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Florida’s Atlantic coast offers a lot of luxury value. Here are the 5 best luxury hotels in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Pelican Grand Beach Resort
A classic Victorian high-rise beachfront hotel, the Pelican fulfills a nostalgic Floridian vacation that harkens back to the heydays of early Atlantic coast vacations. Rocking chairs on wooden porches prioritize sunrises and sunsets along its white-sand beaches.
Balconies at every room welcome sunshine and fresh breezes into exquisitely designed rooms. What makes Pelican so special is the balance it strikes between modern updates amenities and classic style. White finishes against wood floors, bright linens, seaside tones, and windows that bring the view inside underscore these design elements. Those that appreciate the nostalgic efforts will appreciate Smeg mini-fridges as much as they do illuminated mirrors and rain showerheads.
The Pelican Grand is award-winning, claiming both a spot on Condé Nast’s #20 resorts in Florida in 2020 and climbing to #8 on the list in 2021.
Ritz Carlton Fort Lauderdale
Our top pick in the category of Best Luxury Hotels in Fort Lauderdale
For some, the Ritz Carlton Fort Lauderdale is the definition of luxury and its South Florida installation is no exception. Rooms and suites feature sweeping ocean views fitted to a high standard with all of the service and amenities luxury guests demand.
This Fort Lauderdale beach property is one of the best large hotels on the coast. The Ritz-Carlton Fort Lauderdale focuses on a modern approach to beach resort luxury with light colors and everyday conveniences. A white palette meets Ritz-Carlton staples including powder blue and gold accents.
Dining is available poolside or at the Burlock Coast. My family has enjoyed the Ritz-Carlton’s poolside service before (which offers a terrific menu for kids as well) that shouldn’t be missed. At the Burlock Coast, farm-to-table is the order of the day with indoor/outdoor seating options and beautiful floor-to-ceiling windows.
The hotel also offers service at the beach with dedicated beach chairs and umbrellas which can be reserved through the concierge. If the hotel had a drawback it would be that the pool is limited in size when compared with the hotel and volume of guests. That said, guests shouldn’t need much encouragement to get out to the beach and enjoy the waves.
Ritz-Carlton is owned by Marriott and participates in the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program. We have covered that program here in more detail. It’s important to note that while earning and burning Bonvoy points at the property is permitted, not all aspects of Bonvoy’s loyalty program will be honored for Ritz-Carlton properties. Breakfast amenities and lounge access for elites is restricted at these properties, so if it is important to you, consider booking a club level room or a breakfast package even if you are a Marriott Bonvoy elite.
Rates for an intercoastal view standard room begin in the low $400s, junior suites in the low $600s.
The Pillars Hotel
There might not be a quintessential boutique hotel experience in Fort Lauderdale than The Pillars Hotel. This property combines the look and feel of a south Florida villa with personalized service that makes guests feel like family.
The secret charm of the Pillars is its views, and not what most guests expect. The hotel is on the west side of a small peninsula which overlooks an intercoastal waterway that leads to the sea, but is primarily used for very expensive homes as each has a dock for their ever-increasingly expensive yachts. This gives guests a more intimate, local perspective that exudes luxury in an unexpected way.
For those who prefer to visit the lapping waves, the Atlantic is just one block away from The Pillars. Las Olas beach offers fantastic views and is an entirely swimmable beach but at the specific point opposite The Pillars, is perhaps the beach’s most open point with the high-rise hotels further down the coast.
Open solely for the pleasure of its guests, the property offers exclusive dining to hotel guests and select members of a dining club ensuring that hotel guests have access daily to their private offering.
Bright whites, light blues, and lots of windows make rooms clean and comfortable embodying the beach environment around them. Suites are available either poolside, in the main house, or overlooking the water.
Standard guest rooms start in the low $300s; suites are available from the low $500s.
Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina
The Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina is a staple beach hotel resort towering over the sand below. Guests who are looking for a major property with all of the amenities will find that at the property.
While the property was built decades ago, it’s recently undergone an extensive renovation. Fresh whites with birch accents fill guestrooms with a modern look and beach views. The property is famous for its unique design which features fewer guest rooms as the property rises but ensures that each oceanfront view is unobstructed by an overhang from the prior floor.
For guests looking for a luxury experience over an extended period of time, Marina is one hotel that features a kitchenette or full kitchen in most rooms allowing guests to truly settle in.
While all rooms offer beautiful views, many are partial ocean views or resort views. But for oceanfront view rooms, there are some truly stunning suites some of Marina’s high-end suites which include family dining, multiple bedrooms and bathrooms, and even bi-level floorplans.
The hotel has all of the major amenities for large hotels in the United States, such as a fitness center, business center, pool, tanning deck, concierge, and several on-site restaurants.
Good news for members of the Hilton Honors loyalty program, The Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina is available for earning or redeeming Honors points at surprisingly good values. For more information about the Hilton Honors program, check out our post here which covers it comprehensively.
Lago Mar Beach Resort & Club
Active families looking for luxury accommodations will love the Lago Mar Beach Resort & Club. The beachfront property delivers activities for children and adults alike making the hotel a destination for discerning families.
Beach chess, expansive pools, tennis courts, a playground, and a fitness center are just some of the reasons that Lago Mar is so popular. The property is walk-out to the beach and offers a host of beach amenities for those seeking the waves. Lago also features a large conference center with ample meeting space and is a popular wedding venue.
For those looking to relax, the property features a European spa with availability for a range of treatments including couples.
Standard rooms start at just $255/nightly; small suites run about $300/night.
*It’s important to note that Lago Mar (Lake Sea in Spanish) is not the same as Mar-a-Lago, the famed Donald Trump-owned property further up the coast near Palm Beach, Florida.