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“Great Hotel, But Missed the Mark in Service”

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Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection
Ranked #16 of 78 Hotels in St. Augustine
Certificate of Excellence
New York City, New York
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Great Hotel, But Missed the Mark in Service”
Reviewed February 1, 2013

Lovely, historic hotel. Linens and the bed were amazing, lovely architecture, etc. We were part of a group that rented meeting space. We loved the hotel itself. The bellmen (especially Perry!) and the vallet and doormen were all top-notch professional, friendly, and very helpful. The problem was the terrible service at the front desk. We were suppose to get wifi in our room under our contract, and every guest had issues with logging on, and being billed for the wifi, even though it was in our contract. We shouldnt have to spend our time trying to get it fixed. The worst faux pax was I asked for a late check out, and was told by a very rude front desk person "we dont do that for groups." I had to teach a class, leave it in the last 10 minutes, and not get a chance to properly close out my class and thank and say goodbye to my audience, because I had to run and check out. At noon on the dot, they deactivated my keycard, and I was locked out. It was upsetting, and very unprofessional. This is NOT 4 star service. I would take away a star for that. Expensive, and they nickel and dime you for everything, including $7 for an AV cart. Really? When we are paying $1000 for a room rental? Aside from the bellmen/vallet guys, we felt a bit direspected and unimportant, and it was ashame to have to leave on such a stressful, bad note. I suggest brushing up on the "hospitality" and attitude at the front desk.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank NYCFoodie23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anthony L, General Manager at Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection, responded to this review, February 20, 2013
Thank you for your comments. I am very sorry that we did not live up to your expectations and our front desk staff was not able to accommodate your specific requests. Even though a late checkout could not be offered due to arriving guests there are certainly alternatives that could have been offered. Your valuable feedback does allow us to address our shortcomings and continuously improve our service.
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (397)
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New York
Level 5 Contributor
74 reviews
67 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed January 31, 2013

The Casa Monica is in the tradition of an old resort hotel, which it was early in the last century. But don't worry about small rooms and limited amenities - the Casa Monica is very well turned out. It has a nice full-service reataurant, great bar and even a coffee shop out front. The hotel kept much of its original lobby decor, and the Spanish influence is high throughout the property. There's plenty of art [much for sale] on the walls and in a small gallery off the lobby. The Casa Monica is literally on the town square, across from Flagler College [itself a former resort hotel], next to a great little museum. Everything is within walking distance. Or you can call for your car via the hotel's valet parking and hit nearby beaches and golf. The lobby is a great place to hang out and people watch - in how many places these days outside a big city hotel can one say that? Staff is fast and efficient. Room service - fantastic. Strong drinks at the bar, too. Coffee shop serves Starbucks-branded products. There's a pool to hang out in in better weather [though it was 81 degrees F on one of my days there, it's still January] Only bones of contention: media. Internet service [to me] is like tap water at any property - not to be charged for. And upgrade the content on the flat screen TVs to HD.

Room Tip: And a tip: ask for a room with a pool view. Quieter than street view. PS: You can reserve via Marrio...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank 5w30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anthony L, General Manager at Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection, responded to this review, February 10, 2013
Thank you for the wonderful comments. It is wonderful to read your comprehensive review of Casa Monica and your suggestions. We hope to soon have a HD signal to enjoy. I appreciate you taking the time to share.
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Tampa, Florida
Level 4 Contributor
30 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed January 30, 2013

Romance, architecture, location, decor, ambiance, and hospitality... Ten out of Ten! The Casa Monica is conveniently located in the heart of Saint Augustine's Historic District and within walking distance to St. George Street - which is the major hub of most shops, local attractions, and a great source of restaurants and eateries. My Fiancé (now husband!!) and I stayed in a gorgeous suite. The decor was true to the Spanish influence in the area. The hotel concierge were helpful, kind, and more than accommodating! We never had a chance to dine in their restaurant downstairs, but were able to enjoy a cocktail from the bar. It simply has the best of both worlds. It possesses the historical charm that one desires while staying in the country's "oldest city" but has all of the modern conveniences. The room sizes were large and our had a gorgeous view of downtown, whereas some of the others overlook the pool and cabana area. Either way, your view wouldn't be anything less than spectacular.

The downfalls to this gorgeous hotel: The price is high. We were celebrating a special occasion and didn't mind springing for the *best of the best* - but for any other trip we may not have found the price to be acceptable. Also, they have "mandatory valet" service which is another 20$ or so.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank allirussell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anthony L, General Manager at Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection, responded to this review, February 8, 2013
I thank you for taking the time to share a review of your recent visit. I am so happy you enjoyed your experience at Casa Monica and the Ancient City. There is so much to offer in our charming town and I hope you have the opportunity to visit again soon with your new husband.
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Tampa, Florida, United States
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2013

