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“Strange Place to stay” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Penguin Hotel

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Penguin Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1418 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach, FL 33139   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #96 of 205 Hotels in Miami Beach
Brant Lake, New York
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Strange Place to stay”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

The only nice male waiter was Stuart Dwyer and I would like to stress that he was great!!!
Nomoreise, at the front desk was very sweet!
People here are mostly rude....if they will give you the time of day.
Our room was clean, but, with NO other redeeming qualities.
The location is good, and lucky for them, so they can treat people dismissively and still remain open.
Will not return.

  • Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 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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644 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (74)
Date | Rating
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English first
Detroit, Michigan
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

I wasn't sure what to expect based on other reviewers' comments and my own ore-trip experience. I called the hotel a few days before my trip to find out what they knew about the Airport Flyer bus from MIA to an area close to the hotel. When I explained what I was looking for to the person to whom I spoke, they hung up on me. Giving them the benefit of the doubt I called again, spoke (I assume) to the same person. This time I was told "Take a cab!" and again they hung up. I called a third time and selected the option for the general manager's extension. The person who answered identified herself as from reservations. I think her name was Alize. She was polite and helpful after asking to put me on hold while she checked the correctness of her info.

Other reviewers have commented about a lack of cleanliness at this hotel. I did NOT experience that. The hotel was clean but the maintenance was sloppy giving the appearance of a shoddy hotel. I noticed it as soon as I stepped into the elevator (according to the sign it could hold 2 people with luggage and 3 without). The three non-door walls of the elevator contained floor-to-ceiling pictures behind Plexiglas which was spotted with dried white paint. It appeared as if the ceiling was painted haphazardly and the painter did not bother to clean up after his/herself. I found the same when I entered my room. The frosted glass on the closet and bathroom doors were also specked with dried white paint, as was the marble counter topped cabinet that seemed more suited for someone's basement bar. The granite moldings in the room and bathroom were also slopped with white paint which was chipping off. The curtains in my room were patched in several places and were attached to the wall in such a way that they did not fully cover the corner windows, letting light in all night.

My room had only one electrical outlet available with one plug already used for a floor lamp that provided light for the room. There was one chair, but no table where I could use my laptop without hunching over.

Other reviewers had commented on the rudeness of the staff. I did NOT find that to be the case, but neither were they guest-focused, especially the morning waiters. I went to the included breakfast my first morning and not knowing if I should seat myself or wait to be seated, I approached the waitstand and waited as a waiter entered an order in the computer. When finished he looked at me then walked away before I could say anything. He came back in from outside, nodded and continued past me presumably to the kitchen. A few minutes later he passed again and said "You can seat yourself." After I was seated I waited almost 10 minutes for a waiter to approach my table. When one did, without greeting he asked, "Has anyone waited on you yet? The wait service was even worse on Sunday morning and after waiting 15 minutes I left without the "free breakfast" as I was trying to get to church.

I could go on, such as when the front desk informed me at 9:00 AM that they could not give me change for a dollar for the bus because "We're out of change," and more, but suffice it to say, they just didn't seem customer-focused. Having worked in hotels in my life, this is usually a situation attributed to poor, uncaring management rather than front-line workers.

When I checked out at 4:30 AM the desk clerk asked how my stay was and when I said I wasn't very satisfied his response was, "Would you ;like to keep your charges on the credit card you gave at check-in?"

Pros: good location across from a park and over a ridge to the beach; plenty of dining options on ocean drive; one block to a major chain drug store; clean/quiet room; reliable/fast WiFi

Cons: sloppy maintenance, one electrical outlet, no table, $19.00 +tax daily resort fee for which you get very little; and foremost, staff without customer focus - some friendly and others not.

Room Tip: Other reviewers complained that the hotel was noisy. I did NOT find that the case. I was originally...
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  • Stayed January 2015, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

I've stayed in this hotel for one in week for my permanence in Miami beach ! The position is really good coz it's on ocean drive, just in front of the beach and the ocean !
Spacious room with a refill of water every day!
Just one bad thing about the maquette that was stick with the tape and it was really unwatchable!
Free towels if you Ask for the beach and a free welcome cocktail !

