photos by Barry Fitzgerald
If you have ever had the fortune to wander the historic streets and lanes of Key West's famous seaport neighborhood then you know how time seems to stand still. Yet right in the heart of Key West's bustling seaport this blissfully ideal cottage-style house offers all the amenities one could desire in a home away from home. While at first glance authentic landmark architecture makes it easy to imagine life at a simpler time, the interior of the Port Side Perfection vacation rental offers all the most modern conveniences and updates including state-of-the art electronics.
A celebration of island style is made imminent throughout the interior of the house with soft modern tropical furnishings and a beautiful display of tropical artwork by local artists. The feel is both cheerful and comfortable. Just inside the front door, the long beautiful hallway leads to a spacious open and airy newly renovated living room, dining room and kitchen. Quintessential French doors lead to the gorgeous private back yard with generous size free form pool, complete with trickling waterfall that dances in the sunlight. A manicured display of tropical foliage surrounds the parameter of the back yard and makes the pool feel like an island paradise. When I first walked into this idyllic back courtyard I felt like I was in a little private oasis and couldn't believe I was in the heart of the historic seaport.
Back inside the Port Side Perfection, along the north wall near the dining room, is a unique and an impressive built-in office space. This wooden cabinetry space was a special design by the owner who works remotely while in Key West, and will serve the same for the guest who decides to make this his or her Key West home-away-from-home. The living room is just as inviting. Comfortable colorful sofas provide the perfect place to stretch out and watch the large plasma TV.
There are two artfully decorated and comfortable bedrooms in the house. The master suite is upstairs and encompasses the entire second floor. We call this the "flamingo room" as the owners have placed local art work that fancifully captures this theme. The master bedroom is half-story but there is plenty of space to stand up and move about comfortably, even for a tall person like myself. Windows are dormered and custom wooden cabinets and closets are built-in to maximize space. The bedroom offers a king size bed and a loveseat to lounge in. The nice-sized private bathroom off the master bedroom is made light and cheery with glass block window tiles. The shower is large and the there is plenty of vanity space for primping.
The second bedroom is down stairs and has a king size bed. We call this bedroom the "butterfly room". Again, the choice of upbeat and playful art has created a cheerfully creative bedroom. Artful ceramic butterflies adorn the walls in a pattern as if they just flew in and landed. The second full bathroom for this home is just down the hall near the office. This bathroom offers a bath tub for those who love the evening soak.
To summarize: This house was built in the time when this island seaport was as major stopping point for world traders and sheltered the islands' original demographic mix of landowners and cigar makers, adventurers and pirates, merchants and ship builders, artisans and fishermen. However, a stay at this vacation rental will show you that authenticity need not require a compromise of the most modern interior comforts and updates.
Master bedroom - king size bed
Second bedroom - king size bed
This home is offered as an exclusive vacation rental in the most requested location in Key West. The property will not tolerate smoking inside. This property is best suited for adults. Older children may be possible but must be well behaved. This property is far from child-proof. We do not accept guests under 25 years of age unless accompanied by a family group or guardian.
Amenities: Private Swimming pool with waterfall and tropical landscaping. Fully fenced and private, fully equipped kitchen, complete office including internet access, plasma TV, stereo, central a/c, telephone, all linens and towels provided, just 1.5 streets from the dock at the Historic Seaport. Maid service on request.
Activities: Heart of Key West's designated Historic Seaport District. Walk to all old town features, no need for a car. Just 3 1/2 streets to Duval St., close to Mallory Square, and a few short streets from Historic Seaport and retailers (remember it takes 3 to 4 Key West streets to equal the distance of a typical city block). Sailing, boating, diving, museums, nightlife. Conveniently located to gourmet grocery shopping with excellent wine selection, sushi deli, and butcher. Close to shopping, art galleries, and a variety of national and international restaurants, coffee shops. Close to the beach.
Area: The famous historic Old Town Key West waterfront on the gulf side of the island and the original lower Duval Street area, encompasses this district. Here the founding fathers and mothers of the late 1800's built the first shipping docks and warehouses, restaurants and grand homes, that stand today as one of the largest and most impressive collection of turn-of-the-century architecture. From larger Greek Revival Victorians to charming shot gun cottages, many of these alluring structures have been restored and renovated to stand in their gleaming glory and some are available to rent. Today this district includes famous waterfront restaurants and bars, retail stores, museums, fishing and sailing charters, a large variety of historic homes, and Mallory Square. Walk to the Mallory Square Sunset Celebration in 5 to 10 minutes.
Restrictions: Smoke free house. Only well behaved children. No pets please.