If you’re headed to Key West, you’re probably wanting to spend a lot of your time on the beach. The tropical climate means warm weather year-round, perfect for surf and sand activities. For easy access to the gorgeous beaches, consider staying at a property directly along the water — you’ll have optimum sunset views and may be able to hear waves crashing from your bedroom. Take a look at our top beach hotel picks in Key West, and start planning your beach getaway!
This 40-room resort caters to the upscale traveler with luxurious, beach-chic cottages and high-end amenities. It is located on Sunset Key, a residential island off Key West, and is affiliated to the Westin Key West, with which it shares some features, such as the fitness center and the restaurants (though only guests of Sunset Key can use the on-site amenities; Westin guests do not have access to them). The hotel itself has wonderful amenities, including a lovely pool, a gorgeous beach with palm trees and clear waters, and a pleasant spa. Its location, though idyllic and exclusive, might be somewhat inconvenient for travelers who want to be close to shops and restaurants (the hotel only has one eatery on-site).
The 311 rooms of the Casa Marina Resort have a light, sophisticated, but still island-y feel, with neutral tones, sheercurtains, and sleek hardwood or tiled floors. The resort also offers great in-room amenities, including free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, and espresso machines. Although bathrooms aren't anything grand (just simple walk-in showers or shower/tub combos), they're clean and sleek. The resort's grounds are beautiful, with palm trees and lush foliage, and lead to a rare amenity in Key West -- a swimmable beach. Although it's too rocky to wade into the water, a longdock extends to sandier bottoms.
The Reach offers respite from rowdy, gaudy Key West with its brand of relaxed sophistication and its beachfront location. Its 150 rooms are what you would expect from the Waldorf Astoria crowd: spacious, modern and clean, with generic high-end furnishings and comfortable beds outfitted in crisp linens. They feel just a tad less upscale than those at the Casa Marina, its sister hotel next door (partly due to the use of carpet, rather than Casa Marina's tile or wood), but the hotel's private white-sand beach with a pier for fishing is just as nice.
The 19-room La Mer Hotel and Dewey House is an upscale, adults-only property built at the turn of the century on South Beach. With its breezy yet elegant style, beachfront dining terrace, and access to a sister hotels' pools, spa, and three bars, this property offers the features of a resort with a bed-and-breakfast atmosphere. Guest rooms are beautifully decorated in a classic style, and have flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, and coffeemakers; some open to balconies. The property serves free breakfast, along with occasional treats like chocolate-covered strawberries, but there's a pesky resort fee and minimum stays are occasionally required.
The Southernmost House is an adult-only property in an historic Victorian home directly on the ocean and just off popular Duval Street. This 18-room, mid-range inn feels sophisticated but laid-back, and has hosted the likes of Hemingway and Capote. Its genteel sitting porches, antique furnishings, and original Tiffany-glass entrance canopy connect visitors with old Key West, while the spacious, individually designed guest rooms offer modern comforts, such as flat-screen TVs and mini-fridges. Free breakfast is served daily, and there's a lovely zero-edge pool overlooking the ocean. Noise from Duval Street can infiltrate some rooms, and service is not always as personalized as some might expect from a bed-and-breakfast.