Gale South Beach
What We Love
- Prime location in the heart of South Beach
- The rooftop infinity pool plays underwater tunes and is primely situated in all-day sun
- Three on-site nightlife options: an oaky den with crafted cocktails, a subterranean ’70s dance club and a rooftop bar with SoBe views
- READ MORE: Find your perfect Miami vacation?
What To Know
- The hotel underwent a complete $35 million renovation in 2012
- A $25 resort fee per night (including WiFi, beach chairs at the Beach Club and a $15 food and beverage credit) will be collected upon check-in
- No direct beach access; but you'll get lounge chairs and waiter service at the Beach Club
- Some basic comforts are compromised due to space: The ice machine is in the lobby, the fitness center is small and the guestroom closets are teeny
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
The original Gale South Beach was built in 1941 and underwent a $35 million tip-to-toe renovation in 2012. The modern incarnation combines glamorous, retro decor with a maritime influence, harkening back to the days when cruising was downright elegant. Expect mirrored details — from the tissue boxes to the sconces to the dinette car-like lobby desk — alongside classic nautical-inspired navy and white decor. The black-and-white photos of Miami beach scenes (many of which feature members of the hotel’s owners families) add to the hotel’s nostalgic charm.
Bed and Bath
Fresh white linens with navy detailing make for clean lines in the guestrooms and the furnished, private balconies that come with some rooms. A similar linearity is echoed in the bathrooms, where the walk-in rain shower and ample supply of bath products from Menin’s signature brand, GuyandGirl, remind you you’re still among modern-day creature comforts. There’s plenty of tech, too: A flat-screen TV equipped with Internet access (wireless keyboards can be found in bedside tables) and iPod docking stations keep you charged up and in touch.
South Beach is known for its nightlife, but the Gale’s three hot spots mean you may never want to leave the grounds. Stop for an after dinner drink alongside Miami locals at the Regent Cocktail Club, where cocktails are expertly crafted to live music; take in the views at the rooftop Regent Bar (which offers movie nights courtesy of the wall projections at the New World Symphony, across the street); or head to the subterranean Rec Room — a funk-era lounge lined with 1970s records, board games and fishnet-adorned leg lamps — named after the VIP area of New York’s Bungalow 8.
In the Area
After a day spent beachside or hitting the shops on nearby Lincoln Road, head west on 16th Street to the year-old Yardbird Southern Table & Bar, a buzzy, Low Country–inspired restaurant where fried chicken, waffles and Buffalo Trace Bourbon reign supreme. You’d be wise to make a reservation if you’re going for dinner, though — founder John Kunkel’s restaurants are known to rack up quite the scene. Wash down your gastronomic indulgences with a drink next door at the locals-only Abbey Brewing Company, Miami Beach’s oldest (and only) brewpub. Once you’ve loosened up a bit, head to Mansion for the quintessential South Beach nightlife experience; this gargantuan 30,000-square-foot megastructure plays host to world renowned DJs (think Tiësto, John Dahlbäck and Steve Aoki) every night of the week.
How to Get There
Does that title make sense? It was a place to sleep. Nice rooftop pool, but seemed to be lacking "something". Roof top pool, but no real bar nor easy way to grab a drink or easily relax. It was like an abandoned shell of a hotel. You literally have to walk through a restaurant to get to the lobby from the street. I don't like being able to look in the bathroom from the bedroom. Seriously, I could watch my girlfriend on the toilet from the bed? WTF?
When you book a "double" this typically means two beds. Be CAREFUL at this property - a double means a true double that is most likely up against a wall and two American sized adults will surely not fit in ONE bed. Not to mention, complete awkwardness for co-workers! I even confirmed when booking, and when adding names to the room at the Hilton online reservation that this was two beds for a double room and they confirmed (the lingo is not consistent across team members apparently). Every time I walked by the front desk a guest was complaining about their room! Another MAJOR issue if you're there with a friend/coworker/sibling - the bathroom mirrors have see through panes into the bed area. So you totally can see the person getting dressed in the bedroom. The shower in two of the rooms I saw, was out in the open and not closed off in a separate bathroom.
Re: Service, the front desk staff is probably used to all of the complaints because they did not care about our needs. Also, if the Valet tells you 15 minutes to get your car - and then you give them 15 minutes at a later date, someone else will say "be sure to read the card, it warns you we need 30-45 minutes to get your car." Really? Will never stay here again and I hope you don't either.
The process of negotiating a group rate was much easier with the Menin Hospitality Group, prior to Hilton assuming management of the Gale. There was an extreme lack of communication between those who negotiated the rate, Hilton, the Gale's Front Desk, and our party. It was even difficult to reach the persons we originally contacted to set up the group rate. At times it felt as if they were purposely hiding from us. It took several calls/emails to the front desk to finally resolve this issue (at least as much as it could be).
Once we arrived, the staff was very courteous and tried to ensure we enjoyed our stay. They were very accommodating to our requests and handled them promptly. There was an issue where my room never received turn down service. A couple times the Do Not Disturb light was on, but when contacted about it, I granted permission to enter, but service was never rendered.
Overall, my group and I enjoyed staying at the Gale. I can't speak to whether or not they would ever return, but I really hope that the Hilton does some investigation into this episode and puts some processes in place to avoid these issues in the future. Hilton seems to have a knack for providing rough experiences for important life events. Our wedding at the Hilton Bayfront in San Diego, CA was a near disaster, but that's a story for another day.
Great location. Off the busy/noisy Ocean Blvd but close to beach.
Valet parking is expensive. We self-parked at a lot on James between Lincoln and 17. A bit cheaper ($30) with in/out privileges. If you use valet, they are located on James in front of the Regent entrance.
We were a little confused by the fact that so many bars on site were not open.
No coffee service in the morning, but there is a French pastry shop on Lincoln.
Note here and others places, gratuity is usually included on your bill.
Don’t miss the rooftop pool!
In October 2018 we booked a girls getaway weekend for February 7-9, 2019 to the Gale. I used Trip Advisor to get our room. The money came out of my account immediately from a company called galahotels.com but I had to call the hotel multiple times to get a confirmation. And galahotels.com is a foreign company and difficult to get a hold of. On November 5, 2018 I received a confirmation email from Nicholas Narducci in guest services at the Gale. Upon arrival to the hotel we were told by Juan at the front desk that our room had been cancelled in December by a company called JacTravel. Juan tried his best to help. Nicholas was standing at the front desk as well but acted like we didn’t exist. The manager (a short woman) basically told us this was our problem and that they never received any money so we would have to pay full price to stay. And they were running out of rooms so we better hurry up. There we were on vacation with no where to stay. We did book a room at the Gale for the night and found the room on hotel tonight app for $170. Juan honored that price. Then i spent hours on the phone with Wells Fargo to figure out how to get our money back from the scam artists we booked through. The next morning Anthony at the front desk was very helpful and forwarded me the JacTravel cancellation email so that I could give it to Wells Fargo. The experience was not how we wanted to spend our long awaited vacation and we didn’t feel like the management at The Gale did much to help us.
I have a friend who lives in Miami and was able to get us into Fountainbleau for the remainder of our stay.
Overall the Gale property is nice and I would stay there again. The rooftop pool is great. The location is very good. The food at the hotel restaurant is just okay and over priced for what it is.
Lesson learned - never book through a third party. While on vacation we’ve heard many horror stories of this happening to other people. And if you google galahotels.com it’s obvious this third party vendor is a fraudulent company making many vacations into a major headache!!