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“Great getaway!”
Review of Island House

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Island House
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 3, 2007

OK - so the real deal is: Island House is amazing. The staff is friendly to a point where you'd think even as a first-time houseguest that you were long-lost relatives. The food was good (I won't go so far as some of the other reviewers - but it was good) and the facility was CLEAN. We had a 2BR apartment that was DELIGHTFUL - great appointments, clean (did I mention CLEAN). The beds were phenominal. The other guests were a great cross-section of the real world. It wasn't just twinks, it wasn't just daddies - it was everything - and we all created a very cool environment that most of us would agree should have come back home to our "real" communities. If you've ever done an AIDS ride and marveled at how well people got along - it's just like that, except you're not exhausted.

Come ready to have fun, drink a little, (ok, a lot in some cases) and laugh a lot. I'll be back for SURE.

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled with friends
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5  Thank PHXJeremy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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428 - 434 of 518 reviews

Reviewed July 30, 2007

I booked this trip at first thinking that some friends had stayed there and had liked it.. It was the wrong place but definitely one of the best getaways we have ever taken! Even extended our stay instead of going to Miami!!! Here you can do as much or as little as you want and not feel pressured or out of place!
The staff was unbelievable.... eye candy staff that actually has your interests in mind. The friendliest staff we have ever met anywhere in the world!!!
Pools were a bit too chlorinated but understandable! Rooms were clean and spacious(had a queen bed by the outside hot tub!), food was great. Only ate a slice of pizza outside the resort once cuz they had a great menu for b'fast, lunch, and dinner.
The best thing was that the age range was just what we needed!!! everything from early 20's to way up there!! We made friends alot more easily on this trip!!! already planning the next visit!!!
Thanks to everyone at Island House Key West!!!!!

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank lalabkvacationers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 15, 2007

It seems to me that there are folks that write reviews that don't seem to grasp the concept of what a 4 or 5 star property should consist of. I guess some reviews haven't had the privilege of staying at a true 4 or 5 star property... I don't know but I do know this. Island House is definitely not a 4 star property. I wouldn't even say it's a 3 star property. What Island House is is an expensive bathhouse. Pure and simple. When I saw that it was rated the best gay resort by a leading gay publication ..well I had to find out for myself. I've stayed at a few "gay" resorts but none has come close to the hype and all have really failed to deliver when it comes to a 4 or 5 star resort experience. Just because it's a "gay" resort does not mean that quality should be thrown out the window. As a gay man I expect quality when I'm paying over 300 dollars a night. I expect top of the line linens, ultra clean rooms, amenities that you can only get at a 4+star resort. The pluses. Aveda bath products. good. A nice cafe with acceptable food. good. The beds were relatively comfortable. Better than what I was expecting. Now the not so good. Uh...it was not what I would call the cleanest property. My room had a horrible stain on the wall...I don't even want to know what that was, the rug was ratty and smelled horribly. I had to put it in the closet. The drawers were dusty and had small insects. The airconditioner was barely adequate and covered in dust. The floor needed a good sweeping and a good cleaning. The bathroom tile had mold and needed a thorough cleaning, the entire property just neede thorough cleaning. The gym was hardly acceptable and basically the place just had a seedy quality about it. I don't have issues with nudity but I do have issues with the leering and out right permissiveness. Now this is not to say one can't have a good time. Yes, if your looking for sex. This is a great place but does that qualify it as a 4 or 5 star resort? No. Having a good time does not make any property a 4 or 5 star resort...I'm sure there are some that can have a hell of a good time at a Motel 6 but for the rates that Island House charges it really needs to kick it up. I guess why I'm so dissappointed is when I called to make my reservation I specifically asked if Island House had a bathhouse atmosphere and was told, no that it was an "upsale" men's resort. I would never classify Island House as upscale...so if your looking for an expensive bath house experience...Island House is the place but if your truly looking for a relaxing high end resort. Sadly I'd stay away from Island House. I'm still looking for a gay guesthouse that can live up to those standards but haven't yet found one yet and I think we need to stop settling.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled solo
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27  Thank swcosguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 11, 2007

