The Best Ritz Carlton In Miami: South Beach Vs Key Biscayne Vs Bal Harbour


Which is the best Ritz-Carlton in Miami? South Beach vs. Key Biscayne vs. Bal Harbour. This is a difficult one to answer without looking into the details of each resort, but it is worth noting that the Ritz-Carlton South Beach and Key Biscayne both have club lounges, whereas the Bal Harbour doesn’t. Both the South Beach and Key Biscayne properties come at the top of our rundown of the best hotel club lounges in Miami, and we review each property below to determine, which is the best depending on your needs.

In a nutshell, The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach is a fun hotel for couples, friends, and families. Being near the action is exciting and having the beach club makes this a trendy place to be! In our opinion, the Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne has a more resort feel and is probably the one to choose if you are a family. That said, the beach at the Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne, is not great, and the one in Miami is.

The Ritz-Carlton Bal Harbour, Miami, is the smallest Ritz-Carlton in Miami, with just 124 rooms. This one is on the harbor and has a beautiful pool area, but no club lounge and no beach, so it would be my 3rd choice out of the three for a vacation. It is, however, convenient for the airport.

Which Ritz-Carlton Is The Cheapest?

The Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne comes in at a similar rate to the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes and the Naples golf at around $469 USD (or 50,000 Bonvoy points) which is a great hotel for families. The Ritz-Carlton Bal Harbour, Miami, comes in at $549 USD (or 85,000 Bonvoy points). The South Beach property is not yet re-open in 2019, but I would guess this will be 85,000 Bonvoy points. This means that the Key Biscayne property is usually cheapest if you are paying for a room or booking a room on Marriott Bonvoy points.

Review: Ritz-Carlton, South Beach, Miami

The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach, Miami is a great luxury hotel choice and relaunched this year in 2019. They describe the hotel as exotic and refined, paying tribute to Miami’s vibrant culture and colorful history. The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach, is one of your best luxury hotel choices on South Beach (pictured above).

We like the brilliant location of this luxury hotel, right off Collins Avenue at the slightly quieter southern end of South Beach. The building is designed to look like a docked ocean liner from the water and is very grand, with a huge foyer resembling the grand entrances of glamorous White Star Line cruise ships, complete with sweeping staircases.

This is one of the most family-friendly South Beach resorts, with a huge elevated pool area with private day beds overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, which offers a peaceful place to hang out, whatever your age. The DiLido Beach Club is the perfect spot for people watching if you want to be down on the beach. It has an exclusive VIP section and bar, lawn with day beds, a raw bar, and culinary and beverage offerings that are distinctly Miami.

With 375 guest rooms, including two poolside lanai wings in the style of early Miami Beach and more than 20,000 total square feet of meeting and conference facilities, a Ritz-Carlton Spa, featuring the brand custom Time Capsule and signature ESPA services, state-of-the-art cardiovascular and strength-training equipment, this hotel offers a great destination for business or leisure.

Review: The Ritz-Carlton South Beach Club Level

Updated in 2017, The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach club lounge is located on the 10th floor and is reserved for Ritz-Carlton Club Level guests, only those staying in rooms on the ninth and 10th floors. The renovation in around 2017 reimagined the space to create more of a social, lobby-lounge feel encouraging interactive experiences with guests.

There are five daily food presentations featuring select dishes off the menu of Bistro One LR, the hotel’s flagship restaurant, and biweekly cooking demonstrations from chef du cuisine Luis Quant and pastry chef John Martinez.

A mixologist prepares seasonal cocktails for guests at a weekly Cocktail Action Station. Other events such as trunk shows, Espa product presentations, and wine and Champagne tastings from select vineyards are also included if you have club lounge access.

Club Level guests can enjoy to-go snacks and beverages throughout the day, a dedicated concierge, Wi-Fi, and a personal computer station. To gain access to this lounge, you need to book Club Level rooms which are available either offering a City View, Partial Ocean View, Oceanfront, or Oceanfront View as a suite. There are just 64 Ritz-Carlton Club Level rooms and suites in the 375-room hotel, so club lounge access is a truly exclusive experience.

Also on the horizon for the Ritz-Carlton, South Beach is a new spa, which will open at the end of this month and will be the first to implement the brand’s new spa technology and a street-access Spanish restaurant, Tatel, slated to open in March. It will be the first outpost of the Madrid original in the U.S.

Worth knowing: The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach implements a $28 USD per room, per night resort fee. Services and amenities included in the fee are complimentary 5Mb wireless Internet access for up to 5 devices in guest rooms, lobby, and most common areas, beach chairs, and umbrellas, beach Activities including boogie boards, skimboards, beach paddle tennis, bocce ball, and cornhole court, one-hour daily fitness class, 24-hour access to the fitness center.

Our Offer

By booking via our luxury travel concierge you get the following benefits for free at The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach:

  • Upgrade on arrival (subject to availability, not valid to Club Level)
  • Full breakfast for up to two in-room guests, in restaurant
  • $100 USD Resort credit to be utilized during stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full, not valid on retail)
  • Early check-in / late check-out (subject to availability)
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi

Review: The Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne

Just 9 miles/ 14 km from the main Miami airport, this tropical island oasis is set on the eastern shore of a unique island that offers guests a tranquil haven, surrounded by golden sands (if thin and seaweedy – see below), gentle waters, and towering palms. With a décor inspired by West Indies Colonial design, the 12-acre oceanfront resort captures the beauty of its waterfront setting with floor-to-ceiling lobby windows that offer the first dramatic glimpse of palm gardens and the Atlantic Ocean.

