When the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa opened at the northern fringe of Bonita Springs near Naples in September 2001, it nudged a sleepy little farming town into a new level of upscale living and vacationing.
The resort was the first to introduce luxury and glamour to the shores of a pristine estuary previously occupied by fish camps and inland tomato fields. The Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa set a new standard that restaurants, shopping centers and new developments have since followed and aspired to.
Despite its 18-floor, high-rise contrast to the surrounding low-key landscape, the resort strives to blend in with its Florida setting as much as possible. The elegant Italian marble and mahogany lobby is made local with Florida-look terrazzo, and the colors of the public spaces and 454 rooms and suites reflect the sea, sand and subtropical vegetation. All rooms and suites are outfitted with mini fridges, CD and DVD players, robes, safes and coffeemakers.
The Hyatt Regency Coconut Point, a tower of elegance — Photo courtesy of Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa
The Tarpon Bay restaurant resembles old clapboard fish shack architecture and serves local seafood. It's famous for its raw ceviche bar. To make up for the resort's lack of readily available beachfront (Guests must take a short boat shuttle to a private island club to get their sand fix.), Hyatt’s signature water features compensate with a kiddie pool and a corkscrew water slide, a lazy river, a toddler’s pool, adult pools, stunning fountains and a dramatic reflecting pool.
Many guests are more interested in golfing, anyway, and the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point pleases them with 18 challenging holes sanctioned by Audubon International.
Braxton’s overlooks the 18th hole at Raptor Bay Golf Club for post-game cocktails and lunch. In the main resort building, guests have their choice of lake-front Tarpon Bay; Tanglewood, which overlooks the resort’s signature fountain reflecting pool from its windowed dining room and porch; Corkscrew, located outside next to the main pool complex; Mangroves, the lobby cocktail lunch serving sports TV and small plates for munching; and Kofe Nut Marketplace for Starbucks coffee, pastries and snacks.
A well-run kids’ camp introduces young ones to the local environment and history. A climbing wall, evening campfires with s’mores, a complete spa with one of Florida’s few Watsu (water + shiatsu) pools, tennis courts and a marina that offers a menu of water sports activities make this a full-service destination resort for those who don’t mind being a short ride away from the beach, shopping and local nightlife.