We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

trip report from the Swedes!

Which Key West hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
Gothenburg, Sweden
Level Contributor
84 posts
27 reviews
Save Topic
trip report from the Swedes!

Trip report Feb 25 - Mar 11

We went to KW for our honeymoon and for once we had no more plans than relaxing; eating, drinking and getting some sun (we usually move a lot on vacation). This was our 2nd visit.

Since it's a pretty long stay I'll write down some highs and lows and mark them with stars (5* being outstanding, 1* being poor), and write a short summary. We of course eat at more places and did more things.

Duval Inn: 3*

We stayed at the Duval Inn after reading the (very) good reviews it has here on TA. We stayed in the Mango room which according to their webpage is newly renovated. Either the info on the site is wrong (Rosie said they are about to renovate) or the work has been done by a monkey. the room looked dated, and we had some problems with various bugs and dampness etc... We did however liked the location in the middle of everything, the staff was great, especially Mary Lou! We liked the breakfast and the happy hour. A decent place for the money and perhaps the other rooms are better but i can't really agree with all the 5* reviews it's getting.

Seven Fish: 5*

We tried to get a reservation to this tiny place for several nights and when we did we had one of our best meals in KW. Staff was very attentive and friendly and the food was superb. Go there!

Blue Heaven: 5*

A favorite from our last visit. Lived up to our memories and the food was great. Had a fun time in the bar before and after our meal.

Michaels: 5*

Waited until our last night to go here. I had the Veal chop recommended by Mary Lou and it was perfect. Nice quiet bar area and outdoor setting.

Santiagos Bodega: 4*

Being from Sweden, where Tapas is very big, and frequent visitors to Spain we had high expectations on this place. We really liked the food and that they had picked dishes from several different countries. It’s interesting that they “warn” you of the small plates. By far the biggest tapas portions I’ve ever had =)

Mangia Mangia: 4*

Great food – modest prices! Only small, small setback was that they added gratuity automatically to our check, we’d planned to tip the same amount but I don’t care for it anyway.

Blackfin: 4*

Great food and wine, uneven service.

Hogfish (stock island): 5*

Great, simple food and a nice place to have a beer or two on the docks.

Kelly’s : 3*

Nice setting but so-so food. Should have had the drinks only.

B.O’s fishwagon: 5*

Also an old favorite. Great fish sandwiches and relaxed vibe.

Green Parrot: 4*

Great place for beer, drinks and hearing a band, or playing the jukebox if none are playing. A come-as-you-are place that suites us perfectly.

Point5 (above 915 Duval): 5*

We usually went here sometime every day. Perfect for a glass of wine or two and some beers. Nice bar where it’s easy to connect and talk with people.

Things we didn’t really like:

Duval st – this place was even worse than I remembered. One big tourist trap whit jacked up prices and sub-par service. And the T-shirt places, really? Does anyone really think those T-shirts are funny (obviously they sell a lot of them).

The cruise ships – I understand that they bring in a lot of money to KW and I guess they are needed. They look really ugly when they are in front of Westin and Mallory Sq. The tourists do a quick walk/tour down to southernmostpoint via Hemingway house and then crowd Duval buying shirts. I really think KW has got to watch out so it doesn’t become just a tourist attraction in itself rather than a real town.

Spring break – I would lie if I said that I don’t like half naked college chicks… but not when they are accompanied by 15 guys from the football team screaming uuhhh! the whole time. Smathers beach was packed with kids funneling beer and a lot of the bars and restaurants as well, not just on Duval.

The weather – not much to do but accept it.

Note that the grades I put down are not purely for the quality of food. Sometimes a Mahi sandwich and a beer in a relaxed place is as good as veal chops…

If someone has questions or agree/disagree, plz post a reply

Lafayette, Louisiana
Level Contributor
87 posts
9 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

Enjoyed your trip report. We are going to check out Seven Fish the next trip down. We also really enjoyed Blue heaven also. I agree with you on some of the reviews you see on the places. to stay. As far as the rating on places to stay, we also faced the same at Marreo's also. Seen a lot of 5 rating but was disappointed with our stay there. It need updated also. I agree on the the t-shirts also. All we heard was "five dollars" .

Mishawaka, IN
Level Contributor
175 posts
36 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

Great report! You echo my feelings on the T-Shirt shops.

Athens, Tennessee
Level Contributor
2,483 posts
37 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

Great report! I agree about the t shirt shops. However, I don't know if they ever actually sell any of the "4 letter word" variety. I think they just move them around occaisonally.

SDT
Key West
Destination Expert
for Key West
Level Contributor
9,330 posts
145 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

Great report. I agree it is tough to balance the money the ships bring in and the negative impact on the town. It is a source of endless debate in town. This year many of the Florida schools were on break at the same time (this past week). It is the most crowded with spring breakers I have seen in a long time.

Western...
Level Contributor
3,800 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

Great report, like the way you put it together. We love to walk Duval St, agree with your view of it but KW is a vacation town with something for everybody. You can alway find a place at least close to what you are looking for you just need to learn where to look.

PJ

Grand Rapids mi
Destination Expert
for South Haven
Level Contributor
1,744 posts
43 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

Thanks for the trip report. loved the ratings.

Minneapolis...
Level Contributor
187 posts
Save Reply
7. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

I like your report too.One of the better ones put together.Your rating system,along with some commentary and facts made it a good trip report.Thanks for writing.

Naperville, Illinois
Level Contributor
3,165 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

Thanks for the report, somehow it makes my countdown more bearable. You hit a lot of our favorite places. I can't wait to try Blackfin in a few weeks. What did you have there?

Hamilton, Canada
Level Contributor
72 posts
40 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

I had the same problem at Mangia Mangia but didn't notice that they had added the tip till we got home. and we had left a hefty tip. I contacted them and they added what they took off back onto my card quickly

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
652 posts
84 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: trip report from the Swedes!

Great report! The thing about the rating of B & B's (and everything else!) is that everyone has their favorite and there really isn't any way to discern your taste from anyone else's. We've wanted to give Marreo's a try (mostly because of the CO pool) but haven't because of the reviews about cleanliness and need for updating. We've loved BO's Fish Wagon for years but some of our friends were put off by the decor (losers!). Now that I finally figured out to use TripAdvisors forums as guides (not a bible), it's made my planning so much easier. For instance, your report has given me great ideas. I find the reports are more helpful than the rating system.