Hotels in Key West for the Fantasy Fest

by Lisa Fritscher
Fantasy Fest is an annual party in historic Key West.

Fantasy Fest is an annual party in historic Key West.

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Key West, Florida, is well known for its laid-back attitude. Every night the city holds the Sunset Celebration, complete with exhibits, musicians, street performers and tarot readers. On Halloween weekend each year, Key West throws a massive party to rival New Orleans’ Mardi Gras. Fantasy Fest draws thousands of visitors, and hotel rooms book up extremely early. The party takes place all over the city, and buses are readily available. If you're thinking of attending Fantasy Fest, you'll have choices of hotels in all price ranges.

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Deluxe

The Hyatt Key West is a deluxe hotel on the waterfront in historic Old Key West. Many Fantasy Fest activities take place just steps from the hotel. A full-service spa, heated outdoor pool and 24-hour fitness center are among the amenities. Jet skis, scooters and bicycles are available for rent. Sunset cruises, snorkeling trips and yacht charters depart from the hotel. All guestrooms feature flat-screen television with satellite service, wireless Internet access, bathrobes and mini-bar. Hypoallergenic rooms are available with advance notice. The hotel has two on-site restaurants. The Pier House was the first resort on the island, located on a six-acre compound at the end of historic Duval Street. The Pier House offers free parking, a private white sand beach, a full-service spa and a heated outdoor pool. Guestrooms feature wireless Internet access, rain shower heads, refrigerator and balcony or patio; and the hotel has four restaurants and bars.

Moderate

The Crowne Plaza Key West La Concha is on Duval Street just blocks from Mallory Square. The hotel dates to 1926, but has been renovated to provide the latest amenities, including free wireless Internet access, a fitness center and an outdoor pool. A rooftop observation deck provides sweeping views of historic Old Key West. Guestrooms include free newspaper delivery, turn-down service, bathrobes and work desks with enhanced lighting. The La Te Da Hotel was once the private residence of Cuban Revolutionary Jose Marti. Hotel amenities include complimentary cooked-to-order breakfast, an outdoor pool, wireless Internet access and premium bedding. All guestrooms have refrigerators. The hotel houses a full-service restaurant and three bars and runs a cabaret show.

Budget

The Westwinds Inn is a pre-World War II compound in the Seaport district. Nestled in a tropical garden, the hotel offers such amenities as wireless Internet access, an outdoor pool, free extended continental breakfast and a small library. The hotel has a wide range of room configurations suitable for groups of up to four people. There is no on-site restaurant, but the concierge can assist with dining reservations nearby. The El Patio Motel seems lost in time, featuring such original treasures as a Cuban tile floor and jalousie windows. Located just three blocks from Duval Street, El Patio intentionally minimizes its amenities to keep prices low. Rooms are basic but clean and comfortable, with cable TV and small refrigerators. Hotel amenities include an outdoor pool and a rooftop deck.

Special Considerations

Fantasy Fest is a multi-day party, and alcohol plays a major role. Use caution when walking or driving through town. Key West police have zero tolerance for drunk driving, so err on the side of caution. City buses run on an expanded schedule throughout the festival, and Captain Morgan sponsors Safe Ride shuttles on Saturday night. If you are unable to get a hotel room in Key West, consider Marathon, Florida, approximately one hour away. Shuttle buses transport visitors from Marathon to Key West.

About the Author

Lisa Fritscher is a freelance writer specializing in disabled adventure travel. She spent 15 years working for Central Florida theme parks and frequently travels with her disabled father. Fritscher's work can be found in both print and online mediums, including VisualTravelTours.com. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of South Florida.

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