Duck Key, Florida
Photo by Laura Manske
Peaceful, pretty Hawks Cay in Duck Key (on the sparkling necklace of islands between Miami and Key West) delivers luxury with a laid-back vibe. It's a small island, so you view both stunning sunrises and sunsets from its grounds. Stay in one of 177 guest rooms or 225 villas, the latter with kitchens and living rooms and ideal for accommodating doting grandparents. Go shell-collecting on a powder-soft beach, splash in five pools (including a Saltwater Lagoon with tiny tropical fish), and gaze at a tranquil marina where pelicans hang, like salty old pals, on lazily bobbing boats. At Calm Waters Spa, try the couples massage or prenatal massage.
Bonus for Baby Dolphin Connection, an on-site research facility, offers a unique parent-baby dockside program in which your little one sits on your lap as you interact with Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, feeding them fish or gelatin cubes. A photographer captures the interspecies smiles! ($60 per person so $120 for you and your child.) While Camp Hawk counselors care for kids ages 5 to 12, you are welcome to entertain your younger one with their tumble mats, toys, and books. Its playground has bucket swings, and its Pirate Ship Pool sports small slides, raining "palm trees," and an 8-inch-deep water area you enter on a gradual slope.
Bikes with baby seats and helmets available. Complimentary use of high chair, monitor, and play yard. Diapers, wipes, baby shampoo and lotion, and swim wings for sale; swim diapers free near the main pool. Private babysitting, by resort staff, starts at $18 per hour for one child, another $2 per hour each additional child.
Book it! Rates start at $160 per room, per night; HawksCay.com
We wrangled a discount! Get a fifth night free when you book by April 30, 2013, for an arrival between April 7, 2013, and August 29, 2013. Use promo code 5free13 at the website, below.