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Riverside Hotel in Fort Lauderdale, FL

Riverside Hotel in Fort Lauderdale, FL


Welcome To The Riverside Hotel. The Hotel provides the best accommodations in Fort Lauderdale. The Historic Riverside Hotel is casual elegance in downtown Fort Lauderdale, fine dining, ideal for corporate & social events  The Riverside Hotel


Established in 1936.

In the early 1930's, two brothers from Chicago, Preston and John Wells, began visiting Fort Lauderdale. Having made their fortunes in Chicago real estate, the two brothers decided to lay down roots in Fort Lauderdale. The brothers began purchasing property, most of which is now the famous Las Olas Boulevard. In 1936, they opened the Champ Carr Hotel (later renamed The Riverside Hotel) which was then and remains today, the cornerstone of what is commonly referred to as "the crown jewel of Fort Lauderdale," Las Olas Boulevard. Today, the charming Las Olas Boulevard attracts strolling visitors and shoppers from around the world as well as the neighbors from just down the street, offering an eclectic blend of fine and casual dining, art and antiques, extraordinary jewelry and gifts and an abundance of unique boutiques. The Las Olas Company currently owns, leases and manages approximately eighty-five percent of the retail real estate on Las Olas Boulevard as well as owning an additional acr


Company Info:

Rating: 3.59

Address: 620 E Las Olas Blvd, Fort Lauderdale, FL, 33301
  • Mon: Open 24 hours
  • Tue: Open 24 hours
  • Wed: Open 24 hours
  • Thu: Open 24 hours
  • Fri: Open 24 hours
  • Sat: Open 24 hours
  • Sun: Open 24 hours

Hotels in Fort Lauderdale, FL



Comments (63):

1. Felecia W.
This place is a great late night (11pm after work) place to get a drink! We strolled in around 11 and hung till about 2. The bartender inside (at the back bar) was totally awesome and took care of us. It was pretty quiet and not too many people at the bar, but she was happy to see us, and kept the drinks flowing! It helps that this place is across the street from where I work, but either way, I will be back.

29/12/08 | Link | Rating: 5.0
2. Dragos M.
Looks fabulous, the services are top notch, friendly personnel and excellent location. It's a 5 star hotel sold as 3 stars. I was really, really impressed by it.

09/08/10 | Link | Rating: 5.0
3. Chris I.
Beautiful hotel.  Great maid service, valet service, happy hour.

27/05/11 | Link | Rating: 4.0
4. Grant C.
Stayed here on a business trip recently.  Location was great; close to the business district where I needed to be and to the dining and nightlife on Las Olas.  Clean, comfortable, large rooms and good service.  The decor wasn't really my style, kind of old-fashioned, but this is a solid place to stay if you find yourself in Fort Lauderdale.

16/01/11 | Link | Rating: 4.0
5. Jim S.
Older but nice hotel.  Clean, helpful, attentive staff.  Worst pillows ever!  It is like they purchased them from the dollar store.  I called the desk and asked for a thicker feather type pillow and they brought me the same pillows I already had in the room.  simply awful.  I have no other complaints except for the pillows...Holiday Inn has better pillows...Come on!

09/10/12 | Link | Rating: 3.0
6. Ivonne G.
I recently stayed at this hotel for July 4 weekend. I am so happy I booked this short getaway. The location was perfect. We didn't have to drive anywhere as we were on the Las Olas strip and were able to walk around and enjoy the local restaurants and nightlife. The hotel itself was a little bit on the older side but the room was clean and they gave me a room that had recently been updated. The elevator that we had to take to our room was tiny and had a strange odor to it. There was an ice machine on the floor that I was on and the constantly slamming of the door was a bit annoying when trying to take a nap but other than that it was a good stay.

11/07/11 | Link | Rating: 4.0
7. Gigi G.
Loved this hotel! Great service and location. Minutes away from the beach. My husband and I wound up walking to the beach, which was further than we expected walking distance but a beautiful walk at that! Great location, near favorite restaurants and shops! LOVE LOVE!

14/07/11 | Link | Rating: 4.0
8. Mike N.
Great alternate to the beach hotels in Ft. Lauderdale and right on Las Olas strip with restaurants, shops and bars.

Was in town over Easter weekend for a friends wedding and opted for the Riverside over The W. I was offered a discounted rate at both places but the Riverside's discount rate was half of what The W was charging. The Riverside is more of a classy hotel (translation: no college kids is sight while we were there) while, The W was more than a bit of a scene while we were at the event.

The hotels' restaurant left a lot to be desired on food and service on Sunday, but overall, I'd stay here again and liked the friendly staff and decent, very clean and comfy rooms.

07/04/10 | Link | Rating: 3.0
9. Jake L.
My wife and I just stayed at Riverside for the 2nd time. Amazing. The price is right, rooms are wonderful, and enough extras in the hotel to keep us happy. Very few negatives, but then again, I'm not sure what people want in a hotel/room. If you want perfection, I guess you'll have to pay for it. I just don't understand what guests don't like about this hotel. It's clean, the staff is friendly every time you walk in, helpful, and it's in the middle of everything.

I love all the little "nook" at Riverside, too. The courtyard, the balcony, quiet spots at the pool, along the river. Half priced drinks at the bar during the week (b/t 5-7). Never at at the restaurants, but they were always packed and featured a live singer every night. The pool is very nice - small, next to the river, but open so you can get some sun, cool off, and avoid a trip to the beach when you don't feel like getting sandy.

All around the Riverside is great shopping, people watching, and dining/eating. The people of Ft. Lauderdale are friendly and eclectic - we truly loved hanging out in this area. The Riverside is 2 miles off the beach, which we found nice. Getting away from the beach crowd was nice. Very busy down here, but not overrun with t-shirts telling me that "I'm in Miami B**tch!" Thank God.

Getting to the beach is easy, though. You can walk it (about 40 min each way), take a taxi (didn't do that, but probably cheap). take the #11 Bus (1.75 each way unless you get a fare card), or take the 50 cent trolley that you can wave down (you just don't know when it will stop!). We went to the beach 3 of our 5 days. We love it, but with a pool this nice, we really didn't have much of a reason to go anywhere else.

