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“Sadly disappointing” 2 of 5 stars
Review of The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale

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The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   111 N Birch Rd, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304   |  
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Ranked #6 of 133 Hotels in Fort Lauderdale
kingston upon thames
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
119 helpful votes 119 helpful votes
“Sadly disappointing”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2012

We decided to splash out on some luxury at the end of our long trip and get some pampering and luxury;what we expected for top end pricing. Our room, perhaps the only twin, I don't know, was right by reception and the machine that made ice. As we were right by the main thoroughfare, we had no choice but to keep the shutters closed. At least the air conditioning was very efficient. The beds are rather high off the ground and reasonably comfortable although we managed to hit our legs on the corners each time we went to the bathroom as the rooms are small. The bathroom is tiny but satisfactory although I had a very grey towel and not of great quality. The Molton Brown toiletries are nice to have. We ordered a jug of boiling water so I could make some tea (I brought my own tea bags). The jug had obviously had coffee in it as the smell remained making my tea undrinkable.
The prices of food and drink were extortionate in my view. One morning i ordered two portions of toast with jam which I planned to take to my sun bed myself (5$ to go a few feet??). I waited 30 minutes, no apology and a poor excuse that they were busy with other orders. Perhaps it might have been better to tell me first, let me go back outside and return a bit later, or maybe offer to bring it to me without charge? I am quite easy to please, but felt very affronted that the staff thought it okay to leave me standing in the dining room waiting. The prices made my eyes water.
the management leaves a lot to be desired. No one comes to the pool during the day to ask if we'd like a drink and we were unable to get coffee early in the morning ( pre 7am) as the man on the desk was too busy chatting to his friends on the phone to bother to listen to the message we left him. ("Oh, it was you was it?" was his response when we went out to the desk to see if we might get an early drink).
The towels on the sun beds are tired, some have holes in and I fished out a dead frog from the pool the first afternoon we visited. Oh, and you only get 6 hangers in the wardrobe!
On a positive note, the setting is lovely, and the sun beds comfortable and the area peaceful and quiet. Ideal for reading or staring out at the water.
We were advised to use the hotel limo service to get to the airport promptly for our return flight, only he was half an hour late arriving. Caroline, the manager offered to take us as she realised we were getting anxious we might miss our flight, and did help us eventually get to the car for our journey onwards. she offered to pick up the tab for this transfer as it was so poor, something we did appreciate. However, I do feel that they need to tighten up their offering, a lot as they fall far short of their claims at present.

Room Tip: Definitely upstairs
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PillarsManagement, Manager at The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale, responded to this review, March 7, 2012
I was a little shocked and disappointed to read your comments. Just to go over a few points, our towels are Frette and new; when you ordered tea, we brought it in our Tea Forte teapots but you wanted a larger container and our larger containers are usually used for coffee; there is no fee to have breakfast or lunch in our dining room, like in any other hotel, we have a delivery fee for orders brought to the room or in other places on the property; the morning you had to wait for breakfast, I informed you myself that we had a few orders ahead of you and that we would get it ready as soon as possible, I did apologize for the wait. The last point I will go over is “poolside service”, we do not have a dedicated pool attendant like you could find in larger hotels, but as we mention when we give you the tour of the property at check-in, you can ask anything to anyone who works here. There is always one of us walking around and checking discretely that our guests have all they need.
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591 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (115)
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Erfurt, Germany
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2012

