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“Tropical paradise”
Review of Cheeca Lodge & Spa

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Cheeca Lodge & Spa
Ranked #7 of 19 Hotels in Islamorada
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
“Tropical paradise”
Reviewed December 14, 2012

Oh Cheeca lodge and spa! Went here for my 30 th wedding anniversary and oh what a wonderful place it is! From the moment to turn in to the resort drive you are transported to a place of beauty and excellent service. I felt like a Princess the entire 7 days I was there. The room was spectacular overlooking the ocean. We had the premiere ocean front king room and boy was it worth it! The tropical grounds with all the lush exotic foliage was like a wonderland in itself . I was like a little girl in a fairy tail. emily at the water sports hut was so friendly and helped me pick what sports I wanted. The chef and servers were amazing and helped me find great food for me even though I have so many allergies! I can't wait to go back for my 31 st wedding anniversary next ear and the year after that and so on and so on...how nice was it to come to my room and have it cleaned Ina timely manner and bed turn down service with chocolate mints on the night stand!

Room Tip: The main building is the newest and it seemed to have the best rooms available. The open air tub was...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Kelly S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Georgia
Level Contributor
47 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed December 13, 2012

Outstanding! The property is beautiful and I love all the secret pathways. Our room was a lagoon view, and very quiet/relaxing. The room itself had some electrical outlets that didn't work, and the lighting was dim. That is a very minor issue. The food was amazing, although pricey. We enjoyed the sushi bar, but I felt that it was overpriced, however, it was delicious. The breakfast was terrific,and the staff very friendly. Complimentary champagne at check in was a nice welcoming touch. I will definitely visit again, and plan a longer visit.

Room Tip: I visited in December and this was my first visit. I stayed in a 3rd floor lagoon view/double queen...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank njm54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kitchener, Canada
Level Contributor
52 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed December 13, 2012

Starting at the reception, friendly, fast and competent.
Rooms excellent, clean and tidy. Enough towels soap e.t.c.
Free Bike, which could use some WD40.
Pool area superb, nice Caribbean music but not too loud. You get the beat. Enough towels, fresh water, and not many overweight’s 
Bar could be a touch better. You should be able to get a Club Sandwich or something similar at all times.
We enjoyed our stay very much and will come back.

Room Tip: Rooms with even numbers face the ocean
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank WBa1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chesapeake Beach, Maryland
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed December 12, 2012

My wife and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary at Cheeca and can't stop thinking about it. The reviews we read on Trip Advisor helped us pick out this fabulous resort and we were not disappointed. The entire facility and staff are excellent and we have never had such a wonderful travel experience. Believe everything you have read in these reviews (unless it was negative!).

My wife has many food allergies and the chef spoke to her personally to make sure he could prepare something for her. He then made up a dish for her that was not on any menu and she was overwhelmed. We returned for meals multiple times and every time her special food needs were accommodated. For those of you that have food allergies or special food needs, you know how hard it can be to eat out, let alone get a wonderful meal.

All the staff was friendly and attentive and it is obvious that Cheeca chooses and trains their staff carefully. After a few days there, it seemed that they all knew us and what we liked. Although all the staff was very impressive, special thanks to a few people that really made us feel special...Emily at the water sports "desk" was informative and friendly and helped us plan our activities. Deanna at Limonchello helped us find foods that my wife could have and went above and beyond to accommodate us. Chef Kevin prepared special meals for my wife and personally came to our table to discuss options, you just don't get that very often. Paul and Omeil served us at breakfast multiple times and were so friendly and accommodating that I felt they really enjoyed what they do. Marcus at the pool/beach was always there when we needed him and really hustles.

We couldn't have chosen a better place to celebrate our anniversary and look forward to returning to Cheeca every year from now on.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Teefore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maryland, USA
Level Contributor
22 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 228 helpful votes
Reviewed December 10, 2012

I wish we had gone to Key West first, then Islamorada, rather than vice-versa. Once we experienced Cheeca, nothing in Key West would be anything but a step down. This resort is terrific. We had an Oceanfront Superior room in the main lodge. They put us on the 4th floor at the end by the elevator. The room was HUGE, with a wet bar, fridge, living area with a full-sized sectional sofa and coffee table, wall-mounted 50" flat screen HDTV, king bed and full desk. A sliding glass door led out to a large balcony with sun lounger, two chairs and table overlooking the tanning beach and ocean. The bathroom was big as well, with double glass bowl sinks, separate toilet room and a giant tile shower with full ocean view (or as much view as you were comfortable with - a white curtain could be opened or closed as needed). The shower had a large rainfall shower head, a standard shower head and a hand-held, so there were many options and plenty of room for two people. A second sliding glass door led to the outdoor soaking tub (no jets) on the balcony, where the water comes out of the ceiling (nice). All-in-all, one of the nicest rooms we've stayed in. They even sprayed some fragrance in the room after it was cleaned, and there was turn-down service nightly.

