Oh, the choices for guests at The Moorings Village (from $459/night; www.themooringsvillage.com): Read a book on your porch, gazing at surf and sand. Grab a kayak and gently stroke across the water. Walk to the end of the dock and settle into a solitary hammock or take a swim in the perfectly temperate pool.
There’s no better spot for breakfast than your very own villa.
Halfway between Miami and Key West — less than a two-hour drive past gumdrop-colored motels, seafood shacks, dive shops, and, of course, water — The Moorings is a tropical idyll in the heart of the Florida Keys. Eighteen luxurious stand-alone villas are spread across an equal number of gorgeous acres, where orchids cling to trees, coconut palms (more than 800 are on-premises) bend gracefully, and salty breezes beckon. It doesn’t take long for the rest of the world to feel very far away.
You won’t have to fight any crowds for a beachfront hammock at The Moorings.
One, two, and three-bedroom villas have shutters the colors of tropical flowers and wide, spacious porches just steps from the private beach, where rope hammocks, wooden chaises, kayaks, and paddleboards are there for the taking. Inside, comfy furniture in soothing neutrals is accented with evocative plantation-style pieces. Luxurious baths, fully equipped kitchens, and washers and dryers make your villa a home away from home. The couldn’t-be-nicer staff that’s there when you want them, but out of sight when you don’t, will pre-stock your kitchen for a light dinner or an indulgent breakfast.
The sun rises at the beach and sets at Morada Bay, which is right across the road. There, you’ll find the two restaurants run by The Moorings: elegant Pierre’s and the casual Beach Café, where you can reserve a table in the sand, order some fish tacos or curried shrimp, and watch the day end as beautifully as it began.