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W Fort Lauderdale 4.0

Fort Lauderdale, Broward County, Florida

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Hip 2017-renovated hotel across the beach
  • Art installations and attention to design throughout
  • Rooms have contemporary beach decor, minibars, and Bluetooth speakers
  • Some units have ocean-view balconies, living spaces, and kitchens
  • Two full-service rooftop pools, and a hot tub
  • Resort fee covers beach chairs and umbrellas, bike rentals, and Wi-Fi
  • Excellent Mexican, steak, and sushi restaurants, plus three bars
  • Bliss Spa and contemporary gym 
  • Art, music, and dance events, including poolside DJs
  • Pets welcome (fee)

Cons

  • Hefty resort fee (typical for the area)
  • Some units have open-plan glass showers without privacy curtains
  • Loud dance music is common (pro for some)
  • Not all rooms have balconies
  • No food or drink service on the beach

Bottom Line

Renovated in 2017, the 517-room W Fort Lauderdale is a trendy, upscale hotel located across the street from the beach. Young professionals are drawn to the hotel's hip vibe, artsy decor, and lively event schedule. The entire food program, including a steakhouse, Mexican eatery, sushi bar, and dedicated menus for dogs, is helmed by Celebrity Chef Steven Starr, and the bar menu sports creative cocktails. Two rooftop pools provide space to either party or relax, plus spa treatments are available. A hefty resort fee covers beach chairs and umbrellas, Wi-Fi, the gym, and two four-hour bike rentals. Rooms are chic, but not all have balconies, and many have a glass shower open to the bedroom, creating privacy issues for some. For a less bustling and pricy option, consider the historic and modern B Ocean Resort Fort Lauderdale

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Scene

Hip hotel that falls in-line with the W brand's work hard, play hard vibe

The W Fort Lauderdale fits in with the brand's hip, modern, and artful collection of hotels. Guests tend to be young professionals and it's common to see almost everyone hanging in the public spaces playing with their phones. The property is split between two connected towers and rooms are divvied up between resident units and hotel rooms. Originally built in 2009, the property underwent a full multimillion-dollar renovation in 2017, giving all spaces a chic, stylish design inspired by the adjacent ocean. This property is large, taking up one full city block, and the building’s architecture curves to mimic a moving wave. The interior design also nods to the nautical with hombre curtains, pulley system lighting in the lobby (a.k.a Living Room), and an authentic rope brought over by a barge. All of the main hotel features and rooms are located on the fourth and fifth floors of the East Tower, which is closest to the beach. For check-in, you’ll have to head to the fourth floor. There are two pools, and WET East is the more lively of the two, with DJs and a party atmosphere on weekends. 

Location

Across from the beach and next to many hotels

W Fort Lauderdale is located along A1A Highway/North Fort Lauderdale Beach Boulevard (though the entrance is off Bayshore Drive), among several other big beach hotels. This tourist strip is directly across from Fort Lauderdale Beach, and an easy walk to many restaurants, bars, and shops. The hotel's position along the Intracoastal Waterway also makes for beautiful views from the rooms. The action of Las Olas Boulevard is less than a 10-minute walk away, and downtown Fort Lauderdale can be reached in about six minutes by car. Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport is only 15 minutes away, while Miami International Airport is a 35-minute drive. 

Rooms

Chic, beachy rooms and suites with modern amenities; most with balconies

The W Fort Lauderdale has 517 rooms and suites spread out across two 27-floor towers. Renovated in 2017, rooms have a stylish, ocean-inspired look with distressed wood accents, wave-patterned blue-and-white carpeting, white linens and walls, and marble bathrooms. Highlights include the W’s stellar minibars featuring alcohol, treats, and various kits, 24-hour room service, bathrobes, and Nespresso machines with free pods. Bathrooms are spacious and feel hip with a six-piece collection of Bliss bath products, modern showerheads, and frosted glass, however the open-plan glass showers in many may cause privacy issues for those not on a romantic getaway. Bluetooth speakers, ironing facilities, and rose-gold mini-fridges keep things current and convenient, and most rooms have furnished balconies. 

