Florida, the “Sunshine State” as it is nicknamed, offers miles of sun-kissed beaches, palm trees galore, and a tropical climate with humidity that had me walking around West Palm Beach with frizzy hair for the entire week I spent there. Since it’s a popular vacation destination, deciding where to stay in Florida is your first priority. From Gainesville in the north right down to Key West, here are five hotels from some of America’s most dependable hotel chains.
Campus at the University of Florida
Flying in to attend someone’s graduation at the University of Florida? Then this is the place to stay, located right on the school’s campus. Hilton University of Florida Conference Center Gainesville has 248 comfortable rooms with cribs, high chairs and a kid’s menu available for families with young children. If you’re in town for the football, you’ll be right near the Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Other nearby attractions are the Florida Museum of Natural History, the Center for Performing Arts, and the Hippodrome.
The Highly Rated Embassy Suites by Hilton Boca Raton
Boca Raton lies halfway between West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale. This hotel is next to I-95 so getting around by car rental is easy. The Embassy Suites Boca Raton offers two-room suites with separate living areas ideally suited to family and business travelers. In 2014 the hotel underwent a revamp and now features a sleek modern lobby with an atrium that adds a dash of greenery and tranquil water. Guests reviews consistently rate this hotel as a great stay and highly recommend the made-to-order breakfast.
The Ideal Location Near Port Everglades
For those spending some time in Fort Lauderdale before catching a cruise from Port Everglades, staying at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Fort Lauderdale 17th Street puts you less than two miles from the port. This environmentally friendly hotel has received a Two Palm rating from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Green Lodging. What makes a stay here special is the lovely landscaped courtyard and pool area lush with plants, palms, a koi pond, and waterfall.
Excellent Resort Hotel on the Marina in Fort Lauderdale
The Hyatt Regency Pier 66 is a more upscale hotel minutes away from Port Everglades and Fort Lauderdale Beach. The location on the marina gives you idyllic waterfront views. There are several resort-like hotels in Fort Lauderdale, and this one is a great choice. Laze in tropical style alongside one of three pools, including a 40-person hydrotherapy pool, or book one of the poolside cabanas. The hotel’s Aquatic Center has a water concierge service that arranges any water activity from boat charters to snorkelling to parasailing.
Lazy Days on the Tropical Island of Key West
Key West is the southernmost point of the United States and lies about halfway between Florida and Cuba. It’s a tropical paradise, bursting with colorful culture and interesting historic buildings. Literary greats like Tennessee Williams, Robert Frost, and Ernest Hemingway all lived here. Best Western Key Ambassador Resort Inn is close to the airport, five minutes from Smathers Beach, and a 15-minute drive to the nightlife of Duval Street and the Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum.
* This post on hotels in Florida is part of Hipmunk’s Boutique Hotels Campaign.