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9 Fabulous Relaxed Luxury Resorts in Florida • McCool Travel

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9 Fabulous Relaxed Luxury Resorts in Florida • McCool Travel

Most luxury resorts in Florida offer an enviable relaxed vibe that puts guests immediately in a Fins Up mood. Florida is one of the few places where you can wear shorts and flip flops to resort restaurants. I know, because I did—and I do! Please, though, no wet swimsuits in the restaurants.

This list of relaxed luxury resorts in Florida is organized from north to south, as you might encounter them on Sunshine State road trips. I also included at least one special feature (a McCool Travel tip) for each property. And if you visit these fun relaxed luxury Florida resorts after Thanksgiving, their tropical holiday decorations are amazing.

While I personally visited these Florida luxury resorts, I realize there are dozens of others. Leave a comment below with suggestions of other Florida resorts I should visit.

The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island

All rooms at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island have their own balcony—great for relaxing to ocean sounds and scents. The property has four restaurants, including SALT, one of only two AAA 5 diamond restaurants in the entire state of Florida.

Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island room view
luxury Florida hotel: Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island

McCool Travel tip: If dining at SALT is not exclusive enough for you, book the Heaven in a Hammock spa treatment. It was created at The Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island and is offered nowhere else in the world.

Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island spa room
Florida luxury resorts: The Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island, couples spa room

For more Amelia Island information, please read Things to Do in Amelia Island Florida.

Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort

Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort is a massive 1,300 acre property, with tons of space to explore and play. All of their rooms face the Atlantic Ocean. Nine dining venues, all under the direction of Omni Executive Chef Daven Wardynski, offer a variety of culinary experiences.

Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort view
Florida luxury hotel: Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort
McCool Travel tip: try the honey made on the property—collected from more than 1 million bees—and especially sample the spectacular honey bourbon. A cool unique experience is the monthly dinner in The Sprouting Project (reservations required).
local honey at Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort
luxury Florida resorts: Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort

Also see our article about US Luxury Resorts With Water Sports.

Epicurean Hotel, Tampa

Epicurean Hotel in Tampa, Florida is inspired by Bern Laxer, founder of Bern’s Steakhouse. Bern’s Steakhouse is located across the street from Epicurean Hotel and houses one of the world’s largest wine collections (over a half million bottles).

The Epicurean Hotel is the only hotel I have been to with its own Cooking Theater—featuring culinary demonstrations, seminars, and competitions. We love spending a pleasant evening sipping craft cocktails at the rooftop bar.

See our Epicurean Hotel review and click here for best Epicurean Hotel rates.

EDGE Rooftop Bar at Epicurean Hotel Tampa
EDGE Rooftop Bar at Epicurean Hotel in Tampa Florida.
McCool Travel tip: try the Bourbon on the Rocks foot treatment (my first pedicure!) at the onsite Spa Evangeline. Fortunately, you pass Chocolate Pi on the way back to the hotel lobby so you can indulge in more treats.

South Seas Island Resort

Occupying 330 acres of nature preserve with 2.5 miles of private beach, South Seas Island Resort is a tranquil but also adventurous (your choice!) waterfront resort on Florida’s Gulf Coast. Make sure you rent a golf cart to explore all of the hidden gems and secret paths. See our South Seas Island Resort review and click here for best South Seas Island Resort rates.

South Seas Island Resort balcony view of lagoon
South Seas Island Resort balcony view
McCool Travel tip: catch a Captiva Cruises excursion to Cabbage Key and visit the alleged inspiration for Jimmy Buffet’s Cheeseburger in Paradise. While there definitely try the Cabbage Key restaurant Key Lime Pie, made from the original recipe!

For more information on the area, please read Fun Things to Do in Fort Myers Beach.