The resort itself has a bunch of activities. We played golf a couple of times (9-hole pitch-n-putt) as well as tennis. Since it was off-season, the resort was not crowded and we never had to wait to play. The golf course wasn't in the best condition, but it was still a lot of fun to swing the clubs and walk the course. We also walked the trails around the resort for exercise. They have a nice gym with newer equipment, plus bikes to check out that are also included in your resort fee. You can fish off their pier with no license required...the poles and reels are included, and they sell shrimp as bait for $10.

If you know the Keys, you'll no there are few to no natural beaches due the off-shore reef. Cheeca has built up a man-made "beach area" fronting the water, but at water's edge there are large rocks instead of sand. You can still enter the water, albeit very carefully, but we did not see many in the water swimming. Most in the water were on boats or kite-boarding. There is a water sports shack right by the pier that handles both the free activities as well as those you can arrange at additional cost.

There is a snorkeling lagoon with waterfall, two pools (one free-form near the ocean, with hot tub, and a lap pool next to the spa/gym area).

The restaurants were very good and the Tiki Bar was a lot of fun (football on big flat screens, while open-air by the water...what's not to like?). We had dinner at both Atlantic's Edge and Limoncello and enjoyed both, and watched Monday Night Football at the Tiki and ate at the bar (great bacon cheeseburger).

The staff at the Cheeca are absolutely wonderful - friendly, helpful and always ready with a smile. They go out of their way to make your stay welcoming and comfortable. A special shout out to Earl at the main gate, who told us when we first arrived "You're in for a treat" - and he was right. Also, Jade at the Atlantic's Edge who was our server and made us feel like family. She even gave us a water-color picture she painted with a personal note to help us remember our experience.

We never used the spa as we were there only 3 nights, but I'm sure it's great if it's anything like the rest of the resort.

Please note that this resort is pricey - rooms, food and drink - but I believe the quality of the resort supports the costs. The food and drink prices were not that much more than the off-resort restaurants in Islamorada we visited (Lazy Days, Blue Water Tiki and The Islamorada Fish Company).

All-in-all, the Cheeca Lodge and Spa is a great place to stay in Islamorada, and we highly recommend it.

Room Tip: We loved our room in the main lodge. The fourth floor we were on was the highest in the main lodge...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mark W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed December 9, 2012 via mobile

I booked Cheeca Lodge through Hotels.com for a standard room, which is still very nice. It was an anniversary trip for my wife and I. When I checked in they were overbooked for this room and gave us a free upgrade to an Ocean View King Suite!! It was an extremely large suite with a large balcony, biggest shower in the world, and a large outdoor bathtub, yes an outdoor bathtub with an ocean view! The rooms and resort look like Tommy Bahama designed it himself. It is amazingly beautiful. I also plan to return again with my two children. Kayak and paddle boards are included in the resort fee(not included in room price). Snorkel in the crystal clear water and see tropical fish and lobsters. Borrow a fishing pole and enjoy the long fishing pier with thousands of mangrove snappers beneath.They also have several programs and activities each day for children to learn about nature and the Keys. So while you relax on the beach in peace and quiet your kids are being entertained and educated all at the same time. I can't wait to return!

  • Stayed October 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank AWPuck
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fairfield CT
Level Contributor
112 reviews
55 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 173 helpful votes
Reviewed December 6, 2012

I had some reservations about booking the hotel with some of the negative reviews, but we were able to get a good rate by calling the reservation department directly and took them up on the offer.

When we arrived we were very pleasantly surprised. The property is beautiful, the bell captain knew who were we and that a box was waiting for us, the front desk check in easy and quick with a glass of champagne offered. Shannon checked us in, and I must say throughout our stay she was really first rate.

