The B Ocean is a 3 star hotel at best that is trying to present itself as a higher end establishment. The design of the lobby, restaurants, and pool area are pleasant and modern however the individual rooms and service leave a lot to be desired. My stay at the B was an extended one as part of a work trip so my experience may not be typical but many of this hotel’s shortcomings are impossible to ignore. For a weekend stay, the ocean views may be enough to make up for these failings but I found the exceptional views the B’s only real saving grace.
So let’s start with that. The views are quite good though with the hotel in an ‘L’ shape on the corner, the only truly unobstructed ocean view rooms are on the very end. Despite the photos on the website, the B is separated from the beach by A1A so guests will need to cross traffic unlike with a few other hotels further down the beach.
There are many basic amenities/services that are lacking at the B that I would have assumed would be standard fare at a 4 star hotel. Perhaps the most basic part of many a guest’s day is not easily accessible. While there is complementary coffee available, this is available downstairs in the Bistro and only in the mornings. There is no refrigeration in the room for food and drink items. The rooms are not very wide so if someone is using the desk space, the other guest will have to climb over the bed to get to the window or the only other chair in the room. The showers in the morning begin to run cold after only 6 to 10 minutes of use and since they have no doors to keep the heat in, it quickly becomes uncomfortable.
The claims of their “B Our Guest” program to provide exceptional service are unfounded. Housekeeping services were minimal. Dirty glasses were never replaced, even when set out prominently. When placed outside the door they were taken but never replaced leaving me with only one glass. My request for additional glasses made at the front desk never bore fruit. The tissue box was replaced but they never pulled up the tissues to where you could get at them. I’ve had hotels rated less do nice things like tear off and fold the end of the toilet paper so it looks nice. A week into my stay, I stepped on a shard of glass in the carpet that must have been there for some time. The front desk claimed they vacuum everyday but I’m not convinced of that.
The telephone in the room never worked properly and the speakerphone would randomly turn on at night, broadcasting a dial tone and eventually the “off the hook” tones until shut off. This issue was brought to the attention of the front desk 3 times as well and never fixed. To add insult to the injury, the handsets would not work and the speakerphone would only turn on when you needed it to in order to call downstairs for anything 50% of the time. The door to the room isn’t square in the frame and has a large gap at the bottom so there’s significant light leakage from the hall at night. The beds and pillows are rather uncomfortable and I stopped using the pillows completely after a few nights and chose to wad up a blanket to use as a replacement instead. The rooms may be non-smoking but that didn’t prevent a strong smoke smell from entering the room the other night through the bathroom’s exhaust fan.
The bottom line is that the hotel’s 4 star rating is complete farce. The views are not enough to compensate for the many failings and a thrifty traveler can probably get a similar deal on a much nicer hotel further south along the beach. It feels like they are desperately trying to project an air of sophistication and class to distract you from how sub-par the actual rooms and service are. While this is probably a 3 star hotel, I have to rate it poor because of the consistently poor service and of how disappointing the entire stay was.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Just steps away from the ocean and the beautiful Fort Lauderdale beach, Sonesta Fort Lauderdale Beach offers you a sensational experience among Fort Lauderdale hotels: oceanfront hotel accommodations, unique restaurants and lounging areas, and a variety of excursions for those guests looking to explore Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Our ballroom and meeting rooms on the penthouse floor overlook the Atlantic Ocean, presenting a special setting for business meetings and social gatherings held at this Fort Lauderdale Beach hotel. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- b Ocean Fort Lauderdale Hotel Fort Lauderdale