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“Wonderful Oasis” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Betsy - South Beach

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The Betsy - South Beach
Ranked #6 of 206 Hotels in Miami Beach
Certificate of Excellence
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Wonderful Oasis”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2013

Spent the 4th of July holiday week at the Betsy which is always wonderful. The small hotel does everything well and continues to be an oasis at the quiet end of Ocean Drive in South Beach. I've stayed at a number of other properties both on Ocean Drive and Collins Avenue and nothing yet compares. The staff are always friendly and smiling and go out of their way to be helpful with anything that you might need. The rooms can be tight and only a few face out front but they are all very comfortable, well appointed and well maintained. The location is the best...directly across the street from the beach and midway between the fun and jumping part of Ocean Drive and the shops and restaurants of Lincoln Road. If I can help it, I will always stay at the Betsy.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank AvidTraveler2324
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheBetsyHotel, General Manager at The Betsy - South Beach, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
Dear AvidTraveler2324,

Thank you for your review, your loyalty, and of course your most recent visit that you wrote about! You are in good company with our ever-growing repeat Guests - we value your business, so be sure to always mention that you are a return Guest when you come back - you will have the best rates, upgrades when available and our loyalty to you as well to make your time in Miami Beach as special as possible!

Warm Regards,

Jeff Lehman
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,121 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (434)
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Great Neck, New York
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2013

I really wanted to like The Betsy. It sounded exactly like what my wife and I were looking for in our trip to South Beach, a quiet and elegant boutique hotel that would provide a refuge from the madness that is Ocean Drive during a holiday weekend. In many ways, The Betsy succeeds--it's a great looking Neo-Georgian facade that looks different than everything else in Miami Beach. Inside, there's a very cool vibe with a nice bar and large sitting area. The drinks were very pricy ($20 for a glass of Pinot Noir) but the jazz duo made for a pleasant way to unwind before heading out at night. The pool is very small, but it's also very private and was little used while we were there which suited us just fine. The rooftop area is very nice as well, particularly at night where the ocean breezes keep everything cool and hushed conversations take place in intimate seating areas. I even appreciated the photos of the first U.S. tours of the Rolling Stones and the Beatles that were on temporary display throughout the hotel.

The location of The Betsy is also very good, across from the beach and somewhat (but only somewhat) removed from the South Beach craziness. Guests of The Betsy get free use of towels, lounge chairs and beach umbrellas which makes sitting on a public beach feel private. The morning we spent sitting on the beach was our best morning at The Betsy.

Now the bad. Our "Master Suite" on the second floor was a tiny bedroom and a tiny sitting room with a small bathroom in between. The bedroom barely accommodated the king bed and the bathroom contained a single sink, toilet and shower. There was not enough counter space to unpack toiletries and I cannot recall ever staying in a "suite" that did not have a double sink in the bathroom to allow a couple to get ready simultaneously. The AC unit in the bedroom rattled loud enough to disturb sleep at least twice a night and the bedroom's windows faced the alley where garbage trucks roused us every other morning at 5:00 AM and continued banging and grinding for 20 minutes as the garbage for seemingly the entire block was dumped into the truck idling by our window. Also, the door to the suite opens to the bedroom while the closet for the suite is in the sitting area--in other words, reversed as to how it should be. At $400 a night, I think you have the right to expect better.

The housekeeping service was way below the standard of 4 star hotel, with a stained comforter on the bed when we arrived, stained towels delivered on the second day and no replacement of used body wash or shampoo. The final straw was a failure to clean the toilet on the second to last day of our stay. And yes, I tipped housekeeping every day except the last when I truly thought the service merited nothing.

On the subject of service, I have to mention that we arrived at 11:00 AM and requested an early check in. It would be unreasonable to expect such a request to be granted immediately particularly given The Betsy's late check out time of 1:00 PM. However, even though we were waiting since 11:00 there was evidently no effort made to have our room ready until the 4:00 PM regular check in. It is a small matter to rearrange a cleaning schedule on a hotel floor to have rooms ready for guests who are already on the property, but The Betsy either didn't wish to do so or was incapable of doing so. After checking our luggage and two hours of walking around Miami Beach in traveling clothes we returned to The Betsy to change into something more appropriate for the climate. However, instead of making an empty hotel room available for us, a minor accommodation that virtually every other hotel would offer, we were shown to the handicapped bathroom on the first floor to unpack our clothing, repack our street clothes and change. A miserable and humiliating experience made more so by the dim lighting and no chair on which to sit.

We ate at the restaurant, BLT Steak, twice--once for breakfast and once for dinner. The breakfast menu is pretty limited and expensive and the food merely passable but sitting on The Betsy's front porch in the morning looking out at the beach makes the experience worthwhile. Dinner was good and the wine list was impressive, but there are obviously better steak places in South Beach that are comparably priced. On both occasions, the service was spotty and was below the standard the prices would otherwise command.

