We are now sadly returning home from four nights at the Delano in South Beach. Truly a wonderful experience. After reviewing many accounts on TA I decided that the Delano was the place for us. I had read many comments about Lee and his team and was impressed. I am a stickler for good service and it sounded like that was what the Delano was all about.
I sent a note to Lee a few days before arriving to ask a few questions. He was off that day but in spite of that answered within 5 minutes. He answered my questions and introduced me to Willy Garcia, the Concierge. Again, within minutes I had an email from him too. Ok, I'm already impressed.
We arrived at the hotel before 10 am, understanding a room would not be ready, we had packed a small bag with beach stuff. No problem. The terrific receptionist took a little time and found a great room that was ready. Bellman J.C. grabbed our bags and we made our way to the room. All the while J.C explained the hotel and its features with genuine pride. I liked the vibe already! The room was beautiful (thank you Lee!) with a great view of the beach. Done in all white, it was very classy. We unpacked our bags and went downstairs to meet Willy who then took us on a tour of the property ending at the beach. Willy had told me he would have a chair and umbrella reserved for me as it is a first come first serve arrangement. He suggested to the beach team (a separate company) to upgrade me and take care of me. Done! Front row bed with canopy -- thank you Willy! I can't handle lots of sun but because Willy made it happen I could enjoy more time on the beach with my wife.
The beach is very nice. There were times it was crowded but never too much. The team of servers (Delano employees) were awesome. Miguel in particular was always there with a smile, happy to make the run in to get drinks, food, whatever we needed. He couldn't have been nicer or more helpful. Marco and Matthew were very nice too. The beach chair team (non Delano) were also great. Gleb greeted us by name every day and Sam set us up. Thanks guys, you were terrific.
The pool is very nice. We choose to spend our time at the beach instead but it looked great with enough chairs for all and again smiling, friendly staff to insure your every need was supplied.
We often had breakfast and lunch at Bianco, the restaurant in the hotel. It set on a level above the pool and the setting was very pretty. Food was excellent every time. Yes it is a bit expensive but worth it. If only to meet Etty and have the pleasure of her wonderful and friendly service! She needs to be cloned and duplicated many times over. When we thought of dining elsewhere we said, "no we need to go see Etty."
We had drinks one night in the Rose Bar. Fun! The bartender extraordinaire asked what we wanted or what flavors we liked and he would make it for us. I told him the flavors I liked and he came up with something unlike I had ever had and very tasty. Thanks Matthew! It's a very cool looking bar with a super friendly team.
The Bellman team was also great. Aldo, J.C. And all the others were only to happy to offer suggestions, chase down taxis, do whatever you needed done.
The lobby is very nice and open. A tropical paradise. There was a smell pumped in it that was intoxicating. Lee, if you read this please tell me what it is so I can duplicate it at home! Lots of unusual chairs and wonderful Miami music playing, never to loud, just right. I'd love to know the CDs to play at home as well. One night we just set in a couple comfy chairs and watched the DJ spin great tunes.
Its hard to walk threw a door and not have it held for you. It's impossible to pass an employee and not have them make eye contact and greet you. They all seem to genuinely care about their hotel and their guests. One told me he loved working for this company because they let you be yourself. It certainly works! You rarely find this kind of commitment. I am very impressed and appreciative.
We came to South Beach to experience something different than we have back home. There are cheaper places to stay and certainly to eat but we wanted to experience Sobe at its best. For us Delano did it. For us it was a great value. Unfortunately, I only have 10 vacation days a year. Yes that stinks! Because of that everyone of them needs to count! Delano, you gave us more than our moneys worth in a world that rarely does that.
Thanks go out to Lee, Willy, and each and every employee we came in contact with. You are the best. We will be back again and again!