We had done a lot of research before making our reservations at this hotel, and I'm grateful for the amazing reviews here on Tripadvisor. We had been warned that reservations often get botched here, but using a professional travel agency we didn't think it would happen to us.
Well, we were wrong, and our junior suite (precooked with baby crib and microwave oven) turned out to be a tiny room with neither, in the far corner of the property, with an amazing view of our neighbor's balcony. So far a 1* rating. We were of course furious, and in hindsight it's impossible to say who's at fault, our agency or the hotel.
Needless to say, we complained and as a platinum member, and an upset yet still cute baby, we were offered another room (in the category we had booked.) The next morning, a meeting with a hotel manager (one of the amazing people at this property who truly care for their guests) and we were offered to move into a suite for the rest of our 12 night stay (unusual with long stays here)
The rest of our stay was blissful and there were only a few glitches, all of which were worked out by engaged and lovely staff members at the front desk, the amazing bell captain and their truly miracle workers at the beach.
Into the category "not so good" falls the Internet connection (useless really, but I hear it's being upgraded in January 14), for which we didn't have to pay in the end. The concierge desk is friendly, but rarely follows through on promises, so be prepared to go back and double-check that things are done (exceptions apply and were duly noted), and finally the on site restaurant (separate review), which is a disaster, but sadly not under hotel management.
The beach is nice, although we stayed mostly at the pool, as our son is in his "eat sand" period. The spa is not on this property but 500m away at the sister hotel and it seems as if they're ashamed of even having a spa, as it's hidden away in the far corner in an ordinary suite, and the receptionist has to sit outside in the corridor (and so do waiting clients). Unacceptable for a hotel that uses the "Waldorf-Astoria" name. At least the massage was better than what you usually get in luxury hotels. Thanks Russ!
As a family, I think I might consider returning. Having said that, this hotel is carried solely on the shoulders of some amazing staff, while others couldn't care less about the service they provide. That is a risky proposition for anyone who books there. What if these people were to leave?
I need to mention a few team members here who really are amazing and who helped us with anything from pool towels to a baby bath to a last-second ride to the harbor after the baby sitter turned up late: Jenn at the front desk, Cindy, the front office manager, who went above and beyond on numerous occasions, Ricardo at the pool/beach and Chuck, the bell captain. It is staff members like that who carry this hotel on their shoulders and make you want to return. Without them, I doubt I'd given this place more than 2**...
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located on Key West's only private natural-sand beach, The Reach, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, is an intimate, elegant destination for those seeking a casual retreat with the highest level of service. A warm sense of hospitality, gracious staff members, a beautiful shoreline and breathtaking sunshine all provide the backdrop for a memorable and romantic travel experience at our Key West hotel, just steps from Duval Street. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Reach, a Waldorf Astoria Hotel Key West
- Waldorf Astoria Key West
- The Waldorf Astoria Collection
- Reach Resort Key West