I wanted to visit St. Petersburg, Florida for a long time, mainly because of the Salvador Dali Museum there. However, when I got to St. Petersburg Fl, I was pleasantly surprised to see that the beaches were also amazing, some of the best I have seen so far. Also amazing? The view from our hotel. The small Inn on the Beach truly made the difference in this short romantic getaway (in a good way!).
My family and I have the tradition of visiting my parents each year for the holidays. They live in Palm Beach. We usually take four weeks or so to stay with them. During that time we usually go on one or two short road trips around Florida. My husband and I also like to go for a quick getaway to give my parents quality time with their grand-kiddies.
I’ve wanted to visit St. Petersburg for a few years now. My main attraction to the area was the Salvador Dali Museum. I also heard a few comments about the beautiful beaches of St. Pete.
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Last year, I was nearby, in Tampa, but didn’t have enough time to visit the museum. I was really bummed that my half day trip to St. Petersburg didn’t happen. However, I am grateful that instead I was able to dedicate two full days to exploring the area with my husband this time.
St. Petersburg is Full of Surprises
I love traveling with my sons, but traveling without them can also open up so many possibilities. For example, I can stay at boutique hotels. When my boys are traveling with me, I gravitate towards places with pools, two rooms and family friendly activities. But if I’m traveling with my husband I like small, one-room accommodations that are stylish.
Searching for such a place, I found Inn on the Beach. The name alone caught my attention. It’s an Inn on the beach. What more can you ask for?
The hotel is located in St. Pete on the Pass-a-Grille beach. I can’t think of a more adorable, amazing place for a couple’s getaway. The inn is across the street from the beach and a few blocks away from the historic town of Pass-a-Grille.
I was so surprised when I got there and heard that the beaches are rated among the top ten beaches in the US. But I was even more surprised when I actually saw them; they truly are lovely, better than most of the Central American beaches that I have visited. Here I found white-sanded, calm waters with plenty of space to walk around and enjoy the ocean breeze.
Even though St. Pete is a city, it is also surrounded by tons of tiny islands. The Inn was located on one of them. It was extremely tiny, not larger than several miles in length. It was a perfect place for us to explore on rented bikes.
Most of the rooms in the hotel have great views. In their advertising, they even say that you won’t want to leave it. At first I thought, ‘But I’m at the beach, why wouldn’t I leave?” And we did leave. We went out to explore but when we came back, we hopped up on the chairs on our patio and enjoyed the setting sun while drinking a beer. It was then that I totally understood what they meant.
If you stay at Inn on the Beach during the weekend, they also have a continental breakfast that is served in the courtyard.
We loved the whole look of the hotel, but what truly made this a great experience was service. It was homey, like staying with a friend. Someone was always nearby for advice and help, but we never felt like they were on top of us.
Another thing I liked was that it was only 20 minutes from downtown St. Petersburg, where the Salvador Dali Museum is located.
Fun, Historic Facts About Pass-a-Grille Town
- For over 10,000 years, native Indians hunted in the prairies of the area.
- The group that loved here was called Tocobagas and were here from 1,000 – 1,700 AD.
- It was first visited by Europeans in 1528 when the Spanish Explorer, Panfilo de Narvaez anchored in its coasts.
- For the next few years it was used as a campground for fishermen. They used to grill their catch there.
- It is thought that the Pass-A-Grille name comes from the French Passe aux Grilleurs (going to roasters).
- The town of Pass-A-Grille Beach was incorporated into the city of St. Petersburg Beach in 1957.
- In 1857, John Gomez the ‘last of the pirates’, began bringing excursionists here from Tampa.
- The first homesteader settled here in 1886.
- In 1989 a section of Pass-A-Grille was declared a National Historic District.