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“Wonderful experience, family friendly” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami

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The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   455 Grand Bay Drive, Key Biscayne, FL 33149   |  
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Hotel amenities
Special Offer
$50 Credit + Breakfast
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Key Biscayne
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Wonderful experience, family friendly”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013 via mobile

We Have thoroughly enjoyed the beach, the pools, the restaurants. The location is a bit more secluded than I had hoped but will definitely return. The spa is wonderful and the service is exactly what we have come to expect from other ritz Carlton hotels.

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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.
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1,355 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 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (257)
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English first
West Islip, NY
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
43 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
188 helpful votes 188 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

I am not a fan of Ritz Carlton hotels. They are Marriott hotels with just enough extra tinsel to convince the nouveau riche to part with $1,000 per night for a fake luxury experience. Yet I liked the Ritz Carlton Key Biscayne. The setting is magnificent with lots of pristine beach and zero South Beach clowns. The staff is outstanding: well trained, welcoming, and genuinely concerned about guest happiness.

The five-star staff treatment started with a warm welcome from the doorman, who immediately assumed full responsibility for our Mercedes and luggage and waved us inside as if we were long lost friends returning home. Reception was handled just the way I like it: quickly, efficiently, and with a flute of champagne.

We were escorted to our room by a charming man, who took the time to carefully explain the features of the room, adjust the air conditioning to my favorite temperature, answer my questions, and carefully stow our bags. He even pointed out the little step onto the balcony so that I wouldn’t trip over it. After fifteen minutes of courteous service, he shimmered off without lingering for a tip. With a sharp poke in the ribs, I sent My Dearest running to hand over a well-deserved tip in the corridor.

The food in the restaurants was of indifferent quality (more on that below!), but the wait persons shone. Sitting by the beach one evening the breeze picked up and temperatures fell. Within minutes the wait staff were surrounding us with heat lamps so that My Dearest and I could enjoy our cocktails and the sound of the surf without shivering. When I asked for a suggestion on an aged tequila to finish my dinner, the hotel’s dedicated tequila guy, who grandly claimed to be the only dedicated tequila guy in Florida, was rolled out to give us a seminar on the different types and styles of aged tequila. While his claim to be the only dedicated tequila guy in the Sunshine State is suspect, his tequila suggestions were yummy and warming! The waiter at the Dunes beach bar could not have been more helpful.

In my experience almost every member of the hotel staff stood ready both to anticipate my needs and go the extra mile to make me feel like a princess. This key ingredient made our stay a real pleasure.

The room, alas, was a Marriott room with a few extra trimmings. Fake art on the walls. Big chunky blocks of dark wood furniture designed to convince gullible folk from the Midwest that they are staying at Blenheim Palace. People! Big furniture does not equal luxury! The coffee service features paper cups, not coffee mugs. I did like the iPhone dock and the plentiful electrical outlets!

The bathroom was tired. Only one sink so I had to wait while My Dearest, who must be the slowest shaver on the planet, laboriously scraped his razor across every millimeter of his chin and then left me with a sink lined with beard stubble scum. No high end product: just Marriott shampoo, conditioner, and bath gel relabeled with the Ritz Carlton logo. The soap came from Sysco Guest Supply, a (highly profitable) company that supplies many hospitals and prisons. Thin towels and bathmats. Cheap tiling. No hand sprayer in the shower. On the plus side, the mirrors were nice.

Shortcomings like these separate Ritz Carlton fake luxury from real luxury hotels.

The hotel restaurants are cafeterias serving formulaic regionally themed food. Cantina Beach, the Mexican spot, features a tired menu of been there, done that Tex-Mex food. The menu promises that the guacamole will be mashed up tableside but ours arrived already prepared – apparently fresh from the fridge. The ceviche appetizer was adequate but not very exciting. We did enjoy the wide selection of tequilas and margaritas! Dune, the beachside bar, served well-executed bar food with a Florida spin. The grouper burger was a high point. The Cantina Beach and Dune seating alongside the beach offers nice views and fresh sea air. Otherwise none of the restaurants was a particularly charming spot for a meal.

Key Biscayne is an oasis of charm far apart from the Miami squalor, frenzy and imbeciles. Miles of unspoiled beach to meander along. Running and biking paths in every direction. Fun places to eat. I especially recommend the Rusty Pelican, which serves excellent fish and lovely views of the Miami skyline! (Of course, if you are a South Beach imbecile, you will find Key Biscayne far removed from the noisy, tasteless things that you consider fun. South Beach imbeciles: I encourage you to stay elsewhere – for both our sakes!)

