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About Florida Keys
There are around 113 islands making up the famously flat, subtropical arc of the Florida Keys, some of them linked by the equally famous Overseas Highway. Eccentric and eclectic Key West, diving mecca Key Largo and Big Pine Key, which is where the Key Deer reside are probably the best known keys, and where you’ll find many of the best places to stay in the Florida Keys.
There’s so many islands making up the Keys that there’s a huge range of choice when it comes to choosing the best places to stay in the Florida Keys, from romantic, historic B&Bs to big modern hotels and secluded tropical resorts.
Key West - which is just 140kms rom Cuba, has the majority of the key’s official attractions, such as the Ernest Hemingway House and Museum, the Key West Art and History Museum and the Audubon House and Tropical Gardens. And this is also one of the islands with the most unique atmosphere. Firstly the wonderful old Caribbean villas are very evocative, then there’s the bars and arty-cultural atmosphere and of course the island’s natural tropical romance and beauty.
Key Largo is the first key, and the waters between this key and mainland Florida are almost lost in amongst the mangrove forest. This isn’t the most spectacular of the keys at first glance, but dive in - most of this island’s main attractions are below the surface of the water.
Islamorada is a very pretty stretch of keys and where you’l find a number of the luxury resort type hotels.
Marathon is about half way between Key Largo and Key West and is the most developed key, apart from Key West, and where you’ll find some of the best places to stay in the Florida Keys for families.
Then there are the uninhabited islands, often with long stretches of mangrove and empty white beaches with sandbar protected bright blue waters…
Don't forget that if you want to bag a bed in one of the best places to stay in the Floriday Keys during the busy summer months and [eak holiday periods, you'll have to plan ahead and book early.
For Key West
- The Marquesa Hotel is a totally unique property with peaked roofs and charming wooden porches. There are 27 rooms with alluring features like marble baths, hand carved beds and heirloom furnishings. There’s also an elegant seafood restaurant and you’re within five blocks of the Gulf of Mexico, and within walking distance of all the major sights.
- The Artist House is a seven bedroom B&B in a historic Victorian mansion in the heart of Key West. The rooms have wonderful original features and breakfast is served on the front porch or in the garden.
- Santa Maria Suites is a luxury resort in a brilliant central location, offering stylish accommodation, two outdoor pools and a sophisticated Japanese restaurant.
For Key Largo
- The Coconut Palm Inn is a secluded hotel with just 17 rooms and its own private marina, pool and beach access. The decor is laid back yet elegant and there’s plenty of nice extras, like paddle boards, fishing rods, bikes and kayaks on offer, and a fire pit barbecue.
- The Paradise Inn on Key West is an adults only B&B with just 18 exquisitely simple rooms, an outdoor jacuzzi, a fountain fed pool and a complimentary wine and cheese hour as well as the breakfast.
- If it’s a special occasion you might consider Little Palm Island, a tropical beach resort with its own private marina, spa, beach and the option to arrange private dining on the beach or on the porch of your own bungalow.
- The Tranquility Bay Resort is a collection of two and three bed beach houses set on the pristine white beaches of Marathon. As well as direct beach access there are also three pools, a beach bar, restaurant and loads of activities laid on, including kids diving lessons.
- Casa Morada is another serene beachside retreat with 16 elegant rooms surrounded by lush gardens. Guests have access to the hotel’s private beach as well as the pool with its beach bar.
- The Cheeca Lodge is a large hotel surrounded by 27 acres of gardens, beside its own one mile stretch of private beach. This is a spa resort with benefits, including a private fishing pier, watersports equipment, a tiki bar and a seafood restaurant.
- The Moorings Village and Spa is a collection of 18 private villas nestled amongst the gardens of what was once a coconut plantation. The interiors are beautiful and you’re along your own private stretch of white sandy beach.
- Hawks Cay Resort is great for all ages and offers a private beach, jet skiing, snorkelling etc. Plus there's three onsite restaurants and a wide range of accommodation.
Still not sure which is the best place to stay in the Florida Keys for you?
Best Hotels in Florida Keys
The Artist House 7 rooms from $145Key West, Florida Keys
An historical bed & breakfast in downtown Key West housed in a restored Victorian mansion with a turret. High-ceilinged rooms retain original character with ornate woodwork and well-appointed furnishings. Complimentary breakfast can be enjoyed in the garden or the front porch. Private outdoor pool.Sights nearby - 1.6km from the Ernest Hemingway Museum; Key West Museum of Art and History is 7 minutes’ walk from the propertyLively area - 3 minutes walk from iconic Duval StreetRestrictions on children - Children older than 5 years are welcomeFull of character
Coconut Palm Inn 17 rooms from $189Key Largo, Florida Keys
Secluded seaside hotel with private marina, pool and beach access. Charming rooms with light walls, dark wood furniture and nature-inspired art summon up a laid-back elegance. Bicycles, kayaks, paddle boards and fishing poles included. Guests can grill their dinner on the fire pit barbeque outside.Kayaking - Groups and individuals can enjoy kayaking around the shallow waters of the island and explore using the hotel's own kayaks.Diving - Scuba diving opens up a world of shimmering tropical fish, strange sea creatures and a stunning underwater landscape.Fishing - Bonefish, redfish, snook and trout, and yellowtail snapper populate the waters around Key Largo.On the beach - The hotel offers guests private access to the beach.
