Six Tampa Bay staycation hotels worth visiting after all the Super Bowl visitors leave

Or, you know, for Valentine’s Day.

click to enlarge Waterline Marina Resort and the Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch & Shorebird Monitoring established a relationship where the resort supports efforts to maintain a suitable habitat for sea turtles, shorebirds, and the rest of the island. - CHOICE PHOTOGRAPHY
Choice Photography
Waterline Marina Resort and the Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch & Shorebird Monitoring established a relationship where the resort supports efforts to maintain a suitable habitat for sea turtles, shorebirds, and the rest of the island.

When couples' travel plans were canceled at the beginning of last year, getaway ideas quickly pivoted into safer, closer-to-home ideas like staycations. A staycation offers a break from everyday life and makes room for couples to reconnect and recharge their batteries.

From different food options ranging from room service to restaurants and various amenities, Tampa Bay has a plethora of hotels and resorts to choose from. These Tampa Bay hotels offer the chance to book a change of scenery views no one can resist. 

Waterline Marina Resort
5325 Marina Dr., Holmes Beach, 941-238-6262. waterlineresort.com

Tired of your own four walls and ready for a change? Waterline Marina Resort in Anna Maria Island embraces the Old Florida vibes from way back when. Picture it: the white sandy beaches and crystal-clear water right outside your window. Anna Maria Island is full of awesome adventures for visitors to enjoy themselves. Waterline Marina Resort and the Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch & Shorebird Monitoring established a relationship where the resort supports efforts to maintain a suitable habitat for sea turtles, shorebirds, and the rest of the island. 

After a full day of exploring, choose a hearty meal at Waterline’s restaurant Chateau Anna Maria, where Food Network personalities Buddy Foy, Jr. and his wife Jennifer (of the show “Summer Rush”) took inspiration from their upstate New York restaurant The Chateau on the Lake to turn the Chateau  into a “gastronomic destination”. 

A resort style pool with a sun deck extends out to a 50-slip marina for all your fun water activities like guided fishing tours and sunset cruises. Guests are more than welcome to pull up in their own boats, too. Complimentary transport to Manatee Beach is an option when you really want to feel like you’re not in Florida anymore. Waterline Marina Resort is close to attractions in Bradenton and Sarasota like The Ringling Museum and St. Armands Circle. 

Rooms start at $479. Guests can select from a choice of view, outdoor, space, and location for the ultimate experience. 

 

click to enlarge Amarillo Mixto at Hotel Haya in Ybor City, Florida. - AMY PEZZICARA
Amy Pezzicara
Amarillo Mixto at Hotel Haya in Ybor City, Florida.

Hotel Haya
1412 E 7th Ave., Ybor City, 813-568-1200. hotelhaya.com

Tampa’s newest boutique hotel is located in the heart of Ybor City. While you’re there, dine at any one of its three restaurant options: the Latin American, Mediterranean, and Gulf Coast flavors of Flor Fina, which is launching brunch service on Valentine’s Day; Cuban coffees and empanadas of Café Quiquiriqui, and the shareable bites and cocktails of the pool Bar 

Rooms start at $143 for the king, to balcony king suite for $332. Hotel Haya is running two specials for couples to choose from: 

A Valentine’s Day hotel/brunch package starting at $229 and includes brunch for two, a bottle of cava, a signature Haya candle by locally-and-family-owned Seventh Avenue Apothecary. The “Let’s Stay Together” package, where guests who dine at the hotel receive a special rate for same day hotel stays until March 31.

Hotel Haya follows all local and CDC guidelines regarding COVID-19. The hotel has developed several safety measures for guests including enforcing masks, electrostatic spraying, and hand sanitizer stations located around the hotel. 

click to enlarge The JW Marriott implemented a variety of COVID-19 protocols and practices for guest safety including rooms being deep cleaned and disinfected prior to guests’ arrival, mandatory masks, socially-distanced seating, staff wearing PPE at all times. - COURTESY
Courtesy
The JW Marriott implemented a variety of COVID-19 protocols and practices for guest safety including rooms being deep cleaned and disinfected prior to guests’ arrival, mandatory masks, socially-distanced seating, staff wearing PPE at all times.

JW Marriott Tampa Water Street 
510 Water St., Tampa, 813-221-4950. marriott.com

Water Street is slowly coming together as a soon-to-be popular hotspot in the city. Inside this 26-floor hotel are a slew of amenities to ensure guests feel the best about themselves: full-service Spa by JW, fitness center, pool, and meeting spaces. Guests are also allowed to enjoy the amenities at the nearby sister hotel Tampa Marriott Water Street, accessible via a catwalk linking the two hotels. Room service is cool but dress up for a night at their restaurants Six (stylized “SIX”) and Driftlight Lounge or go casual at the JW Market. Although lower than expected, occupancy is steady due to NBA and NHL teams booking rooms and people looking for short getaways.

Looking for something to do with your significant other for Valentine’s Day? Anchor and Brine’s Chef Billy put together a special a la carte menu ($8-$90) featuring a pan-seared beef filet and grilled cobia with drinks and dessert. For couples looking to get away for a spell, the hotel has the “JW Indulgence Package”, where guests receive over $100 in value adds like breakfast for two, welcome cocktails, valet parking, and a 3 p.m. checkout time the following day.  

