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“A truly unique property” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Barnacle Bed and Breakfast

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Barnacle Bed and Breakfast
Ranked #1 of 4 Big Pine Key B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Toms River
Level Contributor
125 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 178 helpful votes
“A truly unique property”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 February 2013

My wife and I decided that it was time to visit the Keys. Although we wanted to visit Key West, we were not so sure that we would want to spend all of our time there. The more I read about the Big Pine Key area the more I realized that it would probably be the high point of our trip. The more I read about the Barnacle the more I felt that it could be the kind of place that we would like. I read the recent bad reviews from the folks from Kentucky but decided to give it a chance anyway. We were sure glad we did. We did not reserve a room ahead of time. We took a chance that one would be available. The cottage was priced a little too high for us so we had our choice of the two atrium rooms. I chose the Dolphin as it has a window which looks out onto the ocean. It had a flat screen tv and there was plenty of room. The two stained glass windows in our unit were awesome. We did not need to use the AC. The ceiling fan worked out just fine for us. We had a room to hang up our clothes in which also contained a small fridge. The shower is probably due for an update though. The controls are not only unique, but hard to use. I believe that the shower in the tarpon room is updated and more conventional. Eric's breakfasts were both pleasing to the eye as well as the palate. We were there for three nights so we got three different breakfasts. We had waffles with fresh fruit, orange juice, and coffee on the first morning. One day two we had eggs benedict. On the final morning we had pancakes dusted with sugar and syrup. No frozen waffles or pancakes here. . My wife and I both enjoy biking and kayaking which is one reason we felt that this would be the place for us. There were four cruiser style bikes available for use. Good helmets were there for anybody to use as well. We rode the bikes all along the street that the Inn is located on. We also found a trail closer to Route l located on a bend. We rode the bikes back there as far as we could go. We did not venture out onto the highway. The bikes were in good condition and none of the tires needed air. There are several kayaks to choose from. They are kept on a rack. They are of the sit on top variety. Think Malibu two. There are seat backs to use if you desire them.. I myself prefer them. Launching the kayak can be a bit of an adventure. Some may be put off by the fact that you must step through a lot of built up sea grass to reach the water. You will sink down a bit into it. This did not bother us however. Once you get to the water you can step in and begin to paddle. That is unless the tide is out. If it is you are going to have to walk the kayak out further before getting in. So water shoes are a must here to protect your feet from any coral that you may encounter. I spoke to Eric about installing a roll up combo wood rope walkway. You could then get over the soft grass area without sinking into it. Just roll it back up when not in use. I hope he takes my advice. Every morning the key deer would show up to get a drink out of the fountain in the back. They would come right up to you looking for treats. When driving at night on Big Pine Key out on the highway be aware that the speed limit drops to 35 miles per hour to help protect the deer. It is strictly enforced. You must visit Bahia Honda state park when you are there. The beach is beautiful. I did some snorkeling while there. Our room had its own cooler and we got some ice out of the ice machine. Our room also had beach towels for our use. We took along a couple of beach chairs. There was snorkeling gear for your use. I brought along my own mask and snorkel, but I did make use of the fins that the Barnacle provided. I really was looking forward to observe the night sky from the roof of the Barnacle, but unfortunately the moon was a little to bright. We did not use the little spa that was located right outside our room. To sum it up, if you are active people who enjoy nature and all it has to offer, the Barnacle could be just the ticket for you. If you are used to plush B&Bs with afternoon tea then you might want to keep on driving. That way you will not be disappointed and I and those like me will be assured of getting a room at the Barnacle. Thanks for a good time Eric.

Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank sheltercove
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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201 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (34)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Freeland, Maryland, United States
Level Contributor
13 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 January 2013

We stayed in the Blue Heron Cottage for a long weekend in January 2013. Wonderful, funky architecture with a 70's feel. The B & B is down a little traveled road on Big Pine Key. Key deer and iguanas abound on the property. The manager, Eric, makes wonderful breakfasts and was very helpful with anything we needed. Several beautiful outdoor seating area available for guests. If you are looking for a nice, low key place to get away from it all, this is just what you need. If you are looking for a fancy beach resort with lots of nightlife, go somewhere else and leave the place to those who will appreciate it.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Molly B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Louisville, Kentucky
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 December 2012

I stayed at the Barnacle Bed and Breakfast for a week. I would have left after one night but I was charged for the entire stay upon my arrival. Now I know why. One of the 16 bulbs surrounding the vanity mirror worked. Just one. The bathroom fan worked intermittantly.
One of the two reading lights over the bed didn't work. The room needed to be painted and the curling, yellowed wall-paper needed to be changed. The bicycles promised were non-functional despite having emailed and called to be certain of their availability. Breakfast was dissapointing since frozen waffles prevailed. The eggs were delcious, however, but mostly breakfast was of the heat and serve variety. A Friday night party by the host lasted until 3pm amid slamming doors and loud conversations. There no ice in the ice machine the next morning, but a sleep-over guest came wandering out just before breakfast looking dazed and searching for his keys. The food preperation area is filthy, overflowing trash, sticky counter tops, and a roach the size of my thumb one morning. The building shows many loving touches that are suffering beneath a malaise of inattention and neglect. It's a shame.

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Stephen B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BarnacleB10, Owner at Barnacle Bed and Breakfast, responded to this review, 9 January 2013
I am Jane, the owner of the Barnacle which is our home that we share with guests so they can enjoy Big Pine Key and the surrounding keys. We are very concerned about how our guests feel about their stay at the Barnacle. We hope that people will enjoy and wish to return as many of our guests do. Eric is a member of our family and has received very positive responses for other guests. He makes every effort to be helpful and kind. He will respond to your needs if you just ask. You may not see him because he is in the laundry room or working in the yard.
He makes the breakfast from scratch and I assure you that you were not served anything frozen.
The bikes did have flats that we had to wait to receive tires since we could not get those kind locally. They were ready the second day you were here.. If you had any issues with your room, you should have told us while you were here and we would have been happy to correct them.