Stop looking at other hotels. Just stay here. You'll love it :)

23/08/11 | Link | Rating: 5.0
10. Stephen F.
This is an upscale hotel without the snobby attitude. Hotel staff is pleasant and helpful. The place is immaculate. Rooms are spacious and well-kept. Bathroom amenities are of good quality. I can't speak for the food since we did not eat there. However, the bar (Golden Lyon) is top notch. Prices are decent ($12 for a dry martini with Hendrick's Gin and $9 for a Manhattan with Canadian Club), pours are generous, and service is friendly.

Las Olas Boulevard is right outside the door of the hotel. Downtown Fort Lauderdale is a few short blocks away. The location is excellent.

The parking arrangements could use some work. Parking is available in an adjacent municipal parking garage at a rate of $17.00 a day. The hotel gives you a key card that also acts as a parking pass, allowing in-and-out access throughout your stay. GPS helps to get to the hotel if you're not familiar with the area.

27/07/10 | Link | Rating: 4.0
11. A J.
Client gets a good corporate rate on this hotel so I've stayed here a few times. The hotel is nice and the staff is always very friendly. There's a bar that is nice to get a drink after a long day, and the hotel is right on the main strip of Las Olas Blvd. There are a lot of pretty spots outside to enjoy the nice scenery and weather.

The rooms are a good size and some rooms even have a little balcony. But the hair dryer in the room is one of those small travel-size ones that blow barely warm air, so bring your own dryer if you dont want to take three times as long as usual to dry your hair. The room service menu is also very limited and the food was only okay.

11/02/10 | Link | Rating: 3.0
12. Mark J.
This is a great little hotel located in the center of Ft. Lauderdale. It is within walking distance of a few quaint restaurants as well as a major chain restaurant which is on the premises. The hotel while dated, is charming and has beautiful rooms. Definitely a place to consider if visiting Ft. Lauderdale.

24/09/10 | Link | Rating: 4.0
13. Heidi M.
Got this hotel on Priceline and wasn't really sure what to expect.  We were pleasantly surprised.  This was a pre-cruise stay.

Plan to spend about 20 bucks on a cab from the airport to this hotel.  But once you're there, you can walk to restaurants on Las Olas and take public transportation (albeit slow) to beaches and other areas.  However, next time I'd probably get a car.

We had one drink at the lobby bar (inside near reception).  They were a little pricey, but well poured.  We wanted to sit out front, but it was too busy.  However, the courtyard outdoors next to the lobby bar was secluded, relaxing and had it's own people watching going on...don't ask.

Internet was cable, but complimentary.  The feel is very old school florida. However, the beds were horrible...maybe it was just our room, but if I was staying here longer, I would have switched rooms.  However, despite that, it was a good place to stay.

The pool was very nice - no bar open during the day - but it's situated across the small street near the river and was nice and warm.

Cabs to the port ran about 7 bucks per person.  I'd definitely stay here again, via priceline. Also - check out my review on Tuscan Grill - within walking distance  - MUST eat there!

29/01/10 | Link | Rating: 3.0
14. Daniel V.
This is definitely an upscale hotel, at least from the perspective of a tower room guest.   Other reviews of this property express concerns about the condition of the older parts of the hotel, which I did not see during my stay.  However, the lobby is exceedingly classy and comfortable, and it exits to a palm-lined walkway with quiet patio tables that leads to the pool area.  The rest of the public areas were equally high class, trimmed in dark wood and well maintained.

We checked in early (1:00 PM) after an overnight flight from Los Angeles and were politely welcomed.  The person at the front desk indicated that our room was not ready, but she took my cell phone number and promised to call as soon as it was.  We found a place for lunch and within thirty minutes she called to say that we could pick up the keys to our room at the front desk.

As stated above, we booked a room in the newer tower section of the hotel.  Our room was clean, comfortable, but possibly a bit "tired" in its overall condition.  The room just had the occasional but hardly noticeable ding in the furniture, the occasional but hardly noticeable stain in the carpet, and a bit of ware to the bathroom amenities.  The bed was extremely comfortable and the fantastic view from our room (from the hotel to the sea) more than distracted my attention away from those nitpicky flaws.

The property is awesomely located in the heart of the Los Olas Blvd. shopping district, which consists of a small portion of a single street filled with trendy cafes and unique shops.  Los Olas makes for an interesting day in Fort Lauderdale but be aware that "trendy" comes at a premium price.  The real world, however, is only about a block down the road with a CVS market and Starbucks located at the next major intersection and a quick walk from Los Olas Blvd.

We had breakfast at the hotel restaurant, which is called The Indigo Restaurant, and found the food to be very good.  It was certainly worth the price especially in light of the added convenience.  I had the eggs benedict, which were fresh and properly prepared, and a cup of coffee that remained continuously filled throughout the meal.

Overall, if you are looking for a place that offers a bit more than just a nice room, you will not be disappointed by staying at the Riverside.

17/12/11 | Link | Rating: 5.0
15. Dustin T.
Always try to stay here when in in Fort Lauderdale.  I love being on Las Olas an the service here is great.  The deluxe rooms are very spacious and updated.  And I love the restaurant!

30/10/12 | Link | Rating: 5.0
16. Gisselle H.
Well the hotel is located right in the heart of fort lauderdale,right on las Olas boulevard,Next to all the hot trendy restaurants.

My favorite thing about the hotel is that their is this small restaurant right downstairs,The restaurant has the world's most amazing outdoor seating,we got to sit in a very comfortable chair sort of like a lounge,and we had a perfect view of everything as we sipped on a pina colada.

The pool is located right across the street,very small and cozy.Their is a bartender with waitress service from 9am-5pm,Their drinks were amazing and totally refreshning.

