Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

October 23, 2021
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Florida for underUS$200 a night

KEY WEST  If your idea of fun in the sun includes a mishmash of restaurants, museums, shops and laid-back locals, then book a room at the Avalon Bed and Breakfast, located on the quieter end of Duval Street, minutes from all of Key West's nightlife. Built in 1895 by a Cuban physician, the Victorian house was a hotel, hospital and boarding house before it opened as a B&B. Boasting high, colonial-style ceilings and decorated with a tropical flair, the B&B has 19 rooms with hardwood floors and one or two queen-sized beds draped with canopy nets. All the rooms have their own bathroom, mini fridge and ceiling fan. There's also A/C for those who find the city's average of 26°C too hot to handle. If you'd like a little more space and a lot more privacy, there's a cottage, with a king-size bed and queen-size sleeper sofa, behind the main house. High-season room rates between December and April start at US$169, including breakfast, but throughout January and April, small queen rooms are US$129. The cottage will set you back US$239. Kids are welcome, but only if they mind their manners. (800) 848-1317.

SIESTA KEY  Does beachcombing with the kids sound like a better vacation? Then set your sights on Siesta Key Suites on Siesta Key, a 12-kilometre-long barrier island outside of Sarasota. Made up of five buildings, one of which is a circa 1920 Spanish-style hacienda owned by a member of the Ringling family, the property is a hop, skip and a jump from the beach, which is always crowded with families. Its 20 units are decorated individually, but all are painted in either blue, green or pink -- classic Florida colours. Its one-bedroom rooms have queen- or king-size beds and sleeper sofas in the living room, while its two-bedroom suites have queen or king beds, a pair of twins, as well as a sleeper sofa. All have kitchens and include linens and towels. Guests also have access to three pools, beach chairs and umbrellas, as well as barbecue grills. High-season rates start at US$165 a night or US$900 a week. A three-night minimum is required, but a one-week minimum may be required during high season. (888) 897-9919.

SANIBEL ISLAND  Dreaming of an island minus the highrises? Enter Sanibel Island, voted one of North America's top islands in Condé Nast's 2006 Readers Choice Awards. And why not? Measuring almost 20 kilometres long and eight kilometres wide, the barrier island, located 23 kilometres west of Fort Myers, is largely without bright lights (not even stoplights) and noise. While there, stay at the Tarpon Tale Inn on Periwinkle Way, the island's main street. Built in the 1960s, the building was completely renovated in 1996. It consists of five attached cottages and three suites ranging in size from 28 to 65 square metres. All of the cottages have queen-sized beds, full kitchens equipped with fridges and stoves as well as their own patios. The suites have mini fridges and microwaves. High-season suite rates start at US$149 a night or US$973 a week; cottages start at US$189 a night or US$1253 a week. Rates include breakfast, beach chairs, umbrellas and towels, as well as two adult bikes. (888) 345-0939.

This article was accurate when it was published. Please confirm rates and details directly with the companies in question.