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“Outstanding Service, average rooms” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach

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The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   1 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, FL 33139 (City Center)   |  
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Hotel amenities
Special Offer
Complimentary Breakfast
Ranked #36 of 202 Hotels in Miami Beach
Orlando, Florida
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Outstanding Service, average rooms”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2013

This was my first stay at the Ritz in Miami. From the moment I pulled into valet I was treated with warm friendly smiles and welcomes. The guest services employees were extremely helpful and kind. The lobby is quite grand, lovely. We were taken to our room which was a standard. Definitely not as nice as I expected as I have stayed at other Ritz properties. The beds were a little on the worn side, the ihome and one of the phones didn't work, and the view was nonexistent. The lighting in the bathroom was horrible if you need to apply makeup. We decided to upgrade to a bigger room with an ocean view and balcony. MUCH better! Everything worked and the lighting was better although the beds were still not to my liking but that is personal preference. The staff was unbelievably helpful and kind in moving us. I enjoyed two days on the beach and did decide to throw a lot of money away on a beach sofa and umbrellas the first day and a queen beach bed the second. The wait staff on the beach was extremely efficient and friendly. I enjoyed breakfast in my room three mornings, room service staff was excellent and the food was very good. I used the spa for a pedicure, it was only a little above average but the technician was very pleasant. Overall it was the staff that made this trip so enjoyable. The rooms could use a little refreshing.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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1,462 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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
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2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

My wife and I recently stayed 7 nights at the Ritz Carlton on South Beach either side of the July 4 holiday. In short, we had one of the best vacation experiences we have ever had.

We decided to visit Miami Beach, but having no knowledge of the area, thought about the Ritz Carlton based on a previous stay in another city and on the company’s reputation for great service. I was initially hesitant as during my due diligence on Trip Adviser and other travel sites I came across numerous comments alluding to this not being a “real” Ritz. I took this to mean it isn’t styled or furnished in the usual “hardwood floors, elegant furnishings, faux Victorian writing desk” kind of way. I considered these comments, but after viewing photos of the hotel and rooms online I felt more than comfortable with the style.

The Ritz Carlton on Miami Beach gives a nod to a different era. The original structure, built in 1953, has been retained while the interior has undergone a complete restoration. Post-modern, you might call it, with contemporary furniture and art, and muted tones in the carpet, bedding and walls. Whether the look is something you will like is purely subjective, of course. But if you are of the opinion that the hotel looks dated (as some reviewer wrote) then this perhaps says more about you than it does about the resort. It does not have the look of “an IKEA showroom”, nor does it look like a hotel from the 80s. It’s different, for sure, but blends perfectly with the clean and simple lines of the architecture, and fits right in with the whole deco scene in South Beach.

Take the lobby: What first seemed a rather dark sanitized space in fact revealed a level of sophistication in both ambience and décor that is so different from most chain hotels I’ve stayed in. And it's functional, too. it was a relief to return to a cool, low-lit interior after a day in bright sunlight. If you take the time, you’ll see similar examples of thoughtful interior design throughout the hotel.

Another surprise: This hotel feels really intimate. It’s not huge to begin with—350ish rooms I believe—but never did we feel overwhelmed by people, which is not how I felt when we popped into Loews next door. This is especially evident around the pool deck. Even though the hotel was 98% occupied (I asked) we never had trouble finding pool loungers no matter what time of day we entered the pool deck, and the pool attendants were always attentive and responsive.

Every hotel has its share of rooms with crappy views. The Ritz Carlton is no exception. It has a few “city view” rooms that look out onto the street, including a view of the aforementioned Loews hotel. But that famed Ritz Carlton reputation for service does show itself in these circumstances: A couple was complaining as we checked in and they were immediately relocated to a room with a better view. That said, these standard rooms are in the lowest-rate category and so I guess if you choose this category, it’s a bit of a lottery as to the type of room you end up with. I removed the risk by booking a Lanai room with pool view. It is a little more expensive than the standard room, but with the convenience of stepping out onto the pool deck, (and no chance of staring at a brick wall) I think it was more than worth the extra.

This brings me onto price. Some have commented that the hotel is expensive. This again is subjective. The benefits of being right on South Beach, a block from the Lincoln Road mall and with dozens of restaurants and bars on your doorstep, come at a price. This is, after all, a luxury resort, and so everything, from a cup of coffee to a piña colada, carries a premium. If it shocks you to pay $22 (including tip and tax) for an alcoholic beverage then perhaps this is not the type of hotel in which you should stay, or drink. But if you value having your every need catered for, and want a secluded beach/pool holiday with a city vibe, Ritz Carlton South Beach is as good as it gets.

Room Tip: We paid extra for a Lanai room overlooking the pool. Some of the rooms on the second and third floor...
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  • Stayed July 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Westchestry Cty, NY
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

As a frequent traveller and a regular contributor to TA, rest assured these observations (albeit candid) are objective. Recent visit to the Ritz SB was all R&R. From the first interaction with the Property , our experience was very positive. Friendly staff in the front greeting us with a smile. Lobby is very nice, and more hellos and smiles from friendly staff as we checked in. Now the lobby does smell a bit like a soap store, but that was refreshing after the smelly taxi ride from the airport. First room was a dud, staff eager to please found us a winner. I agree with some of the other posts here.: Hallways and rooms need a bit of a refresh, but all in all, nothing to complain about. The concierge staff are AWESOME. Andrew at night and Kristin during the day, are among the best I have seen in the entire Ritz Carlton system (worldwide). They are great listeners to your needs and were great help in restaurants. I'm impressed.

