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“Good hotel, but overpriced”
Review of Amara Cay Resort

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Amara Cay Resort
Ranked #6 of 19 Hotels in Islamorada
Certificate of Excellence
Thornton, Colorado
Level Contributor
68 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Good hotel, but overpriced”
Reviewed 13 May 2012

Stopped here for a two night stay on the way to Key West. Hotel is older, but fairly well maintained. Did see some mold behind the toilet as other reviewers have noted, but hey, this is Florida! Staff was accomodating, rooms were older, but clean. Beds were small and fairly hard. Given the choices in this area, an OK stay for the money. Did not have a beach for swimming, but several within driving distance. Outdoor bar attached to Outback Steakhouse had very slow service, and seem to cater to locals. Nice pool area, good walkway along the water, but would not want to swim in the water here. Sea Monkeys is located next to the property and rents boats and kayaks and jetskis.
Lady in the gift shop could not have been nicer!
Very close to Robbie's and many beaches, so a good location.

Room Tip: Make sure your room is not next to the elevators - they play loud music in the area around the eleva...
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank BizTravelerPhoenix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
88 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 May 2012

We walked into the Hampton very hot and tired from our drive down from Fort Lauderdale. To my surprise I was the "guest of the day" and was given a free upgrade to a suite - how nice! I never win anything and felt like I had that day.

The one bedroom suite faced directly out to that beautiful ocean and had a nice balcony to sit and admire the view. It also had a full kitchen which was great. We loved the bar, beach and pool area. This hotel is not fancy but it is kept very clean and has everything you could ask for. We really enjoyed our two-night stay and wish to thank the staff at the Hampton for making it so pleasant for us. We recommend to anyone passing through Islamorada, it's a great value.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank lang2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wayne, PA
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 May 2012

My family and I stayed at the Hampton Inn and Suites in Islamorada for part of our family's Spring Break. We could not have picked a more perfect, family-friendly place to stay. To begin, the two women at the reception desk were incredibly friendly and helpful. Because we were Hilton Honors members they upgraded us to a two bedroom two bath suite. The suite was incredibly spacious with two good sized bedrooms and baths, a large living room area and a kitchenette. The downstairs lobby had coffee and tea set out around the clock for guests and in the afternoon there were cookies in the lobby. Breakfast was included and featured lots of hot and cold food items. My entire family enjoyed starting the day off with a full breakfast and my kids loved the waffle bar area. There is an Outback Restaurant on the premises, and we ate there the first night since we had arrived late in the day. The food was terrific and we had the nicest waiter who gave us great tips on what to see and do while we were in the area. The hotel also has a laundry room which really comes in handy when you are traveling with a family.

There was a nice pool area with plenty of chairs and a very pretty beach area with more chairs and a few hammocks.

For dinner one night we went to the restaurant Lor-e-leis that was only about a mile or two north of the hotel. It was a fantastic place for dinner, and I would recommend it to anyone. It's listed as one of the best places to see the sun set in the area. The dining is casual and you are seated at outdoor tables with lots of live family-friendly entertainment. The food was the best that we had on the Keys and the sunset was absolutely stunning. You see one of those sunsets and you understand why so many people who visit on the Keys decide to never leave.

We also found a great place for water sports called Robbies. This place was about a mile south of the hotel. If you want to go fishing, snorkeling, kayaking or wave running this is a good place to go. In addition to the great water sports, there are lots of huge tarpon that come right up to the docks. They sell buckets of small fish that you can purchase and feed right to the tarpon. My children had a ball feeding the tarpon and the hungry pelicans who dive in to catch the small fish as they are thrown into the water. Robbies is also a great place to eat. On our last day on the Keys we stopped there for breakfast. The portions were generous and the food was delicious. Robbies is a fun, casual place not to be missed if you are in Islamorada.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
4 Thank PATravelFamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Carlos, California
Level Contributor
29 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 May 2012

This was our second stay at this hotel and I would have give it a 5 except for the rudeness of the front desk employee who checked us in, Tia. We arrived in the early evening tired from driving for hours in the rain but very glad to be there. She thought it would be funny to play a joke on me during the first minute I was on the property by telling me very seriously that they thought our reservation had been cancelled. After I stood there speechless with a horrified look she broke into a huge smile and laugh and said "Just Kidding!" I told her it wasn't funny and even had to walk outside to cool off because I was so angry. My husband finished the check in with me standing there but she never apologized and acted like nothing ever happened. Talk about a crummy first impression! Both she and the hotel company should be ashamed for treating a paying guest that way. It kind of ruined our trip too.