I have booked my 2 night stay at the hotel due to the good comments and a good deal I have found on Expedia for a place like this for a "run of the house" room.
First of all I have to say: I would stay there again and really made the right choice.
We arrived around 5 pm and received a warm welcome at the small front desk inside. We were brought to our room, which was in direction to the road, but never noisy at all. People speaking about small rooms in their comments are right. If you need a huge room, they also have some of those, but not the one we have had. For us it was not an issue. Everything was clean, cozy and well kept. We have had a good sleep in the bed.
The gentlemen gave us a short tour to show us around. You find complimentary water, coffee and pool towels by the pool.
There is a small deck were you overlook the waterway and it is a very nice atmosphere. We have had breakfast there on our last morning and it was good - nothing to complain about.
We hired a car for our stay and have had complimentary parking right at the hotel and never a problem with finding a parking space, as soon as there is plenty of space beside the hotel, not just right in front.
We went to the beach and it is really just a short walk to get there and hang out for the day.
If you look for something different than the huge hotels and their chains and something a little bit more quiet - it is the right place, especially for couples.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Durham, NH
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
49 hotel reviews
Reviews in 48 cities Reviews in 48 cities
91 helpful votes 91 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2012 via mobile

We were surprised with the great reviews. The rooms and pool were no better than one would get at a Hampton Inn. The draw here is it being on the intercostal and having very comfortable lounge chairs in which to watch the boats go by.

We tend to stay at small hotels and inns and found this one to be overpriced. It seems most of the money went into the entrance, reception desk area and restaurant . By 5:00 the lovely sitting area by the intercoastal is turned into a restaurant and are no longer for guests.

The front desk staff are young and attractive and helpful. The Pillars seems to appeal to those over 50 and international visitors and anyone looking for privacy and relaxation. It is also gay friendly .

The pluses were free parking, great
linens, and ice tea by the pool area. A refrigerator and microwave. It is also a 5 minute walk to beach and restaurants. For the better restaurants, which Ft Lauderdale has many, you will need a car.

For these prices we expected more. Even a continental breakfast or afternoon wine hour or tea would be more in line with other small hotels.

Unless pricing changes we will stay elsewhere. Prices listed on trip advisor are much lower than actual fees.

  • Stayed February 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PillarsManagement, Owner at The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale, responded to this review, March 7, 2012
Thank you for your review and your kind comments about our service, location and the complimentary items we offer such as free parking and ice tea by the pool.
We are a little confused on how you concluded that our rooms are no better than a 3-star chain hotel. Certainly the size of the room you stayed in might be similar and of course, both rooms offer the same basic features such as flat screen TV, ironing board and so on but our rooms, like most other 4-star properties, include his and hers robes, high thread count luxury linen and towels (in our case Frette), duvet, feather bed, iPhone/iPad docking station and speakers, high end toiletries, marble bathrooms, custom and top end designer furniture and custom created photographs on the wall. Unlike the chains, our hotel rooms (whether you approve of the design or not) were created for our hotel only and will not be found in any other place around the world. By the way we like Hampton Inns. They offer a great product at budget prices. They are certainly a leader in their competitive universe.
Our prices are similar to the other 4-star hotels on Fort Lauderdale Beach. We have a strong upscale, repeat business base that returns on a regular basis. These guests understand that running a small intimate hotel on one of the best sites in Fort Lauderdale costs more per room to own and operate. As you mentioned in your review, The Pillars also attracts an international crowd. These guests and many others from the USA come here because they look for a special place and find it in what we offer: sophistication, intimacy, luxurious amenities, fine dining under the stars, outstanding location and personal service.
Yes, the dock converts to a private dining facility at night for the exclusive use of our hotel guests and members of our private club which helps support the property. The restaurant is not open to the general public. We introduced the club concept to provide the economy of scale we needed to operate a first class dining experience. The dockside fine dining experience at The Pillars is one of the highlights for people staying with us.
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Dothan
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2012

The service and the food were excellent. The Pillars Hotel is like an oasis in the middle of all the hustle and bussle. We certainly enjoyed the quite, peaceful setting. We will be back next February.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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andover, ma
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2012

Loved this place. So quaint and hidden. The view from the dock was spectacular and the chairs set up around it made for a lovely place to sit and enjoy it. Dinner was also available waterside. The pool area was lovely and seating was arranged such that you weren't next to others which was nice for privacy if you wanted it. The rooms were nice with beautiful linens and bath products. The bathroom was a bit small but nicely done. The staff went out of their way to be helpful and courteous. Cant wait to go back!

