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“Beware of the extra charges for everything and no extras” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Casa Marina, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

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Casa Marina, A Waldorf Astoria Resort
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1500 Reynolds St, Key West, FL 33040   |  
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Ranked #26 of 43 Hotels in Key West
Charleston, South Carolina
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Beware of the extra charges for everything and no extras”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

We chose to stay at the Casa Marina for our annual Meeting of the Minds fund raiser, but we were not prepared for the additional charges that were not explained before we finalized the reservation. First, they tacked in a $25.00 per night resort charge for using their (unheated) pool with NO WHIRLPOOL! Then they tacked on an $18.00 per night self parking charge, or a $25.00 per night valet parking charge. so the $199.00 per night basic room fee actually became a $243.00 per night charge for the basics. And this does not cover the fact that there was no free coffee. The free expresso was the grossest thing we have ever tried, like drinking cardboard coffee in a cup.

The fact is that you could get out of the parkig charge by parking on the street just on the other side of the wall from the self park lot, and they did provide our group with a free shuttle to get back anf forth from the hotel to the Key West facilities, but the down side will never offset the extra charges. In the future, we will booka room at the Truman Annex.

Room Tip: Avoid this tourist trap, and book at the Truman Annex.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Steve T, Manager at Casa Marina, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, responded to this review, November 17, 2012
Dear forthlin,

We appreciate your feedback in regards to your recent stay at Casa Marina Resort. We have shared your feedback in regards to your expectations of Waldorf Astoria Resorts with our management team.

Kind Regards,
Steven Tresh
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,297 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 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 (908)
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Brighton, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

This our second time here and on arrival with two other friends, We were greeted with good & bad news, That one of our rooms would onlly be available for one night as it then had to be x-rayed ( don't ask ) but one couple would then be upgraded to a sea facing suite. Fine but how about the other couple left at the other end of the Hotel ? This was duly sorted within half an hour and we were both given suites. From this point on Our stay just took off.
Wonderfull staff. Most Americans are friendly but the staff here exeeded all, We had dinner on the beach one night & the food & service was excellent. This Hotel Has a private beach,with silk hammocks strung from palm tree's food & bar served outside with two very large pools. iced towels to cool you and ice lollies served every afternoon. It is never crowded. The suite's are just great with french doors directly on to the beach. There is much to do in the Hotel. There are all sorts of boats to hire, at a very reasonable price along with bicycles. This would be a great place for a celebration. there were a couple of weddings taking place the week we were there. we all have a different idea of paradise, but to me this was very near. Key West itself has changed a lot, Nearly gone are all the lovely individual shops, and the place is full hen & stag parties...But its still a lovely place, The best part is the US Dollar rate which makes everything very affordale

Room Tip: Rooms next to the lift can be noisy, always go for a sea view
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 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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Boulder, Colorado, United States
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

The service at the hotel pools is amazing. Free drink of the day, free popsicles, iced towels scented with eucalyptus! And, they come around and clean your sunglasses!!!! Mark, Constantine, Austin, and Bob are the BEST. Thanks guys.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Springfield, Illinois
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

Very nicely appointed older hotel. It has the elegance of style and all the modern amenities. We would definately stay here again. The pools are wonderful and the beach outstanding. The staff is very friendly and helpful.

Room Tip: We had a standard king room on the 2nd floor facing north. Not much of a view, but very convenient...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 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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Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

My husband and I debated on which hotel to stay for our honeymoon to the keys and we're glad we chose the Casa Marina. Great location, outside of the busy Duval Street (just a 5 minute bike ride away) with it's own private beach. Upon arrival, we were greeted by valet - 25$ a night, pretty standard for valet parking. We only did it one night as there was FREE street parking right across the street.

The hotel was built in the 1930s, it's been renovated to keep up with the times but hasn't lost its charm. Dark hardwood floors, white curtains, neutral tones when it came to furniture. Beautiful yet small lobby, had a small bar, computer station with internet, and seats to lounge.

The hotel staff is very friendly, the concierge, very accommodating, helpful and very knowledgeable. I wanted to surprise my husband as his birthday was on the 3rd day of our visit and they helped me in picking chocolate covered strawberries, and hand wrote a card for me as we did this over the phone. We were out on a tour of the Dry Tortugas and they timed the surprise perfectly, so when we got back to the hotel it was waiting for him.

Our first room was a bit of a disappointment.. corner room with a measly view of the beach. When we got in, we immediately looked at each other and said, let's move to another room. My husband went and spoke to the front desk and they switched our room to a slightly bigger one with a better view of the beach.

The beach was a small, man made and the beach service was OK. If you can snag a hammock, do it!

The room was simple, king size bed, rather small TV with very few channels. The bathroom was quite small, and the fixtures seemed old.. Although overall the room was nice, it was not what I was expecting of a Waldorf 4 Diamond hotel, or any 4 Diamond hotel for that matter.

We stayed for 10 days, spent time at the outside bar in the late afternoon before heading to dinner. Ate breakfast a few mornings at the hotel restaurant which had great outdoor seating. Tried dinner at the hotel but the hostess didn't seem very inviting, knowledgeable or helpful, so we ate out. The hotel was a great retreat from the busy Duval street scene (day or night) and from all of the fun activities and exploring of the quaint island.