20/04/09 | Link | Rating: 3.0
17. Onnicha G.
So glad I booked a few days at the Riverside Hotel.
You really can't beat the location, located right on Las Olas Blvd in Fort Lauderdale, shopping, nightlife, great dining, and beaches are all in walking distance.
Trolleys and buses run through the strip every 30 minutes, for only 50 cents a person. You can't beat the exceptional views while enjoying the ride.

The rooms are very clean and cozy. The rooms smelled great, the beds were soft, the AC kept us cool.The hotel is literally spotless. Guest service was excellent, responded quickly to all of our needs. The pool area was nice, you get to tan while sipping on a cocktail, who doesn't like that?

The hotel's restaurant, Indigo was lovely. Our waiter, DJ was very accommodating. My husband and I didn't have dinner here, instead we tried their breakfast, which was good. On Friday nights, they have a live musician, who was singing and playing his instrument at the same time, I don't remember exactly what he was playing, but I'm thinking, a guitar.

We really enjoyed our stay at the Riverside Hotel, I can't think of anything to complain about. I hope you give them a chance, because you won't be dissapointed :)

14/06/11 | Link | Rating: 5.0
18. Maureen C.
Lovely - rather like a boutique hotel, though it's truly a historic spot on Las Olas Blvd.

Win = on Las Olas, so LOTS of shopping and dining choices right outside your door.

Lose = not close to the beach (in relative terms)

Tie = ok rates; was here for a conference, and the rates were comparable to similar local places.

Friendly staff, nice lobby, clean, decent-sized rooms, good (though a bit noisy) air conditioning, huge closets.

Note: be a morning person here, 'cuz the "cute, historic" part includes tile hallways, so you hear EVERYTHING going past your door!

If this place were on the water, I'd definitely be back next time I'm in town.  Though I'd have to say: if the water-front places were significantly more $$$, then Riverside still gets my vote.  Until next time, FL!

09/05/10 | Link | Rating: 4.0
19. Bruce P.
I am traveling with my mother and arrived yesterday.  We're heading out on a cruise in a few hours and wanted to get a place near the port.  By chance, I took the correct turn to see their parking garage and the valet parking area.  With assistance we off-loaded our many bags and was directed to the parking garage (self-park) and quickly parked.  The front desk was friendly and attentive, answering all my questions and also going over special requests I had made for an accessible room . (Mom, being a senior sometimes has mobility issues)  The seat for the shower wasn't in the room, but a call quickly corrected that.  The one that arrived, mom found out, didn't have legs that were even and nearly skidded out from under her when she went to use it when she went to clean up.  With the flooring in the roll-in shower the grips on the bottom of the seat made no purchase and slipped away from her. Something the staff may want to look at, since this may certainly cause an issue with other folks who may require assistive aids.  With the hand rails in the shower, she was able to shower and had no other issues.
I'm tall (6'4") and fortunately the hand held shower worked since it didn't raise up enough to allow me to stand under it when it was as high up as the vertical bar would allow.  The staff was top-notch and the door-man and the bellhop had our luggage to our room within minutes of our room assignment.
The beds were comfortable and one thin, one thick pillow were provided; allowing you to choose your sleeping preference.
The A/C in the room too quite a while to get the room comfortable.  The thermostat said it was 72 when we arrived.  Closer to 82, thank you very much.  But a bit of fiddling and giving it time, got the room down where it didn't feel like a moist sauna.
One a Thursday night, we had no issues with noise, as we were placed on the 10th floor and our room faced the river.
For meals the hotels has a couple restaurants.  We went out the front door and walked mere steps and ate at The Cheesecake Factory.
I couldn't be happier with the selection of this as our "rest before the journey" hotel.
Be aware that self-parking is $17 per night.  (I thought I was quoted a different and slightly lower rate, but since I didn't have anything in writing, it is what it is)  I am not sure I like the idea the front desk hand writes in the parking charge.  Makes one believe they can vary the rate on their whim.  If it's a set price, then have it automated so when you sign for incidental charges at check-in it doesn't appear to be arbitrary.
The hotel itself has "Old Florida" charm: sleek and modern isn't it's niche.  I would absolutely stay here again, due to it's location, accommodations and nearby points of interest.

19/10/12 | Link | Rating: 4.0
20. Kimmie H.
Is this a hotel? It's more like a bed and breakfast inside the rooms. Quaint, spic and span, and spacious for a fun getaway.

1. Very nice accommodations - dated but tasteful with very comfortable beds.  The room temperature is easily controlled. Loved the jewel tones of the bed and drapes, which is part of the charm of the area, quite honestly.

2. Vibrant entertainment is right outside the hotel's front door.  Hotel bar, restaurant and convenience shop were spotless and manned with friendly, professional staff. However, I never heard a peep from the bustle below (from the third floor around back).

3. Florida charges you to stay, even your car.  Ask the desk professionals for parking specials -- it may be less expensive to utilize the valet than to park by yourself (word to the wise).

4. Bathroom looks like it should show some wear and tear (style was dated), but everything is spotlessly clean.

5. Really large walk-in closet, if you decide to stay for a few months.

6. Wi-fi is not 100% dependable, but there is an ethernet connection in the room for computer hook-up.

If you are looking for something besides a beachfront cookie-cutter property, and you want quick access to restaurants with European flair, a variety of bars, shops and the water taxi, check this place out. Unless you are the King of England, you won't be disappointed!

10/09/11 | Link | Rating: 4.0
21. Molly H.
The only redeeming value to this hotel is the location. I spent 5 nights here and can't recall a worse experience at any other hotel I've ever stayed in. Upon check in, I asked for a mini fridge to be delivered. I asked 3 more times over the course of two days and it never got delivered. The internet didn't work in my room, so I requested to be moved. I was told twice that a tech would come look at it. The next day, a tech finally came by and said the internet didn't work because of my room location. I was put into a smaller room (even though I paid for a larger one) and was put between a stair case and a noisy neighbor. I could hear the tv in the room next to me all night, as if it was in my own room, as well as people clomping up and down tile stairs all night. I requested to be moved again and they refused to move me. The hotel staff provided some of the worst service I've had in recent memory. I'll certainly do my homework and choose a hotel based on more than location next time I'm in town.

