We travel to Miami Beach once every ten years to dine at one of our favorite spots, Joe's Stone Crab Restaurant which by the way just celebrated their 100 year birthday. I wanted to go down in December, but found the South Beach hotel prices way beyond our means. I kept an eye on the prices at the Hilton Bentley until I found a rate of $284.05 per night. That was still more than I wanted to pay, but the options for a nice place were limited. I booked a studio and was offered an upgrade to their 1 king 1 bedroom suite "City View" for only 41,971 points more on my Hilton Honors account. I had never used any of the points over the last 20 years so why not? I can usually figure that a loyalty point is worth one cent, so I gave them $419.71 in addition to the $641.04 in cash for the two night stay. That came to a grand total value of $1,060.75 for the two nights. That did not count in the $70 required valet parking fee for the car.
I hate to admit it, but that was the most expensive hotel we have ever stayed at in our 47 years of marriage.
The hotel is great. Staff were exceptional even to the point of knowing your name after only one interaction. The Cuban restaurant on site was fun and interesting with some novel dishes for us to try at lunch. All dinners were at Joe's Stone Crab, two blocks away. Beautiful marble existed throughout the common areas and rooms including the bath.
Now the slight nomenclature issues we experienced. You might remember I indicated we paid for a City View Suite. We were in suite #602 on the north side of the building. Our view was totally encompassed by the next residential building about 50 feet away. If we strained looking to the east we could see a small strip of ocean. To the west we strained to see some construction of a new condo going up. Management needs to work on properly describing the rooms. This property is what is called a "Condo Hotel", and is quite common in Miami Beach. Each unit is individually owned, but managed by Hilton. This being the case there are discrepancies in the furnishings and features in the rooms. Our room has flat screen TV's in the living room and bedroom, but only the living room was high definition. The bedroom unit was a nice TV, but without the proper signal it is a waste of money. The kitchen had a nice fridge in it with a working ice machine, but the water dispenser did not operate. Was it turned off so you would have to buy the bottled water at $4.00 a pop?
Again, we enjoyed our stay and I hope that the sales team works a little harder on their promotional material.
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