So there it is. The Betsy has a lot going for it, but it needs to tackle its service issues at almost every level. I don't know what they can do about the size of the rooms and noise levels of the wing of the hotel in which we were in, but they may wish to reconfigure their suites or price them more appropriately. The whole experience was very disappointing, particularly since I was rooting for this little boutique hotel to deliver. But in the end, The Betsy falls short--its a classy establishment in a place that desperately needs a little class, but it just doesn't feel like a great luxury hotel.

We will not be returning to The Betsy even though business will be taking me to South Beach several more times this year.

Room Tip: Request a room facing the pool, not the alley. Unless you are actually disabled, see if they will p...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Hangon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheBetsyHotel, General Manager at The Betsy - South Beach, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
Dear Hangon,

Thank you for your recent visit, and your detailed review! I truly believe that the only way to coninually exceed expectations and improve what we do is to listen to the good and the not so good from our Guests - and your comments will certainly help me with that never ending mission. Both in terms of rooms and suites, we do have a great variety of sizes, configurations, and of course prices. At the Betsy, being a true, historic boutique hotel, no three of our rooms or suites are exactly alike. I look forward to your next visit, and hopefully to your allowing me to personally handle your stay to ensure that it is absolutely flawless!

Sincerely,


Jeff Lehman
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
denville
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2013

The Betsy is not only a beautiful boutique hotel, its staffed with top notch service masters. Hopefully you'll be there on a day when Thomas, one of the hotel's porters, is working - he does his work above and beyond!
Waitstaff on the deck - another great service staff, and the food is perfect.

  • Stayed July 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
Helpful?
2 Thank sara e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheBetsyHotel, General Manager at The Betsy - South Beach, responded to this review, July 14, 2013
Dear Sara E.,

Thank you for your visit - and the expression "service masters"! I greatly appreciate that, as the soul of hospitality is indeed in the passion to serve, to take care of each Guest as if they were a special family member coming home. Years ago, when I managed a housekeeping department in Los Angeles, I asked our Room Attendants to prepare each room as if their mother was coming for a visit! It's great that you felt our passion, and that of Thomas, too!

Best regards,


Jeff Lehman
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Collins, Colorado
Level Contributor
18 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2013

Everything about this hotel was wonderful....the location, the staff, room, hotel, bar, and amenities

The location couldn't have been better...right across from the beach, Starbucks and bike rentals, within walking distance of shopping, restaurants, and before the crazy madness of the southern part of Ocean Drive...perfect!

The staff was magnificent! The staff couldn't have been nicer everywhere in the hotel....the doormen were so kind and loved that they were there too greeting us each time we left and returned! This hotel has a great feeling to it not only friendly but also very modern and classy!

The Beatles/Rolling Stones photographs throughout was a nice touch. I agree with the previous reviewer that it is a shame that they don't utilize the rooftop after dark, although staying there during off season we loved that we could go to the rooftop after dark and pretty much have it to ourselves, with soft music, comfortable seating, a wonderful ocean breeze and a lovely view...it may be very different during busy season.

Both the bar and restaurant were great! We found the bar and the entertainment two of the nights very pleasing...great music but not overwhelmingly loud so you could enjoy drinks and conversation at the same time. The bartender was amazing ! We ate dinner one evening at the BLT...outside seating which was wonderful to people watch...the food and service was wonderful...My only complaint is that the mashed potatoes were too soupy for my taste as I like more consistency to them but everything else was wonderful! Loved the popovers!

We had absolutely no problems in getting our two beach chairs with umbrellas any of the days that we were there and that was such a nice benefit...found all to be friendly and very accommodating.

We had a King Suite that didn't have a great view but we weren't there for the view from the windows and it couldn't have been more comfortable!

We can't wait to return and will only stay at the Betsy in South Beach!

Room Tip: King Corner suite was very roomy and sunny...not a great view but we weren't there for the view...
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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
Helpful?
3 Thank westiesruleyorkies2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheBetsyHotel, General Manager at The Betsy - South Beach, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
Dear Westiesruleyorkies2,

Thank you very much for your recent visit and your review! It always seems that the more time our Guests have to explore all that the Betsy ahs to offer, the better it gets - even with our staff, whom you so kindly call magnificent! With only 61 rooms and suites, we take great pride in really getting to know the Guests that are here at any given time. Please be sure to reach out to us directly next time, and we will ensure that your view matches all of your other feelings about the Betsy - it just gets better!

