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“Just OK,....”

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Congress Hotel South Beach
Ranked #136 of 208 Hotels in Miami Beach
Ohio
Level Contributor
16 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Just OK,....”
Reviewed 11 April 2012

Our visit was just OK - wouldn't book again. We were a mother/daughter visiting for a relaxing few days, not spring breakers and not interested in SoBe party scene. That being said, if you are either of those two things, of course the location is top notch. Also we were impressed with the complimentary on the beach chairs and umbrella daily - a very nice perk. (get there early)

For the Cons: Everything seemed difficult - if we wanted ice,..the bellman had to get it, wanted a wine bottle opened,..no cork screw in the room, front desk didn't have, could maybe call housekeeping for us? (if they were still there) just ended up walking to the bar. The 3 days we were there, the pool area was not maintained at all - No clean towels and cups of drinks with cigarette butts floating left around with trash. Breakfast options were just sad. You'd be much better off paying for a cheap hot breakfast out on Ocean drive and using the bagels provided by the Congress breakfast voucher for an on the beach lunch/snack to hold you off til dinner. Make sure if you're in a deluxe room and you desire a balcony, that you call ahead. It thought that was a given and it was not, we were SOL on that once we got there. Also, I swear we were suppose to have a king bed - if it was, it was the tiniest I've ever seen. We had the last room in the back of building and it was cramped - constantly banging shins on the bed frame trying to get to bathroom. We didn't get the Ocean Dr noise,..but got to listen to car alarms from the parking garage and back alley yelling all night. Trash truck comes at 7am every morning it seems - and they pick up lots and lots of glass bottles.

So if your a SoBe partier and out til 4-5 am (and not a details person) this maybe the hotel for you,....if there for other reasons, maybe look into another hotel.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Vidpro23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
congressmanagement, General Manager at Congress Hotel South Beach, responded to this review, 12 April 2012
My apologies you encountered problems during your recent stay with us. I am not aware of the pool not being maintained for 3 days in a row or having a sad breakfast as we are constantly monitoring it daily however would like to make the situation right with you as this obviously did negatively impact your perception of the hotel staff and your overall stay.

Since posts on this site are anonymous, I would encourage you to contact my office at cbono@congresshotelsouthbeach.com so I can follow-up with the hotel team on your behalf.

Again my apologies that we missed the mark in this instance and hope you will reconsider staying with us us on your next visit to Miami Beach. Safe travels and warm regards.

Claudio Bono
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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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (183)
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English first
Washington, D.C.
Level Contributor
54 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2012

I reviewed this hotel several years ago and captioned it "perfectly relaxing."

While the hotel itself is decent, it's important to know that it's no longer a "boutique" hotel: it is a spring break hotel. Aspects of the boutique ambiance remain, from the dark wood interior finishes, rain water showers, and cool black light hall lights. What is missing is the service and amenities. The staff is pleasant and accommodating, but they can only do so much. For example the glazing on our very cool bathtub had begun to wear through. Our room was "picked up" but never vacuumed, dusted, or straightened in three days. Importantly, there were no locks on our balcony doors. When we requested locks, maintenance installed a lock out bar on one, but not the other. This would not be a big deal in most hotels, but at this one, you can travel from room to room on the balconies, AND you're required to sign a waiver of liability for thefts from your room on check in.

I do think that the Congress is a "get what you pay for" hotel. If you keep in mind that you're staying on the ocean, and paying EconoLodge prices, you won't be disappointed. Above that, you will.

Room Tip: Choose a room on a high floor to avoid the boom-boom music from the Ocean Drive bars.
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank DavidDC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
congressmanagement, General Manager at Congress Hotel South Beach, responded to this review, 12 April 2012
Thank you for your feeback. It seems we missed the mark on your recent stay with us. All of our service team take our guests feedback and comments very seriously and we have reviewed your comments in detail at our most recent staff meeting to insure we can work on improvement for your next visit to our hotel. We are a deluxe boutique Hotel, however, like many other South Beach Hotels including 4 and 5 stars, Spring Breakers are travelling to South Beach this time a year. Again our apologies, please contact me directly at cbono@congresshotelsouthbeach.com for your next stay.