Room Tip: second floor might be best voice wise. we heard rushing water from drains above
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Ireland
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 28, 2012

We had a two night stay at this hidden gem in Fort Lauderdale last year on route to the Carribbean. never having been to Florida before, we were not sure what to expect as Fort lauderdale has a bit of a reputation for being a party town for spring break students. We had also booked a run of the house room as this was all that was available at the time of booking. We were efficiently greeted by the owners and shown to a delightful room at the side of the pool which was beautifully located and pleasantly large with all the facilities we needed after a long haul flight. We had two very special days in Fort L which were made all the more enjoyable by staying in this really special hotel. In fact it's so hidden that the taxi driver from the airport told us that he had never heard of it before. We walked all over town one evening and the next day spent the day on the water taxi stopping on and off where we felt like it having lunch (the Casablana Cafe was super) and then spent the late afternoon relaxing at the lovely poolside. The pool facilities and adjoining rest rooms were spotless and there were thoughtful drinks left at the poolside for the guests and coffee in the reception area.
The highlight of this memorable trip was the dinner al fresco under the stars on our second evening on the water's edge . One previous reviewer made reference to the additional charge of $ 5 for having breakfast outside. Well it was worth every cent for the memory to take away forever. Remember, you would be paying more for room service. Anyway we were sorry to leave and the hotel kindly organised out taxi to the airport. We had an extremely memorable 48 hours in this hidden and charming paradise.

Room Tip: Pool rooms are helpful for either families with small children or those with mobility problems.
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  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Calhoun, GA
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2012

As a frequent traveler, my wife and I truly enjoy staying in smaller boutique hotels. My wife and I stayed here for a long weekend as we have stayed in many of the hotels in the "Small Luxury Hotels of the World" chain. This hotel met our expectations! Although it is not as luxurious as many of their partner hotels in Europe - then again - Fort Lauderdale is not Europe! As for other reviews, I agree with the television complaint as it is very difficult to operate if you are not used to DirecTV. As for other complaints, I just do not concur. Could the hotel use sprucing up? - Yes, but it is quite satisfactory the way it is. The bathrooms are made from Italian marble and are quite nice, there again maybe not like one could find in Rome, Paris or even Venice - but they are very nice for a hotel that is stateside.

The beds were comfortable and the service was very good. The location of the hotel is very good being two blocks from the beach and directly on the intercoastal waterway. The views are excellent also. My wife and I both truly enjoyed being addressed by our last name by members of the staff even the first time we met a staff person in the hall or out by the pool. The Pillars is the type of hotel that gives good service and is small enough to accommodate your needs at the drop of a hat without having to get pre-approval from higher management.

Overall, our three night stay went extremely well and we feel we got what was requested with the room that was booked. Maybe other people just enjoy complaining, however, when you stay at a hotel of this nature and for the price that is paid, I simply do not agree with the complaints of others - they are simply unjustified in my opinion. If you want a mediocre hotel, stay at one of the chain hotels in Ft. Lauderdale, if you want upscale service, room and a staff that treats you very warm and friendly, then The Pillars is the place to stay in Ft. Lauderdale.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 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.
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Additional Information about The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale

Address: 111 N Birch Rd, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Fort Lauderdale
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Fort Lauderdale
#3 Romantic Hotel in Fort Lauderdale
#4 Family Hotel in Fort Lauderdale
#6 Business Hotel in Fort Lauderdale
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale 4*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Pillars Hotel in Fort Lauderdale, Florida is a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH) and a Conde Nast Johansen selected hotel. The property is an elegant and sophisticated 18 room hotel ideally located right on the Intracoastal Waterway, and only a few short steps from the beach. The Pillars offers its hotel guests an outstanding dining experience and an exceptional level of personal service and luxury. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Pillars

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