Choose from several luxurious rooms starting at $293, each boasting crazy waterfront views from Channelside and the Hillsborough River. The JW Marriott implemented a variety of COVID-19 protocols and practices for guest safety including rooms being deep cleaned and disinfected prior to guests’ arrival, mandatory masks, socially-distanced seating, staff wearing PPE at all times.

click to enlarge Nestled on about 1,000 acres in Palm Harbor, Innisbrook offers guests experiences and luxuries from golf to swimming pools to amazing spa packages - COURTESY
Courtesy
Nestled on about 1,000 acres in Palm Harbor, Innisbrook offers guests experiences and luxuries from golf to swimming pools to amazing spa packages


Innisbrook Golf and Spa Resort 
36750 U.S. Hwy 19 N, Palm Harbor, 888-794-8627. innisbrookgolfresort.com

Nestled on about 1,000 acres in Palm Harbor, Innisbrook offers guests experiences and luxuries from golf to swimming pools to amazing spa packages. It’s no wonder it hosts the PGA Tour’s Valspar Championship every March. Several of Tampa Bay’s attractions are within an hour’s drive of the resort. 

The restaurant offerings range from light bites at Market Salamander Grille & Bar, Turnberry Pub, and Grill at Loch Ness to steaks and seafood at Packard’s Steakhouse. Just FYI, Innisbrook is a cashless facility. That means any kind of transaction is charged to either your Innisbrook account, guest room, or credit card. 

In celebration of Valentine’s Day, Packard’s Steakhouse put together a couples dining experience that is open to resort guests and the public. The four-course event includes dishes like Okinawa sweet potato soup, grilled oysters, whole Cornish game hen, and a chocolate fondant tart for dessert ($82-125). Couples are welcome to enjoy Salamander Spa for side-by-side spa packages in the couples room with complimentary wine or champagne.  

Book a room for two starting at $179.25 for a deluxe guest room up to the two-bedroom suite for $321.75. Fortunately, COVID-19 hasn’t hurt Innisbrook too much in terms of visitors. Golf groups and enthusiasts like the facility because of the social distancing protocols on the golf court and hotel. Staff is temperature checked daily prior to entering plus other safety measures include mandatory masks, and surfaces are frequently cleaned with hospital-grade disinfectants. 

click to enlarge “The Legendary Pink Palace of St. Pete Beach” just finished up 3 years’ worth of renovations embracing its history as a beloved Gulf Coast icon. - BREAD & BUTTER PR
Bread & Butter PR
“The Legendary Pink Palace of St. Pete Beach” just finished up 3 years’ worth of renovations embracing its history as a beloved Gulf Coast icon.

The Don CeSar
3400 Gulf Blvd., St. Pete Beach, 844-338-1501. doncesar.com 

“The Legendary Pink Palace of St. Pete Beach” just finished up 3 years’ worth of renovations embracing its history as a beloved Gulf Coast icon. Guest rooms have a beach-inspired look that’s perfect for sitting and soaking up sun rays while enjoying the coastal views. Their suites, equipped with spacious work areas and separate living areas, are the homes away from home we need for a quick weekend adventure. 

Romance is alive and well at The Don CeSar with the “Legendary Romance Package”, which comes with a two-night stay of upgraded accommodations, valet parking, and two complimentary drinks. To celebrate the completion of the renovations, The Don CeSar offers its Dream.Eat. Beach. Package with rates starting at $299, inclusive accommodations, daily breakfast for two at new restaurant Society Table and a waived resort fee. Florida and Georgia residents can take advantage of a 15% discount and $50 resort credit with valid ID at check-in.

The Don CeSar has several health and safety protocols provided by local health authorities, and CDC, and other government agencies. Staff members must wash hands hourly and immediately after sneezing, touching their face, or cleaning. Hand sanitizer is available all over hotel premises and masks are mandatory.

click to enlarge Romance packages are offered year-round at Tradewinds on St. Pete Beach, Florida. - TRADEWINDS ISLAND RESORT
TradeWinds Island Resort
Romance packages are offered year-round at Tradewinds on St. Pete Beach, Florida.


TradeWinds Island Resort
5500 Gulf Blvd., St. Pete Beach, 877-528-5000. tradewindsresorts.com

The sprawling resort is located right on the Gulf of Mexico, allowing guests ample time to socially distance on the beach for outdoor activities. TradeWinds offers suites at their Island Grand and RumFish Beach Resorts to give guests plenty of room for everyone to move around. If you don’t want to leave your four-legged family members, several pet-friendly suites and pet packages are available. 

Dining options are plentiful, ranging from bars to grab-and go. Sit on the beach and sip cocktails at Salty’s Tiki Bar and Beach Lounge or The Sandbar. If you’re interested in fancier options, try Bermudas Restaurant or RumFish Grill. Special V-Day menus, in addition to their regular menus, will be available at restaurants Palm Court Italian Grill and RumFish Grill on Feb. 14 starting at 5 p.m. 

Why wait for Valentine’s Day to do something special for your SO? Romance packages are offered year-round. Until the end of February, couples can take advantage of the “More to Love” package, which comes with a two-night stay, a $100 certificate for dinner at RumFish Grill or Palm Court Italian Grill, and more. Currently, the resort has a Florida resident rate with prices starting at $224 during February (mid-week rates tend to be lower than weekend rates btw). 

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