Monthly Archives: December 2012

Holiday Shopping in Key West…

We know it’s easy to forget that while you’re lazing by the pools here at Parrot Key Hotel and Resort, your friends are back home shoveling their cars out of the freshly fallen snow.

We don’t blame you. Sometimes we forget that snow even exists.

But, in the spirit of the holidays, might we suggest that you put a smile on the face of those you left behind bringing them back a little piece of paradise? (None of these shops are advertisers with us, or have cajoled us into mentioning them…we just love them!)

There are so many great options for holiday gifts around town that it’s hard to choose, but here are some of our favorite places to shop for your loved ones– places to find quality, local Key West items that won’t break the bank.

First up, we suggest that you head on down to Petronia Street in Bahama Village and visit two of our favorite boutiques, Beseme Mucho and Wanderlust. The former has everything from hand crafted jewelry and exotic perfumes to luscious edibles and hard-to-find homeware (with a store so gorgeous we constantly threaten to set up permanent camp there) and the latter has an excellent array of women’s clothing and accessories, many locally made, which are on sale  with extended store hours beginning today through  the 24th. A quality hat from the Bahama Village hat market is always a crowd-pleaser, and any of the antiques shops in the neighborhood offer up a wide array of treasures that are as much fun to sift through as they are to gift.

We think a one-of-a-kind, hand-crafted gift makes a great impression, which is why we love recommending “Honest Works” Key West Pottery to our visitors. This husband-and-wife team of artists makes a variety of stunning ceramic pieces–from mugs to giant vases and everything in-between– that are all made and hand painted in their downtown Key West studio. Their pieces featuring the Key West mascot (a brightly feathered rooster) are a cult favorite and are always the first to sell out. Stop into their beautiful, gallery-like setting at 929 Truman and see what’s new!

Perhaps the most quintessential Key West item to gift your holiday loved ones with is their own Key Lime pie, shipped direct from our little island to wherever you choose. With local companies Kermit’s and the Key West Key Lime Pie Co. sparring over whose pie is best, you’ll have to do your own taste test to choose a winner…hard work, we know. Both companies ship pies across the nation, and trust us: it tastes just as good at home as it does here in Key West.

For an inexpensive gift that will make the wearer look “in the know,” we suggest a t-shirt from iconic Key West bars The Green Parrot, Sloppy Joes, or Hog’s Breath Saloon. Pick up an extra for yourself to remember your vacation– worn under a blazer, we promise they’re work appropriate.

Happy holiday shopping!

 

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It’s never too early…

To buy tickets to one of Key West’s most popular events: The Key West Food & Wine Festival, happening this January 24th to 27th, 2013. This is one of the most well-attended (and worthwhile!) Key West events of the year, with tickets selling out fast. If you love to eat, mingle and try new things, you won’t want to miss this festival.

For the full schedule of events, ticket information, and locations, visit http://www.keywestfoodandwinefestival.com/default/index.cfm

Interested in learning more about Key West events? Be sure to read our blog often to get the best updates on what is happening around town– and check us out on Facebook and Twitter!

As always, feel free to ask one of our friendly front desk agents here at Parrot Key Hotel and Resort to recommend local hot spots for you and your family. We’re here to help you have the best vacation possible.

 

 

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Key West Half Marathon is fast approaching!

For those of you that enjoy running farther than the distance between your hotel room here at Parrot Key Hotel and Resort and the bar at Cafe Blue, you’ll be pleased to know that the Key West Half Marathon (and 5k, for those of us with commitment issues) is coming up fast, with registration now open over at http://www.keywesthalfmarathon.com/

This fun, flat-course event brings runners from across the globe to our beautiful island. With events beginning Wednesday, January 16th, and happening through January 20th,  the day of the race, there’s always something fun to do leading up to the big day! Registration is open to all, and with over a thousand confirmed runners already heading to Key West for the event, you’ll want to get registered now before all the slots have been taken.