Inn on Fifth, Naples

Inn on Fifth is an esteemed Forbes Travel Guide 4-star rated hotel and the only luxury hotel located in the heart of downtown Naples. It is within walking distance of the beach, fantastic shops and amazing restaurants, and Tin City. For an enhanced experience, stay across the street at the Inn on Fifth Club Level Suites, with a private rooftop deck (with pool and hot tub) and dedicated concierge lounge (great snacks and drinks).

McCool Travel tip: an underutilized amenity is their shuttle service within 2 miles. Options include an upscale golf cart, an Escalade, and a Tesla (for Club Level guests).

Tesla shuttle at Inn on 5th Naples
Florida luxury hotel: Inn on Fifth in Naples Florida: Tesla shuttle

For more Naples information, please read Great Places to Eat in Naples Florida.

Boca Raton Resort & Club, Boca Raton

Boca Raton Resort & Club is not one but two magnificent relaxed luxury resorts in Florida. Choose the Beach Club, where rooms have massive ceiling to floor windows to tempt you to get outside. On the other hand, the Main Resort includes the Tower, Yacht Club, Bungalows, and The Cloister—the original classic resort from the 1920s but completely modernized and refurbished. Both resorts have a variety of activities and dining options.

classic pink Florida resort The Boca
Florida luxury hotel: Boca Raton Resort & Club
Atlantic Ocean view from Boca Resort Beach Club
luxury Florida resort: Beach Club, Boca Raton Resort & Club

McCool Travel tip: reserve a window table for dinner at The Blue on the 27th floor of The Tower—or at least have drinks or snacks in the magnificent panoramic setting.

27th floor view from The Boca Resort
Luxury Resorts in Florida: The Blue restaurant. Photo courtesy of Waldorf Astoria

>>> See the McCool Travel article: Boca Resort Relaxed Luxury Features

Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort

Margaritaville Resort Hollywood Beach is a perfect example of relaxed luxury resort in Florida. You can put your toes in the sand in several places, chill in the spa, and eat very well. You bet I wore flip flops to their fine dining restaurant (JWB) and I definitely was not the only one! Guest rooms have comfortable bed and pillows, elegant but comfortable wood decor, and two adirondack chairs on the balcony.

Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort bedroom
luxury Florida resorts: Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort

McCool Travel tip: ride a funky beach cruiser bicycle with an epic parrot horn for an hour each day.

fun bicycle at Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort
Luxury Resorts in Florida: Margaritaville Beach Resort: cool beach bicycle

>>> See our review of Margarita Hollywood Beach Resort

The Ritz-Carlton, Coconut Grove

With its Old World design and elegant marble and decor, the lobby of the The Ritz-Carlton, Coconut Grove instantly transports your mind to Europe’s finest luxury hotels. Here, though, is a great location to stay when you sail from Dinner Key marina, visit the University of Miami, or attend the world famous Coconut Grove Art Festival. Treat yourself by relaxing in the salt water pool.

elegant lobby of Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove
Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove lobby. Photo credit: FuninFairfaxVA.com

McCool Travel tip: ask the front desk for information about the self-guided art tour. The property houses over $1 million of art.

The Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne

Close to Miami yet a world away is The Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne. The property has a large tennis center, extensive fitness center, amazing spa, but also a spacious, clean beach and two pool areas to relax.

Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne pool
luxury Florida hotel: Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne

McCool Travel tip: Have dinner at Cantina Beach and ask the only Tequilier in the United States to help you select from over 100 tequilas, including one blended specifically for this restaurant. Cantina Beach also hosts free tequila tasting sessions every day at 6pm.

For South Florida road trips, please read Great Scenic Drives in South Florida and Best Miami Scenic Drives. See also Romantic Hotels in North America.

Our favorite relaxed luxury resort in the Florida Keys is Casa Morada in Islamorada.

Do you have favorite relaxed luxury resorts in Florida that are not yet included on this list? Leave a comment below and I hope to visit them and might include them in an article update.

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Most Relaxed Luxury Resorts in Florida are located along the beach so you can almost roll out of bed and onto the sand. Wear your flip flops to fine dining.

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