I am back in Miami and it’s time to try a new hotel, I haven’t stayed in before and for a review of this hotel. My choice for this week’s stay was the Element Miami International Airport.
The Element by Westin is part of the Starwood family which now belongs to Marriott. During my stay, I still collected the very valuable SPG Points. The hotel is located close to the Metromover Rental Car Center Station. If you want you can even take the free Metromover from the Airport to the Rental Car Center and walk from there to the hotel, instead of taking the free Airport Shuttle. If you have a lot of luggage and in the Miami heat, it’s definitely better to take the shuttle instead of the train. It picks you up right at the terminal curb.
I had a rental car and in that case, it was a super short drive to the hotel. This was actually awesome because I arrived around 9 p.m. at the hotel and was quite tired from all day traveling. However, they charge you $12/day parking fee. On the bright side, you get at least a fully fenced property with automatic gates. The gates can be opened with your room key or by ringing the buzzer. This makes me feel safer, because the neighborhood in which the hotel is located in, is not the best. On the other side, all airport hotels are located around here.
The Check-In was painless and they honored my Platinum status with Starwood. I got my keys and got some information about the property and location and times of breakfast and other amenities. The use the newer style contactless keycards instead of the once with the magnet stripe. Besides that, they also offer SPG Keyless.
I took my bags and headed up to my room to the 4th floor. My room was almost straight of the elevator and when I stepped in, I was very positively surprised. The Element is more of an “extended stay” hotel. The feature a full kitchen with sink, dishes, silverware and a huge refrigerator. Very convenient for longer stays.
I had a two queen bed room with a view towards the road leading to the hotel. The room is equipped with everything you need for a great stay. The bathroom was huge and very well illuminated.
. The one piece I like most about Starwood-Hotels is the shampoo and conditioner dispenser in the shower. You don’t get this small bottles. Instead, you have a nice big dispenser. I always participate in “Make A Green Choice”. This means you don’t get any room service but on the bright side, you get bonus points for every day you deny the room service.
All the other amenities are at lobby level. There are a big outdoor swimming pool and whirlpool. The pool is fenced in and you also need your room key to open the door. Next to the pool is a BBQ-pit and on the other side an outside seating area.
Right behind the glass wall of the seating area is the breakfast area and lobby lounge. They have breakfast a hot breakfast buffet every day. I was only able to really take advantage of this on one single day of my one week stay. I noticed that the breakfast staff was busier talking to themselves instead of cleaning off the tables. I also hate that people just leave their trash and dishes on the table and run away. They have a cart with crates to drop off your used dishes.
From Monday – Thursday they have an evening reception in the lobby, right where you would get your breakfast. Come down here for complimentary bites and drinks.
If you are hungry a lot, you can visit the restaurant located right next to the breakfast area.
There is plenty of parking available around the hotel and the hotel as special parking spots for low emission vehicles and an electric vehicle parking spot. However, nobody seems to enforce it.
There was a gas guzzler sitting in the EV charging spot and nobody gave him a ticket. I would have towed him away, this is just rude. Just because you are too lazy to walk.
On the back of the property is a lake, which is not actually part of the hotel. If someone tries, he could get on the parking lot from the lake, because there is no fence on this side but the main hotel property is still fenced in and not accessible without a keycard.
The fitness center is fairly big with a lot of workout equipment and view of the lobby area.
What surprised me most is the laundry facility. It is huge and has a lot of washers and dryers. I have never seen so many in a hotel before. This looks almost like a Laundromat. And you can only get in the laundry facilities with your room key.
Overall it was a great stay at the Element and I wouldn’t mind staying here again. I like that the hotel is fenced in with automatic gates and the close proximity to the airport. As mentioned before, I could either take the Metromover or the free Airport Shuttle.