 

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Key West Nutcracker Tickets Still Available

One of Key West’s most treasured holiday traditions, The Key West Nutcracker performance puts a marine spin on the traditional ballet tale, with magical results that will dazzle people of all ages. With a limited run of performances (December 15th-16, 19-22nd) at the Tennessee Williams Theatre, you’ll want to grab your tickets to this gorgeous event now…before they’re all sold out!

Set in the Florida Keys, you’ll delight as Clara and her young Prince dance through spectacular landscapes dotted with tropical fish, snowy egrets, underwater faeries, and much, much more.

To learn more, visit www.nutcrackerkeywest.com. To buy your tickets, visit www.keystix.com.

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Key West Lighted Boat Parade this Saturday…

One of our favorite events here at Parrot Key Hotel and Resort is the Key West Lighted Boat Parade on the Key West Bight. If you’ve never attended, it can be hard to describe the sheer magical quality of this event, which brings hundreds of onlookers to the Key West Bight and harbor area to watch as a parade of boats– from yachts to kayaks– make their lazy procession through the water while decked out in some of the biggest, brightest light decorations you’ve ever seen. This is truly a holidays in Key West staple.

With huge cash prizes awarded to the winners, the stakes are high for this holiday tradition’s participants. You’ll want to bring the whole family down to watch this epic night of lights and revelry, featuring live music, raffles, prize booths and more.

The show begins at 6:00pm down at the Key West Bight and Harbor, with the docks by Schooner Warf offering perhaps the best viewing point for the parade.

 

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Tuesday Fun Around Town…

We know you like to keep a tight schedule while on vacation.

Lounging by one of the four pools here at Parrot Key Hotel and Resort in the morning, drinks and dinner somewhere fabulous in town in the evening, and a whole lot of nothing in between. Throw in a museum visit or a Conch Train tour and you’re practically overbooked.

But on the off chance you’re looking for something extra to do today, might we suggest the following…

The Key West Public Library will be screening this year’s sensual thriller “The Savages” today at 3:30pm as part of their Tuesday Movie Matinee series. (This fast-paced, sultry film by Oliver Stone is full of his usual violence and provocative subject matter, so it might be a good idea to leave the kids at home for this one.) The Key West Public Library is located at 700 Fleming Street.

Another tantalizing option: The Old Town Manor Beer Tasting series, “Island Hops” hosted by Ray & Jim, is holding their monthly event tonight and the menu looks good enough to eat. This creative beer tasting series at Old Town Manor begins at 5:30pm, and your $35 dollar ticket gets you access to the following…
-Southern Tier 2x Milk Stout with Aged Cheddar
-Young’s Double Choc Stout with Vanilla Ice Cream
-Fuller’s London Porter with NY Cheesecake
-Breckenridge Vanilla Porter with Gouda

Tickets can be reserved by calling 305-292-2121.
http://oldtownmanor.com/Manor-Events.aspx

Have a great Tuesday, everyone!

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Art Talk Tonight in Key West

For all of you at Parrot Key Hotel and Resort who are looking for something to do tonight that does not involve rum runners, you’ll be pleased to know that The Studios of Key West are holding a free event tonight: Behind the Curtain: A Conversation with Jonathan Greenberg of Sotheby’s.

At 6:00pm tonight, join other art enthusiasts as Mr. Greenberg, Vice President and Senior Specialist at Sotheby’s, discusses the pivotal role that auction houses play in the art world. Greenberg will speak candidly about what happens behind the scenes at auction houses in the 21st century, and will be joined by Gallery on Greene’s Nance Frank for a discussion on how auction houses fit into the contemporary art world today.
The Studios of Key West is located at 600 White Street, a quick cab ride (or leisurely bike ride!) away from our Key West hotel.

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Friday Forecast

There’s plenty going on here in Key West today, and we wouldn’t want you to miss a second of fun. Sure, we also think a lazy day spent at Cafe Blue is a Friday well spent, but if you’re looking for a little action read on…

First up, enjoy the champagne-filled opening of Sculpture Key West’s second setting, the West Martello Tower Garden Club. Wander through this lushly tropical oasis and see if you can spot all the fascinating sculptures hidden within. The opening runs from 5:00 – 7:00; the West Martello Tower is located next to Higg’s beach.