Warm regards,

Claudio Bono
General Manager
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1 review
Reviewed 11 April 2012

I had an amazing time here. 1st we got to check in 3hrs early!!!!!!!! Daniel was very helpful not to mention how cute he is.... the location was wonderful we could walk everywhere or catch a bus plus the hotel is literally steps from the beach. the only bad thing was housekeeping only changed our sheets 1x during the 4night stay other than that this place was excellent and i can't wait to come back

  • Stayed April 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank msa314
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Prefernottosay
Level Contributor
24 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 April 2012

relatively reasonable prices for lovely, clean rooms n the heart of south beach, with all the necessary amenities. FANTASTIC rooftop pool (although the rooftop bar charges $12/drink), and great access to the beach with towel/chair service. the downside - totally disorganized front desk and staff. don't expect any questions to be answered promptly or accurately, or even for them to remember your correct booking info. poor service is typical for the area though, and would absolutely stay here again. thanks, congress hotel, for a great vacation!

Room Tip: call the manager to discuss negotiate the best possible price.
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank traveler01010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
congressmanagement, General Manager at Congress Hotel South Beach, responded to this review, 12 April 2012
Many thanks for taking the time to review and your 4 & 5 Star review on cleanliness & rooms. My apologies if there some confusion at check-in that negatively affected your perception of the hotel during your stay with us. Please feel free to contact my office directly so that I can arrange your next stay at the Congress Hotel South Beach! In the meantime, I wish you and your family safe travels and warm regards,

Claudio Bono
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Woodbridge
1 review
Reviewed 9 April 2012

I read several reviews about South Beach being a party town so I was prepared for that beforehand. What I WAS NOT prepared for was the loud music played by the Medi Grill all day and night long. The Medi Grill is located on the street level of one of the Congress Hotel Buildings. Congress is made up of more than one building. We stayed in the two level building next to the Medi Grill. Our room was classified as “oceanfront”, but the balcony opened on the side of the Medi Grill. The music thumped and throbbed from about noon til 3 am. We had to turn up the tv extremely loud to drown out the noise. This was very frustrating because paying $250 and up per night, you want to be able to retreat to your room for a little peace and relaxation from activities and to prepare for the night outings. We tried to switch rooms, but nothing was available. We actually considered switching hotels, but because it was spring break, not too many options in the decent hotels.

About the room:

It was decent, just as the pictures had shown. There were definitely areas that could have been cleaned better. They should definitely use some of the open space and provide a dresser because the small closet in the room does not hold much. The couch was not the most comfortable and the bed sank in the middle. It was a great convenience having the kitchen, but make sure you take inventory of the mini bar when you get the room. We bought our own food and drinks and didn’t take inventory of the minibar when checking in. When we checked out we were charged for a tonic water that we never drank. We brought it to the attention of the front desk upon checkout, but she just brushed it off. Even though $2 is not going to break the bank, it still stinks being charged for something you didn’t drink.
Maid service was non-existent the first day, the second day we called for service. She did show up on the final day, but we were checking out so no need.

Our room had a tv in the living room (analog) and HD in the bedroom. This hotel needs to upgrade the tvs so you are not watching different channel selections.

Next time in South Beach, I’ll definitely stay in a quieter area of Ocean Drive.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank A J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
congressmanagement, General Manager at Congress Hotel South Beach, responded to this review, 12 April 2012
Thank you for your recent review tripadvisor review regarding your visit at the Congress Hotel.

I do apologize for the fact that you were disturbed by the noise in the area surrounding our guest rooms during your visit. Miami had a 10 day long conference called "Winter Music Conference & Ultra Festival" and that particular week was dedicated to celebrate music.

I apologize for the inconvenience with housekeeping, please note that our team are trained not to disturb guest while a "Do not distur sign" is on. I encourage you to contact my office at your convenience so I can resolve any remaining issues you may have at cbono@congresshotelsouthbeach.com.

Warm regards,

Claudio Bono
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 Congress Hotel South Beach

Property: Congress Hotel South Beach
Address: 1052 Ocean Drive, Miami Beach, FL 33139 (Formerly The Strand)
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Florida > Miami Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#92 On the Beach Hotel in Miami Beach
Price range (per night): ₹ 9,432 - ₹ 22,868
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Congress Hotel South Beach 3.5*
Number of rooms: 70
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Live the South Beach lifestyle at our hotel in Miami Beach, Florida. Located in the heart of Miami's Art Deco Historic District on Ocean Drive, we offer spacious, stylish suites with all the amenities of home. With stellar views of the ocean and the bustling action of Ocean Drive, our beachfront hotel is exactly what you need for your stay in Miami. Because we are located right on the beach, fun in the sun is literally at your doorstep. Stake out your spot in the sand and enjoy the signature Florida sunshine. With the average temperatures in the 70s and 80s, you can enjoy the beach and the sun almost all year-round. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Strand Ocean Drive Hotel
Strand Ocean Drive Miami Beach

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