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“This is NOT a 5 star hotel - serious service issues and badly managed”

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The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Key Biscayne
Certificate of Excellence
US
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“This is NOT a 5 star hotel - serious service issues and badly managed”
Reviewed July 2, 2007

The hotel is lovely and clean and family friendly and there were a few (very few- say 3 out of 100+?) really nice helpful people (hence the reason it got 2 rather than 1 'star') and a typical Marriot Ritz; not a tremendous amount of character but lovely and presumably predictable, unfortunately not in this case. The service was TERRIBLE not even standard. The staff (front desk primarily) were rude and out of their depth on every level. We had a supervisor complaining to us as we arrived about the fact that he had a report to print out for the night and he must have information from us (that was already in his posession- odd) to complete this report. Another employee speaking (badly) about another guest as we approached the desk and that guest left it. A woman that literally did nothing but scowl- perhaps a weird form of attempted snobbery. We had to ask for things 2 and 3 times- call me crazy but for me the point of a 5 star is that they anticipate your needs-(at least in my previous experience) and most importantly- you don't have to think [!] -not here. Maid service was hit and miss (which we didn't mind as long as it was clean but it added up). Finally, when I asked the night manager if there was a problem with the phone network (messages were lost- then popped up a day or 2 later) he was dismissive. I mentioned (nothing more) that it wasn't the first problem we had had and perhaps they could 'up their game a little' - his immediate answer was another hotel- Bizarre- I am still amazed at this. Even his subordinate - when we did actually finally make a complaint-asked if he could upgrade us. Kind, but we really didn't want a room upgrade; we just wanted proper service.

We were terribly disappointed as this was our main family holiday for the year. We saved the time (most relished) and money (which I am more than happy to spend on quality! but frankly not here) to go and have a great time with our little girl but there was a terrible struggle to get really basic stuff- (such as a pre-booked cot in the room). The day was nearly saved by a great manager who had been off duty for 3 or 4 of our 5 nights there but unfortunately it was too little too late. The few nice people were a housekeeper that was sweet to our little girl, a European hospitality manager/guest liason [who made every effort - basically, just did her job well], and the pool attendants that were great fun and hugely helpful (no pretence just friendly, enthusiastic and helpful despite sweating miserably for long hours in the heat of early Fla summer). Other employees just seemed to present service with $ in their eyes. It is hard to explain this but this was service with one intent - not to serve/ensure your comfort/ or do their job, but to make a very quick $. This included valets, bell men, some maids. There was no finesse or style to it and it made us feel uncomfortable.

I would be hard pushed to stay here again and having already been asked repeatedly by several friends and colleagues, I cannot recommend it. There are typical sur charges on top of your room - $30 Valeting (plus tips), umbrella hires, anything and everything has a charge and tips are expected on top. We were prepared for this - not the bad service.

I do not know if this will effect my ever staying at another Ritz again but I do not see this happening in the immediate future.

  • Stayed May 2007
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank Reviews_Away
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,942 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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BlondieFlorida
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed June 30, 2007

My husband and I stayed at the Ritz Carlton while he attended a conference at the hotel. Literally every person we came in contact with at the hotel gave us first class treatment. Our room was beautiful, the grounds were impeccably kept, and the pool areas were very nice with plenty of chairs and umbrellas. There are 2 large pools - one that has the "beach-like" entry that's really shallow leading out into a deeper area (popular with smaller kids), another that was about 5 feet deep all over (almost all adults) and a small kiddie pool. Each large pool has a bar area right next to it with wait staff circulating throughout the day with "snacks" (pretzels, frozen grapes, etc). We were very well taken care of during our stay. Inside the hotel, a band played music in the main lobby every night we were there. The atmosphere was terrific. Overall - a wonderful experience. We will definitely be returning to this hotel in the future.

  • Liked — Superb Customer Service
  • Disliked — Had to pay for Internet Access
  • Stayed July 2007, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank BlondieFlorida
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NYC
1 review
Reviewed June 25, 2007

If you're looking for excellent service, convenience, good food, good drinks, comfortable clean rooms this RC may be for you.

We spent a great 3 days here and had a great time, not doing too much except eating, drinking, swimming and sleeping. And we went for a nice bike ride to the end of the key. And the Spa was good.

The service was great, really nice, generous and courteous staff. We came here rather than go to the Carribean because it was an easy convenient flight from NYC and we don't need a lot of entertainment.

  • Liked — The Service
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank newyorker2008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pgh
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed June 25, 2007

First of all, this is a nice property if you've never stayed at a Ritz Carlton. But if you have......Well.....

