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“Extraordinary!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale

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The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale
Ranked #2 of 128 Hotels in Fort Lauderdale
Certificate of Excellence
Sanibel Island, Florida
Level Contributor
24 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Extraordinary!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 March 2012

We stayed two nights in mid March and it was a very special experience. The word "boutique" is over used and often not appropriate. The Pillars is a notable exception. The rooms are small, the bathroom was tiny, but everything was lovely, spotless, and fresh. The bar, sitting room and dining room are beautifully decorated...very chic. The best aspect of this small hotel is it's setting...very tropical planting around a lovely pool and right at the Intercoastal waterway. The water taxi stops at the pier for a hop on and off passage around Ft Lauderdale's canals. We couldn't have had a better time. Be sure to have dinner there..gourmet food, perfect service, and the view of the waterway is so romantic! We certainly intend to return.

Room Tip: I think I'd avoid the twin bedded room next to the reception area. It looked like it might be da...
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Cruisinpashmina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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955 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (178)
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English first
Grafton, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 March 2012

We've stayed at the Pillars several times before going on our annual Caribbean cruise. The atmosphere and the service truly prepare us for our vacation. From the room furnishings to the pool to the waterfront to the Secret Garden dinner, all is wonderful. We thank the entire staff and especially Caroline for making us feel welcome and "at home" at this lovely venue. This year we had another couple join us and I am confident that they will be repeat visitors. We love this place!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Evon46
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton, New Jersey
Level Contributor
15 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 March 2012

Upon arrival, we were warmly greeted by Isabella, who gave us a tour of the property and offered us complimentary beverages. Our $285 per night "run of the house" rate on 3/25 got us the handicapped room on the street, first floor. A bit noisy, but no big deal. The room was very pretty. What was at issue, however, was that the thermostat was broken; it would not adjust to a higher temperature, so we had to turn off the AC altogether as 71 degrees is far too cold for us. Once the room started to get too warm, we had to climb onto the bed to turn on and adjust the ceiling fan as it was not able to be turned on, off or adjusted from the outlet. As the chain was very "sticky" we had to hold on to the fan for fear of pulling the chain too hard and bringing the fan or its globe down upon us.

The bathroom featured a roll-in shower; however, within 30 seconds of turning on the shower, water began pooling out into the main bathroom area as it was not sloped properly. As it started to puddle under a small free-standing cabinet between the shower and toilet, I quickly moved it away only to find it had been rotting away for quite some time and no one had bothered to move or even clean behind it (or better yet, remove it!) The tile floor and wall were covered in rotted wood/mold/mildew.

Dinner at the hotel restaurant, The Secret Garden, was very nice. Food was tasty and attractively presented and service very attentive. Our server even offered to go outside with our camera to take a picture of the sunset from the dock (they cancelled dinners on the dock as it was too windy that evening.) $200 for two appys, entrees, a bottle of wine, coffee, tea, and a dessert to share. We had the asparagus crème brulee, butternut squash purses, sea bass, and the hazelnut chocolate dessert. The Chef came out from the kitchen to greet us and check our satisfaction, nice touch! After dinner, we borrowed a movie (from their nice sized video collection) to watch in the room, however, shortly into the movie, something from dinner did not agree with not one, but both of us, and the remainder of our evening was spent taking turns running to the bathroom. Not fun!

On our way out the next morning for a day out on the town, we were greeted by Caroline (?). She called the water taxi for us as the hotel has a "by request" stop only on the route, which we found out earlier after the Water Taxi passed us by even though we tried waving them down from the dock. After purchasing the tickets from her, she asked if we needed anything else. I said that we did, and asked her to come to our room, where I pointed out the issues. She offered to move us to another room (poolside) and offered to move our belongings while we were out. I was not entirely comfortable with the offer and was certainly willing to move our items ourselves, but she assured us that "they do it all the time," so I accepted her offer.

When we returned later in the afternoon, we went to the desk to retrieve the key cards to our new room (which was actually on the second floor "overlooking" the pool, not "poolside" as she had promised.) She said that they completed the move, and removed the rotted cabinet from the room. Once in the new room, we immediately noticed that the bottle of wine we had brought with us from a wedding we had attended over the weekend had not made it to the room. I went down to the front desk and asked her for the keycard to the old room to look for it and to double check that nothing else was left behind. In the room, not only did I find our bottle of wine, but also, my clothes were still in one of the drawers. I checked the rest of the room and bathroom and found no other belongings. When I returned the key card to the desk, she noticed the wine and other items in my arms, apologized and said they had been very busy during the day and it took her longer than she expected to move our room. I asked her, by the way, if anyone had come to her today with any "stomach issues" from dinner the night before; she said no one had.