Best regards,

Jeff Lehman
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2013

Have just left The Betsy after a second visit - nothing has changed - it is still utterly delightful. The overriding reason for returning and recommending to British friends is the immaculate service. Prior to arriving Concierge Paul Dacq had headed up a full schedule of events - I travel worldwide and I have to say he is possibly one of the very best in the hotel industry - all his recommends were inspired. Rooms and facilities glorious - great location - and all in magnificent Miami! Stay nowhere but here.

Room Tip: Go for an upgraded room as bigger beds - I personally like rooms that overlook the pool area.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
Helpful?
2 Thank Deborah B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jeff L, General Manager at The Betsy - South Beach, responded to this review, July 13, 2013
Dear Deborah B.,

Thank you for your return visit and for your glowing review! Our many repeat Guests hold a special place in our hearts, as there is no more genuine compliment to us than to come back! I was glad to hear that our concierge Paul upheld his usual part of the deal with great service - and we look forward to your next visit almost as much as you do!

Best regards,

Jeff Lehman
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
89 reviews
79 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2013

Pros:
- Location.
- Lovely rooms.
- Lovely common parts.
- Lovely staff, particularly at check-in.
- Great vibe - stylish whilst in the middle of the madness.

Cons:
- Shame they make no good use of the roof terrace after dark.
- Breakfast hostess had a bit of an attitude.

Overall, great place. This was my fifth stay in Miami Beach over 20 years (5 different hotels). This is the one I would go back to.

  • Stayed June 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
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank edtealdi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jeff L, General Manager at The Betsy - South Beach, responded to this review, July 13, 2013
Dear Edtealdi,

Thank you so much for your recent visit and your five star review! As a frequent traveler (and reviewer!), your words mean so much to me. I'm happy to read that you have found your home in South Beach - the only hotel you ever need to return to!

Warm Regards,

Jeff Lehman
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belfast, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
89 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2013

This hotel was amazing! Immediately I stepped out of the taxi into the white light of the Betsy I felt we were somewhere special. The lobby was buzzing with life and the diners in BLT were tucking into their food with gusto - after travelling most of the day the restaurant was calling to me! However we checked out our room first which was charming - tastefully furnished in tones of white and vibrant green. The separate sitting area had interesting books which if we could have stayed longer I really could have enjoyed. The overall feel of the hotel is a calming colonial oasis in the middle of Miami madness. We ate in the BLT - I had the rosemary chicken which was wonderful
and then we moved on to the bar area where there was a girl singing accompanied by a pianist - the ambiance was delightful as were the Martinez's! It's a short walk to the beach where we were setup with comfy chairs and umbrella (fee $16 for the two of us for the day) . The roof top sitting area is lovely too - great views of the beach. The location was excellent and the staff were attentive - the manager sent us chocolate and coconut covered strawberries with a lovely note as a token for our wedding anniversary celebration. All in all a fantastic experience !

  • 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
Helpful?
2 Thank Ulsteron2ur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jeff L, General Manager at The Betsy - South Beach, responded to this review, July 13, 2013
Dear Ulsteron2ur,

I am so happy you chose to celebrate your 50th anniversary with us! With 42 reviews in the last 2 years, I can tell you have quite a bit of experience in travel - and it makes it that much more rewarding to read a review such as yours. The "white light of the Betsy", as you called it, is indeed something very unique, so many travelers feel the sense of timeless service and our passion for hospitality from the moment they arrive...and it just gets better after that! We hope to see you again in the future!

Sincerely,


Jeff Lehman
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Betsy - South Beach

Property: The Betsy - South Beach
Address: 1440 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, FL 33139-4108
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Miami Beach > City Center
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection 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:
#5 Romantic Hotel in Miami Beach
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Miami Beach
#6 Spa Hotel in Miami Beach
#6 Luxury Hotel in Miami Beach
#7 Business Hotel in Miami Beach
#12 Family Hotel in Miami Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Betsy - South Beach 4.5*
Number of rooms: 61
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Betsy - South Beach is an elegant, beach-side haven located in the heart of South Beach. Its relaxed tropical interiors create an aura that is passionately low-key, cocooning its guests in timeless luxury and service, while offering exquisite amenities, world-class cuisine by celebrated Chef Laurent Tourondel, and a unique presence for art and culture that invites travelers to relax, refresh and renew. The Betsy's Ocean Deck is expansive with sweeping views of the Atlantic, offering a Wellness Garden with a full range of spa treatments and sunrise yoga. Other amenities include private beach service, a 24-hour fitness center, and an intimate courtyard pool. Guests can also enjoy live jazz music and signature cocktails in our lobby bar. While located in the heart of the Art Deco District on famed Ocean Drive, The Betsy is within walking distance to shopping and nightlife, yet offers a uniquely serene experience in one of the world's great beach destinations. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Betsy Hotel Miami Beach

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