02/12/13 | Link | Rating: 1.0
22. Susie J. S.
Beautiful hotel in the heart of Las Olas...piano player in lobby is great, sit outside if you prefer, went to UF Meeting on the 8th floor, nice view, great staff, always fun!

10/05/13 | Link | Rating: 4.0
23. David W.
As far as I'm concerned, this place is as good as it gets.

I stayed here on business for three nights.  I was in the tower, which is the newer part of the hotel (thanks to Yelpers, I heeded the advice to book in the tower).  My room was elegant (a word that I rarely use), upscale, well-appointed, sparkling clean, very comfortable and had a great view to-boot.  Reasonable price for what you get.

The hotel location is amid some fabulous eating and shopping establishments on Las Olas.  I ate in the hotel restaurant for breakfast one morning and ordered room service for breakfast one morning.  In both instances the food was of quality and the service was prompt.

The wi-fi connection was included in the price of the room and was lightning fast.

My only suggestion is that the garage tower, which is attached to the hotel, have better signage directing one to the hotel lobby once one has parked, have better lighting and have a garage key-card system that isn't so counter-intuitive.  

I'll stay here again in a heartbeat!

02/07/12 | Link | Rating: 5.0
24. Chrissss D.
We booked through Hotwire. Usually a great deal for a 3 1/2 or 4 star hotel. Not this time! The hotel puts hotwire guests in the 'classic' rooms. In this case, classic stands for old and not renovated. Definately not four stars! Old, stinky (smells like old furniture here), with beds made with sheets that don't fit. Really , both queen beds had undersheets that were a foot short, so our feet were directly on the mattress (hygenic? Not really!)
Bathroom was not clean, hairs everywhere... Come on guys, really!
This is not what we expected, and we will not recommend this hotel unless you are willing to pay full price and hope and pray you get a room in the big, renovated part!
On top of that, the guys that were supposed to bring our luggage never showed up, and after 45 minutes I decided to go downstairs to get it myself. The ticket was still just laying there, no bellboy in sight... Finally someone came and gave me my luggage.
When we told the frontdesk, they kind of shrugged it off and told us the hotel was full and there was nothing to be done... After that they simply did not look in our direction anymore whenever we walked in or out past frontdesk. Rude, stinky, overpriced.
For us not a good experience at all!

26/03/12 | Link | Rating: 1.0
25. Geno K.
Not an overly friendly checkin, room smells musty, wifi is ok and free, parking rate is absurd, bed is fairly comfortable, TV is from the 90s, just a typical old school hotel that has seen its better days.  Location is convenient to shops and river walk, but that's the really only selling point.  Don't pay anymore than $60. That's what I got this for on Priceline.  But prepare for the nickel and diming game as soon as you walk in the door... $17 for parking, $23 for valet, $25 for a room that doesn't smell, etc.

12/05/12 | Link | Rating: 2.0
26. Vanessa R.
Stayed here for a friends birthday. The location is as good as it gets! It's minutes away from from Riverfront where everyone goes to party! The hotel has an awesome patio, where you can relax have a drink and a smoke.

The lobby is clean and nice! The staff is friendly and always eager to help.

The only complaint that I have is that the AC doesnt cool all that well. The curtains dont close all the way. It may be because the room was a bit older? Im not sure.

Other than that, the hotel is good- and I would definitely suggest that you stay here, if you want to be in the middle of everything.

08/08/12 | Link | Rating: 3.0
27. Doug J.
Nice place.  Clean, very friendly service from all, and nice pool with a view of the river.  Rooms are very large, as are the bathrooms.  Sme furnishings are a little dated, but did not bother us at all.  Would stay again.

22/06/13 | Link | Rating: 4.0
28. Michael F.
Took my fiance here for a weekend getaway for her birthday.  We're locals so I knew this hotel would hit the spot for eveything within walking distance.  

When I checked in, the reservationist evidently made note of the birthday and the friendly front desk clerk gave us 2 free drink cards (score!) ;)  

The inside of the hotel is classic and elegant.  We used the pool (which is a little odd across the street, but understandable if you know the property area).  The pool was nice and right on part of the intercoastal.  HOWEVER, they really should have even a small Tiki bar or something.  Instead, you have to order a drink (or food) via a phone by the pool area entrance.  When a server DOES come with drinks, don't ask them any questions about what the drink is or anything else because they "don't know" - yes we asked 2 different servers about the drinks they were carrying when they walked by us.

We had a GREAT king suite room (not huge) that had a wrap around balcony.  The bed was super comfy! The room was spacious but a little noisey.  We figured being on the 11th floor and the end of the hallway, it would be quieter.  I do suppose the hotel has little control over unruly guests. When you flush the toilet in this room it made the oddest sound in the walls for 5 min after the flush.

Anyway, it's a great spot with a nice staff.  The location makes it unbeatable!

18/04/12 | Link | Rating: 4.0
29. Rich H.
I used priceline and ended up with this hotel for $80-something a night.  I wanted a room near the FLL airport and this one is around 4 miles away and is right on the highway leading to the airport.

Upon arrival, you have a decision to make.  $17/night for the ramp right across the street or $23/night for the Valet.  I chose Valet and we'll see how they do early in the morning when I pick up my vehicle.

I upgraded my room for $25/night to the tower, and that was a no-brainer decision as I read other reviews that the non-tower rooms are old and kind-of dumpy.  I confirmed that with the bell boy when he brought up the bags.   I ended up with a 12th floor room facing east with a sliding glass door balcony and I have added a picture of the room and the view.

This looks like a fantastic area to be in as there is a street with lots of places to eat at along with the riverwalk nearby.

26/03/12 | Link | Rating: 4.0
30. Bao N.
I stayed here on a Friday night back in April 2012. The reason we picked this hotel it was close to Los Olas and a few spots we wanted to hang out at. We stayed in the new tower and it was a decent spot. There is nothing extra special about this hotel but there is nothing bad about it from my experience either. So I think it's average hotel room. I would stay here again since the location is pretty good.

