd Wright style of architecture. Owners have brought Wright designed stained glass panels and sculptures as additions to the original hotel property. The lighting, rugs, furniture and artwork throughout, were all Wright designed or influenced.
There's a private resort feeling to the extensive grounds. There are multiple swimming pools and a complete exercise facility. There's a spa and golf course which we didn't have time to try. The Biltmore was a welcome refuge to regroup from the desert sun with a cool beverage on the terrace. Terrace service at the Wright Bar was attentive. Curiously the front desk seemed understaffed for a Waldorf Astoria Hilton/Biltmore, as we had to wait or did not receive a response when we called down on occasion. Our friends enjoyed the additional amenities offered at the Ocatilla Villas. There's a reason why every American president since the Biltmore’s creation has stayed there. Presidential elegance. Admittedly some furnishings could use a refresh. There are other luxury facilities in the area, with better service, but without the history and extensive grounds.

  • Stayed March 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
White Rock, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

My family of four had a beautiful long weekend at the Biltmore. From arrival to departure we all found our hotel experience delightful. The history, architecture and gardens of the Biltmore make it into a monumental hotel that one must stay at! Johnathon at the front desk was more than professional and made our entire check-in experience fantastic, jovial and stress free. I did specifically request a renovated room and was easily provided with a lovely, beautiful, recently renovated room. We stayed from Wednesday to Sunday and did find the weekend busier but found the right activities and quieter pools easily. All of the staff were happy, cheerful and had just the perfect demeanor to them. We have stayed at Mandarin Oriental hotels and resorts and I will confidently say that my recent experience at the Biltmore Arizona was very comparable in service, quality and overall resort experience to our experiences at the Mandarin. I believe that the vintage nature of this hotel is a dramatic component of why people stay here and perhaps some of my fellow reviewers need to embrace the history and timeless qualities of this amazing property.

Room Tip: Simply ask for one of the recently renovated rooms!
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  • Stayed March 2015, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Longmont, Colorado
Top Contributor
100 reviews 100 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

. . . offering high quality accommodations, excellent customer service, and old fashioned resort ambience in a modern setting. The fountains, floral landscape, and plush furnishings remind you that it is a destination, not merely a hotel.

Room Tip: High floor, terrace building was quiet with a lovely view.
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  • Stayed March 2015, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Texas, United States
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

My family stayed her in March, 2015. The hotel grounds are really beautiful but it lost it luster as soon as we checked in.. we didn't feel welcomed, the room felt modern and sterile but not welcoming.. we had to send one of our dishes back at dinner as it was not cooked and waited, what seemed like forever for another dish..

For me it felt just like any other Hilton hotel..

  • Stayed March 2015, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Arizona Biltmore, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

Address: 2400 East Missouri Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85016
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Arizona > Central Arizona > Phoenix
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Phoenix
#5 Spa Hotel in Phoenix
#8 Luxury Hotel in Phoenix
#9 Family Hotel in Phoenix
#29 Business Hotel in Phoenix
#29 Romantic Hotel in Phoenix
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Arizona Biltmore, A Waldorf Astoria Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 738
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Polished and refined, the Arizona Biltmore,a Waldorf Astoria Resort shines brighter than ever following a grand restoration. This historic luxury resort has been a destination of inspiration for over 85 years spanning over 39 acres of lush gardens, 8 sparkling swimming pools and iconic architecture. Championship golf, the 22,000+ square foot Spa Biltmore and fitness center, multiple restaurants, and a variety of amenities await you. Experience the unrivaled grace of this timeless treasure with a spirited soul. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Arizona Biltmore Hotel Phoenix

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