Then we went to the room. We had " one of the best rooms in the house" , it was 402 I believe.
As we approached the room, you could smell an overwhelming air freshener scent, which was really strong in the room. It was an awful orangey coverup smell, something you would sprinkle on the carpet and hoover up. We thought it would go away and opened up all the doors and windows, but after a few hours ( and a few coughing fits ) it was evident it was here to stay. I went to ask for another room and was given 102, ( after looking at a bungalow which had the same scent and was very dark and poorly kept up ) and told that was the only option left. We took it as there was no strong smell.
The room was nice enough. An outdoor tub I originally thought was a bit cheesy turned out to be great and we used it every night. A big shower with door to the outside, and plenty of room, with a little minibar with water included. One thing I really didn't like was there were no slippers offered, or ones I could buy. The carpet is dark brown and none too clean looking. I had to wear my flip flops the whole time, even in and out of the shower. Not sure why they offer really nice bathrobes, but no slippers, especially as they are called a Spa as well. Something you might want to bring if you're coming. The couch in all 3 rooms I went to were a bit rough looking, not sure I'd want to be sitting on them.
Back to room 102 - avoid at all costs if you want to actually sleep on your holiday. We had the most annoying, sleepless night. Drunk people from the bar literally yelling outside our room all night and then at 7am a photo crew directly under our window. Maintenance golf carts driving by at all hours. Just awful. My husband went to complain and we were moved once again. We were also compensated by the Manager for that night which we appreciated. This time to 310. This room was better, we still heard people at night though on the beach. Not the quietest property.
The best thing about the property is that it's very pretty, the common areas really nice with professional staff. The downside is that it's loud, some rooms very smelly with a coverup scent. Even the elevator had this smell from time to time, so I believe it was some "carpet refresher". They need to invest in something that doesn't smell like it came from a roadside motel.

I did go to the spa and I had a great massage from Kristen. The locker rooms are showing their age. I did enjoy the adults pool area. You can get drink and food service there, and the service was very nice.

Overall, if I'm in the area again, I probably will check out a different property nearby which I had looked at previously. The room we eventually ended up with was nice, but it was too much work to find it!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Sinclair36
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Cheeca Lodge & Spa

Property: Cheeca Lodge & Spa
Address: 81801 Overseas Highway, Mile Marker 82, Islamorada, FL 33036-3631
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Florida Keys > Islamorada
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Islamorada
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Islamorada
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Cheeca Lodge & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 214
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The "Queen of the Florida Keys", Cheeca Lodge & Spa has been an exclusive hideaway for celebrities, business leaders and U.S. Presidents for over 70 years. Set on 27 private oceanfront acres in Islamorada, Cheeca has been constructed with a porte-cochere entrance, traditional Florida Keys architecture, chic West Indies décor, and spirited tradition of “barefoot elegance” -- a term coined at Cheeca. Along with a new breakfast bistro and lobby bar, Cheeca boasts three distinctive restaurants: Nikai Sushi Bar and Lounge offering the Florida Keys’ freshest sushi, Asian-inspired fare and a unique selection of Japanese sake and wine; Atlantic’s Edge with a seasonal fine-dining menu of fresh local seafood, prime steaks and organic local produce; and its family-friendly Limoncello Italian restaurant serving up Tuscan favorites in a casually rustic setting. Cheeca Lodge & Spa features 2,400 square-feet of retail shops with a Cheeca Signature store featuring the latest designer fashions and accessories. An expanded roster of activities include offshore and backcountry fishing, parasailing, sightseeing, eco-tours, paddleboards, water trikes, kayaks, golf, tennis, pickleball, shuffleboard and more. The resort’s signature features include a classic 525’ wooden fishing pier, tropical gardens, crossing palms archway, nature trails, Tahitian-style Spa Lagoon, spectacular purple sunsets, 1100 feet of beaches, Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course, Camp Cheeca children’s environmental activity program, and access to world-class sportfishing. Located just 90 minutes south of Miami International Airport in the Florida Keys, Cheeca Lodge & Spa is just a few hours by air or drive from major East Coast U.S. cities. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cheeca Hotel Islamorada
Cheeca Resort Islamorada
Cheeca Lodge Florida
Cheeca Lodge And Spa
Cheeca Lodge Islamorada
Cheeca Lodge Spa

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