We went out to YOLO and VIBE which was two blocks from the hotel which was super convient so for that I loved the location. I'd give it a shot but only in the newer tower as I've read that old tower is not the best rooms.

18/06/12 | Link | Rating: 3.0
31. JJ B.
Location of this hotel is key, but parking isn't the best.

08/10/13 | Link | Rating: 4.0
32. Ed S.
Nice hotel right on Las Olas whose location is its greatest asset.

The lobby and grounds are clean and have a nice inviting feel. There's also a restaurant right off the lobby.

Rooms are O.K. and comfortable enough. You'll probably hear your neighbors, though.

Plenty of bars and restaurants within an easy walk. However, the beach is not within walking distance at all. Taxis are readily available if you're flying into or out of town as I did.

A little pricey, but well worth the price just for the location alone.

04/04/13 | Link | Rating: 3.0
33. Brittany T.
I was looking at planning a party and they never responded. The party was going to have 20k worth of food alone. I guess that wasn't an interest to them. What a shame.

02/05/14 | Link | Rating: 1.0
34. BrentandMichelle W.
No good if you want to get some sleep on a Saturday night.  Hotel took only $20 off a two night stay totaling $355!!!  We won't be going back.  So sad too.  Love the area and it was a nice hotel.
Our neighbors were having loud sex all night.  Actually we could hear them talking thru the walls too. Talking not yelling

07/10/12 | Link | Rating: 2.0
35. Paul W.
To be honest, I'm a bit surprised to read so many 4 and 5 star reviews of this place.  While the location might be great, when I consider the hotel itself, the room I was placed in and a few hiccups I experienced on the morning I checked out, overall my stay here wasn't the greatest.

I was planning to go out with some friends in the Lauderdale area on a Saturday night, and was meeting up with another group for lunch in this city the next day, so on a whim I logged onto Priceline on Saturday afternoon and put in a bid of $55 for a room to save myself the 40 minute drive each way to go back and forth.   I was awarded this property.

I arrived after midnight, got checked in right away and was given room 539 in the older, original section of this hotel.   While the room was adequate, I was a bit surprised to see this place listed as a 3 star property on Priceline judging from the room I was given.  While the carpets, bedding, furniture and upholstery all appeared to be in good condition, one could tell that the plaster walls of the room had been repaired and touched up in several areas over the years, there were lots of cracks in the concrete ceiling which had been repaired or painted with paint that didn't match the rest of the ceiling, there were rust stains in the bath tub, I saw what appeared to be rodent droppings on one of the shelves near the toilet (grey/brown grass seed shaped dung), and when I went to make coffee the next morning, there was so much gunk from past hotel guests' use on the burner that the carafe stuck to it.

I was tired when I first arrived, so I went to bed relatively quickly.  The next morning when I woke up, I noticed that they'd slipped a copy of my room charges under the door just as many hotels do on the morning of checkout.   I was expecting to see a zero balance since I'd paid for this room through Priceline.  Instead, there was a balance of $48.12 for a "Promotional Channel Rate" and taxes.  I went to the front desk as I was leaving, explained the charge that had appeared and asked what it was for.  I assumed it had to do with a TV channel, but I hadn't switched my TV on at all during my stay here.  The woman at the desk looked at it and said "Oh, that wasn't a TV charge, let me have a look".  She threw away that original charge statement, went to her computer, pressed a few buttons and printed out another statement of charges that simply said "Paid in Full, Thank You $0.00".    I thanked her, but also asked for the original statement back in case any of these charges appear on my Visa card as I'll be contesting them.    I'm also curious if they would've caught and corrected these charges had I not taken the time to actually read the statement and stop at the desk on my way out to ask about them.

I made my way to my vehicle, loaded my bag and went to leave the smallish parking lot when a gentleman flagged me down and said "That'll be $4.50".  I explained that I'd stayed in their hotel the previous night and that I was a paying guest.   He asked to see my room key, which I explained was packed in my luggage, but I offered to get it out and show him.  He then asked if I'd paid for parking and if I had a receipt.    I got out of my vehicle, opened the hatch, opened my luggage and showed him my room key.  He looked at me dissapointedly and just said "Alright", and that was that.

Would I stay here again?  As one other reviewer mentioned, for the rate of $50-$60 per night, most probably.  However, if I were doing it again, knowing what I know now, I'd ask to be placed in the newer tower.  The additional charges to my credit card and the attempt to charge for parking were annoyances, though I did resolve those, I think.

It's my opinion that this hotel has a lot of potential.  In general it's in decent shape for as old as it is, and they're obviously proud of their 75 year history as it's mentioned on the card you get with your room key and in some of their promotional materials.  It's also in a very good part of town if people staying here are hoping to be close to active nightlife, restaurants, shopping and other activities as it's in the busiest section of Las Olas and is within walking distance of the Performing Arts Center and Riverwalk.  While I realize it's nice to walk into a hotel like this one every once in a while that's more traditional, has a long heritage and isn't shiny, new, sterile and doesn't look the same as every other newer, modern hotel in the country, at the same time it wouldn't take much effort, time or cost to make some repairs to the rooms and put them in better condition.  Maybe invest in some rodent traps or a good exterminator while they're at it!

24/09/12 | Link | Rating: 2.0
36. Marqus R.
The Riverside Hotel speaks of Las Olas trendiness. When I find it necessary to put business guest up in the downtown area, this is the place. They've always given me great rooms which rooms I would consider as being Four Star but at Three Star prices. However, more than the rooms, it's all about location. The Riverside is located right smack on most trendy location of Las Olas, which is the most trendy, fashionable area of downtown Fort Lauderdale. It's great for walking, shopping and next to some of the very best of restaurants.

04/06/12 | Link | Rating: 4.0
37. Miguel R.
This hotel is what it is, nothing more nothing less. It has outdated everything really, and some really tacky lamps made to look like palm trees in the rooms. The elevator has got to be the tiniest and most annoying I have ever had to use in the USA. We actually got a room in the older part of the hotel but it wasn't half bad as many reviewers claim. I actually expected more of this hotel. Just a little bit more. In the end my BF really got a great deal here.

