Hotel Type: Boutique
Stayed: October 19 – 21, 2015 [2 night stay]
Price for stay: $124.37 excluding taxes & fees on Amoma.com
Room Reserved: Standard Two Double
Room Received: Junior Suite King Bed [Room 406]
Fabulosity Level: 3.5
 It’s a doozy [teeth suck]  Ordinary [rolled eyes]  Ordinary  Awesome  Marvelous
Frugality Level: 4
 U get what U pay 4  Not good  Not bad  Well Worth It  Bang 4 Ur Buck
I booked a room at the Chesterfield Hotel & Suites in South Beach Miami for a 2 ½ day stint. This was one of my quick getaways just to see some sun, beach, eat, drink [a lot] and head home to the East Coast. I wanted fabulosity on a frugal budget and here is what I got.
The Shuttle: There is a free shuttle from MIA to the hotel. It runs like clockwork and the instructions on how to catch it and it’s schedule is posted on the hotel website. I landed at 1:30pm and was on the shuttle and on my way to the hotel [because I followed the instructions] by 2:05pm. The shuttle was PERFECT! SCORE!
The First Impression: The hotel is cute and quaint. It sits on Collins avenue; situated in the thick of things. Other boutique hotels, shopping, restaurant, beach and activities all are within walking distance. There is no need to rent a car. The lobby was decorated for Halloween and I must say that everything was gawdy fabulous. I friggin’ loved it! The hotel lobby is small but chic. I felt comfortable with my choice.
The Check In: SoOOooOOooOOo there was a little wait on check-in. There were two young ladies behind the desk but only one was checking individuals in for a moment. Not certain why but there was visible hustle & bustle so I waited patiently on the couch that is directly in front of the desk [a plus]. Sitting and waiting is so much better than standing and waiting. My estimated wait time was 10 minutes with 2 people ahead of me. Once it was my turn, check in was seamless and I received [wait for it] a FREE upgrade to a Junior Suite. Well, that was well worth the wait. Thank you Keisha! Keisha also encouraged me to visit both Tripadvisor.com and Yelp.com [via a handy dandy review card] to rate my stay. I like that --- that means that they are driven by customer satisfaction.
The room: The room was in a different building and the bellman walked me over. I forgot his name but he was kinda cute. A bonus [raised eyebrow]! There were lounge chairs & couches, picnic table, and places to sit outside and enjoy each other [if there was an “each other”] on the grounds. They had a very chic and modern feel in a very frugally subdued way. When I opened the door I felt like I was in one of the display rooms at Ikea. It was very sleek and modern and not overly done. It was clean and inviting. The bathroom was nice and I wasn’t afraid to take my shoes off which is the litmus of whether or not I stay or go [teeth suck]. There were some blemishes that said that this is not a five star but when you paid what I paid you are willing to forgo perfection. There was a hair curler burn on the toilet seat where some guest must have just put the hot curler directly on the toilet seat. Like who does that [lip curl]? There were some minor construction issues like a inexplicable hole down by the bottom of the sink like maybe they were going to run the pipes from there and then they changed their mind but it wasn’t anything that I saw as a deal breaker. I just pretended like it wasn’t there. There were some small blemishes on the white couch but nothing that made me say, “I’m outta here”. Like really on a scale from 1 to Fabulous the room gets a “pretty decent”.
The amenities: This is where they lose some cool points but I hope that these are things that they are willing to fix.
- The Wi-Fi sucks moose balls. It only works in the lobby or if you are staying in the main building apparently. No bueno [teeth suck]!
- The cable channels did not include ESPN or any of the really good premium channels. Needless to say that I did not get to finish watching the Eagles beat the Giants. It was a huge downer because I had left the bar thinking that I would simply watch the remainder of the game in the room [sigh].
- The hot tub that was advertised was not available. This was a huge Debbie Downer. I really had plans to feel up some unsuspecting muscle bound gentlemen in the hot tub only to find out that my plan was foiled. I could, however, take a little jitney [that’s what I’ll call it] that the hotel provides free of charge to their sister property Catalina to indulge in their pool and poolside activities. BUT when you are on a 2 day hiatus that is really not what is in the crammed plans. So no water sports!
- There is no computer to print out boarding passes. The front desk will accommodate you by allowing you to email them your boarding passes and then they print them out but a computer terminal and a printer for guest to do this simple task would be a great addition.
- The restaurant/bar is attached to but not affiliated with the hotel. I shall explain. While I sat outside people watching and waiting for my sand to come to the beach [raised eyebrow] I ate at outside with the restaurant/bar that is lobby associated with the hotel. I had the wings. They were good. Not great but good. I also had an apple martini. It, too, was good. I wanted to bill the charges to my room but they were unable to do so. No big deal but it would have been a plus.
- I did not make happy hour so that is my fault. But there is one and its free for an hour.
All in all my stay at the Chesterfield was a good one. I felt comfortable as a single traveler [well, kinda’ single] and the accommodations were comfortable. For a frugal stay it was definitely on the plus side of fabulousity. I would stay again but just hope that they do address some of the amenity issues.
Points of Interest: South Beach, Yardbird Southern Cuisine Restaurant, Ocean Drive, Half Price Tours [right next door to the hotel].
Would you like to invite India L. Trotter to visit and review your establishment? Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org. To receive travel tips, blogs and travel reviews like Fabulously Frugal Travel Tips on Facebook.