When the place you call home turns cold hearted for at least 4 months of the year, it is beyond a blessing to have the ability to escape somewhere warm. Most often times, this means lighting a few candles and making a scorchingly hot bubble bath, but this past weekend was a little different. This time it involved flying down to Florida’s southernmost point, Key West.

Key West is a very tiny island and has a total area of only 7.4 square miles. Every local we spoke to said what they love most about the island is how safe it is. You also cannot help but notice the diversity of the island. People we met had come from all over the world to settle down in this peaceful place.

Inspired by this rich culture is a little hotel on the eastern side of the island, The Gates Hotel Key West. As we checked in, we were generously greeted by a friendly staff and a mini cocktail. Once we changed into our swim suits, we joined the other travelers at the hotel’s pool bar. The entire hotel has a very intimate setting, allowing you to really get a feel for the history and energy of the island. Everyone we spoke to was so friendly as each and everyone of the staff members taught us something new about the history of Key West. When we weren’t enjoying one of the many yummy cocktails, we enjoyed the hotel’s delicious foods and southern island touch from the hotel’s food truck The Blind Pig. I have to admit… I have a weakness for good chicken & waffles and these just hit the spot. Key West is also known for their conch, and their conch fritters were delicious!

The Gates Hotel Key West

In the evening, we would catch the breathtaking sunset at Sunset Pier and enjoy some oysters. Afterwards, we hit up Duval Street which is lined with an assortment of bars and restaurants where we met people from all over the world; Alaska, South America, Russia, South Africa, New Zealand, Netherlands… the list goes on!

When the end of our nights came about, it was so assuring to come back to the warmness of The Gates Hotel. We only spent three nights in Key West but The Gates immediately felt like home, making it that much harder to say farewell.

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