TS Bonnie Is A Bust For Key West

It’s another beautiful day here in Key West. 

We are officially under a tropical storm warning for “Bonnie”, but there is nothing going on in our corner of the earth as of 10am EDT Friday July 23.  Last night on my drive home to Big Pine Key, I spotted a Miami Channel 4 satellite truck headed down to Key West.  Those Miami reporters love to stand on Duval Street with their rain slickers on and tell the world how Key West is bracing for another tropical event….  I guess they made the trip for nothing this time.  On my commute back into Key West this morning I passed the Channel 4 truck again… on their way home to Miami where the “storm” actually went.

Bonnie looks like a quick rain event for Miami at worst.  It’s already inland over Miami this morning and is moving fast to the northwest.  It will be past Florida and into the Gulf of Mexico by this afternoon.  In Key West we’re getting nothing but our usual beautiful, balmy breezes!


Reporting from Key Lime Inn, 725 Truman Ave, Key West.

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This Is The Way To Celebrate The 4th Of July!

I have to say that it is really beautiful here today and the forecast for this 4th of July weekend will be perfect!  Great celebrations all around.

Here is a new video which shows the current underwater conditions for swimming, snorkeling, diving and fishing off our island waters. Last week, some divers were swimming with the turtles.

VIDEO OF THE WEEK | This is the Underwater World of the Florida Keys!

This Sunday marks July 4th 2010, and what a day it should be! Hopefully even after your relaxing days on the water, you will still be left with a sliver of energy to enjoy the festivities the fourth should bring: great friends, good food, and of course, a smokin’ fireworks show come nighttime.  Once again the Key West Rotary Club will be providing a dazzling fireworks display from the White Street Pier on the south side of the island, over the Atlantic Ocean.  They usually begin shortly after sunset.

Bring your blanket and we’ll see you there!

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Royal Poinciana's and Beautiful, Blue Water in Key West This Week

We love when the Royal Poinciana’s are in bloom here at Chelsea House as the sun shines through the vibrant orange flowers and lands on the orange carpet below. Here are some of the trees that are adding such beautiful color to three of Chelsea House’s historic buildings and around the parking lot area.

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Our beautiful Florida Keys have not been impacted by the Gulf  Oil spill. The beaches are warm, the water is refreshing and perfect for a plunge, fishing is terrific, jet ski’s are flying and drinks are flowing!

Here is a video that was filmed June 12 – 13 which gives you a current view of  the area. Check it out here Key West is Still Your Favorite Vacation Place.

One of our favorite things to do is sail around our island waters.

Here is a wonderful description about a full-moon sail written by our favorite poet, Vicki, who is in the reservations department at Key Lime Inn.

” Full Moons inspire all sorts of activities in Key West. Duval Street Galleries host wine tastings and art openings, couples stroll the beaches hand in hand, and the kayaker’s don headlamps and paddle into the night, but this April full moon brought about a special treat. For this month’s full moon, Adirondack II, a gorgeous sailing schooner from Manhattan, hosted a full moon sail that departed from the Historic Seaport. As we set sail from this fascinating historic area of the island, the amber light of the moon was parting a patch of thin high clouds rising over the ocean. The crew and captain took this time to introduce us to the boat and its safety and convenience features, such as fully flushing heads, life jackets, and beer coolers. Throughout the sail the crew carefully attended each guest’s needs, providing a variety of cold refreshing beverages; including beer, wine and champagne. Despite a bit of ambient light from the shoreline, the captain provided a brief and interesting astronomy lesson, identifying the visible constellations and stars. Guests on board were able to view the planet Venus, the belt of Orion, the Big and Little Dippers and the Dog Star.