Back in the room, my husband decided to nap and I decided to go to the pool. First of all, there were no clean towels left on the poolside shelves. After a walk around the pool and dock area, I was able to scavenge a set from the only lounge chair that had not been used that day, dockside. Before settling in, I decided to pour a glass of tea or fruit water from the decanters poolside, however, aside from the ice in the bottom of the decanter, there was only enough water to fill the glass by a quarter. Neither the beverages nor towels were refreshed while I was outside. The pool was chilly (I thought I had read that it was heated, but maybe I am wrong) so only a quick dip was more than enough for me.

Later that evening, we went out locally for dinner. When we returned to the room to retire for the evening, my husband could not find the cord to charge his iPhone, which he had plugged in the night before in the "old" room. I also noticed, as I was looking for something sweet before retiring, that our Ferrero Rochers from the night before never made it to the "new" room either, nor did the personalized labeled package and heart tag that the "wedding wine" was presented in. At that point, I told him that we should just wait until morning and really go through the luggage to make sure that they didn't place the cord in one of our bags when they moved the room.

At check-out this morning, we asked to go in the "old" room again as my husband could not find the charger for his iPhone. Caroline (?) reached into a drawer behind the desk, pulled out a cord that she said Maria the housekeeper had found but she did not know what it belonged to. My husband identified it as his and we proceeded to check out. She reviewed the bill with us and asked how the new room was. I said it was fine, but did not mention the issues with the towels and beverages poolside the day before. She handed me the receipt, thanked us and wished us a safe trip.

Yes, overall, the property is beautiful, food presented and tasted wonderful, and staff friendly, however, they missed the mark on far too many levels for me not to share my experience. It's difficult for me to "select a rating" for each of the categories as overall, for example the rooms were very clean (except for the wall/floor/rotted cabinet.) Bottom line, did I get value for my money and have a positive experience that would prompt me to return to this property and recommend to others? Absolutely not!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Claytonnj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PillarsManagement, General Manager at The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale, responded to this review, 1 April 2012
Thank you for your constructive feedback. I regret that I wasn’t at the hotel to personally take care of you, however, I am glad Jessica was able to assist.

Most of the concerns you brought up were addressed right away and resolved. A few we are still working on, everything should be of the highest standards shortly.

Our Chef prides himself in using the freshest ingredients available and our restaurant is known to be one of the best in Fort Lauderdale. We had over 30 people for dinner the night you dined with us and no one reported any discomfort that night or the following days.

I understand that your first impression with us would not prompt you to return but I do hope that reading the numerous positive reviews we receive, you will reconsider and possibly give us another chance. I will be happy to assist you myself.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
36 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 March 2012 via mobile

There is no place quite like this in Ft. Lauderdale, and we know this city pretty well. It's a gem of a small hotel, located on the intercostal facing west on the Beach. It is compact and intimate. Our suite, room 109, was terrific, with a private dining terrace overlooking the water and facing a gorgeous evening sky. Breakfasts on the dock are divine, as is all the food at this wonderful place. The dinners are excellent...you can't go wrong with anything on the menu. The rooms are well appointed with all the amenities you could possibly want aside from a coffee maker. Nice pool area, nice bar area, excellent outdoor spaces. So what are the negatives? There is only one...the service is just slightly off the mark. The Dominican housekeeper could not be nicer, and the waiters and waitresses at dinner are really good. But there is something not quite right at the front desk. Can't put my finger on it, but there may be a mild "attitude" that rings the wrong bell. A tad more friendly, more willing to assist would help. But it's a minor thing...all in all this is an excellent property that is a hidden gem and one that we highly recommend.

Stayed March 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Lucinda00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 March 2012

Staying at The Pillars is either stepping back in time to the golden age of hotel stay, or magically being transported to a boutique hotel in France... I'm not sure which. The hotel is beautifully appointed, the staff is very accommodating without being irritatingly sweet, and the food is outstanding. If I had to find fault... the internet speed is terrible. Bring your own connection.

Room Tip: Any room other than the room closest to reception.
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank rrzzrr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PillarsManagement, General Manager at The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale, responded to this review, 1 April 2012
Thank you so much for your great review and your kind words.

We recognize the problems you might have experienced with our Internet connectivity and we have since taken steps to enhance our coverage throughout the property.

We look forward to welcoming you back to our serene hideaway.
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 The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale

Property: The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale
Address: 111 N Birch Rd, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304-4313
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Florida > Broward County > Fort Lauderdale
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Fort Lauderdale
#1 Romantic Hotel in Fort Lauderdale
#6 Family Hotel in Fort Lauderdale
#13 Business Hotel in Fort Lauderdale
Price range (per night): $310 - $733
Hotel Class:4 star — The Pillars Hotel Fort Lauderdale 4*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated on New River Sound, a block from the beach, the Pillars Hotel is a beautiful mix of classical British Colonial architecture and 30's "Art Deco". Well-known for its magical sunsets, unpretentious service and its special dining experience, the hotel caters to travelers looking for a sophisticated intimate venue. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Pillars

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