It was easy to part ways with the hotel, but hard to part ways with the island.

Room Tip: For free parking, park in the street. Rent bicycles rather than use your car, corner rooms are odd i...
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  • Stayed June 2012, 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oviedo, Florida
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

There were definitely plusses and minuses to our recent stay at Casa Marina, and a couple of the minuses are controllable and would be just changes I make if we go back:

The Suite
We stayed in a one-bedroom ocean vista suite. Quite simply, it's not worth the additional expense as we spent almost no time in the suite. It truly was a one-bedroom suite but the bedroom was dark, the ceililng was low, and was hardly the ocean front vista I expected to wake up to each morning. When your initial reaction when walking into a suite at a Waldorf is, "oh, this is all it is," not a great sign in my book It felt more like a little apartment than a modern suite. This might just be a personal preference but it just didn't feel like it was worth the cost.

Room Cleaning
We were always wondering when we went back to our room whether it would be cleaned or not. We came back at 4pm one day and it still wasn't clean. When we called to complain and have someone come up after we were ready (in like 30 minutes), they sent someone immediately, only adding to our frustration.

The "Spa"
I wasn't terribly surprised by the high prices at the spa when I booked in advance. It's what I expect at a hotel of this level; however, for that price, I expect an actual spa with some level of overhead (steam room, hot tub, locker room etc.) rather than a converted hotel room. Pretty inappopriate in my opinion. There's also an option for a massage on the beach, but it's not secluded and right next to where the jet skis leave from. The massage itself was actually pretty good; however, it killed the experience a bit that I was paying a premium simply because I was at a nice property but not actually in a spa. The hotel does a nice job trying to make the room an inviting spot, but it's not a spa - it has more the feel of a temporary arrangement.

The Beach
Now this is the reason to come back to Casa Marina. It's one of the better beach/pool setups I've seen at a hotel. The beach is easily accessible, close to the hotel, has the right level of waitstaff taking orders (and not being pushy about it), and has some of the more comfortable hammocks I've seen. It was a perfect place to relax.

Location
It's far enough removed from the craziness of Duval Street but close enough to where you can easily get there (we drove and paid to park - was an easier decision with a pregnant wife) and experience what you want to experience while knowing you have the ability to quickly retreat to the quiet and luxury of the hotel.

Breakfast
The buffet breakfast was excellent, especially for a buffet. While it was expensive (as I would expect), it actually seemed like a decent value. I also liked that there was a coffee shop in the hotel's store that was an easy option if you just wanted a coffee and bagel or muffin.

Overall, I'd go back but I'd do it differently - I'd save my money and just get a regular room and take a pass on the massage while still enjoying the amenities the hotel has to offer. While I think it's silly that they charge a daily resort fee (just add it to the price of the room so guests don't see it - it's like a checked bag fee except there's no option not to check a bag - I'd rather pay $485 and get free towel service, free internet, free fitness center, etc. rather than $460 for the room w/ a $25 kicker, but again that's just me - I get why they do it and it's not a deal breaker).

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Baltimore, Maryland
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012

loved it here. The pool area was lovely & the scattered hammocks are awesome- the fire pit on the cool nights was wonderful also. At this time of year, they got a bit crowded - it might be worth adding another! Brandie at the pool area was so helpful - the bartender was AMAZINGLY good & efficient! Nice breakfast buffet included w/AMES FHR - very good. We booked a suite & it was SO nice - plenty of room for two tall adults to relax, spread out, & also sit on the balcony & hear the waves. Check-in suggested Louie's Backyard Cafe - 3 block walk - our first night & we loved it so much we went back again! Buy the Old Town Trolley ticket - it's good for 2 days - and use it to go wherever you need to be in Key West - then come back & enjoy the resort feel at Casa Marina. My only suggestion would be that one of the pools be an "adult only" pool & one for kids, and a few more of those big chairs in the pool! I want to come back if only to sit in that chair! Would suggest this resort to anyone - enjoy!

Room Tip: the suite is HUGE - living/dining area, nespresso, lots of storage, if you're there for a few da...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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 Casa Marina, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

Address: 1500 Reynolds St, Key West, FL 33040
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Florida Keys > Key West
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Key West
#8 Spa Hotel in Key West
#9 Luxury Hotel in Key West
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Casa Marina, A Waldorf Astoria Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 311
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
With a $43 million renovation complete, this Mediterranean-inspired resort sits on a 1,100-foot private beach. The historic beachfront resort, combines 1920s ambiance with a chic, contemporary flair, features sophisticated new accommodations, complete with LCD televisions, iPod docking stations, and an in-room espresso, coffee, and tea maker. Amenities include: two tropical pools, water-sports activities, spa services, poolside cabanas, Sun/Sun Bar & Grill serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and The Lobby Lounge for tapas and libations. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Casa Marina, a Waldorf Astoria Hotel Key West
Waldorf Astoria Key West
The Waldorf Astoria Collection
Casa Marina Resort Key West
Casa Marina Key West

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