We have stayed numerous times in this hotel b/c it is conveniently located to where we go to work, it offers a good rate, it has the Manager's Reception and breakfast and we can earn HH points.
This hotel's biggest asset is Rick Funke, the new manager. He goes above and beyond what normally would be expected of a manager, including being there (and cleaning the tables) at breakfast in in the evenings. As for other employees, the night manager for the front desk, Carol (?), is equally pleasant and efficient and Michael, who is new since our last visit is also the type of employee Hilton should be proud to have on their team.
However, he is working within the confines of this hotel's franchisee. While I can see why the owner's wouldn't be bothered with refurbishing the hotel---why, when they have a high occupancy rate and keep the prices low---but the suites and the furnishings are tired and worn out. A case in point are the filthy carpets in the hallways and the stained and tired sofas in the living rooms. This really is discouraging and doesn't present a good image of the Homewood Brand.
Also, I feel that the manager's hands are tied because it is difficult to get enough housekeeping staff and combined with the high turnover, this often means that the suites are not cleaned until 5-6pm and when they do, the cleaning is haphazard---some days they take out the garbage and some days they forget to replenish the coffee or shampoos. This late cleaning s not really what you want when you arrive home from a busy day at work and I am sure that the housekeepers are working on their own time after 5 pm to finish.
This Homewood Suites is well situated for the airport, cruise departures and also a number of businesses in the area. There is a Publix within walking distance and it is an easy drive (it that can actually be said for any driving in Miami!) to the Dolphin and International Malls. All it needs is a little TLC and some more staff to look after the housekeeping needs. The hiring of Rick Funke will go a long way to bring this property back to where it once was and holding onto employees like Carol and Michael, who are real assets to the hotel will create a good caring culture.
We will likely stay here again, but I truly hope they plan some renovations and cleaning of the public areas soon.
Keep up the good work Rick :-)