The Riverside Hotel served its purpose though. It was cheap and clean. That's all that matters. We would have stayed at a gay resort close to the beach again but most of them required you to stay a couple of nights. Very lame.

What I did like about this hotel is that it had a good sized safe. Very important since I always take my laptop with me so we could plan our trip during our vacation time when things changed and well, also because I used it when there was down time. I also liked the tile floors in the hallway and the art they had hung on the walls. When you walk in to the hotel they have a couple of paintings with nice tropical scenes including spider monkeys and a crocodile. It was also nice to be right on Las Olas. We just walked out of the hotel and took a really nice stroll on this fun street. The hotel is also more gay friendly than I anticipated. They have a rainbow flag hanging out on their Las Olas facade. Not only does this tell you that the staff is aware that the hotel is gay friendly but it also lets the people that come in know it. Service was courteous, especially the valet guys - and I feel bad for them because their uniforms are ugly!  

Mind you, I would only stay here if the plan was to save money. Otherwise, I would not stay here. Simply because there are better deals when you spend a little more. However, If you want to spend little and get a clean, convenient place to stay I highly recommend this hotel to anyone! Don't listen to all the whiners' reviews. It amazes me that people really expect to find all the perfection of an expensive hotel at a hotel that is cheap. It's lame that they judge cheap hotels by these expectations. This hotel is a you get what you pay for hotel. This hotel is a good bargain!

07/03/13 | Link | Rating: 4.0
38. Sherry H.
Our stay at The Riverside was part of a large group, almost 100, for a high school reunion.  We were impressed from the begining with the bellhops who helped us unload our bags for our hotel room, as well as the hospitality suite.  The staff at Registration was efficient and the housekeeping was excellent.  Everyone we came in contact with at the hotel was friendly, helpful and professional.  Our room was in the Executive Tower so we had a great sitting area and a nice view.  The hotel is located in an ideal spot for shopping and restaurants with easy access to the trolley and river taxi.  I would definitely recommend this hotel to friends and family and stay there again.

18/10/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0
39. Liz O.
A well-kept hotel, but I don't see myself returning voluntarily.  

The decor is a bit outdated, albeit traditional.   No biggie.

Valet men were kind, and helpful to newcomers like myself. Cool.

Room Service was appalling.  One hour wait, for cold food.  But Erica at the front desk was quick to help correct that.

Food from the restaurant, even when warm, was nothing special.

21/08/12 | Link | Rating: 3.0
40. Mary G.
Truly first class. ... it was a pleasure staying here...plus such a great location..... can't wait to come back.

08/05/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0
41. Nathan S.
I had a great few days here for a solar convention we were attending. The staff was very polite. The hotel vibe was very laid back and relaxing. This is a very unique place to stay. Ryan at the bar squeezed several limes by hand to make my drinks. At one point I told him to stick a fork in it and twist it. I'm pretty sure they ran out of limes that night.

06/06/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0
42. John S.
On February 27, 2011, I gave an Excellent review for this hotel on TripAdvisor. Sadly, my recent stay was an utter and complete disappointment. I came back to the hotel expecting the first experience - instead it was like I was in an entirely different hotel.

When I made the 3 night reservation, I requested a corner room on the East or South part of the hotel as high up as possible, facing the river. I booked this hotel solely for the river view. That was not what I received when I checked-in. I went to the room and found it was not the room I thought I had reserved.  The river that I had hoped to see was hidden behind a 12 story wall. When I called the front desk manager, she said that the hotel had no record of my request for a river view room, but she would need to check with her reservations department She said she would call back. After waiting 30 minutes for a return call, I called the desk again and she indicated that she "had just gotten" a copy of the reservation and it did indeed show my request (absent the request for the view of the river), but she had no requested rooms available. The desk manager said she would call me to tell me if any requested rooms opened up the next morning. Given the attitude I experienced, I expected that the desk manager would not find an available room, but she did commit to calling me in either event. NEVER got a call or a message on the phone!
The Hotel.com confirmation for the room I rented indicated that the room was 525 square feet. Not a chance that the room I got was anywhere close to 525 square feet. The attached pictures confirm the large discrepancy in size.

But it got worse

I was on the "Executive Level" which is supposed to be Riverside's premium rooms in the new building. The room I had was not remotely premium - although I did pay the price for premium - over $215 a night, even with the Hotels.com discount. For that price, you expect great service in a quality establishment. Instead, I RECEIVED THE WORST HOTEL EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE. Starting with a room that felt old and worn and a sense that the hotel has lost pride in itself.... then it got worse.
1) On the first night, the hotel placed me in between four rooms whose occupants were having a drunken bachelor party all night. After being woken up twice, I went to the loud party room next door knocked on the door and asked them if they would quiet it down - I was trying to sleep in the room next door. That worked for about 2 hours before things started up again.  There were high pitched screams (ever come out of a deep sleep because of a high pitched scream? - really rattles you - first thought is "who is dying?") and shouts in the hallway, repeated slammed doors, loud music. I called the front desk and it rang for about 3 minutes with no one picking up - I gave up. Did not get much sleep that first night. Luckily they checked out the next morning. Every conversation in the hallway comes right into your room - and at 62 I have hearing issues. I pity the folks with better hearing.
2) When I went out on my balcony, I had a wonderful view of the roof of the main hotel building and a 12 story wall - in lieu of the river I had hoped to see. I looked two stories down to a terrace that looked a mess. See the two attached pictures.
3) The room door constantly stuck when you tried to open or close it. I had to throw my body against the door to get it open. There was no TV remote in the room. The safe in the room did not work. No power. The confirmation and the hotel information notebook both say the room has a mini-bar. There was just the empty, unplugged small frig. in a cabinet, and I could not pull the cabinet off the wall far enough to plug it in. See the picture. My sink would not drain. There was an odd musty, mildly nauseous smell in the room that I could never identify.
4) On Monday, my last full day at the Riverside, I called the front desk around 8:45AM and asked that my room be cleaned before 10:00AM - and  that I was gong for a walk until 10:00. I told the desk attendant I needed to spend most of the day working in my room. She said she would immediately send someone to the room. When I came back at 10:00, the room had not been cleaned and there was no sign of a maid. I called the front desk and she said she would call housekeeping to get the room cleaned. When I asked about why the room had not been cleaned as she and I had previously discussed, she said, she just passes on the request and that it was not her responsibility to make sure the staff followed through.  "Not my personal responsibility" seems to be a mantra for this place.
5) And then to top off the amazing experience at Riverside, theydid not indicate that the hotel was remodeling the two floors above my room. I was driven out by the pounding, scrapping and other sounds from above the room.

