Living that South Beach Life at Lord Balfour Hotel Ocean Drive
The more unique the hotel, the more I expect an amazing experience.
As a lover of boutique hotels that are stylish and trendy, yet quaint and chic, I was immediately drawn to Lord Balfour Hotel located on Ocean Drive in the iconic South Beach area of Miami. I first saw Lord Balfour in passing while staying at another SOBE hotel in 2013. At that time, Lord Balfour was the newest property on Ocean, and had only been opened maybe a month or two. I peeked inside and took in the lobby and bar area, which had me at hello. And I vowed that I would stay there during my next trip to MIA.
Fast forward to May 2015, and I kept my personal promise by staying at Lord Balfour for three fun filled days in Miami Nice. I was looking forward to not only luxuriating in the hotel, but experiencing its charm and charisma that awaited me.
Upon first look, the room I was given was a splashy little number. Complete with a painted tattoo woman on the wall, it’s everything that you’d expect in Miami. Art deco nuances and bright colored fixtures and decor made the room inviting and fun. But, that is where the fun disconnected with the functional.
For starters, the bathroom was itsy bitsy. You’d expect a tight bathroom space, say in a city like New York, but not on South Beach. It was way too small for the updated room. And speaking of updates, there was a lack of outlets to charge all of my technology. It was struggle trying to get everything charged.
And while the staff was hospitable and friendly, there were times that they were simply MIA—and I am not talking about the airport code for Miami. On several occasions, I needed to call the front desk for something and I was met with no answer. I had the feeling that Lord Balfour was under-staffed, or everyone was calling off.
Lord Balfour did have some pros, however. The free breakfast each morning was wonderful, and offered a huge assortment of items—this is definitely a few steps up from your continental breakfast fare. The property is also located across the street from Miami Beach, so it was awesome being close by.
All-in-all, Lord Balfour served up flyness, but failed to deliver in other areas. For an area that is all about keeping visitors happy, Lord Balfour almost missed the mark.
Pros: Location, free breakfast. Cons: small bathroom, not enough electrical sockets, staff MIA a lot of times.
I would like to give Lord Balfour another shot to see if thy can redeem themselves. Hoping the 2nd time is the charm.
Lord Balfour rates an average of 4.3 stars on Google Reviews. Prices vary; about $199 per night.