Stayed December 2014, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AlexeisE37, Guest Relations Manager at Penguin Hotel, responded to this review, 4 days ago
Greetings from The Penguin,

Thank you so much for staying with us for an entire week! We truly love and appreciate our long term guest. It really gives a us a great opportunity to get to know them. With that said, we are happy that you enjoyed our very convenient location and our amenities. It was truly a pleasure to have served you and we really appreciate you taking the time in giving us your feedback.

Thanks again and we hope to see you back for a future stay!

Alexeis Espinosa
Reputation Manager
Penguin Hotel Miami Beach
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Farmville, North Carolina
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

This hotel offered a comfortable room with artistic decor. The room is sparcely furnished, but was ok for a one night stay. It is located in the heart of South Beach. Lumas park is across the street with direct beach access. The hotel is within walking distance to the Lincoln park area where there are lots of high end stores and open air restaurants. The hotel has a bar and restaurant open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner with great menu choices and great prices. This was a gem of a find.

  • Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
AlexeisE37, Guest Relations Manager at Penguin Hotel, responded to this review, 1 week ago
Hello Sherri,

Allow us to say thank you for taking the time to share your experience with us. We are really happy that you found our convenient location to your liking. As well as our breakfast and room. We truly do enjoy it when our guest have such a full experience from everything our prime location has to offer.

Thank you again and we hope to see you back really soon!

Alexeis Espinosa
Reputation Management
Penguin Miami Beach
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Eva at the penguin was amazing! We had a minor issue with our bill and she solved the problem right away. Her service was excellent and her genuine personality shined through & made us feel at home and comfortable.

  • Stayed January 2015
    • 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AlexeisE37, Guest Relations Manager at Penguin Hotel, responded to this review, 1 week ago
Hello Amy,

Thank you so much for your kind words and we are really happy that your truly enjoyed our staff. It's always such a great thing to see our staff being recognized in this way and please rest assured that I will be sharing your good graces with Eva. I'm sure that your wonderful praises will make her shine even more!

Thank you again for taking the time to share your feedback with us, it was our pleasure to have served!

Alexeis Espinosa
Reputation Management
Penguin Hotel Miami Beach
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
45 reviews 45 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

I booked the Penguin looking to stay at one of the old Miami Beach Art Deco hotels. The Penguin's location is unbeatable, as it's right on Ocean Drive across the street from the beach in a low-rise part of South Beach. I found that the rates here are quite reasonable compared to other hotels. The rooms are clean and well-decorated; the restaurant/bar/patio service amazing. Check-in was a little bit annoying due to a back-log of guests arriving and it feeling a bit disorganized, but the check-out service was great; the clerk called ahead to a museum I was planning to go to and confirmed I could store my suitcase there, which was very helpful.

It's an older hotel, sometimes it shows. The rooms, even the superior rooms, are a bit small. But how much time do you plan to stay in the room?I had an ocean-facing room on the second floor, above the restaurant. But it wasn't too loud, especially after 11PM.

I wouldn't hesitate to stay here again if I was ever in the Miami area.

  • Stayed January 2015, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 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.
AlexeisE37, Guest Relations Manager at Penguin Hotel, responded to this review, 2 weeks ago
Hello Tayser,

Thank you so much for sharing your feedback with us. We are very happy to know that you enjoyed our very convenient location, attentive staff and amenities. It's always a great feeling to see our guest have such a full experience from their stay! Tayser, we truly appreciate your kind words and would like nothing more than to see you comeback for a return stay!

Thank you again for the opportunity to serve!

Alexeis Espinosa
Reputation Management
Penguin Hotel Miami Beach
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mackinac island
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

It's so cool to be on South Beach
Music, entertainment, yummy food, great drinks, lovely beach, history & culture...
I had a great time & I'll return!
The Penguin is a wonderful place to spend time in South Beach.

  • Stayed December 2014
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AlexeisE37, Guest Relations Manager at Penguin Hotel, responded to this review, 2 weeks ago
Hello from The Penguin,

Thank you so much! We are truly happy that you had such an awesome full experience. Please do return and we can promise you that our yummy food will still be here when you do! Thank you so much for choosing us on your visit to Miami Beach. It was truly a pleasure to have served you!

Alexeis Espinosa
Reputaiton Management
The Penguin Hotel Miami Beach
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Penguin Hotel

Address: 1418 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach, FL 33139
Location: United States > Florida > Miami Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #96 of 205 Hotels in Miami Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Penguin Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 43
Reservation Options:
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