30/09/14 | Link | Rating: 1.0
43. Ting Z.
True, it is convenient and close to night life. however, This place disgusts me. There is dust everywhere in the bath room - I wish I could load a picture in my comment, but to give you an idea, the ivory soap tray and toilet paper holder literally show dark grey spots of dust on top of them. And... HAIR!

Even better, when I finally decide to ignore it and go to bed, I saw - large holes in the sheet!! Not one, but two!!

I would never spend a night here ever again in the future. For a place costing over 100 a night that is not even close to the beach, cleanness is nothing you should have to comprise on.

17/08/13 | Link | Rating: 1.0
44. Bill Y.
The Riverside Hotel sadly lacks the great service and attention to detail that once made it the most pleasant off-beach location in Ft Lauderdale. Standards seem to be missing, and training and supervision absent. Your experience now depends solely on the employees you are fortunate or unfortunate to encounter.
The front desk clerks display either total indifference or a willingness to bend over backwards to make you feel welcome and meet your needs. Ditto the bellhop and parking attendants.
The maids are helpful and try hard, but twice our room was left off the cleaning list and only once did one insist on cleaning it before leaving for the day. (A desk clerk offered to prevent a recurrence by 'emailing everyone'...saying 'that's what it takes to make sure anything gets done.)
The restaurant hostess is seldom on station and the same food comes plated differently each day. Once the scrambled eggs were served on a tiny desert plate.
While negotiating for help from the front desk I was asked by an important looking woman if we were enjoying our stay and said "I'm not sure, I'll tell you in a few minutes." "That's great" she said and waked away. I asked "who's that?" and was told, "oh, she's in sales."
Sad to see another grand hotel falling apart. Maybe competition from the new beach hotels is just too great or, maybe someone's just not paying attention. I suspect the latter.

06/01/15 | Link | Rating: 3.0
45. Lama B.
I really enjoyed my stay at this hotel with Sora and Eli.  It was really comfortable, it was clean, it was safe, and it was well located.  We were not too far from the beach, or too far from the area where all the fun bars are.  
The elevators worked, the rooms were big and cool, and they were very clean.  
I think that I don't have very high expectations of hotels in FLL, but after staying at the Riverside-hey they may hold up to the best.

05/04/13 | Link | Rating: 4.0
46. Geoff And Jenni G.
We stay here every year. You can't get a better location for great restaurants - right on Las Olas Boulevard...

The staff are super friendly and polite and are always very welcoming...

We recommend paying for an upgrade to the towers; the rooms are significantly better than the standard rooms.

One thing we don't like is the $10 charge a day for a fridge in the room; a hotel of this calibre should provide this services for free (especially as we stay every year at this hotel!)...

11/03/14 | Link | Rating: 4.0
47. Mike C.
I stayed in this hotel 2 nights about a week ago. The staff was rude, the TV wouldn't work long enough to finish 1 show without cutting out. I have been dealing with false charges on my credit card for 5 days with NO help from the managment at all. I would
rather seep in my car than give these people $200 a night. I WILL NEVER RETURN TO THIS SAD EXCUSE FOR A HOTEL.

19/11/14 | Link | Rating: 1.0
48. Mica S.
Very lovely rooms. Quaint reminds me of an old house. Large closets for clothes. Very friendly staff.  We didn't mind paying for valet parking. It's 27.50 a night.  Would definitely stay again.

23/11/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0
49. Sheri J.
I found a little jewel in Fort Lauderdale!  I needed a place to stay over 1 night while I was traveling back to Texas.  Luckily, I found the Riverside Hotel.  The concierge was amazing and had me going down the canals in no time.  There are renovations going on but I was so charmed by the facility that those details were barely noticeable.  The Hotel had multiple restaurants to choose from.  It is also located in the heart of the Los Olas district in Fort Lauderdale.  If you love history, this is the place for you.

19/08/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0
50. Hannah C.
I stayed here for one night last week while I was in town for work. I got a Hotwire "Hot Rate" on this hotel so I booked it blindly and paid $141 total with taxes and fees, which wasn't bad for the area.  The room seemed a little dated, but was clean enough. I ordered room service for dinner - had the Cobb salad with Chicken and also ordered the soup of the day (which they brought without a spoon).

I didn't have a terrible experience but next time, I'd rather pay up for a more comfortable room at a nicer hotel.

01/04/14 | Link | Rating: 3.0
51. Marko E.
I love this place. As a recruiter, I come here often to meet both clients and candidates in a very centrally located environment. Breakfast is 100% perfect. Staff is very attentive, they remember how you like things, and will always make sure that you're well taken care of while you're there. Additionally, you can sit inside, or outside right on Las Olas Boulevard. Parking is very easy and reasonably priced as well, and if needed you can park in the lot right behind the hotel and sit in the private living room area just inside the garden. The Riverside Hotel is highly, highly rated in my book. Oh and one more thing, the bathrooms are always impeccable, there's a hook for your  jacket (men's room) and always clean and well maintained.

21/02/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0
52. Leilani D.
A group of my girlfriends and I recently stayed here for one of our best friends birthdays/art opening. It ended up being a pretty solid choice.