This is the best hotel in St. Augustine, and the only hotel my company will book in that area for business travel (most hotels in St. Augustine are questionable at best). The hotel is beautiful inside and out with original works of art and stunning architectural features. The property is also walking distance to most attractions in the area.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Liz T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anthony L, General Manager at Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection, responded to this review, February 8, 2013
Thank you for your comments and we certainly appreciate your business and your company's selection of Casa Monica. Knowing you travel extensively, your senior review means so much to us.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jacksonville, FL
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed January 28, 2013

As other reviewers have pointed out, the Casa Monica is very well located within walking distance of the historical sites, shops, and restaurants. The architecture is Spanish/Moorish which lends interest to the hotel. Two friends and I stayed one night in the 3 story Flagler Suite as a special treat to celebrate a birthday.We had expectations of luxury since we paid $700 (w/tax) for the stay. The suite is actually in a tower, so we expected stairs, but the climb to the second bedroom had 37 stairs. We learned not to forget anything from the room! Also, this bedroom has about a dozen very small windows without any window coverings, so you need to be an early riser. The upside is that the windows provide a great view. The two king sized beds in the room were very comfortable; there is a leather chair, a small refrigerator and sink, and the bathroom has a tub with shower.
The bedroom on the second floor is spacious, with a king sized bed, a leather chair, a desk, and a walk-in shower. However, the person who stayed in that room could not get any hot water for a shower.
The first floor has a pull-out couch, a leather chair, a round table with four chairs, a small refrigerator, and a small sink. No dishes or silverware are provided, and there is no microwave.
As for service, the people at the front desk were rather stiff and unfriendly, although the rest of the staff were the opposite. We were sent a fruit plate and a bottle of water upon arrival. Note that the bottles of water left in the room cost $5, and we were charged for a bottle by mistake.
To sum up, we found comfort (with some negatives) but not luxury in this suite. The price of $700 for a 2 bedroom suite in St. Augustine should bring a lot more attention to detail and a much warmer welcome mat to the guests.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank JoanJacksonville_FL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anthony L, General Manager at Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection, responded to this review, February 8, 2013
I appreciate your review and sharing your experience in our Flagler suite, one of our seven signature suites at the Casa Monica. I have reviewed with our Front Office Manager to ensure the description of this suite is more thorough so that there are no surprises. I do have to apologize that you felt that the front desk staff was not as friendly as you would like. That is not the service level that we aspire to and assure you the exception rather than the rule. Thank you again for your comments.
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Lakeland, Florida
Level 5 Contributor
68 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed January 27, 2013

I've stayed in a wide range of hotels, but none like this one. There's a beauty and quality and atmosphere that's unlike any other. It's the best of both worlds, it feels historical but has all the modern conveniences. First impression was made driving up, the exterior of the building is very impressive. The lobby is to die for, and when we got to our room jazz music was playing on a bose system which really made the atmosphere.
Advantages:
The location can't be beat- walking distance from everything.
Very comfortable bed.
The restaurant hosts a very nice (a tad overpriced) brunch.
Live music on the weekends.
Fantastic pool area.
Nice furniture/paintings in the room.
Historic feel of staying in one of Flagler's hotels.
Nice bathroom/accessories.
Nice service.

Room for Improvement:
Price was steep (270 for a standard room or one night in January, plus 24 for parking, pay for your own breakfast, plus extra if you want wi-fi...for a hotel at that rate I'd expect more inclusions).
Plumbing was spotty (weird water pressure, loud noises).
Maid didn't realize we opted for late checkout and tried to come in to clean the room.
Wish they had a day spa or one was nearby.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank KyTravels30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anthony L, General Manager at Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection, responded to this review, February 8, 2013
Thank you for sharing your recent experience at Casa Monica. I am very happy that you enjoyed all that we had to offer and I certainly will review those areas where we can still improve. We are reviewing plans for a spa so please keep an eye out for your next visit..
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2 reviews
Reviewed January 27, 2013

My wife had a great experience at the Casa Monica in St. Augustine. The hotel was weary quaint with a comfortable sitting area surrounded by the restaurant. Friends of ours stayed in one of the suites. We stayed in a standard room overlooking thr pool area. Both the standard room and the suite were very spacious. Everything about this hotel was first class. We especially liked the fact that we could walk out the front door of the Hotel and we were in the heart of Saint Augustine.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank gbrockl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anthony L, General Manager at Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection, responded to this review, February 3, 2013
I am so happy that you and your friends enjoyed the Casa Monica. Saint Augustine does indeed have that European feel and charm and without the time and inconviences of traveling abroad. Thank your for sharing your experience.
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Additional Information about Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection

Property: Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection
Address: 95 Cordova St, St. Augustine, FL 32084-4424 (Formerly Casa Monica, Autograph Collection)
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > St. Augustine
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Business Hotel in St. Augustine
#12 Family Hotel in St. Augustine
#13 Romantic Hotel in St. Augustine
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Casa Monica Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection 4*
Number of rooms: 138
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Casa Monica, Autograph Collection Hotel Saint Augustine
Casa Monica Saint Augustine
Casa Monica St Augustine
Hotel Casa Monica
Casa Monica Hotel

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