My standard hotel reviews include a breakdown by the following topics. Feel free to skip to whichever section you find most interesting.
- Hotel Space / Ambience
- Food & Drink
Highlights: Miami Marriott Biscayne Bay
Quality of the staff service and food were the highlights of this stay – with an amazing breakfast at The Catch restaurant, and great drinks at the 180° Pool Bar. The staff at the front desk, lounge, bar, and restaurant, were all excellent and very accommodating, making for an excellent experience.
The lobby is well lit and expansive, with a small shop directly left of checkin for quick drinks or snacks, as well as an Illy café across from registration. Service was excellent, and occasionally they lay out mojito samples for guests!
Helpful front desk agents will provide water on request – especially if you have status or mention that the lounge (see: Hotel Space) is closed. Additionally, they offer a third party shuttle service to Miami Beach which leaves hourly for $12 per person, which goes to the Lincoln Ave Mall, South Beach, and the Marriott Stanton South Beach. Please note a cursory analysis of Lyft/Uber showed a lower price, especially for Line/Pool options, at about $4 each way. It’s also a great deal for a party of more than two, and allows for more flexibility.
Because the shuttle service is with an outside company, the front desk agents were not able to discount or comp it, even for guests with Marriott status.
Gold Elite did not warrant a room upgrade (something I notice, as when I was SPG Gold and as Platinum now I always got upgraded). Internet is free for Marriott Rewards members (standard speed) and free “enhanced high-speed internet” for Marriott Gold or Platinum. Otherwise, it is $10 per day for standard and $15 per day for enhanced internet. The standard room was comfy but pretty small, with excellent views of the bridges and intermediate islands, as well as Miami Beach.
I did notice a faint moldy odor from the air conditioning, as the room would be too hot without it and too cold with it. Quite a dilemma.
Hotel Space / Ambience
The Marriott concierge lounge was a very interesting experience, as I automatically compare it to the Sheraton Club lounges or Hilton Diamond lounges. This lounge was located on the 26th floor, which very nice views of Miami Beach, and serves hors d’oeuvres Sunday through Thursday. My Thursday was Mexican night – with make your own beef or chicken tacos, which were decent. Excellent drink assortment – but Marriotts are Pepsi properties, and I am a Diet Coke fan. It was great for a quick grab and go upon checkin – with yogurts, bananas, and an assortment of milks, juices, and water available.
Also, the breakfast is typically served in the lounge – most likely basic continental and light hot foods. However, during my stay there were certificates at The Catch (See: Food & Drink) so we were treated to an improved buffet breakfast.
Food & Drink
This is the highlight of my stay. Breakfast was served buffet style at The Catch restaurant on the ground floor, courtesy of Gold Elite status (otherwise $22). The bacon was not excessively crispy, and there was a good selection of hot foods, such as ham croquettes, sweet potato and mushroom hash, and delicious sausages. Additionally, there are made-to-order waffles and omelettes, with fresh avocado they will scoop for you! Service at The Catch (and the rest of the hotel) was excellent, and it was a real pleasure to enjoy their hospitality.
Outside of breakfast, happy hour is a big part of this hotel – with drink deals from 1pm to 4pm at the pool, and 4pm to 7pm at the Catch. We enjoyed $6 margaritas, mojitos, and daiquiris, which were delicious. Their mojito ranks in the top 10 in Miami according to some publication, an award heavily advertised in the lobby, elevators, and around the hotel. The burger at the pool was decent, but the bartender was great.
Lastly, we received a thank you amenity of cheeses, fruits, meats, crackers, and bottles of Pellegrino. A pretty standard platter but a nice thought nonetheless.
The Marriott gym was decent with 3 treadmills, 3 ellipticals, and maybe ~5-10 other machines. It was very convoluted and spaced out with a very clear weights section and machine section. The pool was very spacious, with many reclining pool chairs and expansive views of Miami Beach at a ledge. The pool area also had two ping pong tables and a large chess set, and an excellent bar whipping up excellent drinks.
For those without a car, note that drivers can drop you off on a side street next to the Marriott (following the GPS) so you may have to walk up some stairs.
A comparison of rideshare showed Lyft being significantly cheaper (20-50%) as compared to Uber, when going to downtown or the Miami Beach areas. This is only for UberPool versus LyftLine – where you may have to share a car with another party.
The hotel is located at about 15th Ave, which is a short jaunt to Downtown Miami and the American Airlines Arena, Bayside Marketplace, Bayfront Park Amphitheatre, and other points of interest. Also, this Marriott is located about a twenty minute ride from Miami International Airport.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Miami and stay at this Marriott, and I would definitely come back!
Featured Image from Marriott Hotel Website.
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