Just a few blocks from the beach, a boutique oasis awaits at The Kimpton Goodland in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. I recently had the chance to check out this new hotel, which opened on April 14th, 2021, and explore Fort Lauderdale. It was a much-needed escape. Here’s my Kimpton hotel review!
The Kimpton Goodland Review
Except to board a cruise, I’d never spent time in Fort Lauderdale. I was excited to hit the beach and enjoy a Florida vacation at the newly opened The Kimpton Goodland in the North Beach Village neighborhood of Fort Lauderdale. I’ve stayed at Kimptons in Los Angeles, Washington, DC and Denver and always had good experiences. A few things I generally like about the Kimpton brand include their fragrant Atelier Bloem lotions, cozy robes, bikes to rent, wine hour with a free glass of wine and that they are pet-friendly. Each Kimpton hotel pays attention to those fun details that make your stay more friendly, including having yoga mats in the rooms. All of the Kimptons are individually decorated and have specific design themes, like the George Washington themed Hotel George in Washington, DC, another favorite.
The Kimpton Goodland Fort Lauderdale has a mid-century, nostalgic look and is a renovated property with interesting history. It was built in the 1950’s in the art deco style and was one of the first hotels in Broward County that had a pool and tennis court. It was one of seven hotels from the original builder. The modern Kimpton Goodland has a remodeled and revitalized interior, keeping those exterior art deco and 1950’s details. The 1950’s hotel was a social hub, with a bar and live music and dancing. It was a top destination to visit with great food and drinks!
The outside of the building is crisp white with bright blue accents for the doors, surrounded by green grass and with airy interior spaces. If you’re considering COVID, there’s an indoor and outdoor restaurant and bar, outdoor pool and seating area and the hallways to the 96-rooms are open-air, making for a breezy, breathable stay.
I arrived too late on my first day for wine hour, when guests can have a free beverage or two. I did check-in just in time to take some cool 360 photos of my room (I like photography) and to head out by the pool for a margarita. For dinner, I tried the on-site Botanic Restaurant. I started with the arugula and watermelon salad, garnished with cucumber, mint, cojita cheese and pumpkin seeds. For a main course, I had the grass-fed plank steak with maitake mushrooms, chimichurri and French Fries. The fries were a delight, and the steak was very good, as well.
The interior of the restaurant overlooks a courtyard with outdoor seating, a bar, a pool, hammock and pool lounge chairs. The pool area gets some natural shade during the day, depending on the time of day and is a comfortable place to relax. Inside the restaurant, there’s another bar with deep blue walls and retro beach photos to remind one of this hotel’s past. Design elements like a cheetah lamp, sailing artwork and mirrors on the far walls lined with plants and greenery, give the restaurant a funky and fresh feel. It’s spacious, but not cavernous. White and blue colors grant the overall hotel a nautical theme.
My dinner was relaxing and tasty and topped off with a s’more brownie sundae. The most interesting part of the dining experience, though, was hearing conversations from the other guests outside. I wasn’t eavesdropping really, but when a nearby couple asked me about my entrée and if they should order it, we sparked a conversation. They relayed they lived just down the street in Fort Lauderdale. This was not just a place for travelers to rest, but a spot that locals in the area frequent, which means… it’s good!
The next day, I didn’t get up early enough for yoga, offered for free by The Kimpton Goodland, but did get to indulge in tasty Eggs Benedict for breakfast, before setting off for the beach. You can walk to the beach super easily, but also other area shops and restaurants from The Kimpton Goodland. I love being by the ocean, so relished the opportunity for a brief walk and a dip in the sea. The water was rougher than usual on my visit, but super refreshing.
Fort Lauderdale Things to Do
That day, I also decided to do a little sightseeing, taking in the famous Fort Lauderdale canals. Fort Lauderdale has been called the Venice of America, and there are beautiful mega mansions lining the hundreds of miles of canals in the Fort Lauderdale area. There are plenty of beautiful yachts to observe, too.
As a foodie and food hall lover, I also drove over to Sistrunk Marketplace. This newer Fort Lauderdale destination has a variety of dining options and drinking options, as well as a shopping zone called Sistrunk Kollective with all locally made goods. I drooled as I walked around to see vendors making poke, empanadas, Asian inspired desserts, ramen, hot taiyaki and Mediterranean fare. I noticed a few folks having flights of beer, but for my midday snack, I instead opted for key lime pie at Bean & Rose Craft Coffee House.
The Kimpton Goodland Poolside and Rooms
Serendipity seems to hit more and more as I travel or just perhaps because I keep extending my friend network. A friend from New York happened to let me know she was in Fort Lauderdale, so the next day, we met for pool time. We sat outside to catch up and enjoyed wine hour, as well as a whole fried snapper taco kit that came with delicious guacamole, pico de gallo, tropical salsa and plantain crisps. There were a fair number of people enjoying the afternoon pool area, but it wasn’t overly crowded.
My room at The Kimpton Goodland was simply decorated with memorable furniture and accessories, like a vintage bright teal Galanz mini refrigerator, Marshall speaker, a bamboo rug, a beach bag ready with towels and generally lots of white and sun. I slept great on my second night and awoke again for another hearty breakfast by the pool and time at the beach, before making a break for Miami.
I only had two nights at The Kimpton Goodland and could have stayed longer or even done a work-cation from the property (or might in the future : ). For now, I’d say I recommend this newly opened boutique hotel for those looking for a Florida beach escape!
Check out my interview for Insider Travel Report with Nils Bergmann for those interested in learning more about this property.