Cottage at Lighthouse Court — Photo courtesy of Lighthouse Court/Historic Key West Inns
Much like Ernest Hemingway used the Key West Lighthouse as a beacon to find his way home after a night of revelry on Duval Street, you can follow in his footsteps when you stay at Lighthouse Court in Key West. Located directly across the street from the Hemingway Home and Museum and next door to the lighthouse, Lighthouse Court is a quaint, historic inn comprised of ten conch-style cottages.
All of the major Key West attractions are within walking or biking distance. Duval Street - the main drag with all the bars, restaurants and boutiques - is one block away, while the Southernmost Point and Beach are a five-minute walk. The best part of it all? When you're done partying for the night, you can leave the hustle and bustle behind for your quiet retreat.
Lighthouse Court on Whitehead Street — Photo courtesy of Lighthouse Court
Spread out over half a city block, the cottages at Lighthouse Court date from 1890 to the 1920s and showcase charming Key West architectural details like tin roofs, wood siding, open porches and French doors. One of six elegant hotels owned by Historic Key West Inns in Old Town, the property has 40 rooms, all with unique floor plans and décor.
If you’re on a budget, their small standard rooms offer the most affordable prices, but the luxurious suites are more spacious. Spring for their Hemingway Suite for a one-of-a-kind experience, where you’ll feel like you're staying in a close friend’s home. You can toast Hemingway's ghost from your front balcony, which directly overlooks the notable American author’s two-story home: he prefers Teacher’s scotch and soda. You’ll also enjoy spectacular views of the lighthouse from the living room, sun-deck and bedroom.
A six-toed cat relaxes outside the Hemingway Home — Photo courtesy of Florida Keys Public Libraries
When you’re on the hunt for other libations, wander the brick pathways past the lush tropical landscaping to the pool and Mojito Bar and Café. As the name implies, bartenders Peter and Geoff make a mean mojito, or margarita for that matter. (Don’t forget to use the 2-for-1 drink coupon you’ll receive at check-in.)
Or you can head to Hemingway’s favorite watering holes: Captain Tony’s Saloon and Sloppy Joe’s. Captain Tony’s was a former speakeasy and the original location of Sloppy Joe’s until 1937. In the mornings, a light continental buffet is served poolside, but don’t miss the lobster benedict at Blue Heaven just a few blocks away in Bahama Village. Not only does the restaurant's outdoor courtyard charm with the resident chickens clucking at your feet, but it was once a boxing arena frequented by "Papa."
For lunch, you can walk across the street from the inn to the Six-Toed Cat Cafe. Named in honor of the polydactyl felines that roam the Hemingway property, the cafe even has paw-shaped tables and a fun collection of cat-themed art.