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“Facilities in Need of a Good Maintenance Supervisor, but Beautiful Location”
Review of Cheeca Lodge & Spa

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Cheeca Lodge & Spa
Ranked #7 of 19 Hotels in Islamorada
Certificate of Excellence
Buffalo, NY
Level 5 Contributor
84 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
“Facilities in Need of a Good Maintenance Supervisor, but Beautiful Location”
Reviewed 10 June 2014

In the course of the history of a hotel, every room has a last resident before that room is upgraded. In the case of our room, that guest should have been one about 18 months ago. But at $628 a night, nobody should ever be such a guest—upgrades should be made before they are needed, not a year or more after they are needed. Although our room was larger than in any Hampton Inn and was on the beach 60 feet from the Atlantic Ocean, I've never stayed in any Hampton or even a Motel 6 or Knights Inn that was as worn, beaten, and poorly maintained as our room at the Cheeca Lodge & Spa.

Certainly the grounds and landscaping of the Cheeca Lodge were beautiful and well kept, but our room—$628 a night plus an outrageous $40 -a-day facilities fee—was dark, drab, beaten, bedraggled, and even grungy. Let me list and describe some of its many failings.

• The floor was worn, scratched and generally faded. In fact, it was obvious that a rug had been removed from under the bed, as that area where the rug had been was darker and had a significantly better finish.
• Not only are the bed lamps 3 feet tall and on top of a 4 foot dresser—which necessitates getting out of bed to turn the light off—but on top of that, they do not provide sufficient light for reading in bed.
• Every dresser rocked back and forth.
• Porch furniture rocked back and forth, and though comfortable, every piece was badly scratched and chipped.
• The sliding glass doors to the porch stuck! They had gaps and were badly dented and scratched. They were just plain worn out and need replacing five years ago.
• The paint on the screened porch railings and door was chipped, corroded, rusted, and needed repair and cleaning years ago. The screened porch door handle was rusted and did not work properly. Every screen on the screened porch had holes.
• The corner cabinet that had once held the TV was worn, chipped, cracked, gouged and a mess.
• The flat-screen TV hanging on the wall was fine, but drooping from the bottom of it were wires and cables.
• The overhead lamp in the fan—the only overhead light in the room—did not work.
• Very lackadaisical cleaning: e.g., dirty refrigerator on arrival, dirty coffee pot first morning, water rings on the tables not cleaned during the entire stay, forgetting to replace drinking glasses, not cleaning any part of the room one day necessitating a call to the front desk.
• Broken faucet handle in the bathroom—that stayed broken during our entire stay.
• Handle on toilette stuck after flushing.
• Curtains in the room were all torn.

The beach is also limited in width. Certainly there is an expansive waterfront, but 90% of it has retention walls of stone or concrete, and only 60 feet or so is actually beach. And on top of that, the first two days of our stay, entrance to the water on that beach was hampered by huge drifts of seaweed. On our third morning, that seaweed was raked and stashed—on the end of the beach.

The waterfront was handsome, not any doubt of that. But I would never recommend this place to anyone, I don't care if the room was 1/3 the cost we paid. Yes, the natural part of Cheeca Lodge & Spa is beautiful and the grounds are immaculately maintained, but this place needs money, time, and work invested in upkeep of the rooms. And on top of that, somebody needs to do a far better job of supervising the cleaning help.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank MichaelBuffalo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CheecaSales, Director of Sales at Cheeca Lodge & Spa, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Your thorough feedback is appreciated. We are thrilled that you found our tropical gardens beautiful and well-kept and our waterfront views handsome. However, we read your list of issues with your room with embarrassment and dismay. We certainly have some work to do to remedy this list of complaints. You have our word that we will get to work on this immediately.
Cheeca’s 1,100-foot palm-lined beach is typical of any beach here in the Florida Keys, including the seaweed. The Keys are a string of tiny islands comprised of ancient coral rock. The only living coral reef in the continental U.S. is located just off our shores. The reef is surrounded by crystal clear waters and creates spectacular fishing, snorkeling and diving adventures, but it also prevents surf-like waves from reaching our shores and creates the shallow waterfront and less sandy type of beach found here in the Keys. We are so sorry you were disappointed with it.
We thank you for your feedback, and we hope you will re-consider your recommendation. We invite you back for a return visit soon.
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Westhill, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
208 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 107 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 June 2014

We stayed for 6 nights in a lagoon view room, which was very nice. The hotel has a great outlook over the sea, and there is a 9 hole golf course with free clubs and balls. Check-in was very efficient, as was the very helpful member of staff on check out. We ate twice at Limoncello, and were really pleased.

