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“very good beach vacation” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island

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The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island
5.0 of 5 Resort   |   4750 Amelia Island Parkway, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, FL 32034-5501   |  
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Hotel amenities
Special Offer
Complimentary 3rd Night
Ranked #4 of 11 Hotels in Fernandina Beach
GreenLeadersBronze level
Baltimore, Maryland
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
75 helpful votes 75 helpful votes
“very good beach vacation”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2009

We have just returned from an excellent vacation at the RC Amelia Island.
The resort is on a beautiful stretch of beach south of the town of Fernandina Beach. IMHO the beach location is the greatest "amenity" offered at this hotel.
The pool, fitness facility, and spa are pretty much standard RC issue (i.e. excellent). We had a couples massage, very well done.
The food was excellent, we used room service a lot....the food was delivered promptly, and hot.
The hotel is a little more than 1/2 hour from JAX airport, and there are many places to pick up sundries along the way (a Walmart Super Center, Publix etc.) Nice convenience factor.
The grounds are immaculate, well maintained, and beautiful. If our stay was any indication, expect some conventions/meetings and weddings, especially on weekends.
This is an older facility, but the upkeep is excellent. Our room was nice enough and housekeeping maintained it well, but it was modest compared to some of the other high end hotels we have stayed at. Smaller room than other RCs we've visited, the bathroom not as "grand" (for example no separate free standing shower as in many other nicer hotels).
These are minor issues, enjoy the terrific beach and the sounds of the Atlantic from your balcony!

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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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1,286 reviews from our community

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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 (305)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
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English first
Atlanta, GA
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
37 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2009

The hotel itself is very nice and typical of a Ritz, but the service and attention to detail is lacking in some respects. My feeling is that the quality of service you receive from some staff scales with your appearance of wealth—at times some of the wait staff acted as if they were better than we were. One waitress at the pool bistro was so bad, a guest we had brought to the hotel for an afternoon noticed her bad attitude and asked us “what her problem was.” Most of the staff was polite and helpful, but it only takes a few to spoil the day. The bottom line is that every guest is paying the same over-priced rate, and the staff should treat all guests equally regardless if they show up in shorts and flip-flops or a three piece suit.

Likes: Honored our room requests, spotless interior throughout, quiet room, great breakfast buffet which was included in rate, nice outdoor amenities (pools, fire pits, and plenty of chairs and umbrellas at the pool and beach), attentive housekeeping service, flat-screen HD television, outdoor balcony, and a very quiet beach (perhaps it was low season though).

Dislikes: Valet parking was all over the place (it seems they no longer have a covered parking deck and they will park your car on the curb of the entrance way, in the grass, or off in a parking lot away from the hotel where mine received gifts from the birds above). I was expecting the great RC bed but found my mattress worn out and not as comfortable as compared to other RC hotels (the pillows and sheets were great as usual). I was also annoyed by the overall snotty atmosphere (would say good morning to other guests and they would just keep walking as if I did not exist). I realize the hotel cannot control this, but understand that it comes with the territory.

Overall a relaxing stay and I will most likely return in the future.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
new york, ny
Top Contributor
86 reviews 86 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
121 helpful votes 121 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2009

This was our second stay here for a long golf weekend and we were very pleased. Service was impeccable. Wonderful breakfast buffet. We had a spacious ocean view room, which was just beginning to show a little wear and tear, but overall this is a lovely resort. There were a few business groups there but we did not feel as if they overwhelmed the hotel. Will definitely return.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
fairfax
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2009

My family and I (we have young kids) spend our Spring Vacation and Easter Weekend at this location. I must say the staff and service was wonderful, just like you would expect from a Ritz. The programs they have for the kids are great. The kids pool and play area are wonderful. They had a wonderful complimentary Easter Egg Hunt for the kids on Sunday, it was a lot of fun and was packed with eggs and treats, enough that no child there would be disappointed. However, I was disappointed with the cleansiness of the bathroom and room in general. If a Ritz staff member is reading this, than please make some changes because we want to come back. The room was very dusty. It had a nice dusty table and HDTV. The bed was awful. It was an old mattress with a pillow top on it that kept sliding off. The bathroom shower tile had mold on it. The tile seemed like it had never been wiped, I could clearly see soap scum on the walls. There is really no excuse for this. The water pressure in the shower was terrrible and yes we did see the lever to adjust the pressure, it did not work no matter which way you moved it. When cleaning service came they did not clean, just replaced towels took out garbage and made the beds. I did not complain about the condition of the room to management because when I am on vacation I was to just enjoy it. We did not stay in the room much but for the price we paid the rooms should be cleaner and no, I did not have breakfast included or hotel credit. Speaking about the breakfast, It was very costly and quality was very average.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, Florida
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 13, 2009

In preparation for our 1 year anniversary, my wife and I chose to stay at the Ritz Carlton Amelia Island. This was despite the large number of mediocre or dissatisfied reviews posted here on Tripadvisor. These reviews and complaints addressed poor water pressure, quality of conditions, service and/or cost.

Having spent four days and $2000 there, I can only surmise that those complaining about water pressure had no mechanical skills since the bathroom fixtures in the tub had a lever which would alter the water pressure when moved. Others complaining about the hotel's conditioning seem at least to me to have unrealistic expectations no hotel would be able to meet or they have a silver spoon pushed way, way too far back in their mouths. The condition of the hotel may not compare as highly as some of the other Ritz locations around the globe, but I daresay that any beach resort hotel patronized by large numbers of families with young children would. Regarding the staff, from the moment we checked in to our departure, we were treated graciously and expediently by every member of the staff we requested a service from. The quality of the restaurants and spa were what we expected them to be, though the premium one pays for the Ritz Carlton reputation may cause some hesitation. As to cost, we received a room rate which included breakfast and a $40 daily credit to use on the premises.