450 guest rooms, including 37 suites, 64 Ritz-Carlton Club level rooms, and suites, each overlooks either the water or gardens. All guestrooms and suites welcome guests with feather beds and down comforters, Frette linens, and comfortable, Caribbean-inspired furnishings.

This hotel is not in central Miami and is instead 20-30 minutes from the hustle and bustle of Miami Beach, so if you’re looking for nightlife, you may find this hotel on the quiet side. In the holiday season, the Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne attracts families, so expect very busy restaurants and communal areas. You can escape the madness in the adults-only pool, but be aware that the whole hotel is a bit crazy, particularly on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year.

The beach here is somewhat disappointing, narrow, and full of seaweed, and golfing options are limited too. Crandon Park is nearby, a very nice but overpriced municipal course, full of quite bad golfers costing around $160 USD per round.

Review: Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne Club Lounge

The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne club lounge gets excellent reviews and offers food presentations daily, breakfast, lunch, mid-day snacks and fine selections of wines, liqueurs, beers and non-alcoholic beverages. There is complimentary wireless in-room Internet access for Club guests along with the pressing of two garments pressed daily.

This exclusive lounge is on the 9th floor and features an endless array of beverage and culinary offerings throughout the day coupled with the finest personal service. Views from the lounge and adjacent Club Level guest rooms boast stunning panoramas of Key Biscayne and Biscayne Bay.

We highly recommend booking a room on the Club floor. It will almost undoubtedly work out cheaper than booking a standard room as you have all your meals catered for, for free, and the food in the lounge is excellent. A full breakfast buffet is served daily. Sandwiches are provided for lunch and heavy hors-d’oeuvres for the early evening (lobster, crab, and other delicious offerings). You may choose to eat all your meals there, and will certainly use it for breakfast and snacks and of course alcoholic drinks which are available 24/7. You can choose from wine, Champagne, beer, spirits, and a selection of non-alcoholic beverages are available throughout the day.

Kids are welcome here, and there is a dedicated kids room in the lounge, which is fully stocked with classic board games, TV entertainment, puzzles, and more, along with glass candy jars that are filled with a variety of delectable delights like the Executive Pastry Chef’s delicious cookies.

Our Offer

By booking via our luxury travel concierge and you get the following benefits for free at the Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne:

  • Upgrade on arrival (subject to availability)
  • Daily Buffet breakfast, for up to two in-room guests
  • $100 USD Resort/Hotel credit, to be utilized during stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
  • Early check-in / late check-out (subject to availability)
  • Complimentary Wi-fi

When comparing the lounge and property to the Ritz-Carlton in Naples, the lounge is marginally superior, but the beach and the golf and the sheer busyness of this hotel let it down compared to other Ritz-Carlton’s in Florida.

Review: The Ritz-Carlton Bal Harbour, Miami

This is the smallest Ritz-Carlton in Miami, with just 124 rooms. The ocean inspires from nearly every corner of The Ritz-Carlton, Bal Harbour, which is surrounded by water on the very northern tip of Miami Beach. The Ritz-Carlton hotel doesn’t have a club lounge or floor, but it is a great luxury hotel choice in this part of Miami.

They say: Whether visitors are seeking a quiet retreat from the everyday or looking for a unique destination for a wedding or event, this coastal sanctuary is the perfect setting.

Located near both Miami International and Fort Lauderdale International airports, the waterfront hotel offers a desirable address in the heart of the city’s most exclusive, Bal Harbour. From art and outdoor adventure to shopping and professional sports, visitors can explore top attractions just moments away. Those who prefer a leisure-intensive agenda can spend lazy days at the beautiful pool or take in the beach scene from floor-to-ceiling windows and the private terrace of their luxury guest room.”

Within the hotel is the 10,000-square-foot waterfront Exhale Bal Harbour spa and fitness studio with state-of-the-art cardiovascular and strength-training equipment, personal training, and group exercise classes. Two Tesla charging stations, Two restaurants: Artisan Beach House and Water’s Edge featuring poolside alfresco dining and an elevated outdoor pool and private luxury cabanas overlooking the Atlantic Ocean along with beach lounge chairs and beds, umbrellas, and cabanas available for rent. There is no club lounge here, but this hotel remains another excellent choice in Miami.

Our Offer

By booking via our luxury travel concierge and you get the following benefits for free at the Ritz-Carlton Bal Harbour:

  • Upgrade on arrival (subject to availability)
  • Full breakfast daily for up to two in-room guests, in the restaurant
  • A $100 USD Hotel/Resort credit to be utilized during stay (not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
  • Early check-in / late check-out (subject to availability)
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi

Note: Benefits offered correct at the time of writing but may be amended at discretion of the vendor. Posts may be sponsored by the proprietor or brand being appraised. All opinions remain our own & are in no way influenced.