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“ahhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Kona Kai Resort, Gallery & Botanic Garden

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Kona Kai Resort, Gallery & Botanic Garden
Ranked #1 of 17 Key Largo B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Cleveland, Ohio
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“ahhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 19, 2013

This was my first vacation in many years and I didn’t know what to expect from a small, local resort except for just hoping to have a place to relax and get away. Upon entering the resort parking area, an air of seclusion and quietness surrounded me even though the main road was close by. The feelings were enhanced by walking over a small bridge surrounded by a carefully designed garden. Continuing down the walk toward the main office, you cannot help but notice the same kind of thoughtful landscape continuing throughout the resort in a manicured tropical sort of way. What a cool feeling! Later in the week, we took time for a tour of the botanic gardens from the on-site ethnobotanist, Rick, who was very personable, enjoyable, and captivating to listen to. This hour tour takes you to a whole new level of understanding and appreciation for the plants that surround you (this seemed like a quite unique feature for a resort). One other feature that stands out in my mind was the staff. The most friendly and caring staff I have ever come across. Everyone made me feel so comfortable and yes..relaxed! And yes, of course, at the end of each day the sunset overlooking the mangroves far off in the distance. Can it get any better?! I cannot get over how great I felt at the end of the week and how glad I was to have spent my time here. I would definitely recommend Kona Kai Resort, Gallery and Botanic Gardens to anyone who wants to get away from the rat race and appreciate the more subtle things in life.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Ricklmr1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Owner-KonaKai-Resort, Owner at Kona Kai Resort, Gallery & Botanic Garden, responded to this review, January 23, 2013
Dear Ricklmr1:
While this might have been "your first vacation in many years," we are thrilled to learn you enjoyed the resort and found our staff to be both friendly and caring. Everyone at Kona Kai works hard to see both our guests and our botanic garden visitors have an enjoyable and memorable time. Our Botanic Gardens, a non-profit that operates within our grounds to promote the importance of the interdependence between humans and plants, will be 2 years old this March, so it is especially important to us that you took note of the tropical gardens and the tour(s) our ethnobotanist does for registered resort guests such as yourself, as well as garden visitors who've made a tour appointment. We hope we your next vacation will not be "many years" away and thus hope to see you again soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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446 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    375
    46
    11
    7
    7
See reviews for
28
332
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (117)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Washington DC, District of Columbia
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 12, 2013

Great management, great location, nice villas. My wife and I were there over New Year's and will certainly go back at some point. It's a small place (though it does have its own tennis court), so if you're looking for an on-site restaurant, big fitness center, etc., then it's not for you, but for us, it was perfect.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank jandj2700
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cleveland, Ohio
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 9, 2013

We were one of the fortunate few to land at this beautiful oasis for a week. We found
ourselves transported to a paradise in December, unlike any other. Truly a jewel of the Keys...from its owners/employees who make it what it is, to the beautiful backdrop of nature - botanic gardens, on the water, gorgeous sunsets, etc. The staff is one of the amenities that is "top-notch". From the concierge who are so knowledgeable of the surroundings and make you feel right at home, to the friendliness and the little extras the housekeeping and other staff delivers. Not to mention the impeccable beauty of the gardens and the newly redecorated and furnished private suites nestled inconspicuously within the gardens. It was a "Garden of Eden" of sorts! We were there at an opportune time since the coconuts had just been harvested, and Rick, the ethnobotanist on staff, gave such an engaging tour of the gardens, and afterwards, we were able to experience and enjoy freshly tapped coconuts! If you are waiting for reassurance that this is the right resort for you...rest assured, along with relaxation, recreation, rejuvenation, refreshment...IT IS!! Reserve!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Linda H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sudbury, Canada
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 5, 2013

Probably the best kept grounds in FL, a nice stop for friendly advice and accomodation in Key Largo. This setting is best suited for a couple that wants a quiet getaway and will spend most of the day on site. The price is high compared to surrounding resorts but what you get is a quiet stay and good advice. Definitely a good place to go if you have never been to this part of Florida.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank MrSleuth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Staunton, Virginia
Level Contributor
19 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 4, 2013

We just returned from our fourth stay at Kona Kai. The resort is fantastic, and the staff is even better. Tracy and Denise understand customer service far better than most in the game. They will help you as much or as little as you like. It would be very difficult to be disappointed with any aspect of this resort.

Room Tip: Ask Tracy or Denise about rooms that are away from the bridge near the entrance if you want to sleep...
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank TraveltoDive01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level Contributor
20 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 29, 2012

This is a pricey resort, but it is worth it, in general. Small inconveniences are that the windows can't be opened (at least in the cottage where we stayed), and the water in the kitchen and bathroom sinks comes out in a trickle. That being said, everything else is just about perfect: the staff is very friendly and accommodating, and the setting is one of the most beautiful In which I have stayed: literally right on the water. The landscaping is very beautiful, too. There is free kayaking, paddleboating, tennis, and ping pong on the beach, in addition to swimming in the lovely pool for actvities. Overall, if you want to splurge, I say stay here.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank EEEontheroad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 28, 2012

My family and I, four of us total, stayed at the Kona Kai over Christmas of 2012. We had two suites, one for mom and dad and one for our two adult children.

The resort was quiet and relaxing. Among the various amenities we enjoyed: the kayaks that they have on the property, reading on their small beach area, enjoying the lush vegetation, and evening sunsets -- there's a great view directly to the west over the waater.

I don't know if it was because it was the Christmas time of the year, but we felt like we owned the place.

Our experience probably would have been markedly different had it not been for the spectacular weather -- but heck, the weather was spectacular! Sunny and mid seventies every day for four days.

We also spent some enjoyable time at the Pennekamp State Park, which is a short drive away.

Not an inexpensive stay, but it was really good!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Charlie A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kona Kai Resort, Gallery & Botanic Garden

Property: Kona Kai Resort, Gallery & Botanic Garden
Address: 97802 Overseas Hwy, MM 98, Key Largo, FL 33037-2229
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Florida Keys > Key Largo
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 17 B&Bs / Inns in Key Largo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Owned and operated by the same family since 1991 and a "Fodor’s Choice" selection since 2009, Kona Kai is a magical hideaway, teeming with the natural beauty of old Key Largo and hand polished into one of the most exclusive resorts in the Florida Keys. With all new accommodations in 2013, Kona Kai is reserved for adults. Offering highly praised personalized concierge service, Kona Kai is regularly recommended by leading travel publications and websites. SInce the 2011 addition of "The Botanic Gardens at Kona Kai," guests enjoy our gardens day and night; complimentary tours for all registered guests are offered by our staff ethnobotanist. Kona Kai is a classic Keys experience; the perfect alternative if you're seeking to avoid the crowds and formality of a big resort. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Kona Kai Resort & Gallery Hotel Key Largo
Kona Kai Resort And Gallery

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