Herein lies the only caveat I would call your attention to: this hotel (Naples Beach Resort also) is very popular for families with children. If you are thinking of getting away for a nice quiet weekend as were we, this is probably not the hotel where you want to stay. One way around this is to book a service at the spa which affords you the opportunity to use the spa's pool and dodge all the kids at the resort's main pool. Also, request to be located on the south end of the hotel to avoid the busier and noisier portions of the hotel. The short walk to the pool, spa and restaurants is worth the quiet you will receive if that is what you are looking for.

I think you will enjoy your time if you go, we certainly did.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 12, 2009

My family and I love this hotel. It is high quality, as all Ritz-Carlton hotels should be. We are repeat guests, and stay at this hotel at least once a year.

However, if you have stayed at other Ritz-Carlton hotels, then this particular hotel may not be what you are expecting.

The rooms are clean, the beds are plush, and the televisions have been recently replaced for shiny new HDTVs. The location is wonderful - Amelia Island is one of the best kept secrets of Florida.

The biggest problem that my family and I have experienced with the hotel is the room service. We constantly use the room service, usually for breakfast. You can expect a problem every time you order food from them. We've had dirty glasses (covered with lipstick and grime), food that had not matched the description in the menu, and rude servers. That being said, almost every time we have complained we have had our problems fixed with no questions asked.

The only exception to this was our last visit. We ordered a slice of chocolate cake. I had tried the cake on the previous visit and was provided with a slice of chocolate cake with dark chocolate frosting and pretty gold flakes decorating it. However, on the last visit, when I ordered the cake, I was provided with a small cake drenched with cherry liqueur. When we called down to room service whether we had ordered the cake off the wrong menu (there are different restaurants that you can order from), we were informed that the cake had always been prepared this way.

However, if you are looking for a nice, quiet getaway to the beach, then I'd definitely recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed February 2009
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
new york, ny
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2009

I was a little nervous to stay here after reading a lot of mixed reviews. All in all, I thought that it was a nice place to stay, and I enjoyed myself (for most of the time) while on property. That said, it was WAAY overpriced for what it was. It reminded me of a Hilton or Marriott resort somewhere... not a Ritz-Carlton.

In some areas, the service was over the top great. In others, it was lacking. My first night there, my fiance and I flew in from New York and were excited to get the last 2 hrs of sunlight at the pool. We called the concierge to make sure that the pool was open before rushing outside... we were laying down for maybe 10 minutes before a staff member came up to us and said that there would be a reception in the pool area later on that night and the guest holding the reception wanted us to leave immediately while they were setting up. He did offer us drinks and to open up the spa pool for us (and later, we were offered dinner in the cafe by the manager), but the bottom line was that if we are staying at the Ritz, we can afford to buy our own drinks, we didn't want dinner in the cafe, and we wanted to lie out at the pool with a view of the ocean! That really rubbed me the wrong way. If I had spent $200 for the night, maybe not so much, but when you spend this kind of money you are expecting to be able to use the amenities that were advertised. If they were going to shut down the pool on a Friday late afternoon (which seems silly to me as I'm sure there were many other guests who were there for the weekend who wanted to use the pool), they needed to let the concierge etc know to communicate that to guests. It probably wouldnt have been quite as irritating if we did not specifically call down to inquire about whether the pool was open first.

Along the same lines, no one ever asked me whether I enjoyed my stay at checkout. I would have shared the above story to them instead of putting it online, but no one asked. Also, we were there for a wedding and they screwed up the out of town bags that the bride and groom had left for guests.

However, some parts of the service were great. The people working at the pool on Saturday were fantastic, as were the ones working at the beach. They really went out of their way to make you feel like you were staying at a nice place.

The room was a little bit dated and reminded me more of a Marriott/Hilton than a Ritz. I did love the big loveseat.. it was great to read/nap in.. and we LOVED the balcony. Both nights we sat outside while my fiance smoked cigars.. that was very relaxing. This might sound minor, but one thing I thought was a little odd was that the door separating the toilet from the rest of the bathroom had slats in it. My understanding is that the whole point of having the toilet separate from the rest of the bathroom is to give someone privacy.. but when you can see and hear through the door becasue of the slats, it kind of defeats the purpose of the door. Just something I noticed.

All in all, there were good and bad parts of our stay here. We certainly had a good time, but not for what we paid. I did feel kind of ripped off when we were checking out... I could have had the same experience elsewhere for much less. I don't mind paying a lot when the hotel is obviously worth it, but this was not.

(I should add, however, that the wedding we attended here was absolutely gorgeous... and our experiences as hotel guests were not a reflection of our experience as wedding guests).

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island

Address: 4750 Amelia Island Parkway, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, FL 32034-5501
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Amelia Island > Fernandina Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Fernandina Beach
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Fernandina Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island 5*
Number of rooms: 446
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Immerse yourself in southern charm at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. With miles of pristine beaches to explore, you’ll find yourself basking in the glow of the sun as you swim, relax or walk along the sandy shore. As one of the most popular beach destinations on the East Coast, this luxury hotel in Florida provides a welcome barrier between you and the world beyond. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Ritz-Carlton - Amelia Island Hotel Amelia Island
Ritz Carlton Amelia Island
Ritz Amelia Island
Amelia Island Ritz-Carlton
The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island Fernandina Beach, FL

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