Visitors to the Florida Keys and Key West have an enhanced range of accommodation options for Autumn/Winter, with intriguing new and reimagined options in the island chain as well as some characterful properties reopening after renovation work.
All-inclusive luxury in Key Largo
The 12-acre luxury inclusive, adults-only 135-unit Bungalows Key Largo is scheduled to reopen on 19 December, 2019, as the Florida Keys’ only all-inclusive resort. Originally opened in December 2018, the property has been closed for renovation since a portion of it was damaged in an early morning fire in May. Bungalows average 800 square feet, with private outdoor plunge pools or tubs, and include cruise bicycles. The resort offers three restaurants, a food truck, two on-site bars and two six-seat floating Tiki boats. A full-service Zen Garden Spa features a Himalayan salt room and eucalyptus steam room. All-inclusive rates include lodging, 24-hour golf cart pickup and drop-off, food, premium beverages, water toys and activities such as morning yoga, cooking and mixology classes, sunset happy hours, fish fries and pig roasts. www.BungalowsKeyLargo.com
Meet a TV star in Marathon
Near Marathon and the Long Key Bridge on Florida Bay, the 10-unit boutique Conch Key Fishing Lodge & Marina, previously the Bayview Inn & Motel, has new owners: former ‘Deadliest Catch’ star Erik James, known as James Brown on the programme, and his mother Sandy Stillwell, owner and operator of an inn on Florida’s west coast. Amenities include a saltwater pool, cafe and convenience store, beach with beach chairs, Tiki hut, barbecue grills, kitchens in most rooms, parking for a vehicle and boat trailer for each unit and a dedicated boat slip and dock for each unit. Boats can be rented on-site and guests can meet James at the resort. www.conchkeyfishinglodge.com
Stay vegan on Big Pine Key
On Big Pine Key the four-room boutique-style Deer Run on the Atlantic, a Florida-certified green lodging programme bed and breakfast, has reopened in the heart of the National Key Deer Refuge. Utilising organically sourced bedding, supplies and food, the property is a 100 per cent plant-based vegan establishment. Guests can enjoy bicycles, kayaks, a daily plant-based full breakfast, an on-site beach and private porches. www.deerrunontheatlantic.com
Eco-camping in the Everglades
Everglades National Park’s Flamingo region, located in the Florida Keys, is to offer 20 new furnished eco-tents for overnight camping for stays beginning on 1 October 2019. The 186-square-foot tents, erected on platforms, have a choice of queen or two double beds. Amenities include bed linens, electricity, a sitting area, a nightstand with lamps and storage bins. Rates range from $60 per night (approximately £48). Campgrounds have grills and picnic tables. Also at Flamingo, Concessionaire Guest Services Inc. offers overnight stays for a maximum of four adults and two children on 42-foot houseboats and boat rentals. Flamingo is about a 40-minute drive from the park’s entrance. www.flamingoeverglades.com
Celebrate an aviation legend in Key West
In Key West IBIS Bay Beach Resort has unveiled a retro-themed, three-bedroom Mile High Suite on the resort’s east side overlooking Florida Bay. It’s designed to pay tribute to holiday aviation pioneered by Pan American Airways, which launched its first flight from Key West to Havana, Cuba, in October 1927. The suite features a fusion of wing-shaped aluminium counters, 1950s-era furniture and a state-of-the-art kitchen. Each bedroom is called a Mile High Club cabin: A, B and C. The suite is priced from $650 per night (approximately £521). www.ibisbayresort.com
For more information on the Florida Keys & Key West, visit www.fla-keys.co.uk.