Key West Hotels & Motels

by Pamela Wright
Palm-fringed beach in Key West

Palm-fringed beach in Key West

Key West image by Schlegel René from

Visitors to Key West find accommodations including charming guesthouses and inns to full-scale resorts. If you're traveling with kids, consider an all-suite property with extra room and kid-friendly features, like free-form pools and private beaches. Historic hotels, some dating back to the 1800s, are an option, and local, discount motels are available for those on a budget.


Well-known budget chains, like Comfort Inn and Days Inn, sit on the eastern edge of Key West. A handful of modest, value-priced local hotels and motels also exist in the city. The Blue Marlin Motel is a block from Duval Street and has 54 rooms overlooking a center pool and courtyard. Decor is basic, with white walls and light oak furniture, and tile-floor bathrooms. Some rooms have kitchenettes. The small Casa de Luces hotel, within walking distance to the shops and restaurants on Duval Street, is a two-story property with a wrap-around veranda and second-floor porch. Guests settle in the antique Cuban rocking chairs on the porch or gather at one of the two outdoor pool areas. The seven rooms with private entrances and private baths are simply furnished, with white-painted walls and floral bed coverings. A free continental breakfast and free parking are budget-pleasing amenities.


If you're looking for a full-service resort or an upscale hotel, consider one of Key West's posh accommodations. The elegant Marquesa Hotel has won a variety of awards, including being named the No. 1 hotel in Florida by Travel + Leisure magazine in January 2008, and to Conde Nast Traveler magazine's Gold List of World's Best Places to Stay in 2009. The hotel consists of four historic buildings with 27 rooms and suites. Rooms have pastel hues with ceiling fans and marble bathrooms, surrounded by lush gardens. Other amenities include an on-site restaurant, two outdoor swimming pools and a garden patio. The full-service Ocean Key Resort and Spa sits on the Gulf of Mexico, surrounded by water views. The 100 rooms are decorated with bright canary yellow, navy blue, green and turquoise island colors; all have private, marble bathrooms, whirlpool tubs and private balconies. Guests have use of an oceanfront pool and on-site spa. A variety of guided excursions, including snorkeling trips and boat rides, are available at the resort.


The Gardens Hotel, dating back to the 1800s, is on the National Register of Historical Places. The hotel is surrounded by a one-acre botanical garden, boasting plants from around the world, including rare Japanese and Hawaiian orchids. Some 87,000 century-old bricks are used for paths that wind through the plantings. Spanish earthenware rainwater jugs serve as garden sculptures. The hotel has 17 rooms, with private entrances, marble baths, tropical fabrics and mahogany furniture.


Families have plenty of room to stretch out at the modern Santa Maria Suites, located a block from the Atlantic Ocean. Rooms at the all-suite property feature two bedrooms and private balconies or terraces with city or ocean views, separate living and dining areas, and three flat-screen TVs. Rooms are decorated in bright whites, tans and taupes, with marble baths and upscale kitchens, including top-notch refrigerators and wine chillers. The property has two pools and access to a nearby beach with a resort attendant to provide towels and chairs. Families walk to a private beach from the Hyatt Beach Club, nestled on the northeast corner of Key West. The all-suites resort features 74 units with two bedrooms and two baths, fully-equipped kitchens and balconies. Rooms are decorated in nautical blue and white colors, with woven and wicker island-style furniture. Families also enjoy the free-form, lagoon-style pool.

About the Author

Pamela Wright is a freelance writer, author of more than two dozen guidebooks, and hundreds of articles. Her work has appeared in a variety of publications, including "National Geographic Traveler," "Family Circle," "Family Fun," "Backpacker," "Hemispheres," "Cooking Light," "Yankee" and more. An active member of the Society of American Travel Writers, she holds a Bachelor's from Michigan State University

Photo Credits