Ok, now the bad. the staff at the beach are obnoxious. Their shameless up selling of extras was very unbecoming the Ritz brand. $150 for a bed, $25 for an umbrella, no jug of water, only bottles for sale. Not one bed was sold in our days on the beach, there's no bid at $150, time to rethink the pricing strategy. The pool staff is a lot less pretentious. Although there was a full inventory of unsold beds there too. The pool side food was good, but the drink prices are OUTRAGEOUS. $7 for iced tea.( This is recent apparently maybe ownership is looking to fund common area upgrades one iced tee at a time) The markup on that is incalculable. BTW, the staff at the pool agree.

I think the hotel is having an identity crisis, do they cater to the rock star bottle service crowd or families? By my observations , no rock stars just families. So, loose the house music, beds and $300 bottles of grey goose, and you will have returning guests.

Again, I really love the staff, the location and the property as a whole. But I think the management needs to solve its identity crisis. It seems like a family resort not a night club. Don't let your south beach address confuse you, stick with the ritz Carlton resort model, it works.

Room Tip: Pool side house music plays all night. If you're a light sleeper avoid pool area
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  • Stayed July 2013, 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sao Paulo, SP
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

It is amazing the location .
We spent a week and almost didn't need to drive .
Everything was close to the hotel.
The staff is vey helpful and efficient as well
The restaurants also are very good !
We stayed there for a week and in 4 th July of course there was many people to watch the fireworks.
But in the hotel we could be seated ,comfortable and in the middle of the crowd.They hired a band and we seat ,drink , enoy.

Room Tip: Front beach of course .
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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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Alpharetta, Georgia
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

This was one of the best hotels I've ever stayed in - so glad we splurged! We payed in advance (via AAA for $300 savings) for 4 days/3 nights for a partial ocean/pool view. Once our room because available, they upgraded us to a full view! The hotel is impeccable - the pools, beach, rooms, bars, etc. The marble bathrooms are awesome, including the soft towels, shower area, and toiletries. You feel as if you are royalty - ALL of the staff was wonderful and tended to our every need! Our room had a free safe and fridge. You don't need a car - you can walk to all the shopping areas and dine in dozens of restaurants on Ocean Drive for a reasonable cost. Take some singles for tips.

Things to do: (1) Rent a bike using DecoBike - pickup and drop off at different locations. Ride on the boardwalk/beach for miles! (2) Go to Sets nightclub a few blocks away - ask the concierge for a pass to get in as they may be 'members only'. (3) eat at News Cafe on Ocean Drive for the best grilled mahi mahi and blacked shrimp tacos. Great mimosas too. (4) shop at the beach shops nearby - buy some new bikini's and cover ups.

Caveats: (1) the hotel charges an extra $25 for an umbrella at the beach (not at the pool), (2) prepare to pay $17 per drink or more at the pool/beach side. There is a Walgreens next door where we purchased snacks, food, and sunscreen. There is a liquor store around the corner called "I love Liquor" - buy your liquor there and bring to the pool/beach and ask for cups of ice. All restaurants/bars charge 18% on the check.

Lastly, prepare to have a temp charge of $200 per night (upon checkin) on your credit card for "incidentais". I wasn't told at check-in and complained later, but someone called me back to resolve the issue, although it took 3 days to clear for actual charges only.

I would definitely go back to this hotel - loved our experience!

Room Tip: Pay extra to get a partial ocean/pool view. Ask for a higher floor. We ended up with a free room u...
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  • Stayed July 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
39 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2013

We were in Miami for a 1 night trip at the request of my husband's teenage sons, visiting from UK. We booked 2 standard rooms, 1 of which was ready when we arrived at noon. The greeting from door staff and reception was warm and friendly and check in efficient. The reception staff promised a phone call when the second room was ready, while we went off to explore.
The hotel is directly on South Beach and steps away from shops, bars and restaurants of Lincoln Road. Ocean Drive is just a few hundred yards walk. The location could not be better.
When the 2nd room was ready, my husband enquired about the upgrade he should expect as a Marriott platinum member. Disappointingly, It had not been processed initially, but we were instantly upgraded to a Clubfloor room with seaview and balcony. Later that evening, complimentary truffles and bottled water was delivered to our room. Both rooms had wonderful beds and beautiful, large marble bathrooms. Although, I was not pleased to discover a clump of hair in the bath -presumably from the previous occupant.
The beds in the pool area are a little bit too close together but the beds are very comfortable and made up by the friendly and helpful pool attendants. Pool attendants brought various delicious iced and frozen drinks and fruits.We were also kept well hydrated with large jugs of iced water.
Would certainly recommend this hotel and when we go back stay longer than 1 night.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Atlanta
Top Contributor
70 reviews 70 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2013

All I have to say is WOW! Customer Service is their middle name. It is in everything they say, do and touch during your stay. It comes from the top down to the lowest staff member. They all know you by name during your stay.
Since it was off season, but still cool enough to tolerate, we enjoyed a great rate that included breakfast for two each day and $100 a day in resort credit.
Loved the beach and the beachside service. Beautiful pool and impeccable service there too.
Upon checking in, we told them it was our first time ever staying at any Ritz Carlton and they chose to WOW us even more with a 1 BR oceanfront corner suite that also overlooked the pool. Elegant and beautiful! Loved the sunrise on our last morning there. Quiet and peaceful time on the beach.
My wife went to the spa twice and was helped

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 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
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 Ritz-Carlton, South Beach

Address: 1 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, FL 33139
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Miami Beach > City Center
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#17 Spa Hotel in Miami Beach
#19 Family Hotel in Miami Beach
#23 Luxury Hotel in Miami Beach
#24 Romantic Hotel in Miami Beach
#28 On the Beach Hotel in Miami Beach
#32 Business Hotel in Miami Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach 4.5*
Number of rooms: 375
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Also Known As:
Ritz-Carlton South Beach Hotel Miami Beach
Ritz Miami Beach
Miami Beach Ritz-Carlton

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