Wonderful Rooms start things off with 50-inch flat-screen TVs, bedside electrical outlets and USB ports, comfy W-brand beds, and shower/tub combos. Upgrades to Spectacular Rooms guarantee balconies, and Fabulous Oceanfront Rooms have large, furnished terraces with direct ocean views. All of these rooms can sleep up to four, while further upgrades have occupancy limits of just two people. Sitting areas are available in the Cool Corner Oceanfront Rooms and above, while suites have separate living and bedroom areas (and often more than one balcony).  

Food

Food program designed by a well-known chef

While it’s not specifically a foodie hotel, W Fort Lauderdale has a promising partnership with James Beard Award-winning chef Steven Starr. All hotel dining -including an in-room menu for dogs -- has been devised by Starr. Upon entering the hotel, guests are greeted with a coffee cafe that shares space with  El Vez restaurant. In addition to a decorative wall made of empty beer cans, guests can expect tasty Mexican dishes on the menu, indoor and outdoor seating, and over 100 types of tequila. Other food options include steak and seafood plates at Steak 954, a sushi bar with fish flown in from Japan, and casual eats off menus at both the Living Room bar and pool bar. 

Features

Impressive amount of features, including nightly events, two pools, and pet perks

If the W prides itself on anything, it’s having its pulse on the hip and slightly eccentric. W Fort Lauderdale flexes these muscles through nightly events in the lobby space, which is called the Living Room. From Bollywood nights to live art studios and top DJs, guests don’t have to go far to find interesting entertainment. During the day, this space is relaxed, with business meetings on lounge couches and drinks out on the terrace. Thanks to the W brand’s cocktail culture, drink specials are available every night. 

Just across the road from the property is Fort Lauderdale's beach. This beach is public, which means no alcohol or food service on the beach, though guests have a dedicated area set up with free beach chairs and umbrellas. The fifth-floor Wet Deck is home to two pools, one on each tower. The West Pool on the resident’s side is calmer, and features Intracoastal views, a whirlpool, and padded loungers on top of Astroturf. The East Pool has a cooler scene, peek-a-boo cutouts that expose swimmers to the Living Room, and vinyl padded loungers, plus DJs at times and a party vibe on weekends. Curtained daybeds and cabanas are available for an extra fee. Both pools have food and drink service. 

Bliss spa offers a variety of treatments. A 24-hour gym, dubbed FIT, is loaded with Technogym equipment. Water and fresh fruit are self-serve, and personal trainers are available for a charge. Over 40,000 square feet of event space is hiding inside the hotel, with both indoor and outdoor options, catering menus by Steven Starr, and a la carte costs for audiovisual equipment. The W Fort Lauderdale also has a well-connected concierge service called W Insiders who help hook guests up with hard-to-book restaurants, tickets, and exclusive clubs. 

Like most hotels in the area, guests are charged a hefty daily resort fee that covers two beach chairs and an umbrella down, bike rentals, daily yoga or boot camp classes, water bottles for the beach, Wi-Fi, and coupons for signature cocktails. Dogs are welcome at the hotel for a daily fee and pricey cleaning fee. Even dogs have special perks here, like their own room service menu, bowls, treats, beds, bark boxes, bandanas, and balcony tinkle turf pads. 

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Things You Should Know About W Fort Lauderdale

Address

401 North Fort Lauderdale Beach Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33304, United States

Phone

(954) 414-8200

Room Types

  • Cool-Corner One-Bedroom Flat
  • Cool Corner Room
  • Extreme Wow Suite
  • Fabulous Room
  • Fabulous Two-Bedroom Flat
  • Fantastic Suite
  • Fantastic Two-Bedroom Flat
  • Marvelous Suite
  • Marvelous Two-Bedroom Flat
  • Mega Room
  • Mega Two-Bedroom Flat
  • Spectacular One-Bedroom Flat
  • Spectacular Room
  • Studio Suite
  • Wonderful Room
  • WOW Suite

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