We were slightly concerened that the Island House would be full of dirty old men after reading some of the reviews. Nothing could be further from the truth at least over Memorial Day. There was all kinds of ages, shapes sizes, and very little if any attitude. There is a great restaurant for breakfast and lunch (too many good restaurants on the island to eat dinner there), go to Louis...
Seriously, we had one of the best trips in a long time there. You can play around if you want, but it is not a must, and you can be social with your clothes on and not feel a prude. We will go back.

  • Stayed: May 2007, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank travelinggeek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 9, 2007

When planning our trip to Florida, my boyfriend and I wanted to stay at a gay-specific place while in Key West...we looked at all the websites and reviews of the gay guesthouses in Key West before choosing Island House. At first I was a little apprehensive of booking this hotel because we're a young couple in our 20's and some of the previous reviewers around our age commented somewhat negatively on the vibe and clientele of the place. Well, upon check-in all my worries went away, this place is awesome in so many ways! If I lived closer I would come here more frequently. If only Palm Springs had a guesthouse like this place. Booked the 1-bedroom apartment, which is actually across the street from the main complex. The apartment was very nicely appointed with a full kitchen, small living area, bedroom (had the most comfortable bed we've ever slept in) and private bathroom. Before staying here I thought the rates were a bit pricey (most gay guesthouses do cost more than standard hotels) but the discout given to college students (my boyfriend is in college) is very generous (20%) and was well worth it. All the facilties, from the steam room, to the sauna, to the video room, to the pool and sundeck, were immaculate (albeit they could take it easier on the chlorine), which is especially noteworthy considering all the "action" that goes on at this place. As for the clientele, it was actually a pretty diverse mix of guys, from locals who use day passes (most of which were very friendly), to the guys who were staying at the resort....I'd say the age range was around 22-60, averaging late 30's - early 40's, the majority of which are in decent shape and were for the most part friendly, not sketchy and talkative. The complimentary happy hour definitely helps break the ice. As for the staff, they were very friendly and fun, I even bumped into some of them out at the bars on Duval and had a great time just chatting it up over a few drinks. However, I think the best thing this place has going for it is the restaurant...the food is absolutely amazing! If I lived in Key West I would probably go there just for the food...okay, I probably wouldn't go there just for the food. (ha ha!) That leads me to another note, I wouldn't go here on some romantic couples-only weekend...this place is very sexually charged, and if you're going here to have "fun" you won't be dissapointed. Needless to say, my boyfriend and I had a very good time and look forward to come here again!

  • Stayed: May 2007, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank irvoc_78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2007

From the showround on arrival until the departure, the staff could not have been more friendly. Our room a standard as well appointed and very clean. The bathroom was a little small, but again well fitted just no more than 1 at a time. The whole place is well thought
out with a lovely sun deck above the pool area. I would certainly go back!

  • Stayed: May 2007, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Adsandkev
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 8, 2007

We regret that we didn't stay here for a few nights as we stayed at Albury Court around the corner but we purchased a day pass and it was wonderful!

They have everything you need there. You really don't have to leave. They have an awesome restaurant with fantastic food, an open bar (if you are staying overnight), 2 awesome jacuzzis and a pool, a sundeck over the restaurant area, beautiful rooms (we were given a tour), a nice gym and it's VERY clean. We didn't go into the steam room (as it was too strong with the Pine Sol scent) or the sauna (as it was just too hot).

Great service from Craig - sorry we didn't say goodbye), awesome drinks and excellent hospitality!!

You guys will like it here a lot!

  • Stayed: April 2007, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank thevopro
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 33040-6997
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Florida Keys > Key West
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 22 Specialty Lodging in Key West
Price Range: $85 - $399 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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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