Do you know what happens when you have a baby? You get Mommy Brain (I swear it’s a thing- don’t argue with me!) and forget that you drafted this whole post about your babymoon. Thankfully, when your mom is visiting you, giving you some free time to do some blog housekeeping, you discover the draft (and a few others) sitting there, just waiting to be published. So that is exactly why I am sharing this babymoon recap 5 1/2 months after Autumn was born… derp…
When Price and I were looking around for places to go for our Babymoon we eyes places where we could get a nice tan since we needed some fun in the sun! Plus my Dr’s advised that we should stay in the U.S. incase anything happened, like pre-term labor. While that would be stressful, dealing with the baby’s omphalocele would make things extra complciated. So we eneded up focusing on Florida, The Sunshine State!
Price then found a great deal through Jet Blue. We like flying Jet Blue so he was checking out their vacation packages and found a great one including our flights, hotel stay, and a car rental. Win!
A silver Mustang convertable… a must!
We flew into Ft Laurderdale on a Thursday morning, grabbed our rental car, and headed south to The Keys. First we stopped off for some lunch and then for some pictures at the Homestead Race Track. We passed through Key Largo, Islamorada, Long Key, and then ended our drive at Duck Key. We pulled up to our hotel, Hawks Cay Resort, in the early evening.
A storm off to our West on our drive down to the keys
There are tons of shops and restaurants to check out on the way to/from the hotel. We did skip the shops since we didn’t want to get touristy T’s and sea shells but they are always fun to browse.
I do suggest stopping off at Robbie’s of Islamorada to feed the tarpons there. There is a restaurant there, where we enjoyed a fantastic, massive breakfast one day. Plus, there is a facility where you can feed the tarpons at the docks there. It is soooo much fun. But be careful since they jump and will get ya!
The Hawks Cay facility covers a large portion of Duck Key. There are plenty of options for where to stay and what to do, including a kids camp, marina, and plenty of tennis courts.
We stayed in the main area of the Hawks Cay Resort complex that had the hotel rooms and suites. But there are also rental villas in the Sunset Village, Sanctuary Village, and Harbor Village, and Marina Village. They range from attached 2 bedroom villas to detached 3 bedroom villas with private plunge pools.
The large beautiful lobby showcasing big fans and a water feature
We checked into our room to get our stuff put away and to explore the rest of the resort quickly. We had one of their standard rooms with a king size bed that was crafted in West Indies island decor syles. The room had a TV and plenty of outlets, which were great for using out laptop at the desk. There was plenty of room for our bags and for lounging around. The rooms have ceiling fans which was nice to circulate the air and keep things cool without having to blast the AC.
The room came at a great rate but it was extra affordable with the promotion of staying 3 nights and the 4th was free. When booking the room, keep in mind there is a daily $29 fee. The fee local and toll free phone calls, includes wireless Internet access, transportion throughout the resort, self and valet parking, and access to the Indies Club and Calm Waters Finess Center. As well unlimited use of the Putting course, Sports Field, hard and clay Tennis Courts.
Checking out the balcony
Price had requested that we have a water view room but in the end we ending up with a room that was back facing of the property. While at first glance it was disappointing to not get what we requested, we ultimately realized that we put us in that room because while he requested that we have a nice view he made note in the reservation that we have a quiet room. When we were at the pool we realized they put us in the back because the water view rooms were packed and adjacent to the pool.
The very large bathroom in our room
This would be such a nice bathroom to have at home! A big mirror, a seperate toilet from the rest of the space, plenty of hooks, and lots of counter space to use as well. Plus, it was well lit, which is always helpful when needing to check if you got your back completely covered with sunblock.
I do suggest being a bit careful in the shower. We found the floor a bit slippery.
The first night there we went to the ocean-fed saltwater lagoon and took dip in the water. It was nice and refreshing but if I am floating around in salt water I want some waves, which this did not have.
The large pool had plenty of chairs around the perimeter giving you the option of sitting in the sun or enjoying the shade with the umberella that is paired between every few chairs.
You have to sign out towels so be sure that you keep track of them. I suggest getting 2-3 per person so you have some to cover up the chair, which gets hot from the dark fabric, and for drying off after dipping in the water.
On our last day there we noticed on the map that there was a separate pool just on the other side of the Beach Grill. Such a bummer since it was the Tranquility Pool, which is reserved for guests 21 years of age or older. This would have eliminated our feelings towards the swarms of kids who though that used drink cups and their parents used metal beer bottles were appropriate toys for the pool although the staff kept telling them otherwise.
Next to the pool is a big fire pit with a lot of loungers around it. It was always nice to relax next to it at night when it was lit up!
While at the pool we often enjoyed food from the Beach Grill. You can either sit there and enjoy lunch (11am-5pm) or dinner (5pm-10pm) or have it served to you at the Resort Pool, Tranquility Pool and outdoor sandy dining area. For it being on site dining we felt it was pretty reasonably priced.
The food and drinks served were always fresh and really tasty. For example the Fish Tacos were realy good as the mahi mahi was marinated in fresh, local citrus juices and then grilled. The tacos were served with a green papaya slaw and chipotle mayo. They have several gluten-free options as well.
Price enjoyed some of the mixed drinks there including the Rum Punch Bucket from their 32 oz Rum Buckets of Fun menu. I on the other hand suck with water, iced tea, and virgin drinks. I had a virgin pina colada one day as a treat (yikes- lots of calories!) but only had it once because I was a bit bummed that the virgin version was $9 and a regular one is $10.
You do have to be careful when you are enjoying your meal as the sea gulls there are fearless and will try to steal your food if you are not careful. Do not leave it uncovered!
One day we got to watch the bottlenose dolphins at the Dolphin Connection perform some tricks while they were getting fed. Fonded in 1990, this is the only on-property resort dolphin program in the continental U.S. In 2010 Dolphin Connection became only the 2nd marine mammal facility to be accredited by the International Marine Animal Trainers Association (IMATA).
We didn’t partake in the variety of interactive programs they offered because I was pregnant. But there is a nice selction of things to do that have different levels of involvement with the dolphins from just sitting on the dock feeding them to swimming with them.
Ahh, doesn’t get much better than this!
Hawks Cay was in such a great location because it was midway through the keys giving us easy accessibility to plenty to do on the keys. We drove to Key West for a day trip and didn’t have too much of a drive from the Ft Lauderdale airport to the hotel either.
There are plenty of beaches, resturants, and things to do around Hawks Cay Resort. We suggest grabbing dinner The Wreck and Galley Grill and The Stuffed Pig for breakfast. We enjoyed both places very much. As well, dinner at Lazy Days South and Morada Bay Beach Cafe, which are a bit further away than the other 2 places but worth the drive.
We loved our vacation at Hawks Cay Resort! We will hold this vacation in a special place in our heart as it was our last vacation before our beautiful daughter arrived. As well, we got engaged after almost 9 years together on the docks at sunrise. We are looking forward to one day traveling back and staying there again!
Hawks Cay Resort
61 Hawks Cay Boulevard
Duck Key, FL 33050