Rounding the jetty at the outer edge of the Historic Seaport, the wind picked up enough for the captain to cut the engine and have the crew hoist the sails. The Adirondack II cruised peacefully through the Gulf heading for the South Eastern tip of island toward Fort Zachary. For over an hour, the calm breezes of the Gulf eased our double-mast vessel through the night over smooth, glass-like waters. The lights of Mallory Square signaled our return to the civilized side of Paradise, and as we took the turn into the Seaport’s Harbor the melodies of the outdoor musicians wafted aboard, reminding us that with the night young and the moon full and high, the Key West adventure had only just begun . It was a night well worth howling for!”

We’ll see you soon!

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Got Key West Plans For Summer? Come Fish, Snorkel & Swim.

It’s beach, fishing, swimming and water sports time in Key West! Besides gorgeous island weather, there are many fun things to do in May thru July. Don’t wait to make  your reservations at your favorite HISTORIC KEY WEST INN. For a limited time, we are offering our “Stay Longer – Get More” special, available at all five hotels thru July. Earn discounts and freebies for each additional night of your stay. Make your reservations today!

Florida Flats and Backcountry Fishing

Our favorite fishing guide, Captain Lenny Moffo, can get you on Snook, Redfish, Tarpon, Cobia, Bonefish, Seatrout and Permit just off our shoreline. Experience sight-fishing from a skiff while you are being poled across the flats.

You can also fish from the shoreline, by wading out on the flats like the anglers pictured here.

Here are a couple of upcoming tournaments:

Annual Ladies Tarpon Tournament

May 22nd -23rd

Women compete in this all-release tournament to catch tarpon in one of the longest-running tournaments in the Keys. Contact Donna Vankirk at 305-289-2248

Key West Gator Club Dolphin Derby

June 25th – 27th

Anglers compete to catch dolphin fish, a plentiful summertime treat off the Keys. The derby raises money for college scholarships. Contact: John Stuempfig (305) 304-7674 for more information.

The Beautiful Beaches of Key West

Smathers Beach

A half mile stretch of sandy man-made beach. Restrooms, ample parking, concession stands, chair rentals, bike paths, picnic tables, volleyball nets, and watersports rentals: jet skiiing, parasailing, and windsurfing. On South Roosevelt Boulevard.

Fort Zachary Taylor

An 87 acre State Park with a pre-Civil War Fort. Wonderful sunset views. One of the best beaches in Key West, though a bit rocky. Public restrooms, food/drink kiosk, chair rentals, picnic tables and BBQ’s. There is an admission charge. Entrance through Truman Annex at Southard Street.

Higg’s Beach

Wide, sandy beach with a long wooden pier. Restroom facilities, covered picnic tables, Salute! Restaurant on the beach, playground, chair rentals, rafts and watersports rentals. It’s at the end of Reynold’s Street.

The Florida Keys Are In a National Marine Sanctuary

The protected waters of the Florida Keys are home to the third-largest barrier coral reef in the world and entice millions of visitors each year. Read more about our reefs here National Marine Santuary

Diving and Snorkeling Key West

Inner Reefs3 ft. to 30 ft. depth. The inner coral reefs are great for both snorkelers and scuba divers. These extensive reefs are abundant in coral and marine life, with lots of available light. Bring an underwater camera for some stunning shots.

Outer Reefs35 ft. to 45 ft. depth. The outer bar provides a slightly deeper dive on beautiful coral formations. These reefs offer some of the nicest corals, gorgonians and larger fish found in the Florida Keys.

Wreck Dives off Key West

Joe’s Tug60 to 75 ft. depth. This wreck has been damaged by many hurricanes but is a great dive. Large sections of the wreck are nestled in and around soft and hard corals. It is home to some friendly eels and many inquisitive fish.

The Vandenberg140 ft. depth. This recently sunk, world class wreck is over 520 ft. long and is the second largest artificial reef in the world. It sits 40 ft. below the surface, making it accessible to divers of all levels. Explore the unique superstructure, bridge, com-rooms, and crow’s nest with a dive guide.

Visit our site or call 800.549.4430 to make your summer vacation plans today! We’ll see you soon!

