If you dream of a Florida vacation with your toes in the sand, relaxing at a gorgeous resort, you’ll have plenty of options.
The Sunshine State offers over 1,300 miles of coastline to explore. Additionally, there are watersports, historical sites, golf courses, shopping areas, gardens, zoos, aquariums, state parks, theme parks, and fabulous nightlife opportunities. There’s something for every member of the family to enjoy.
With many cities to visit, you’ll find it hard to choose the best places to stay. The following is a list of properties in some of the state’s top destinations, offering incredible amenities. Pick one, unpack, and unwind.
1. Henderson Beach Resort
Henderson Beach Resort sits on the sugar sand beaches of the Gulf of Mexico, known as the Emerald Coast, in northwestern Florida.
The Henderson looks like a coastal manor set against a breathtaking setting. It’s perfect for stays in guest rooms or vacation home rentals. It’s located beachfront with three sparkling pools and a lazy river. There are five signature dining venues, a kids club, lawn games, a fitness center, classes, a 10,000-square-foot spa, and equipment rentals for land and water. The town of Destin has fabulous shopping, world-class golf, art, and entertainment minutes away.
The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island has an idyllic setting on a barrier island spanning 13 miles of pristine Atlantic coastline.
The luxurious resort offers seven dining and cocktail venues and 446 guest rooms and suites, renovated to reflect modern coastal charm. Guests can play golf or tennis, swim in two refreshing pools, take surf or paddle lessons, and explore the island by boat or kayak. Afterward, relax at the spa or beach. The Victorian village has museums, nature paths, and historical places to discover. It’s the only U.S. city previously under the flag of eight different nations — the Isle of 8 Flags.
3. The Collector Luxury Inn & Gardens
The Collector Luxury Inn & Gardens is an adults-only (16+) hotel across an entire block in historic St. Augustine. It was named one of the top 5 Best Resorts in Florida by Travel + Leisure.
The Collector spans nine historic buildings from the 18th century, a mix of contemporary, luxury, and old-fashioned charm. The 30 rooms have unique furnishings and details, with a daily European continental breakfast and bespoke activities — art and history talks, watercolor painting, or town-walking tours. The location puts you in strolling (or cycling) distance for all St. Augustine has to offer. The heated pool, lawn games, and daily happy hour make this a delightful stay.
4. JW Marriot Orlando, Grande Lakes/The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes
The JW Marriot Orlando, Grande Lakes and its sister property — The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes — share 500 acres at the Headwaters of the Florida Everglades. Both offer luxurious amenities for guests to experience at either resort.
You are 20 minutes from all the incredible Orlando attractions, but you might opt to stay put. Dining options are diverse and plentiful. The JW Marriot opened the Grande Lakes Water Park featuring a quarter-mile lazy river and Headwaters Slide Tower including three waterslides; or enjoy spa treatments, a Greg Norman championship golf course, world-class pools with deluxe cabanas, and a gourmet restaurant with produce plucked from the onsite farm at the Ritz-Carlton. There are many outdoor adventures, including eco-tours, fishing, and birding.
5. The Alfond Inn
The Alfond Inn is a 15-minute drive from downtown Orlando and within walking distance from Winter Park, an artsy city with restaurants, shops, and museums. The hotel is completing a renovation and refresh of existing spaces by the original architect — a seamless addition to a stunning boutique property.
Art lovers will adore The Alfond. The hotel lobby features artwork from the Alfond Collection of Contemporary Art at Rollins College. The college is only a 3-minute stroll from the Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Garden. Hamilton’s Kitchen serves southern favorites for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. The renovation added a second pool and spa for guests. It’s a pet-friendly place with many amenities for your pup as well.
6. The Don CeSar
St. Pete Beach
The Don CeSar is a glamorous icon on the gulf coast of central Florida. The fascinating history (circa 1928) makes it worth a visit, but the luxurious accommodations, restaurants, and amenities will keep you entertained.
The “Pink Palace,” named for its blush color, is the crown jewel on St. Pete beach, where white sugar sand, teal water, and orange-pink sunsets are enjoyed from this legendary resort. The property-wide renovation of 241 guest rooms, 36 suites, and the Bayside Penthouse on the hotel’s top two floors is breathtaking. Pets are welcome and larger groups requiring more space can stay a half-mile away at the Beach House Suites. Two heated outdoor pools, the all-new Beacon Pool Bar, and the 11,000-square-foot Spa Oceana offer the relaxation you crave. At the same time, bicycle and water-sport rentals provide thrills. The museums, shopping, and dining nearby are world-class. The Don CeSar is a perfect resort for a romantic getaway.
7. The Resort At Longboat Key Club
Long Boat Key
The Resort At Longboat Key Club provides relaxed luxury along 410 stunning acres on the secluded barrier island known as Longboat Key. This is the epitome of a toes-in-the-sand vacation. But if you long for more, the exciting city of Sarasota and its art galleries, museums, and nightlife are only 20 minutes away.
Voted one of the best tennis resorts in the United States, you’ll also enjoy golf, five unique dining experiences, a full-service spa, fitness classes, and a refreshing pool. The newly renovated rooms are modern with coastal touches perfect for a romantic, family, or friends’ getaway. Activities beyond the resort include incredible fishing, kayaking, or stand-up paddleboard tours, and wildlife adventures at Sarasota Jungle Gardens, Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium, and Marie Selby Botanical Garden. This location is fabulous for walks on the pristine white sand and gulf coast sunset views.
8. White Elephant
The White Elephant is a renovated resort that resembles a stately Palm Beach home. The 1920s-era Mediterranean-revival property features 13 deluxe rooms and 19 suites, including two penthouse suites (one award-winning) on the fourth floor. A rotating art gallery offers beauty and style in public spaces.
The White Elephant and its sister property in Nantucket are known for coastal charm and outstanding hospitality. Lola 41 Restaurant serves coastal cuisine for brunch, lunch, or dinner. A pre-arrival concierge connects guests with dinner reservations, tours, airport pick-ups, and car rentals. A chic pool with complimentary treats and a fitness center on the property help work off the afternoon wine and cheese and daily ice cream cart’s arrival at 3 p.m. The beach van is ready to whisk you to the sand — complimentary chairs, umbrellas, towels, and water are there to greet you. Complimentary bicycles or the WE Courtesy car are available to drop guests at Worth Avenue, museums, and shops.
9. Acqualina Resort & Residences
North Miami Beach
Acqualina Resort & Residences in Sunny Isles Beach is a stunning Mediterranean villa-style resort set on 4.5 acres of beachfront facing the Atlantic Ocean. The resort won numerous awards and was named The Best Luxury Beach Front Hotel In the Continental U.S. by Tripadvisor.
Enjoy the award-winning 20,000-square-foot spa, golf, watersports, and all of Miami’s art and culture. All 98 guest rooms and suites offer ocean-facing balconies. Oversized rooms decorated with classic, modern luxury are outfitted with an iPad to curate your stay. Make dinner reservations at any of the four fine-dining destinations — Costa Grill, Il Mulino, Ke-Uh, or the newest addition, Avra Miami serving Greek seafood. Reserve a cabana by one of the three incredible pools and living room lawn seating, or set a time for room cleaning; the app makes your stay bespoke. South Beach is only 25 minutes away.