Just an hour south of Miami is Key Largo, the northernmost of the Florida Keys. A stay at the Key Largo Bay Marriott Beach Resort, a family friendly Florida Keys hotel, was just what this Traveling Mom needed to put her and her family in a sunny mood.
Key Largo Bay Marriot Beach Resort Review
Boasting a tropical waterfront setting, the Key Largo Bay Marriott Beach Resort sprawls across 17 acres along the Gulf of Mexico, only an hour’s drive from Miami. This family-friendly Florida Keys hotel had everything my family needs: lots of things to do, great dining options, spacious rooms and waterfront views.
What Works For Families
- Right on the beach
- Boat, paddle board, kayak and bike rentals on-site
- Spacious, comfortable, recently renovated rooms with beautiful views
- A wealth of onsite activities keeps kids happy and busy
- Complimentary beach chairs for hotel guests
- Amazing staff and service
What Doesn’t Work For Families
- Onsite coin laundry facility is outside
- The beach is on the bay side, so no ocean waves for more adventurous travelers
Amenities & Recreation
During our recent visit, we enjoyed spending time lounging at the resort. The beach is calm and lovely – perfect for kids – and we especially loved the swim-up floating docks. There is also a great pool and volleyball court, relaxing hammocks and plenty of lounge chairs. It was a great way to chill out for a couple of days between more active stints in Miami and Key West.
With its private beach access, onsite marina and dive shop, the Key Largo Bay Marriott Beach Resort also offers more adventurous activities. Guests can rent jet skis, kayaks and standup paddle boards or take a snorkeling or scuba diving excursion. In addition, John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park is just minutes from the resort. There, you can rent a kayak or take a glass-bottom boat tour. Also nearby is Everglades National Park, the largest subtropical wilderness in the United States.
TravelingMom Tip: We snorkeled off the hotel’s beach, but the bay water did not have a lot of interesting fish and undersea life to explore. If you are a serious snorkeler or if this is your first time and you want a great experience, invest in an excursion that will buzz you out to one of the island’s nearby snorkeling reefs.
Key Largo Bay Marriott Beach Resort has 133 guest rooms and 20 suites. Our room was elegantly furnished, had a spacious upscale bathroom, and private balcony. We loved spending time in our room almost as much as we enjoyed the beach. The views were so impressive.
The resort has recently undergone some notable renovations to its indoor spaces. Lobby, spa and fitness center enhancements provide an upscale appeal. With its cushy chairs, complimentary cookies, drinks, and wi-fi, spending time lounging in the lobby was almost as nice as lounging outdoors.
Casual Island Dining
The Key Largo Bay Marriott Beach Resort has three bars and restaurants on-site – Breezer’s Tiki Bar, Flipper’s Pool Bar, and Gus’ Grille. Just like you’d expect at a beach resort, the atmosphere at all three is casual. We felt comfortable wandering up to the bar in our flip-flops and swimsuits. In fact, we would have felt overdressed wearing much more!
Gus’ Grille is probably the fanciest of the three, but you don’t have to worry about putting on heels and lipstick if you don’t want to! It features an outdoor covered terrace with waterfront views. Menu options include locally sourced seafood and freshly-prepared cuisine. There is also a daily breakfast buffet.
Ideally situated between the pool deck and beach, Flipper’s Pool Bar is the spot we mosied up to when we needed a cold beer or tropical drink while relaxing in the sun. The bar also offers snacks and light fare, as well as a kids’ menu.
TravelingMom Tip: Plan to have dinner at Gus’ Grille at least one night during your stay. The outdoor seating area is the best place to catch a magnificent sunset!
Relax at the Spa
I don’t always have time or budget to add a visit to the spa to my trip, but I love a hotel that provides the option. This time, I was lucky to get the chance! By the Bay Spa offers numerous decadent treatments, including body wraps, massages and facials. With a tranquil atmosphere and beachy motif, the aptly-named By the Bay Spa provided an oasis of relaxation away from my family and between active adventures.