The real snag was that some (not all) of the staff were rude and unhelpful. Housekeeping in particular was poor, and we constantly had to phone for towels and other items which should have been replaced. Note - the marble floor in our bathroom was filthy, and it was a good job we had the slippers from our previous hotel! Breakfast, whilst good, was let down by staff again, sometimes we had to go and find a server, and on most days we had to get someone to chase up the chef/cook responsible for the egg station. We were not the only people unhappy with the chef doing a disappearing act. The only star in the breakfast crew was a super lady named Rene. She seemed to do twice as much work as the others, and seemed frustrated at times that some staff seemed to be hiding!

To be fair, the hotel listened to our concerns about housekeeping, and everything was resolved to our satisfaction.

Room Tip: Ocean front rooms look to be fantastic, but they come at a price.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank lindsayburnett001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CheecaSales, Director of Sales at Cheeca Lodge & Spa, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Thank you so much for your thoughtful and considerate review. We were pleased to read that you enjoyed your room, the golf course, our front desk staff and our Italian restaurant, Limoncello. We also appreciate your praise of Rene, one of most loyal and treasured employees. We are so sorry for the issues you had with housekeeping and restaurant staff. We always want to hear about guest concerns so we can address them at the time as we did with you. We appreciate your feedback, and hope you are planning a return visit in the near future.
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Fort Lauderdale
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 June 2014

Definitely worth staying in Islamorada. Ocean view rooms with bathtubs on balcony are excellent! Without kids or with kids!! Bathrooms are huge! Property is awesome. Lagoon is so fun for kids to snorkel in. Dock is great to fish off. Location is excellent with great restaurants around. Hotel provides shuttle service as well! Excellent feature.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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Helpful?
1 Thank Nicki R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CheecaSales, Director of Sales at Cheeca Lodge & Spa, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
Your review was tops with us! Thanks. We are delighted you enjoyed your stay, and hope to see you again this summer.
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Baltimore, Maryland
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 June 2014

My husband and I stayed on the top floor in the premier oceanfront king. It was amazing, we loved the huge shower that overlooks the ocean as well as the huge tub on our balcony. The room was super clean and the bed was comfortable. Did have a slight issue with the bedding and called down and they sent someone up right away.

The beach was nice in front of the resort but couldn't really walk out in the water with all the grass laying. There were other places to enter the water and they did their best to remove the daily grass.

We took a bike ride around the resort to check out the tennis courts, golfing and to see the adult pool and everything was really pretty and well kept.

Only negative to say is that I don't feel we got our monies worth on the $39 daily resort fee and drinks/food were kind of expensive.

Overall we were very satisfied with our visit and would recommend to our friends/family and plan on returning in the future.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank livingthelife22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CheecaSales, Director of Sales at Cheeca Lodge & Spa, responded to this review, 16 June 2014
We are delighted that you would recommend us to your friends and family, and that you are planning to return! We are so happy you found your room amazing and comfortable. We are glad you enjoyed our beach, and wanted you to know that Sargassum seaweed has washed ashore at Cheeca recently due to recent storms and wind direction. The Florida Keys and its smaller islands are well known for the high levels of Sargassum covering their shores. Sargassum is also what offshore captains look for to find mahi-mahi and other species of fish who feed off the plankton and other creatures living in the seaweed.
Cheeca’s resort fee is comparable to resort fees charged by other resorts of our caliber. It includes tennis, golf, fishing rods, sea kayaks, bicycles, shade cabanas, fitness center, DVD movie rentals, in-room coffee, tea and bottled water, wireless internet, guest internet station with DSL and printer, local and 800 calls, guest fax services, daily newspaper delivery, local shuttle service and valet or self-parking.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level 6 Contributor
104 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 June 2014 via mobile

My husband and I are staying at Cheeca for our 20th Anniversary. We visit several times per year and although I've meant to write a review many times, I never got around to it. We travel a lot and have been to many places, but Cheeca keeps bringing us back. From the glass of champagne enjoyed during check-in, to the impeccably clean rooms and comfortable beds, to the friendly employees and bartenders, we feel both pampered and at home here. The Spa is fantastic (Ricky gave me the best massage I've EVER had), the food is great, and the sunsets are spectacular. We will keep coming back for consistently good service and great memories. An all-around wonderful experience. Thanks Cheeca!

Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Renee P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CheecaLodge, Guest Relations Manager at Cheeca Lodge & Spa, responded to this review, 21 June 2014
Wow! What a fantastic review, and Happy Anniversary. We are so glad you took the time to write down all that is wonderful about Cheeca. We are so appreciative. We truly treasure our repeat guests like you, and we thank you so much for your loyalty and patronage. We are looking forward to your next visit. Thank you so much for writing.
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Marina del Rey, California
Level 6 Contributor
138 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 June 2014

My husband and I stayed here for a few days on our trip to the Florida Keys. It was really the highlight of our trip and we enjoyed it. Nice surroundings, right on the beach and lots of things to do. They have an excellent brunch at the weekends.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Joan1914
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CheecaLodge, Guest Relations Manager at Cheeca Lodge & Spa, responded to this review, 21 June 2014
Thank you for your lovely review. We are delighted that Cheeca was the highlight of your trip to the Keys. We would love to have you back for another visit soon. Thanks for writing.
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Buffalo
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 June 2014 via mobile

Was great stay but some things needed to be fixed ! We went to our room and the door was broken . We called to get it fixed and at 8:30 that night the drilling banging started !! They fixed it but did not work like it should . The service was great till the last night , it was you 20 wedding anniversary and we went to dinner . It was so bad , the service was slow food cold and someone was smoking a cigar 10 feet away !!!! I asked to speak to the manger . The ocean would for been better to talk to ! 4 good days 1 bad

Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank Tim B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CheecaLodge, Guest Relations Manager at Cheeca Lodge & Spa, responded to this review, 21 June 2014
We wish you a very happy 20th anniversary, and are honored you chose to spend this wonderful occasion with us. Our apologies for the broken door and the service issues at dinner, we will investigate these things and rectify them. We also are so sorry about the cigar smoke; that is most unfortunate. We will look into this as well. Please do consider a return visit so we can strive for five good days out of five. Thanks for writing.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Cheeca Lodge & Spa

Property: Cheeca Lodge & Spa
Address: 81801 Overseas Highway, Mile Marker 82, Islamorada, FL 33036-3631
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Florida > Florida Keys > Islamorada
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Islamorada
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Islamorada
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Cheeca Lodge & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 214
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The "Queen of the Florida Keys", Cheeca Lodge & Spa has been an exclusive hideaway for celebrities, business leaders and U.S. Presidents for over 70 years. Set on 27 private oceanfront acres in Islamorada, Cheeca has been constructed with a porte-cochere entrance, traditional Florida Keys architecture, chic West Indies décor, and spirited tradition of “barefoot elegance” -- a term coined at Cheeca. Along with a new breakfast bistro and lobby bar, Cheeca boasts three distinctive restaurants: Nikai Sushi Bar and Lounge offering the Florida Keys’ freshest sushi, Asian-inspired fare and a unique selection of Japanese sake and wine; Atlantic’s Edge with a seasonal fine-dining menu of fresh local seafood, prime steaks and organic local produce; and its family-friendly Limoncello Italian restaurant serving up Tuscan favorites in a casually rustic setting. Cheeca Lodge & Spa features 2,400 square-feet of retail shops with a Cheeca Signature store featuring the latest designer fashions and accessories. An expanded roster of activities include offshore and backcountry fishing, parasailing, sightseeing, eco-tours, paddleboards, water trikes, kayaks, golf, tennis, pickleball, shuffleboard and more. The resort’s signature features include a classic 525’ wooden fishing pier, tropical gardens, crossing palms archway, nature trails, Tahitian-style Spa Lagoon, spectacular purple sunsets, 1100 feet of beaches, Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course, Camp Cheeca children’s environmental activity program, and access to world-class sportfishing. Located just 90 minutes south of Miami International Airport in the Florida Keys, Cheeca Lodge & Spa is just a few hours by air or drive from major East Coast U.S. cities. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cheeca Hotel Islamorada
Cheeca Resort Islamorada
Cheeca Lodge Florida
Cheeca Lodge And Spa
Cheeca Lodge Islamorada
Cheeca Lodge & Spa Islamorada, Florida - Florida Keys

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