I spent about an hour researching Miami Beach hotels before settling on the Pelican Hotel due to its intriguing mix of rooms. We booked a three-night weekend stay in the hopes of having a fun, positive experience in Miami Beach.
Unfortunately, both my girlfriend and I left with a terrible overall experience of the hotel which unfortunately took away from our entire vacation experience.
The hotel’s policy offers guests complimentary bottles of mineral water. With that in mind, after 2.5 hours of walking in scorching Miami heat, we attended front desk to ask for 2 bottles but the front desk attendant at the time was chatting on the phone. We then proceeded to visit the bar, asking the bartender for 2 bottles of water and if they could be included as part of the complimentary water offered to hotel guests.
The bartender misheard me, thinking I told him to charge it to the room, and came back with a bill for the 2 water bottles. Knowing that it was not his job to know about the complimentary water, we walked back to the front desk to explain the situation to the girl who by then had gotten off the phone. We were immediately confronted with rudeness, a lack of understanding and very demeaning treatment. The girl wouldn’t even take the time to let me explain the situation fully and continually cut me off, telling me she had no authority after the last time she cut me off.
I then asked to speak to the manager, so she called the hotel “CEO”, who came to the check-in desk after about 5 minutes, already aware of the situation because the girl in the front explained it to him when she called him.
Up to this point, my girlfriend and I were very cool and approached the situation for all that it was, a misunderstanding between us and the bartender. However, the “CEO” turned that all around when he came up to me within just a couple of inches, put on his best tough guy face and almost spit at me barking, “What’s the problem?”
I responded that there was no problem and before being able to explain further, he cut me off right there and said that’s good and began turning away. As he was turning away, I asked him if he was aware of the situation and he said that he was and that it is what it is and that the rules are the rules and the water from the bar is not complimentary. He did not give me a chance to explain what actually happened, let alone show ANY sign of sympathy for the situation or concern to us as hotel guests. He continued to be VERY aggressive with me and finished by telling me, “I’ll give you the 8 dollars in the morning,” implying that I was trying to in some way be cheap and rip the hotel off, and then turned around and walked away, leaving me stunned and speechless. I have NEVER been disrespected in this manner by any level of hotel staff in my life.
Needless to say, from that moment on, I hated every bit of moment that I had to spend at the Pelican Hotel. Furthermore, when we checked out, the hotel did charge me for those 2 bottles. Fortunately, the hotel General Manager was decent enough to see me that morning and after some reluctance, offered to clear my bill up.
Quite ironically, that same morning after getting out of the shower, I found a cockroach in the bathroom, which struck me as a comical metaphoric clincher to my experience at the hotel.
The bottom line is - I will NEVER EVER even think about staying at this hotel again, and will recount this story to anyone that asks me about my experience in Miami. I don’t care if celebrities have stayed at that hotel. It does not give hotel management the authority to treat “regular” guests as a nuisance and definitely does not give them the authority to ruin their entire trip experience.