We chose this hotel because of the proximity to Las Olas Riverfront. We wanted to be able to walk to all the bars on Las Olas Riverfront which we did that night. If you're looking for a party hotel this is it. We saw several people checking in that had the same idea - lots of bachelorette parties, birthdays, etc. Repeat: this is not a relaxing hotel - or probably a good place for families. If you take your family here you shouldn't be surprised if you see a lot of drunk people hanging about. You've been warned.

The staff was incredibly friendly when we arrived and offered us a complimentary room upgrade to a nicer tower room with a riverfront view. The room was very spacious, nicely updated, and clean. The view was great too.

The one odd thing was that the pool was located sort of across the street? I guess real estate is at a premium here and they couldn't build one into the hotel.

Honestly for the price we paid (under $150/night) you can't get anything better in terms of rooms and location in Ft. Lauderdale if you're looking to party.

05/08/13 | Link | Rating: 4.0
53. Glen T.
You can't find a better location in all of Fort Lauderdale. This hotel is in the middle of all the hot nightlife, restaurants, and shops and is a five-minute cab ride to the beach. You can also take the free trolley or the scenic Water Taxi.

The restaurant has great eats right on Las Olas for a reasonable price. The service is fantastic. They have live music outdoors at night and during Sunday brunch with dancers nearly spilling out into the street. The bar is a great, tranquil setting to take in a game, and Ryan, the bartender is a great stand-up guy who knows his stuff and provides amazing service.

The hotel is pet-friendly and has a Canines and Cocktails happy hour every Sunday night at 5:30 PM.

03/09/14 | Link | Rating: 4.0
54. Kelly H.
Lovely location! We arrived late last night (midnight thirty) and felt like the staff thought it no big deal. An off the clock employee helped us out when we were tired and circling the block trying to find out where to stop the car. By the way, it's around the back. We parked and immediately another employee, who was obviously on a smoke break, asked how we were and what we needed. Even though a sign said valet parking needed to be found inside, he helped us out immediately.
Spacious room, nice view, and extra pillows in the closet.

03/07/14 | Link | Rating: 4.0
55. Brett V.
Location is the best if you want to be downtown.   Staff was great.  Ya it prob could use a facelift but still a solid hotel.   Pool is very private overlooking the river.  Plenty of shopping nearby.

Corporate Pilot

24/07/14 | Link | Rating: 4.0
56. David Z.
My client today had to leave very early in the morning to attend a funeral for a friend since childhood. He had to make sure his son was picked up and taken to school early this morning. I knew he had no time to eat anything and wouldn't have a chance until lunch, I went o a couple of bakery's to put together a breakfast basket of muffins and croissants. However the bakery's I went to didn't first open up until after 07:00. With wheels up at 07:15 and 50 miles away I knew that would never work. So I went to the Riverside Hotel and spoke with the Food and Beverage manager Ken Williams and explained my predicament. Without a doubt in my mind Ken came up with a solution. A beautiful basket with muffins and croissants and the chefs own jam was created. I want to thank Ken and The Riverside Hotel for doing a great job.

08/10/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0
57. David P.
Stayed here after our cruise. Hotel is old but location is excellent.. My friend book us here .. I would never pay more than 100$ to stay here.. Staff is rude,  especially Ryan the bar tender.. He was just simply rude n has NO idea of how to talk to  guests..my friend was attempting to play on the piano n this dude actually yell across the lobby wagging his fingers at us like we were a child. Really?  You forget who help pay your salary sir.. It's guests like me.. Certainly not a 3-4 star establishment like they claim. Terry at front desk was wonderful however.. We moved to the Renaissance the next day.. Avoid this place if you expect service.. Book it if you want location n willing to pay..

01/12/14 | Link | Rating: 2.0
58. Ari M.
Would leave a 2 or 1 if they didn't let me check in early. Parking is 20 to 30,  dnd sign doesn't mean anything, and key stopped working and I the phone rang for 3 minutes before someone answered then they transferred me to my own room and when I called again right after it too 3 minutes to get the same guy. Waiting in hallway for them to come up with working key.

20/04/15 | Link | Rating: 3.0
59. Capt. Shawn M.
My wife and I spent our 20 year anniversary here. The room was very clean and the service was excellent. There are plenty of restaurants to choose from on Las Olas  but we enjoyed the one's in the Hotel. I would highly recommend a stay at the Riverside Hotel when you are in the Ft Lauderdale area.

19/11/14 | Link | Rating: 5.0
60. Maureen L.
Spent 2 days here. Valet guys were amazing - everything else pretty blah. We never had our room cleaned although we were out pretty much all day. Electronic keys were not working for the first day so we had to rely on someone letting us in our room each time. Restaurants in hotel food very average, service about the same. Batman in lobby bar was great. Second day for breakfast credit card machine was not working. Windows on our 11th floor room were dirty (I know it must be hard to keep clean - but for the $780 we spent on room fees and charges ...!!!) Very disappointed with this as my expectations were much higher. Beautiful area and great place to walk around.

10/03/15 | Link | Rating: 2.0
61. Ilse S.
Cute hotel in a centric location. Room was very clean, they could offer more options for pillows as they were all the same and too hard for me. everyone was very friendly.

26/04/15 | Link | Rating: 3.0
62. Moe P.
Chillin in the lobby so xant rate 4-5 for lodging.  This lobby feels so classic.  Fireplace was great for the weather drop chil outside.  Piano guy playing smooth classics is so relaxing.

In the heart of las olas & feet away from sandy beach

07/03/15 | Link | Rating: 3.0
63. Amanda B.
My birthday weekend crept up on me and I was left scrambling for last minute reservations. I have lived in South Florida for most of my life and like many of us have attended an event or two at this historic hotel. However, I never stayed there as a guest.

It was heaven. My one night stay was perfect from the moment I arrived. I was given a generous upgrade by the lovely Terri and Gigi at the concierge desk. The greeting, the hotel decor, the balcony over looking Las Olas... Simply put, magical.

I can't wait to go back.

26/01/15 | Link | Rating: 5.0