Once we had checked in, we found everything at the hotel to be just as nice as we had on our previous visit, which was with out 2 kids. The pool area and beach are lovely. We had a very nice, one-bedroom suite with a partial ocean view. The breakfast was good and the selection plentiful, and the chocolate chip cookies at the desk in the afternoons were a treat. We enjoyed eating at the Outback Steak House on the property twice during our stay and we think it's the best Outback we've ever been too. On that previous visit, we also used the dive shop on the property and were very pleased. The beach and fishing-themed decor is delightful and everything was immaculately clean.

The rest of the staff was courteous during this recent stay, if not overly friendly. In 2010, the staff was extremely friendly and helpful and seemed genuine about it. This was a stand out for us and a reason we chose to come back. Something has changed now. While they were polite and efficient when we asked for something, their "friendliness" seemed fake and their greetings and responses overly rehearsed. They said the same things to every guest. Staff appeared bored and as if they were not happy being there.

Even with the negatives, I would still recommend this hotel. The location and grounds are perfect and everything is so clean. Hopefully they will work with their staff to improve their attitude.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Lori B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Palm Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
82 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 May 2012

We stayed here for three nights before and after a soccer tournament in Islamorada. When we checked in we were upgraded to a 2/2 suite due to my HHonors status. The front desk staff were friendly. The housekeepers were friendly. The maintenance man was friendly. Everyone there went out of their way to be friendly. The family room was huge. Having two bathrooms was a huge plus. The beach is not really a beach (most "beaches" in the Keys are really an area with sand, beach chairs, palm trees and hammocks and a seawall with a ladder down to the water) but it was a relaxing area. The nice thing about this hotel was that, unlike most of the mom and pop/non chain hotels, there are no surprises. It's a Hampton Inn (with some excellent perks/amenities) and you know what to expect. If I had to list one negative it would be that the beds were rather hard. I had no problem overlooking this, however, due to the quality of the overall experience.

Room Tip: All rooms are oceanview at a minimum. The North side rooms face parking lot. The south side face t...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Pistolpjh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boca Raton
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 8 May 2012

What a pleasant suprise! From the moment I arrived to the time I departed all team members were friendly and professional. The hotel guest suites were spacious with a full kitchen, two bathrooms and balcony over looking the pool and ocean. The public areas were clean and well maintained inside and outside by the pool, tiki bar and beach area. Enjoyed lunch both days at the outdoor beachside restaurant. Even though the waiters were very busy - both Omar and Seth were pleasant to engage in conversation while servicing the tables. Great weekend stay....will definitely recommend and stay again in the future.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank KJTasca
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
va
Level Contributor
38 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 May 2012

Stayed here for 4 nights in April. Wonderful property. Pool area was clean with plenty of chairs for sunning. Beyond the pool was the "beach area" of sand and more chairs plus 2 hammocks in the shade! There is no real beach but a seawall with 4 steps down to the water. Not a big deal for us but could be a concern for parents with small children. Water was warm and clear with some sea grass. Many guests were swimming and snorkeling. One day we were in the water and a manatee swam up and checked us out. It was Amazing! Close enough to touch and we did!
Room (209) was big and clean with a king bed and a nice view of the pool area. Breakfast was plentiful with the usual cereals, breads, waffle maker, fruit juice etc. But they also offered hot items each morning like scrambled ham and eggs, sausage gravy, and such. Plenty of fresh fruit and yogurt too.
Went fishing for tarpon one day with Captain Mike who works from the dock beside the hotel but had no luck catching although you could see tarpon rolling the surface at the Channel 5 bridge every where. Oh well, you pay to go; thats why they call it fishing, not catching.
Would definitely recommend this Hampton Inn.
Go to the Islamorada Fish Co. for dinner and beautiful sunset views. Great blackened yellowtail and mango-passionfruit cheescake! Green Turtle is a great place as well!

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Karen G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Amara Cay Resort

Property: Amara Cay Resort
Address: 80001 Overseas Highway, Islamorada, FL 33036-3802 (Formerly The Islamorada Resort)
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Florida > Florida Keys > Islamorada
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Islamorada
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Amara Cay Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 110
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Major renovations recently completed at this oceanfront resort in picturesque Islamorada. Amara Cay is the perfect setting for our guests to unwind, connect with the sea, and make lasting memories. The story of Amara Cay is compelling and distinct. Our guests are inspired by the authentic experiences we provide. Each member of our diverse staff is a local expert empowered to provide amazing and unexpected service. We emotionally connect with our guests by crafting a story that is compelling and extraordinary. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hampton Inn And Suites Islamorada Hotel Islamorada
Hampton Inn Islamorada
Islamorada Hampton Inn
Amara Cay Resort Islamorada, Florida

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