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Our Silent Art Auction at This Year's Relay For Life in Key West

We live in paradise, truly, and when there is a fundraising event, like Relay for Life, everyone comes out to support the cause, including members of our own hotel team. This is the third year we have had our own Historic Key West Inns relay team and every year our proceeds donated to the American Cancer Society get bigger and bigger. We’re very proud of that because many of us have felt the sadness and loss that comes with the death of someone we love and have lost to cancer.

This year we had a new team captain, Denice Suriner, our hotel events coordinator at Key Lime Inn. Her artistic interests include drawing and jewelry box making, inspiring her to include a silent art auction this year at our tent. She got donated paintings from several local artists, including one larger piece by Garth Holtkamp, one of our maintenance techs, and another donated by his fiancé Katie Hobbs. Abby Leamard, our Albury Court and Merlin Guesthouse manager was ‘womaning’ our tent, watching over the auctions and talking with the walkers. We all signed up for a walking shift and were able to cover all 24 hours!  Thanks to everyone who sweated out there for a good cause!

When you are planning your Key West wedding, Denice will be be happy to help you organize all the details to make your Key West wedding elegant, yet carefree.  Whether your wedding is large or small, grand or simple, or if you just need accommodations for your guests, she can help you plan an unforgettable event at any of our five unique hotels. You can contact Denice here for further information: denicesuriner@historickeywestinns.com

Here is a testimonial from a recent bride and groom :

“My husband and I had stayed at Lighthouse Court on our first vacation together and had a great time. So when it came time to plan our destination wedding in Key West, we wanted to have our guest stay at Lighthouse Court also. The Group coordinator for the hotels, Denice, was amazing. She helped out with way more than rooms. I bet I called 30 times while planning rooms and she was always very pleasant and eager to help me. When we arrived at the hotel, they helped us get our gift bags to rooms before all the guests got there.  All of the employees asked if there was anything I needed help with.  And you couldn’t pass an employee without hearing a hello; they didn’t make us feel like tourists. More like neighbors. All of our guests loved their rooms and the property. It has a wonderful location, right near Duval St., but away from all the noise. “

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Our Key Lime Inn Fifty Years Ago Today

Here is the pool we added. Are you ready for your afternoon swim!

Here’s a look into our Key Lime Inn fifty years ago today when it was called the Cactus Terrace Motel: you could actually pull your car right up to your room. Since then, we’ve added a pool, landscaping and much, much more.

The Old 'Cactus Terrace Motel', circa 1960

Our current 'Key Lime Inn' with added private cottages and lush landscaping

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Our "Stay Longer–Get More" Special in Key West

Spring is in the air in Key West!
Besides gorgeous island weather, there are many exciting events occurring around town in March and April.  Don’t wait to make  your reservations at your favorite HISTORIC KEY WEST INN.  For a limited time, we are offering our “Stay Longer – Get More” special, available at all five hotels thru May. Earn discounts and freebies for each additional night of your stay. Make reservations now and join us for a memorable vacation.
March 12 – 13th
Tour five elegant and unique homes of Key West. Proceeds help benefit the Old Island Restoration Foundation. Presented by the Old Island Restoration Foundation, this house and garden tour offers a rare opportunity to see inside some of Key West’s magnificent, charming and tropical residences.

Hot Havana Nights at the Botanical Garden

Celebrate Cuba Week finishes with the hottest event of the year, March 13. This annual event has returned to the Garden with the sounds of Havana Soul; enjoy mojitos, authentic Cuban food, original Cuban art, live auction and more. This HOT benefit always sells out so make your reservations early!
Fight Night in the Keys
March 20th
A Key West boxing tradition dating back to Ernest Hemingway’s days on our island with a series of evening bouts in a harborfront ring at Mallory Square. Fight Night in the Keys has seven matches slated, highlighted by a 12-round fight for the WBC international heavyweight title featuring defending champion Odlanier Solis.
April 10 – 11th
Rock and rumble with the U.S. Navy Flight Demonstration team and the Blue Angels, as well as aerial demonstrations by military and civilian performers, and static military and vintage aircraft. Free admission to Naval Air Station.
April 13th – 17th
With a guaranteed top prize of $100,000, the prestigious sailfish challenge draws top teams and benefits the Don Shula Foundation for Breast Cancer Research, Camp Boggy Creek for youngsters with chronic and life-threatening illnesses, and other national and local charities.

