I did a ton of reading and research before picking this B&B. We were traveling for the first time from the West Coast to Fr. Lauderdale. I had to travel to see a doctor, the trip was going to be hard, and we wanted to find a clean and comfy place to stay where we could enjoy a little beach time, have a little quiet time and make the best of this difficult trip.
Ataraxia (Hollywood by the Sea) exceeded my hopes and gave us some great memories!
My first contact with Dean, the owner, was by phone. He was very upbeat and took my reservation. We were traveling in May, so he told me we would be missing the more crowded winter travel. I was hoping for beach and quiet so that sold me!
We arrived after dark, and the directions we were given were perfect! Easy drive from Ft. Lauderdale airport! I called him and told him we had arrived and he let us in and showed us to our room. I was very happy to find a very clean room and bathroom. Having just come from the airport, Dean went and grabbed us several water bottles from his own stock. We had a little fridge, tv, air conditioning (which we hardly used because we had come from the cold NW and enjoyed the heat and humidity) and internet access.
We stayed in The Marguerite room and it was tucked in the back with as much quiet and privacy as we could want! It had a nice little patio - great bathroom, plenty of room for the two of us. It is decorated a bit different than the pictures on the website and the bed has been moved, but I like the set up even better than in the pictures!
We had space to unpack our backpacks and Dean asked us what time we would like breakfast. In the morning, there he was, waiting for us at the table next to the pool with a huge plate of fresh fruit. He gave us some options and set up our breakfast and then headed out for his walk and my husband and I had a leisurely breakfast by the pool.
Ataraxia is just steps from the beach. I am mobile, but can't walk far, and this was perfect. We were provided with towels and chairs and any beach items we could think of. He even offered sunscreen! This was fantastic as sunscreen is hard to take on an airplane if you're only taking carry on luggage.
We loved the beach! It was clean, and not crowded at all this time of year! The water was warm and you could wade out quite ways. The broadwalk was beautiful and we did take a walk down a little ways. There were quite a few people, yet not at all crowded and it felt very safe. But many shops are empty and closed. This did not bother us as we were not there to shop anyway. There are several cafe's and bars along the broadwalk.
I took a dip in the mineral pool to cool off and it was really nice. They also have an outdoor shower on the patio to wash off sand before heading to the room. Dean offered us a tour of the other rooms, but we ran out of time. But it doesn't really matter because we loved our room and would choose it again next year.
The second morning, we had to get up early to get to the doctors appointment. Dean sat with us for breakfast, and I really enjoyed his stories about living in Florida and hurricanes etc. Unfortunately, we had to rush off to the appointment, or I would have tried to keep him chatting while I sat and enjoyed the sun!
The third morning we hadn't arranged a breakfast time. We got up early and went to the beach and when we returned, breakfast was waiting for us on the table outside our room. He had cooked us some fantastic omelets, and potatoes and more fresh fruit. It was all covered, set up on our little table and still warm! Did he watch for us to be walking back??? In addition, I had been collecting shells on the beach and Dean saw my little collection and left 3 big beautiful shells with our breakfast for me to take home! What a great host!!!
This is not a place for those looking for luxury and fancy dining. It's like a home away from home - just what I was looking for! The breakfast items are all kept in a cabinet outdoors and we were able to help ourselves to anything we needed. Dean even went out the first day and bought black tea for us because we are morning tea drinkers.
What more can I say? I'm already looking forward to our trip next year... only because I'm looking forward to my stay at Ataraxia. I'm not a "luxury" vacationer, but I am also not a camper/rough it type person. I like comfortable, clean, quiet, friendly. That's just what I got!
Oh... I will add that we met Lori and she is lovely and friendly too. Next trip, I hope to save up and get a massage from Lori!
I guess the last thing I can say is that Ataraxia represents it's name well; "a state of tranquility free from anxiety and emotional disturbance".
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Steps to the Beach and Broadwalk. Our home is your home. Enter as strangers- leave as friends. Our goal is to make your stay a memorable and fun time. Our Breakfast is wonderful. Read our reviews. ... more less