I wanted to stay away from the Ocean Drive district which is a bit kitsch, very noisy, and is not ON the beach. Ocean drive is a road you have to cross in yours swim trunks to get to a beachzone that is grass ridden which you cross again to get to the beach. No fun. So I chose the Lincoln/Collins strip. This one is next to the Shore Club and a block from Delano, SLS, all of which are opulent.
- Crispy the concierge - hands down the encyclopedia (and well known at that) for South Beach. She recommended everything and everywhere to go and even reserved and such
- The front desk staff was good (one lady is a bit moody though) but the rest are AMAZING, great service really! Bartenders are friendly too and make special drinks if requested.
- Kiehls toiletries in rooms, and rooms cleaned twice a day - at night they dim the lights, and light candles in it - awesome!
- The pool area is amazing, huge, pretty, with beds and single seats. Next is the cabana area with private cabanas, hammocks, and the likes. Then comes a door which is a few feet walk to the amazing, upscale beach area where chairs and umbrellas with Raleigh's name are read (next to Shore Club's) - its all so gorgeous!
- The drinks start at sunrise at the pool and end at sunset - how awesome is that?
- Great housekeeping, very friendly and clean up really well after you, and trustworthy too
- Free towels and such for the beach and pool, and free FIji water in the room
- Sleep like a baby but party like a tiger
- No happy hour in hotel - a shame really since other hotels have good stuff
- No amazing restaurant in hotel - actually not restaraunt as such, while Delano and SLS have amazing ones.. makes it seem that this one is overpriced for nothing.
- Gym is nonexistant - its just 3 machines and weights in a cabana
- No rooftop access
- The rooms are small and the sunset ones only face the street, which is better than others that face another building. But for the price you pay, its not much
- There is no study area in the room, and a shortage of sockets available to plug stuff in!
- Room keys - no swipe cards - so oldschool! Not a deal breaker though
- Lobby area at first looks dingy but grows on you.
For the pool, beach, service and drinks, I'd recommend it highly.