Great Staycation Escapes, Part 9

Plan your summer and fall getaways (with help from Lifestyle) at Florida resorts near and far

Cheeca Lodge & Spa

Address: 81801 Overseas Highway, Islamorada

The allure: An Islamorada mainstay since 1946, this 27-acre private estate continues to enchant travelers with accommodations like its spacious Lodge suites (with open-air balconies and outdoor soaking tubs), its 1,400-square-foot oceanfront Islamorada Suite—and, now, its secluded luxury casitas. The one- and two-bedroom villas (the latter tops out at 2,100 square feet) have large furnished porches, full kitchens, bathrooms with rain showers, and butler service. Customers have access to two family pools, one adults-only lap pool, two tiki bars, three restaurants (award-winning Atlantic’s Edge for steak and seafood; Mia Cucina for Italian cuisine; and Nikai Sushi Bar for Japanese favorites), Camp Cheeca (for kids), a full menu of watersports rentals, a spa with seven treatment rooms, a nine-hole executive golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus, six tennis courts—and the resort’s famed 525-foot-long wooden fishing pier.

Isn’t that special: Florida residents can save up to 10 percent off nightly rates, and 10 percent off all property activities (including restaurants, spa treatments, and water sports).

Contact: 844.489.9664;

Acqualina Resort & Residences on the Beach

Address: 17875 Collins Ave., Sunny Isles Beach

The allure: For the ninth consecutive year, Acqualina has earned a Five Star Hotel designation from Forbes Travel Guide, no surprise given the setting and services associated with the beachfront haven. The resort’s signature deep-red tones and impeccably landscaped grounds play into that aura, but it’s the world-class dining, accommodations and amenities that keep people coming back. Acqualina raised the culinary bar in January with the addition of Japanese fusion standout Ke-uh, which joins the popular Il Mulino New York. On the tranquility front, it doesn’t get much better than Acqualina Spa by Espa, a two-story, 20,000-square-foot sanctuary that complements its roster standard massages, facials, etc., with a variety of innovative treatments.

Isn’t that special: In addition to a 15-percent discount for residents of Florida and Georgia through Oct. 31 (with free valet parking, and a private 90-minute session for kids 5-12 at the AcquaMarine children’s program), as well as a fourth-night-free deal through Dec. 17, Acqualina boasts its share of ultra-luxury offerings unique to the resort. For example, its travel package with Tradewind Aviation combines an Acqualina stay with a private jet experience (valid through Dec. 23).

Contact: 877.312.9742;

  • frank papandrea
    Posted at 18:22h, 29 July Reply

    the Cheeca Lodge & Spa is a great place

  • Jim
    Posted at 19:25h, 06 August Reply

    Cheeca is the best place to stay in the Keys hands down !!!!

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