Florida’s 2016 Hotel Forecast

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Opal Sands Resort is scheduled to open Clearwater Beach early next year.
Opal Sands Resort is scheduled to open in Clearwater Beach early next year.

The 2016 forecast for the hotel landscape in Florida shows continued growth throughout the year thanks to a new cropping of oceanside and gulf-side properties.

Central Florida
The 230-guestroom Opal Sands Resort, opening early next year in Clearwater Beach, will offer a range of amenities and services, from a zero-entry outdoor pool and sun deck to a fitness center, onsite spa and retail shops. In keeping with the area’s tropical, beach town vibe, the resort’s restaurants will offer a taste of local flavors—from the seafood-centric Italian restaurant, Sea-guini, which incorporates farm-fresh and fresh-off-the-boat ingredients in its dishes, to the outdoor tiki bar, Sandbar, which will serve signature cocktails and libations made with fresh fruits, purees and hand-picked herbs. As the day winds down, guests can watch the sun set over the Gulf of Mexico from their private balcony, a feature included with every room. For more information, call (855) 335-1087 or visit opalsandsresort.com.

A rendering of the future pool at Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort, set to open in early 2016.
A rendering of the future pool at Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort, set to open in early 2016.

South Florida
Ocean Properties Ltd.’s new luxury beachfront property, Treasure Island Beach Resort, is scheduled to open early next year, making it the city’s first new-build on the beach in years. The all-suite resort will boast 77 one- and two-bedroom suites designed in a contemporary fashion, each with a custom kitchen and a spacious porch or balcony overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. Onsite amenities, such as the beachfront pool and tiki bar, take advantage of the property’s sun-filled location. Fitness-minded guests will enjoy exercising at the hotel’s gym after indulging in burgers, fries and shakes at the onsite BRGR Kitchen & Bar restaurant. Best of all, the new resort is located a short distance away from the quaint beach bistros and eclectic shops of the surrounding Tampa Bay area. If your clients are looking to live like the locals, suggest they try shelling along the powdery white sand of the mile-long Treasure Island Beach Trail. For more information, call (855) 660-6366 or visit treasureislandbeachresort.com.

Meanwhile, the new Waterline Marina Resort & Beach Club is set to hit the East Shore of Anna Maria Island next fall. The 37-guestroom resort will embrace the island’s waterside location by offering a variety of aquatic activities right off its own 50-slip marina. The Waterline Marina will allow guests to arrive via boat, charter vessels for family outings and go on guided fishing excursions, in addition to providing a jumping-off point for sailing adventures and sunset cruises. At Waterline’s separate Beach Club, guests can rent kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, lounge chairs, umbrellas and beach toys. The hotel’s oversized sun deck with its resort-style pool offers a relaxed setting for lounging and sunbathing. For more information, visit waterlineresort.com.

Farther south in downtown West Palm Beach, Hilton Hotels & Resorts is preparing to open the new Hilton West Palm Beach, also in early 2016, across from the open-air CityPlace shopping center, which offers more than 100 stores, ranging from upscale boutiques and restaurants to bars and entertainment venues. A half-acre outdoor pool area complete with poolside bar, fire pit and private cabanas is planned for the 400-guestroom (33 suites) hotel, which will host DJs on special nights. Additional amenities for your clients to look forward to include the farm-to-fork restaurant, Manor, and the indoor/outdoor lounge, Galley. For a cultural feast, we recommend your clients spend a day taking in the area’s arts and culture at The Kravis Center for Performing Arts, The Norton Museum of Art, the Henry Morrison Flagler Museum and historic Clematis Street. For more information, call (561) 231-6000 or visit www3.hilton.com/en/hotels/florida/hilton-west-palm-beach-PBIWPHH/index.html.

Conrad Hotels & Resorts’ first beachfront resort and residence in South Florida, the 290-guestroom Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort, is scheduled to drop its anchor by Fort Lauderdale Beach early next year. The nautically inspired resort will pay homage to the “Venice of America” with clever furnishing, such as porthole windows and panoramic waterfront vistas. Guestrooms will feature floor-to-ceiling windows and glass balconies with views of the ocean and the Intracoastal, as well as chic styling, including white furnishings and touches of chestnut teak and leather. The hotel’s well-appointed bathrooms feature marble soaking tubs, rainfall showers and customizable bath products chosen by guests. Although guests can whip up their own meals using their in-room Wolf touchscreen stovetop, they’ll want to experience the hotel’s four indoor and alfresco dining venues, including a Northern Mediterranean restaurant with an outdoor terrace; a Prohibition-style bar serving craft beers and 1920s-inspired cocktails; a gourmet market with dine-in and take-out options; and a pool bar and lounge located on the property’s elevated pool deck with an ocean-facing pool and plush cabanas. For more information, visit www.conradhotels.com/fortlauderdale.