This review only focuses on The Sunset Lounge at The Mondrian Hotel in South Beach, FL.
Being a native Miamian I am accustomed to some indifference from wait staff from time to time. Yet the following experience was one of the worst Miami can offer. I and my boyfriend were visiting during the recent Xmas holidays with my mom in Coral Gables, FL; home to me. My boyfriend looked up and reconnected with an old friend from NYC, it happened to be her birthday. The birthday girl and her husband live next door to The Mondrian in a condo, so they suggested we meet for drinks at The Mondrian's Sunset Lounge on the evening of 12/28/12.
We arrived to find the birthday girl, husband and friends sitting in very dark area outside, we could barely make each other out. After greetings we suggested to move to a sitting area nearby that had just opened up; with a candle and better lighting. As we walked to the sitting area the waitress, that had previously served our friends their first round, appeared to be very distressed at our actions. She said in an agitated tone with hands waiving in air: "You cannot move to this table! It has not been cleaned and I can't do it right now! I will get in trouble!" We were all put off by her fearful and aggressive behavior. I calmly stated with hands up (signalling that we come in peace) "It's OK, no worries, we can wait for it to be cleaned, we understand you're busy." No reply from her, she was pissed!
She then proceeded to loudly gather 6-8 glasses and some napkins and left without taking any orders or refills. 15 minutes later a young gentlemen accompanied our very animated waitress back to our table, she seemed to be venting to her colleague. He wiped our tables with courtesy and left. As she finally took our orders her unpleasant and flippant attitude was embarrassing. No smile, no courtesy, she only seemed annoyed and angry. My rum and coke was one of the worst I've ever had, no joke. After savoring my poor excuse for a Cuba Libre, glasses sat empty for over 25 minutes. She reappeared in s seemingly better mood?, she gave us our checks for our first drinks. She never asked if we would like another round and so we paid and ordered another round.
Looking at the bill my boyfriend reminded me that a 18% gratuity was added. I love to tip well! I have been on the other side and it can be a very hard & thankless profession. Yet, I was incensed that I had to tip one of the worst servers I have ever had the displeasure of meeting. I always tip 20%+, but even 18% must be earned, regardless if it's a safeguard against foreign tourists, etc. After our second round and promptly being given the bill with drinks our waitress went MIA. I don't recall seeing her again, easily 1.5 hours. We all agreed to leave…we were never offered menus or asked if we would like anything.
I'm very disappointed with our awkward and agitating experience at The Mondrian. I'm beyond shocked they allow someone to represent them whom is obviously not adept in handling people on a busy night. Sadly, I will never recommend or suggest The Mondrian Sunset Lounge to any of my friends or family. In all honesty I am reluctant in seeing anymore of The Mondrian.
Eugenio M. Valle
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