April 16th – 25th
It’s the 28th Anniversary of the celebration whose slogan is “We Seceded Where Others Failed.” With activities ranging from wacky bed race to a lighthearted sea battle featuring tall ships, the Conch Republic’s 10-day birthday party showcases the independent and eccentric spirit that characterizes the Florida Keys.
The final concert of the symphony’s twelfth season will feature pianist Christopher Taylor who is back by popular demand to perform the beautiful Prokofiev’s Concerto No 2 for Piano and Orchestra. The symphony will also play the haunting music of Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis and the jubilant Beethoven Symphony No 5.
April 28th – May 2nd
The 15th-annual showcase of musical magic features 100 of America’s foremost performing songwriters, with 30 concerts staged in intimate, audience-friendly island settings.
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Kayaking in Key West. Make Sure to Bring Your Camera.

We’re planning on going kayaking these next months. Our favorite time is sunset when the night herons are wading at the shoreline for their catch and the color of the sky is shifting between the purples, oranges and reds of our Winter nights.   We have great rates now on our beautiful rooms and look forward to your visit with us soon. Come stay with us and head out for an adventure!

Kayaking in our crystal-clear waters

We also like to go snorkeling from a kayak. The waters are so shallow and clear that you will be able to see the fish and coral in brilliant color!

Flats fishing is also excellent from a kayak and they can be rigged easily. Bonefish, Tarpon and Permit are abundant in the flats and backcountry and the water is clear and shallow so that you will be able to see them swimming towards you.

Kayak Fishing in the Keys Backcountry Flats

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Our Superbowl XLIV Party Starts Sunday at 6:00 pm. Come Watch It Here!

Come join us this Sunday February  7, 2010 at the Lighthouse Court Pool Bar for our SUPERBOWL XLIV party where we’ll be watching it on our  52″ flat screen. The bar will be serving 2 for 1 margaritas until Half Time, and happy hour will be extended until 10:30. We’ll also have some free chips and dips for munching. It all kicks off at 6pm !

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All you need is love. All you need is love, love. Love is all you need.

Love on the Beach

Love on the Beach

We agree! Grab your special someone and spend the Valentine’s Day weekend with us here in Key West February 12 -14th

Does anyone have any sweet, funny or silly Valentine’s Day stories they want to share?
One our faves was when Dave and Elena  got engaged at Lighthouse Court. Elena came with her friend Brittany and checked into a cute, private cottage. Brittany said she wanted to go see the pool and told Elena to meet her upstairs by the Hemingway Suite because she wanted to show her the view of the Lighthouse from the porch. Dave was hiding around the corner in the Suite on the front porch. When Elena got to the landing she saw that the door to the Suite was open, candles lit, flowers were arranged and the door was open across the room to the porch. She looked in and thought “it was really beautiful but why did someone leave the doors open?”  When her Navy man stepped through the porch door we could all hear her screams of joy!! Dave proposed and they spent the weekend in the Suite. Oh, she did say yes and they got married eight months later.

We still have some beautiful rooms left. It’s one of our busiest holidays of the year so book your reservations soon!

Also upcoming January 28th at Fort Zachary Taylor is Cuba’s World Renowned Dance Band Los Van Van.

Los Van Van

Los Van Van appearing in Key West Janaury 28th

This band is HOT and will get you off your feet. Tickets are expected to sell out fast! Get them at www.keystix.com

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