Review: Hilton Palm Beach Airport

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During my recent trip to Florida I drove down to Palm Beach for a couple of days, and spent the first night at the Hilton Palm Beach Airport.

The Palm Beach area is simply really crappy for hotels. You have some decent limited service chain hotels, but aside from that you only really have a couple of expensive independent hotels, which I find to be way overpriced. If I had my choice I’d much rather stay further south, be it at the Westin Diplomat or St. Regis Bal Harbour.

So in looking at hotel options, the Hilton Palm Beach was one of the more reasonable options, at ~$100 per night. While it’s an airport hotel, it’s not really any further from Palm Beach than any of the limited service hotels in West Palm Beach, so isn’t a bad option.

Since I’m a Hilton Diamond member through the Citi® Hilton HHonorsTM Reserve Card, this seemed like the best option.

I arrived at the hotel in the evening, and was pleasantly surprised to find that parking was complimentary, which is rare for an airport hotel. The lot was massive, so there was no shortage of parking.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport exterior

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport parking lot

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport entrance

The lobby looked exactly as you’d expect for an airport Hilton, and was definitely a bit past its prime (do airport hotels really even have a “prime?”).

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport lobby

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport lobby

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport lobby

I was quickly assisted at check-in, and the associate thanked me for being a Diamond guest. I thanked him and asked if they had any Diamond upgrades available, and he said “oh, we’ve already upgraded you to a double bed superior room.”

Hilton-Booking

That’s funny, because that’s exactly what I booked. I mentioned that to him, and he just pretended nothing happened. Ultimately it wasn’t a big deal, but it does frustrate me when hotels “fake upgrade.” If you don’t have rooms to upgrade to or don’t want to upgrade me then say so, but please don’t tell me I was upgraded when I wasn’t.

In addition to the complimentary breakfast for being a Diamond member, I also received two vouchers:

  • One for a complimentary drink
  • One for a complimentary glass of wine, two draft beers, one mixed well drink, one appetizer, or one dessert

That was definitely a nice touch.

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Hilton Palm Beach Diamond drink vouchers

I proceeded up to the 10th floor, where my room was located. I was assigned room 1017, which was a two double bed superior room, exactly as booked.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport hallway

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport room entrance

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport floorplan

The room was perfectly fine — not especially nice, but also not so old that it was in dire need of a renovation.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport room entryway

It was reasonably spacious, with two double beds, a chair by the window, and a console with a desk and TV.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room chair

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room TV & desk

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room TV & desk

On the desk was a welcome amenity consisting of two bottles of water and some M&Ms — also a nice touch.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room water and M&M

I did notice that the clock was set to the completely wrong time, which shows a lack of attention to detail.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room incorrect time

My room faced a parking lot, so those weren’t the most exciting views in the world.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room view

Oddly the room had both a sink in the bedroom, and then another sink in the bathroom, just on the other side of the door.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room sink

The bathroom consisted of a sink, shower/tub combo, and toilet.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room bathroom

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room bathroom

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room shower

The toiletries were Peter Thomas Roth branded.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport 2 Double Bed Superior Room toiletries

After settling in I decided to go to the bar and redeem my appetizer/drink vouchers at this point, though service in the bar was non-existent. I sat there for 15 minutes without being acknowledged.

I then walked up to the bar and asked if there was any service. She said the server would be by shortly, and gave me a menu in the meantime.

I sat there for another 15 minutes without even seeing a server, at which point I just left and ordered room service instead.

While I was trying to be healthy, that was a lost cause given what they had on the menu, so I ordered a pizza. It was delivered in a pizza box, which seems to be the direction a lot of room service is headed.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport room service

The pizza was surprisingly good, at least.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport room service

I had breakfast at Veranda Restaurant, which opens at 6:30AM. As a Hilton Diamond member I’m technically only entitled to complimentary continental breakfast, though this hotel offered a full breakfast for free, which was cool.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant

My nonfat cappuccino was delicious, though perhaps a bit less “non-fatty” than I was hoping for thanks to the cocoa powder.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant cappuccino

The buffet spread itself was also better than I would expect from an airport Hilton. It offered fruit, cold cuts, cereal, yogurt, toast, pastries, croissants, a handful of hot dishes, etc.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant buffet

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant buffet

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant buffet

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant buffet

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant buffet

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant buffet

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant buffet

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport Veranda Restaurant buffet

I didn’t have time to use the other facilities, but the hotel did have a pool, hot tub, and two tennis courts. So it looked like a nice enough outdoor area, especially for an airport hotel.

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport pool

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport pool

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport tennis court

The gym was rather disappointing, however, as I thought it was awfully tiny for a hotel of this size. Then again I didn’t see anyone in it, so maybe the South Florida airport hotel crowd just doesn’t use hotel gyms. 😉

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport gym

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport gym

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Hilton Palm Beach Airport gym

Hilton Palm Beach Airport bottom line

I was a bit miffed by the service at check-in and in the lounge, but all things considered I was pleasantly surprised by all the “small touches.” The in-room amenity, drink vouchers, and full breakfast were nice added features. The room itself was fine, and if the price was right I’d certainly return given the lack of decent options in the Palm Beach area, even if not flying out of the airport. While Hilton isn’t my primary hotel chain (Hyatt and Starwood are), they’re a great backup option, especially given how easy it is to get status with them through the Citi® Hilton HHonorsTM Reserve Card.

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Comments

  1. Lucky: What is your career, that you get to travel so often and live out of a hotel? Have you been able to turn your “blogging” into a career?

  2. This was really sad and really funny at the same time. But now I fully know what to expect at the Hilton Palm Beach Airport!

  3. Ahh…St. Regis Bal Habour. Gotta be one of the best in the States, in my opinion.

    Not to mention the Virtuoso amenity as of late: $100 spa credit, one category upgrade upon arrival, early check-in (huge) and late check-out, plus breakfast for 2 for each day.

    Why isn’t Virtuoso more discussed on these blogs? You basically get those stay/night credits + get amenities that could potentially negate the need to use your systemwides…

  4. Why do you book a room with 2 twin beds when you travel alone? I always prefer a king bed.

  5. Lucky, this seems to be a good deal on a hotel for circa $100 nightly rate. The main thing to remember with Hilton branded hotels is that they tend to better at their international locations where the Executive lounges offer complimentary drinks, but there are also many international Hilton branded hotels which are worthwhile to book even if they do not have an Executive lounge. Hiltons tend to be everywhere across the globe, and their rates tend to be more competitive and better via the other big hotel chains. If I have a choice between a Hyatt or SPG hotel with a $300 nightly rate and a or a Hilton at $200, then I will choose the Hilton even if the competitor’s might offer a better room. I usually read up on FT, MP, and tripadvisor on hotel reviews to get an idea of the guest’s opinions.

  6. Lucky, Next time you are in South East Florida ( Miami area) you should try The Four Seasons or The Mandarin Oriental.
    And don’t forget I promised you a beach-side lunch at The Ritz on Key Biscayne.

  7. You’re so lucky, Lucky, in getting status so easily! I’ve had 20 Hilton stays so far this year, another 10 to retain Diamond – a long slog compared to having that credit card!! They’re still my main chain though as Hyatt just have too small a footprint outside the US and Starwood, albeit a bit better, tend to be overly pricey too compared to Hiltons. Some of the recent Hampton Inn and Hilton Garden Inn properties in Europe have been pretty nice, excellent value too.

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