msannmcd

The Saint - Key West

Blog Post created by msannmcd on May 28, 2019

The Saint Pool

This was a 4 night redemption, 5th night free, plus $500 to ensure a larger king room.  Taxi fare from the airport is a flat $9 per person, cheaper than Uber. Quick 10 minute ride to the hotel. Tom checked us in, thanked us for being titanium and explained the layout of the hotel. I had messaged Tom days before using the app to advise that we would be at the hotel before 2 and asked for an early check in so our room was ready. In addition to the red front door on Eaton Street, there are 2 other card key entrances - one on Duval, and the other near our room which is also the handicapped ramp access from Eaton. We got 103 facing the pool and only 14 rooms face the pool area. Tom pointed out there was nobody above us and that our room was a bit larger than the rooms on the other side of the pool. Austin escorted us to our room which was nicely appointed. Plenty of room in the dresser, closet and bathroom for all our belongings. The closet had 2 robes, a safe, ironing board and iron. The balcony was good sized, had 2 chairs and a table and had privacy curtains. The balcony wall was all glass with both room darkening curtains and sheer curtains. We got early morning sun and shade by late morning and the rest of the day. No fridge or coffee maker but coffee was always in the lobby when we needed it. There is nightly turn down service and chocolates. Bottled water was provided. Well worth the extra cash.. We got vouchers for complimentary continental breakfast daily. It consisted of plain yogurt with fresh fruit and granola, a deviled egg topped with bacon, and a muffin which could be replaced with toast or English muffin on request. Other breakfast offerings looked great. Sunday they had a buffet and King Paul in the bar was making his famous $22 Bloody Mary's with everything but the kitchen sink in it.  If you don't use your breakfast voucher you get 750 additional points. 

It's a fun and funky vibe. Blue lights everywhere. The pseudoSleep Saintly-techno music is on poolside from 9 AM to 9 PM. Pool closes at sunset. Water, SPF 30 sunscreen and cool down lotion are provided. There is a shower provided behind the water feature. With the sound of the music and the water feature it kept conversation relatively private. You get 2 pool towels in your room. None provided at the pool.

We didn't eat in Tempt but had wine in the bar. There is cocktail service at the pool. You can bring beverages up to the 2nd floor balcony overlooking Duval. There are tables but no chairs. You can observe all that's happening on the street below and hear the music from the Hard Rock hotel. The suites were on the 2nd and 3rd floors but we did not see an elevator. There was a handicapped room - 101 - that was pretty much ground level with one ramp to maneuver. 

Location is fantastic. They are close to everything. If you don't want to walk everywhere they do offer bicycles for use.  I did see an oversized golf cart as well but did not ask about its use. Amy the concierge was helpful even though we stayed over Memorial Day weekend and some tours were fully booked she provided good alternatives. There are See Key West books that have lots of discounts for tours. Hemingway House is $18, Truman's Little White House $15 and Mel Fisher Museum $18. Weeks in advance we had booked the ferry to Fort Jefferson Dry Tortugas National Park. I brought Dramamine and it was needed. It's a long day but well worth it at $180. The terns were nesting which meant one part of Garden Key was off limits. The area with the frigate birds is always off limits. If you aren't keen on boats the only alternative is the sea plane at $380. It’s a beautiful quiet spot with a lot of history and the ferry guides are helpful. There’s salt water feet hoses and warm water showers at the back of the boat for returning snorkelers (equipment provided) and swimmers. Another fort with a beach not too far from the hotel is Fort Zachary Taylor and it cost $2.50 each to walk in. There is a free tour daily at 11 AM with a ranger but it's easy to do the self-guided tour. There are hiking and biking trails and a nice beach area. 
Dry Tortugas
Dining options run the gamut. We loved Latitudes at Sunset Key. Reservations needed. Food was presented well, it’s quiet and the views are lovely. We had our key lime pie when the sun set. Perfect! Another standout meal was at Little Pearl. Very small establishment so reservations are needed but we went early and scored 2 of their 4 bar seats. Great seafood and Amy the bartender was very helpful. Had fish sandwiches at BOs, sloppy joes at Sloppy Joe's, popcorn at Green Parrot, salad at Southernmost brew house First Flight (nice amber, wheat and IPA), drinks at Louie's where we missed Greg Norman by a day. Cuban sandwich at Blue Macaw was good. Vivo's on Duval is the better wine bar (Wine-o was pretentious and overpriced) as is Viv across from Blue Heaven (which was packed for Sunday brunch and how we ended up at Blue Macaw). 
Little PearlBlue Macaw Bloody Mary Bar
We walked 29 miles in 6 days! Neither of us had been there before but we did our homework and booked in advance the things that were important to us. Overall a great vacation with a good balance of activities and relaxation. All the folks at the Saint were great and there to assist with questions while not being obtrusive. It is worth noting that a film crew was there at the beginning of our stay. I spoke to the bartender Jeff about it and he said that it will be used to market the new Saint being built in Charleston SC that will not be part of the Marriott family. It will be interesting to see if that works out. Highly recommended.

Sunset

Outcomes