Hotel Review: Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort

Hi I’m Libby Rome. I am the ultimate
minimalist who lives in hotels. Today I am going to talk to you about the Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort. Hilton’s Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach is an all suite resort across from the beach in Fort Lauderdale Florida. The price of this
hotel can vary greatly. I booked a one-bedroom suite with a
partial ocean view, which is normally at least $320 a night, plus taxes. They also
charge an additional $40 a night resort fee. I booked this hotel using a free
weekend night voucher from my Hilton Aspire credit card. Hilton Honors Diamond guests who use points or vouchers to pay for their stay also get
taxes and the resort fee waived. So, fortunately, my hotel bill for this stay
was zero dollars. The Conrad is named after the original founder of Hilton Hotels, Conrad Hilton. Conrad Hotels & Resorts is
an international brand of luxury hotels and resorts. There are 37 properties
worldwide. The Conrad Fort Lauderdale hotel was the first Conrad hotel in the
U.S. and now there are six. I had just returned from a 15-day trans-Atlantic cruise and decided it would be nice to check out Fort Lauderdale and this
luxury hotel for a night. As my taxi was approaching the hotel I noticed there were at least a dozen homeless peoplewalking around on the beach. I also noticed that there was a big construction site next to the hotel. I
hoped that the noise wouldn’t be too much of an issue during my stay. We
arrived around 10 a.m. so my husband and I needed to wait until our room was
ready. There’s no Club Lounge at this hotel so we asked where we could sit and
work. The hotel desk staff member showed us to the library area but unfortunately
it only had couches not actual places to set up a laptop. He gave me a key to use
the elevators so I could instead go relax at the 6th floor pool. When I
arrived I asked the pool attendant if I could get a drink. He said he would
send someone over. however the drink service started at
the opposite side of the pool and serviced one person at a time. At least a half hour went by and it was clear that I was not going to get a
drink anytime soon plus the music volume was so low I could hardly hear it. Instead all I could hear was the construction next door. I left and went to go find a drink elsewhere. After waiting a few hours, I stopped by the
front desk to see if they had a room ready for me even though they hadn’t
called me yet. They did, so I headed up to check out my suite, number 1801. The suite includes a galley kitchen with a fridge, sink, microwave and stove. It includes oneand a half bathrooms. This is the half bathroom. There is 770 square feet of living space
the living room has a sofa bed and a work desk. The bed is a standard Hilton
king-size bed and there were two TVs the bedroom also has a 20 square foot Juliet
balcony to enjoy my partial ocean view. The ensuite bathroom has a large shower
and a deep bathtub. Normally at a nice Hilton or Waldorf Hotel Hilton honors Diamond members receive access to a club lounge and enjoy complimentary breakfast
for two guests. This hotel instead provides a $20.00 food and
beverage coupon to use at their restaurants. I used it to purchase 4 drinks and some french fries for my which ended up costing $60 even after the coupon was applied. I knew their prices were high
but the total was still higher than I expected. The waitress explained that there’s an automatic 20% gratuity added based on the original amount rather than the final amount, thereby reducing the value
of the coupon. I learned not to return. As I mentioned, this hotel also
doesn’t have a club lounge. Instead they offer Hilton Honors Gold and Diamond
members a wine reception for one hour in the evening. I had to ask the front desk
where to go, and they directed me to the hotel store / café. When I and others
walked in and looked around confused the staff asks, “Are you here for the wine
reception?” and they direct you to a corner of the room where someone will pour you a
glass of wine and you can help yourself to some appetizers. To me, the appetizers weren’t actually
very good but I did enjoy the glass of wine A week before my stay the concierge
emailed me offering to book restaurants, services or activities for
additional costs. I responded within an hour declining those services, answering
his questions, and requesting a tour of the hotel. A week went by
and he never responded. The day before my arrival I emailed him
again, once again copying the main concierge desk as well.
I received an out-of-office reply. Another concierge contacted me to let me know that someone else would contact me. After several more emails, I was finally assigned a sales rep who showed me around a bit. I had
many questions but she was only able to answer a few. I learned for example that
this hotel was originally built as a residence until the builder ran out of
money. Hilton bought them several years later I
also asked what was unique about the Conrad brand and this property. Her
response was “impeccable service.” Honestly, I wasn’t really seeing that. I returned to my room only to find that my room key no longer worked. Frustrating. I walked
downstairs to get my key reset and the front desk said “oh it’s because you have
back-to-back reservations.” I said “no it’s actually just for one night.” “Oh well how
many keys do you need?” “So my husband’s key was reset too?” She responded, “Yes do you need two keys then?” “Yes.” That night I had difficulty sleeping due to the air-conditioning event that only blew directly at the bed and you couldn’t
change the vent to point elsewhere. There was also someone with a megaphone, people yelling, &loud music somewhere nearby. The next morning,
I walked to the beach across the street but unfortunately it was a rainy windy day plus the Hilton Beach service was
not yet open so that I could get a lounge chair. Overall I didn’t have a
very nice day. I feel like this hotel was just an expensive tourist trap. It
seemed like the hotel was just trying to get as much money for me as possible.
For example they wanted me to buy a unit or pay for an upgrade, and they installed
the TV in such a way that you can’t plug in your own devices or play netflix on
the TV. Instead they want you to buy their on-demand movies. You need to be
extra careful when buying them too. The movies were a minimum of $19.99 plus
tax but if you choose the default selections you end up paying more for
additional services. I made sure to carefully select the cancel button
instead. I don’t want to pay seven dollars extra for a one month
subscription to a karaoke app for example. The minibar was also ridiculous
although I was happy that they left me a little room to store my own food the
other items just took up space and cost way too much. I don’t want to pay $5.50 for a diet coke $14 for some nuts or $16 for cookies. I also won’t pay $32 for a small bottle of rum or $36 for a small bottle of red
wine. Overall I rate this hotel 2 out of 5 stars. Given the price and the promise
of service, it did not meet my expectations. Thanks for watching my
review. Let me know what you think, and don’t forget to subscribe!