Florida Keys
Florida Key Palms at Sunset

Mercer House We flew to Miami and drove to Key West, stopping for lunch in Key Largo and for several days in Islamorada.  We were surprised to find the original African Queen (used in the film) docked at the Holiday Inn in Key Largo.

Islamorada and the Chesapeake Resort

Chesapeake Resort Islamorada Chesapeake Resort Islamorada Chesapeake Resort Islamorada
We spent several days at the Chesapeake Resort and liked it so much we stayed several more on our way back.   We had reserved a deluxe room, but it was off season and when they offered us a large discount on a lovely suite with a full kitchen, we were happy to take it.   We loved lying on the beach watching the friendly pelicans, but we wish it hadn't been quite so windy.   Stone crabs had just come into season, and we enjoyed picking some up at a store down the street and taking them back to our suite for lunch or dinner.

Key West

We had reservations at the Reach Resort, and while it seemed very nice, one look at the sun bathers packed chair to chair in the pool area and we knew it wasn't for us.

Gardens Hotel LogoSo we wandered around and were lucky enough to stumble onto the Gardens Hotel.   It used to be the Peggy Mills Garden, begun in 1930, and sprawls over a quarter of a city block.   It had just been converted into a hotel the year we were there (1994), and perhaps for that reason, or maybe because it was off season, we had the place to ourselves!  It was wonderful.  Note: They serve a continental breakfast, but don't have a restaurant.  The day we lounged around the pool, we picked up carryout for lunch.

Gardens Hotel Gardens Hotel Gardens Hotel
Gardens Hotel Gardens Hotel Our room was on the top floor of this building.

Here's what we did in Key West:

Visit Key West Paradise and Clydes Home Page for more information on Key West.