Pros:
Great bed, tasty Sunday Champagne Brunch (very expensive, but worth it!)........for the most part friendly staff. The property is beautiful, and they burn the most deliciously fragrant Mango scented candle in the common areas (I bought two to bring home!!), Cantina Beach restaurant

Cons:
No kiddie pool, a toddler had an accident in the main pool(her mother cleaned her in the pool and there was waste in the water), and no staff member stopped her.......the club level lounge was a HUGE disappointment (food selection, the size of the room, very unattentive staff except for a few people, tables went uncleared for long periods of time, no dvds for guest use).......the spa wasn't inviting at all, no spa menus in guestroom, and it's hidden off of the lobby entrance......no local attraction magazines

Bottom line

Been here.........going to Ritz Carlton Cancun or Molasses Reef next year. If you want a REALLY great resort experience in FL, go to the Ritz Carlton Grande Lakes in Orlando....there's no beach of course but you won't miss it!

Stayed June 2007
Helpful?
Thank tres
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SE
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed June 23, 2007

We visited in June 2007, with our 2 small children. Living close to the Gulf, we usually take our beach trips to Destin or Gulf Shores. However, we decided to try this for a change. Being used to the wide, white beaches of the Gulf, we were VERY disappointed with this beach. It is narrow and seaweed is everywhere along the beach. We walked to the beach and walked right back!

The pool, on the other hand, was incredible. We spent 3 days at the pool and enjoyed every minute. Great pool for children and adults!! The Ritz staff brought around fruit and cool washcloths periodically. The pool bar and restaurant were very good (although expensive). One word of advice - get there early and claim your chairs! The good ones go fast!!

The grounds were very lovely and, overall, this was a great relaxing vacation. We were disappointed in the beach, but the pool made up for it.

The only negative was housekeeping. Our room was not cleaned on the first day until 9:00 pm and that took 2 calls to the front desk. The cleanings on the following days seemed very light. Also, check out the drawing room - there were free drinks in there each day - beats paying mini-bar prices!!

  • Stayed June 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Traveller969
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed June 22, 2007

I just got back from our trip at Ritz Carlton Key Biscayne. It was great. I have very few negative things to say about the hotel -- just the mandatory $30 valet parking charge and typical ridiculous surcharges to be expected from the Ritz. If you ask me, all Ritz Carltons are the same and the one in Key Biscayne was no exception. You get no surprises with the Ritz--that can be both good and bad.

We picked this resort because we traveled with our 3 year-old and wanted something family-friendly. It definitely was--great pool, lots of children and child-friendly activities.

HOWEVER, the beach was just okay. Nothing spectacular. South Beach (which is 15 min away by car) is *much* nicer. When we arrived, there was seaweed and trash EVERYWHERE on the beach. Not just bottles and cans. I mean huge bags of ruffles chips, large pieces of trash. Frankly, I was shocked. So we ended up spending the next day on South Beach (our friends have a condo at the Continuum) and tried to check out to go to the Ritz South Beach but it was booked. Luckily, the beach cleaned up a lot the next day (must have been the tide) --but I still stand by my assessment that South Beach is MUCH nicer--white sandy beaches, blue waters. Key Biscayne is much more quiet and small--the beaches are small and the water was dark greenish. I am picky about beaches.

So my overall statement: Typical Ritz Carlton in a quiet, family-friendly setting. Beaches were "eh". It is a safe option. Be prepared to eat at the Ritz if you want to stay on Key Biscayne--not many dining options. Expensive, of course.

  • Liked — family friendly, great staff, nice rooms
  • Disliked — the beach, valet charges
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank pickyatltraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brooklyn
1 review
Reviewed June 18, 2007

I just recently stayed at th ritz carlton for a long weekend. It is an annual trip with 10 of my girlfriends. I have to say we all were extremely pleased with the hotel. We stayed on the club level, which was the best thing we could have done. The food, service, atmosphere at the club lounge was impeccable. The spa was great!. The service at the beach was especially great. And we still are dreaming about the bed! It was so comfortable. We are already looking forward to next year!

  • Liked — luxury!
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank irishgirls3
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 Key Biscayne, Miami

Property: The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami
Address: 455 Grand Bay Drive, Key Biscayne, FL 33149
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Key Biscayne
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Key Biscayne
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami 5*
Number of rooms: 352
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Also Known As:
The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami Hotel Key Biscayne
Key Biscayne Ritz Carlton
Ritz Key Biscayne
Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne

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