Tranquility Bay Resort 87 rooms from $195Marathon, Florida Keys
Fully-equipped 2 and 3 bed beach-houses set on pristine white sands overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. Soothing pastel tones complement light woods and wicker accents. Three swimming pools, beach-side bar, international restaurant, and the chance to enjoy a range of activities, from golf to kayaking.Families - With the opportunity to rent houses, rather than rooms, families can easily be accommodated.Fishing - Fishing charters organised by the concierge service (fish the flats, hit the reef, maybe a wreck, or go offshore)Kids Club - There are age-graded activities for children, including diving lessons, snorkelling and scuba classes.Swimming Pool - Three tropical outdoor swimming pools
Marquesa Hotel 27 rooms from $210Key West, Florida Keys
Historic property in bustling Key West, with whimsical peaked roofs, gingerbread trim and wooden porches. Rooms have marble baths, hand-carved beds and heirloom furnishings. The elegant restaurant "Cafe Marquesa" serves imaginative Neo-American cuisine with an Asian twist and excellent seafood.Sights nearby - Five blocks from the Gulf of Mexico and within walking distance of the main tourist sights and museumsLively area - Downtown Key West just a block from the main thoroughfare, Duval StreetRestrictions on children - No children under 14 allowedSwimming Pool - OutdoorRecommended by - Tablet
Cheeca Lodge 214 rooms from $230Islamorada, Florida Keys
Resting in 27 acres of garden along a one-mile private beach, this spa resort offers Atlantic views and a wide range of activities. Rooms are bright and well equipped, the restaurant specialises in seafood and The Tiki Bar overlooks the ocean and pool. Relax at the spa or tone up.Fishing - A private fishing 525-foot pier is the perfect spot for guests to try a hand at fishing in the Atlantic Ocean.Sights nearby - Miami Seaquarium is a great day trip for all the family.Kayaking - Kayaks are readily avalaible in the saltwater lagoon.Full of character
Casa Morada 16 rooms from $309Florida Keys
Serene beachside retreat. Utter comfort, elegant rooms, indulgent accents. Carefully tended grounds include lush gardens, private island and beach access. Swim with dolphins, go snorkelling, recline in a hammock, lounge by the year-round outdoor pool, or enjoy a drink at the beachside bar.Views - Some rooms have views of the sea or gardens.On the beach - The hotel has its own private beach areaRestrictions on children - No children under the age of 16Sights nearby - Theatre of the Sea is nearbyRecommended by - I Escape, Tablet, Mr & Mrs Smith
Hawks Cay Resort 420 rooms from $315Marathon, Florida Keys
Tropical resort and spa on a sheltered bay with aquamarine waters and private beach. Go jet skiing, snorkelling, fishing, or swimming with dolphins. Interiors feature comfortable heritage-style furniture. Dine on Latin, Mediterranean or American cuisine in one of the three on-site restaurants.Swimming Pool - There are five swimming pools on the resort.Kids Club - Babysitting availableViews - Great views from hotelSeaside - Ideal for a seaside holiday.
The Paradise Inn 18 rooms from $319Key West, Florida Keys
A tranquil adults-only bed and breakfast with outdoor jacuzzi and fountain fed pool. The exquisitely simple rooms, painted in calming whites and nudes, are flooded with natural light and furnished with an eye for Floridian refinement. Breakfast and wine and cheese happy hour are included.Diving - It is possible to go scuba diving in the waters surrounding the island.Sailing - Go for a sunset sail on the ocean.Restrictions on children - No children under the age of 18Swimming Pool - Outdoor pool
The Moorings Village and Spa from $359Florida Keys
Eighteen private villas nestled among the lush tropical gardens of a former coconut plantation. Beautifully furnished interiors have views onto the garden, outdoor pool or ocean and come fully equipped with kitchens, flat screen TVs and other necessities. Activities such as kayaking can be arranged.On the beach - Private beach access to 1,100 ft. of natural white sand beach.Views - Pool, garden and ocean views.Swimming Pool - 25 meter heated lap poolSecluded setting - For escaping.
Santa Maria Suites Resort from $529Key West, Florida Keys
Downtown Key West resort with tropical palm-fringed gardens surrounding two heated outdoor pools. Carefully appointed suites are bright and airy, have private balconies and feature fully equipped kitchens to cook for family and friends. Alternatively, dine in the sophisticated Japanese restaurant.Sights nearby - Ten minutes' walk from the Ernest Hemingway house.Swimming Pool - Two outdoor heated poolsSeaside - Ideal for a seaside holiday.On the beach - In front of the hotel.Recommended by - Small Luxury Hotels
Little Palm Island 28 rooms from $890Florida Keys
This tropical resort with beach, salon, spa, private marina, yoga and outdoor pool is the ultimate in beachside romance. Dine in the dining room or request a more intimate affair on the beach or in your bungalow. Swim with dolphins, learn to scuba dive, or simply watch the sunset from your porch.Weddings - The island and resort is a magical location for an elegant and enchanting destination weddingRomantic - Seriously romantic with muslin draped beds, roll top bath tubs and glorious ocean viewsDiving - Looe Key Reef Dive Center is 2.1 km from the resort.Remote - The resort can only be reached by seaplane or boatRecommended by - Tablet