Local singing superstars Key Chorale will perform their annual Christmas Concert tonight at 8:00pm accompanied by a chamber orchestra at the Old Stone Church, located at the intersection of Eaton and Simonton Streets.  Tickets are $20 and can be purchased by calling Robert Ochoa at 305- 293-4869.

And for the younger members of your group…

The Bahama Village Music Program will perform a free Christmas concert for the Frederick Douglass Community Center’s annual Christmas program at 6 p.m. tonight, Friday, at 111 Olivia St.

Kids will also love the holiday movie party (with special guest: Santa!) happening at Montessori Children’s School tonight at 5:30pm. A $5 entry gets you pizza, popcorn, drinks and hot cocoa (bring your own mug & blanket, plus an extra $10 and your camera if you’d like holiday pictures taken with Santa.) Montessori School is located at 1221 Varela Street.

 

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Holiday Parties in Key West Tonight

Here at Parrot Key Resort, we firmly believe that Thursday is the new Friday.

Which means that you’re going to want to head on out to one of the holiday parties that are happening on island tonight– ’tis the season, after all.

First up is the always enjoyable “Share the Wreath” party, hosted by all the beautiful gals over at Key West’s La Te Da. For a measly five dollars you’ll gain access to La Te Da’s Crystal Room, where you’ll be able to drink, laugh, and bid on a number of “celebrity-designed” Christmas wreaths, with proceeds to benefit AIDS Help. Why not bring a little piece of Key West home with you for the holidays in the form of a fancy wreath? The party starts at 6:30 and is open seating for all, so grab a couple friends and head on over!

Also happening tonight is a meeting of the island’s famous Sunset Social Drinking Club, whose bar events are known around town as the place to be and be seen on a Thursday night.

Tonight’s party, “POSH (Paws Often Steal Hearts)” will donate its proceeds to the Florida Keys SPCA. From 6:30 to 9:30 participants will enjoy live music, a silent auction, tapas-style appetizers, a local-priced cash bar, and even a complimentary welcome drink to get you into the giving spirit. And since the party is being hosted at one of the most beautiful spots on our island– the Audubon Home & Tropical Garden at 205 Whitehead St– you’ll get to sightsee a bit with your cocktail.

General Admission is $20 / $25 at the door, with tickets available at “We’ve Got the Keys” Office at 922 Caroline St.
Alternatively, you may call Ben Hennington at 305-304-1232 for ticket information.

Tickets are also available at the Mad Hatter, located at 253 Front St. (at the Westin Key West Resort and Marina) – Purchase a fascinator from Mad Hatter and a % of sales will be donated back to the FKSPCA! Wear your fascinator to the party and a % of the looks you receive will be from people wondering if you are British royalty. We promise.

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We suggest: Sculpture Key West

 

If you’re looking for something to do on this grey day, we suggest heading over to Fort Zachary Taylor to check out the incredible outdoor sculpture exhibit that is currently there. A lack of blazing sun overhead means you’ll have more time to comfortably explore the artworks, which are spread throughout the park, in addition to no crowds!

Our Key West hotel is just a short cab or bike ride away from Fort Zachary Taylor, a truly beautiful park to spend the day wandering around in. After you’ve finished honing your art eye, take a tour of the gargantuan fort itself, or even take an easy nature walk through the trails! There’s plenty to do at Fort Zach.

The artworks exhibited in Sculpture Key West have come from all over the country (as well as a few places beyond the USA) and are as diverse as the homes of their artists. Bring the family and spark a conversation about art (instead of video games) or bring a book to sit by the ocean with once you’ve finished your self-guided tour.

There are worse things to do on a rainy day, we’re sure.

For directions, ask one of our friendly front desk agents to point out Fort Zachary Taylor on a map. Admission is a few bucks, which goes towards the maintenance of the park.

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