While the Ritz Carlton Key Biscayne is an upgraded Marriott, her lovely setting and excellent staff make this a charming place to stay.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
new york
Top Contributor
85 reviews 85 reviews
70 hotel reviews
Reviews in 68 cities Reviews in 68 cities
84 helpful votes 84 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2013

This is an upscale hotel, and you must know going in that you will spend a fortune. I went for 4 days to relax; I didn't rent a car because I wanted to lounge and relax without having to plan or drive anywhere. This is a good hotel to do this at if you can afford it, as the location is a little remote - you can't walk to much anything. The adult pool area is great - there is a second pool that is a little larger and allows kids - and there is direct beach access right up against the hotel.

The rooms were fairly large and average Ritz...no complaints. The bathrooms were oversized with stall shower separate from the tub which I like.

Restaurants - the Italian restaurant on site is worth the hefty prices however skip the Mexican restaurant, the quality was not good. The beach side burger restaurant was good. For breakfast, we ordered coffee and bagels from the lobby bar (also very expensive, but again, you know what you are getting into price-wise when you book Ritz).

The service was great...I would stay here again. This hotel is far, far superior than the Ritz Carlton South Beach.

Room Tip: Enjoy the Italian restaurant but skip the overrated Mexican restaurant (poor quality food).
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

the hotel is very nice, very clean..I was honestly expecting a better beach, and did not love the location. Being our first time in miami I did not realized that key biscayne is about 25 minutes from south beach. If you want to stay where the action is, then the ritz in south beach is a better option. The brunch is a MUST

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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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New York
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2013

This was our second Christmas week visit to the Ritz Carlton on Key Biscayne, and it was quite nice and relaxing. The hotel and staff do get somewhat overwhelmed during this businest of weeks and are a little less flexible about things like late checkout, but overall the service is quite good all the way from the pool/beach guys to the wait staff to the bellmen, to the housekeeping staff (although if you want to talk to the housekeeping staff you will need to brush up on your Spanish). The grounds are quite lovely and I love the fact that they have a separate outdoor pool for adults only (the main pool is a zoo of kids during Christmas week). The physical plant/rooms are a bit below average by Ritz Carlton standards, but still pretty nice. The gym is pretty good, but could use replacement of some of the older equipment. If you want to have an active nightlife/shopping I would stay at the Ritz in South Beach, as Key Biscayne is fairly isolated from anything else other than the resort itself, and for nightlife/shopping you need to drive 30 minutes to South Beach, or 20 minutes to Coral Gables. But its great if you want to be away from the South Beach hustle and bustle, and the restaurants at the hotel are very good. Rates at Christmas time are jacked up to the moon, of course, and they nickel and dime you for things like $20 a day for an umbrella on the beach, and $32 a day to park your car, but what can you do.

Room Tip: Obviously, ocean view rooms are preferable, but you will pay for that.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
Chicago, Illinois
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2012

Let me start by saying that I think this is the best resort in the area! They have a great location away from the noise and dirty Miami beach area but close enough to still have access to Miami whenever you want!

What they can improve

Much of their staff speaks broken english
Bathrooms for public use near pool are dirty and falling apart
The restaurants and spa were overwhelmed, too few staff and too many guests
Poor service at every restaurant and even by the mostly empty pools

Things done right

Outstanding food, the fruit was very fresh
Quick room service
Check in was very easy
Staff was very friendly and helpful
Rooms were great, comfortable and very clean

Something I highly recommend is their yoga class taught by Donnatella, truly a great instructor!

I will be returning and I would recommend this hotel to anyone interested in traveling to Miami

Room Tip: Ocean views are a must! The noise from the wind and ocean doesn't come through unless the door...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 4 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.
New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2012

Our family has returned to this hotel for the third Christmas time trip and we liked it even more this year. The service is perfect (no kidding... really perfect) and we really got to relax. We sat by the pool every day -- which was just a few steps away from the beach. We liked the spa and the tennis courts. The only issue we had for the days we were there, was that the work out room is a little small for the size of the hotel, with not enough cardiac machines and definitely not enough space for stretches and floor exercise. But this is a small nit...

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
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 Key Biscayne, Miami

Address: 455 Grand Bay Drive, Key Biscayne, FL 33149
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Key Biscayne
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Key Biscayne
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami 5*
Number of rooms: 352
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami Hotel Key Biscayne
Key Biscayne Ritz Carlton
Ritz Key Biscayne
Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne

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