4 day weekend - florida

Old Dec 4th, 2005, 10:14 PM
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4 day weekend - florida

looking for an upscale, relaxing and mostly warm long weekend destination in florida -- rare chance to get way with my wife. we have coverage for the kids, want air travel to be minimal to increase our time away, so it's likely FLA-- any suggestions -- looking for great food, interesting places to see and maybe some sun, opportunities for long-overdue pampering, preferably less than 1 hour from airport (not Disney or other mass market destination). Probably late january through February travel dates.
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Old Dec 5th, 2005, 05:24 AM
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Key West would be my first pick.

Direct flights from Atlanta on Delta jets so I would try and fly Delta.
 
Old Dec 5th, 2005, 12:58 PM
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I suggest Naples area. There are several upscale hotels there--Ritz Carlton, Registry, LaPlaya all on the beach and The Inn on the Fifth in downtown Naples. Lots of restaurants, shopping, the Philharmonic, Art Galleries. theatre so you will need a car. About 30 minutes from Fort Myers Airport.
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Old Dec 5th, 2005, 02:01 PM
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Adult vacation screams South Beach/Miami to me.
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Old Dec 5th, 2005, 02:14 PM
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Ritz Carleton or Registry (preferably the former) in Naples. La Playa has no appeal (in our opinion). But so much depends on how "happening" you want the place to be. South Beach is more "interesting" and also has quite nice beaches. Naples is more laid back, with pretty places to stroll, good food (South Beach food is better) and an outstanding Ritz (beaches are better in the Sarasota area). Sannibel/Captiva (esp South Seas Plantation on Captiva) also handsome and much quieter than east coast Florida. Lovely beaches there.
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Old Dec 5th, 2005, 03:23 PM
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I think South Seas will be closed until March due to hurricane damage.
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Old Dec 5th, 2005, 03:38 PM
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For more promise of warmer in Jan/Feb I would choose west coast of Florida, land in Ft. Myers, and go south to Naples or further. Partial to Naples having visited many times over the years. Easy drive to Naples from airport, which also has good offerings if weather iffy, the Ritz is wonderful there, as is shopping, antiques, galleries, beautiful sunsets weather permitting, fine dining, fun dining, and easy for a in and out for a 4 dy trip. Also some nice outdoor options if not total beach weather, but beach walking weather, and you feel like a close by short day trip you can go to Marco island, passing Isle of Capri (fishing villages, outdoor seafood eating on water, casual), also a nature preserve close enough by further towards Marco Isl., (kayak, canoe, small island boat tours); or straight on to Marco Isl, which has lovely stretch of beach - less than a mile - to walk from Tigertail down to "hotel" stretch, have a drink @ one of hotels and walk back to Tigertail and then drive back to Naples.
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Old Dec 5th, 2005, 05:24 PM
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There's South Beach. It's quite a scene, if you've never been there. Think South America does Florida, Carmen Miranda meets Scarface. You will feel glitzy and embraced all at the same time.

There's St. Augustine with its romantic old town. An old fort, cobble-stone streets, historic reenactments. The beautiful St. Johns River.

Naples is a lovely sedate town. It has a small walking downtown with lots of art studios. Very upscale. Nearby Corkscrew Swamp is a first-class destination in my book. An incredible spot.

Captiva & Sanibel are terrific but you'd spend awhile flying to Ft. Myers and then have to drive there. But it is very relaxing in these little islands. And the sand is gorgeous.

I'm in Tampa and I'd recommend a stay at the Don Cesar in St. Petersburg. You can take in the Salvador Dali Museum and the Fine Arts Museum. Lots of antique shopping and art galleries in downtown St. Pete. Take a day trip to Caladesi Island by ferry with a picnic.

Sarasota and Siesta Key are quaint. Sarasota has the Ringling Museum and the old beautiful Ringling home to tour. And Marie Selby Gardens.

So those are some suggestions. Let me know if you'd like me to elaborate on one or the other.
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Old Dec 6th, 2005, 06:15 AM
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TandooriGirl; I just had to comment on your " Carmen Miranda meets Scarface" - too perfect and funny and - great description - I am going to quote you on that one many times! A smile w/ my coffee was just what the morning needed.
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