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“I was skeptical about going, but I Love this place” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Island House

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Island House
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1129 Fleming St., Key West, FL 33040   |  
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Hotel amenities
New York, NY
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“I was skeptical about going, but I Love this place”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 13, 2008

I had seen ads for the Island House online, and read some reviews, but I was skeptical about trying it since it's quite a trip down to Key West from NY. I finally decided to give it a go once one of my friends told me he had been there and loved it.

I stayed for four nights, and all around it was one of the best vacations I can remember having. As other reviewers have said, the age group is mixed. This is a very social atmosphere, and within about 15 minutes of sitting at the poolside after I checked in I already made a few friends. The crowd is mixed with hotel guests, locals who come to hangout, and guys from other guest houses in the area. It's a very sexually charged environment, but without feeling sketchy - it's up to you how much you want sex to be a part of the trip.

I thought the food was fine, what's nice is that all of the meals are served at the poolside. Nothing I ate caught my attention as being overly exciting, but then again, I doubt anyone will come here just for the food.

I've paid less money for a room at the Four Seasons....the rooms here are small and plain for the price, but this is a niche resort and you're paying because there are few places gay men can go, especially in the U.S., to have a trip like this.

The bartenders and staff were all very friendly, and the bartenders are fun to hangout with - definately try a massage too, they're given in a tent by the pool, and worth the price.

Even though I wasn't totally impressed with the accomodations or the food for the prices they charge, I thought the trip was well worth it; I was so bummed about having to leave that I booked another stay before I checked out.

If you're curious and have doubts, definately give this place a try, it's a fun and relaxing place to go, and you won't feel lonely if you decide to take the trip by yourself.

  • Liked — Beautiful poolside, excellent staff, very social atmosphere
  • Disliked — food and rooms were nothing spectacular
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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347 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Families
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (83)
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Atlanta
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
48 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
79 helpful votes 79 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2008

I have been vacationing at the Island House for several years and have always enjoyed my stays. The property (although nothing approaching four star) is very nice and clean for a gay American resort. The staff isn’t rude by any means, but not what I would consider overly accommodating either. The food, pool and friendly atmosphere are great. You must remember, however, the atmosphere can change greatly from week to week. That is strictly “luck of the draw”.

I must say that the frequency of my trips to the Island House has decreased and will continue to do so. The resort is simply not worth the outrageous room prices. Rooms that would be considered very average for any hotel are now going for $300 and $400 a night. You can cut that in half if you don’t mind sharing a bathroom with several other rooms, but who wants to pay $150 a night for a share bath? Also, the kind of men most are hoping to run into in a place like this, usually can’t afford to pay for them. How many guys in their 20’s or even 30’s can plunk down $3,000 for a week of vacation?

I never thought I would be knocking the Island House, but with the current lack of nightlife in Key West, the outrageous cost of flights to Key West, the dramatic increase in room prices and the inability to find and maintain good staff, the bloom is off the rose. You can really travel anywhere in this country (and most others) and stay at a real five star resort for less money.

  • Liked — pool
  • Disliked — price
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
overland park, kansas
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2008

the hotel is awesome, it has the best beds and great rooms some are small but most are very comfortable, all are very tastefully done and the staff , grounds , food, pool, and people are all amazingly good and very helpful and friendly. everything you need or want is there for you and if you cant find it they will find it for you. thankyou so much for a great time, we will always go back.

Stayed March 2008
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Wilmington, NC
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2008

The room may have been small, a bit pricey, but the view of the hot tub was fantastic! Our only regret is only being there for a few days midweek. The bed and pillows were amazing, the staff top notch. We hope to go back in June for a short weekend during the off season.

  • Disliked — small room, but the website warned us
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Goteed1
Top Contributor
111 reviews 111 reviews
92 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
86 helpful votes 86 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2007

This place does have great service and I did like the on site restaurant very much - HOWEVER what ruined what should have been a great experience was the room. I paid $250 a night for a room that was no bigger than a postage stamp. Literally there was no room for my luggage and it was dark. I'm not used to paying that much money to stay in a cave. This was during a holiday weekend so I know rates are inflated and the place was booked solid. This was not a hotel room, this was an after thought. It was underneath a stairwell and along a major walkway, so lots of noise issues as well. To charge anyone that much money to stay in this place was the height of arrogance. It told me all I need to know about their attitude towards customers. If you are looking to stay here, make sure you spend the bucks otherwise you will have alot of regrets about spending your hard earned money in this place. I'm done with Island House for sure.

  • Liked — Restaurant
  • Disliked — It's a basic rip off
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leicester, England
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
79 helpful votes 79 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2007

Myself/Partner and friend spent two days/nights here at the end of three week trip. Culmination of two week trip to Fort Lauderdale.

I guess different people look for different things, but this is NOT the place for us. If you are happy with elderly/young/fat/thin men walking around the bar/restaurant areas with their sunburnt tackle on display then you will fit in and probably love the place. There is very much an underlying current of sexual prowling, which can be a little disconcerting 24 hours of the day.

Although it does mention nudity in the website, it is VERY much in your face. How this place was voted THE BEST in the world is beyond me, and I would be interested to see what the competition was.

We were accommodated in a two bedded apartment within the complex which was spacious and nicely furnished. Cleanliness not really up to what I would have expected about a place with such a glowing website.

Food OK, and portions/prices very reasonable. With the Pound/Dollar conversion rate at the moment, it is very reasonable to eat on Duval Street. Italian restaurant called Antonias is excellent, great food, and prices.

Staff very friendly and helpful. Overal - would I stay here again? No, because of the reasons above. If you enjoy nudity in all shapes and sizes at all times of the day, then go ahead, you will have a great time.

Stayed November 2007
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NJ
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2007

Island House seduced me...

Quaint and charming Island House is a relaxing oasis of pleasure for the senses; both tactile and taste.

The staff was accommodating. The food far superior to most on-property guest houses, and both staff and fellow guests were warm and welcoming.

While some rooms tend to be small, others are very comfortable and well appointed. All aspects of the resort were clean and well maintained.

Was there random sex to be had? Yes. Does one feel compelled to be involved; no. Pretension and pressures are left at the door step of the Inn.

What is golden about Island House is that the guest, if they wished, would never have to leave the property for a restful respite in the tropics. Great pool. Great (and free happy hour). Great food. Great people. My heart yearns to be there again now.

  • Liked — The atmosphere
  • Stayed October 2007
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Island House

Address: 1129 Fleming St., Key West, FL 33040
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Florida Keys > Key West
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 22 Specialty Lodging in Key West
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 39
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Imagine.... a place where everyone is gay.... where it’s easy to make friends.... where you can really be yourself.... where you can enjoy yourself 24 hours a day..... in a secure locked compound, safe from the outside world...... where a friendly and capable all-male staff are on hand to make sure you enjoy your vacation...... in a tropical paradise. Well that place is waiting for you. It’s called Island House in Key West ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Island House Hotel Key West
Island House Key West

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