You are able to leave if you are not happy with us. We do not force people to stay if they do not wish to stay. Your room rate was not $275 as your wife stated in the following review. We are sorry that you were disturbed, but we do have family over at special times and not very often. We try to kept our hours reasonable.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Louisville, Kentucky, United States
Level Contributor
15 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 December 2012

Good Lord, $275 for this. The current manager by the name of Eric was on staff there when we went the week of December 19, 2012. Whoever created this building in the beginning did a fabulous job because the design and everything is creative, funky and wonderful. But Eric, well.... he appears to be doing the minimal amount of work to just get by between hangovers. One night, he and the girlfriend (works at the local bar) had a party right outside our room, thanks. I was awake half the night. Everything is in disrepair and I see this lasting only a short time longer before somebody comes along and closes it down. Such a shame because the building itself is wonderful!!!

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Anne M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BarnacleB10, Front Office Manager at Barnacle Bed and Breakfast, responded to this review, 27 December 2012
We are sorry if your rest was disturbed on one night of your stay by a holiday get together of 5 people sitting by the ocean that was over between 11 - 12.
If your stay was so awful why would you stay 6 nights if this disturbance occurred the second night.
Why also would you call on the last night to see if the room was available for another night stay.
Every GREEN business only changes the towels every other day conserve water. And if you wanted daily maid service you should have asked. As it is not our policy to to come clean your room every day . And after six days its wasn't that dirty except for where you got some kind of white paint on the floor and the bed spread that took 4 hours to get up before the next guest arrived.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 November 2012

Best bed & breakfast in the Florida Keys. This lovely place is a great location for day trips to either Key Largo or Key West. Kayaks and bikes right there for guests to use. Wonderful breakfast with an ocean view. The Key deer and iguanas are fun to see too. Eric is a fun, friendly, and helpful host. The star gazing was amazing!

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank elizrayman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vicksburg, Mississippi
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 November 2012

I chose the Barnacle B&B for its cool, quirky architecture (built in the 70s with lots of arches, concrete curves, funky touches), beach access/view, and the inclusion of some toys (bicycles, kayaks, etc.). We stayed three nights and had three wonderful, different, colorful, hearty breakfasts... good job, Eric! Hubby and I rode bicycles (do check if you need to air the tires). Bikes are cruisers so refresh your memory on how to put on the brakes! We rode only on Long Beach Drive which if you make a complete loop you'll travel 4.5 miles. We also braved the muck of the seaweed to take a double/tandem kayak out for an afternoon. Take it out at high tide (tide runs every 6 hours) to minimize the sinking in the seaweed... I wore water shoes for protection from the rocks and gunk. Tim (owner/Eric's step dad), Eric and Eric's girlfriend (sorry, I never got your name) stayed busy working on property so were often available to answer questions and give advice for local eateries and attractions. No snorkel gear was available as it had all disappeared or been damaged and removed. There was a small hot tub available in the Atrium common area which we never tried. Also there was a larger one outside for which parts had been ordered. We loved talking to the other guests from all parts of the US. Maps with pins show visitors from all over the world have stayed here. Hammock in the tiki hut was great for napping. Climb up to the roof for stargazing. The key deer were so tame and plentiful around the house and on the road (you are in a protected habitat). The odor was noticeable (but for us it smelled like someone had been boiling peanuts), but we got used to it so that it was not offensive. We would definitely stay here again.

Room Tip: We had one of the two Atrium Rooms (I think Dolphin) which was spacious and comfortable. We never t...
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank AnitaMargarita51
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
41 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 November 2012 via mobile

We stayed in the Cottage at this bed & breakfast and it was great. It may be a little small for some people especially the shower. There isn't really any complaints about this place. People have said it before about the Seaweed but it is the Keys & Big Pine so that will always be something there. There is really no reason to give this place a bad review for that. It is just Nature. So if you want to stay somewhere that is cozy and has the most comfortable bed ever!! Stay in the Cottage. You also feel like you are in your own little private island because you will be nesseled between trees! it is great!

I made 2 videos of the Cottage which is the room we stayed in and also of the outside area and beach front and also the inside of the main house. Other than me and other people writing reviews, watching videos is a great way to see what this place is really like. So I wanted to post the links to my You Tube videos for people to watch and help you decide if this may be the place for you.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rCyrWLrbr24&feature=share&list=UUrDMe0fl2yeyZhkqrF_2hog

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tr94_PYGaU4&feature=share&list=UUrDMe0fl2yeyZhkqrF_2hog

If the videos are not popping up for any reason my You Tube name is ButterFlyKey422

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Butterflykey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Barnacle Bed and Breakfast

Property: Barnacle Bed and Breakfast
Address: 1557 Long Beach Dr, Big Pine Key, FL 33043-3511
Region: United States > Florida > Florida Keys > Big Pine Key
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 B&Bs / Inns in Big Pine Key
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3 star — Barnacle Bed and Breakfast 3*
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to the Barnacle! We are a bed and breakfast in Big Pine Key, FL which is about 30 miles from Key West. Our place is peaceful and very quaint. A perfect place to get away from the hustle of everday life, but still close enough to Key West to enjoy a day downtown. We pride ourselves on making your stay the most memorable and relaxing experience that you have ever had at a b&b, with excellent gourmet breakfasts and bbq's in the evening to reflect on the days activities while you watch the sun sink into the Atlantic Ocean. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Barnacle b&b
Barnacle Hotel Big Pine Key
Barnacle Bed And Breakfast Big Pine Key, Florida Keys

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