When choosing a cruise ship, you factor in budget, lifestyle, and design preferences. And if you’ll be sailing from Fort Lauderdale, you may be thinking about adding a pre- or post-cruise beach resort stay. We’ve scouted nine nearby properties that complement the major cruise lines sailing from Port Everglades: Carnival, Celebrity, Costa, Crystal, Cunard, Holland America, Princess, Royal Caribbean, Seabourn, and Silversea. Here, the best options to match your cruise style.
Located 15 minutes south of Port Everglades, this two-year-old, 349-room resort on Hollywood Beach (with access to the Broadwalk and Intracoastal Waterway) is surprisingly elegant (in a casual chic way) considering it’s named after a 1977 song about drinking too many margaritas. Vivid blue and green decor, witty Buffett lyrics painted on hallway walls, seven dining options, and live concerts add up to a “no worries” good time.
Vibe: Guests range from baby-boomer Buffett fans in flip-flops to families with school-age kids, and the beach and three pools (one with a water slide, one adults-only, and one with cabanas) offer plenty of places for “watchin’ the sun bake.”
Best for: Carnival or Royal Caribbean cruisers looking for non-stop music and frozen drinks at any hour. After all, it’s Five O’clock Somewhere—and yes, the margaritas are pretty potent.
Parents of active kids who need a pre- or post-cruise resort with lots of space should consider this 650-room property set on 16 acres. It has a huge lagoon-style pool, a private beach with snorkeling and JetSki rentals, a kids’ club and playground, and easy grab ‘n go breakfast options. There’s free WiFi and a Starbucks, too.
Vibe: A recent renovation has added pleasing contemporary décor in neutral hues to a resort offering plenty of space to relax.
Best for: Carnival or Royal Caribbean cruisers with younger children seeking a family-friendly resort.
Fresh off its October 2017 opening, this 290-suite hotel on Fort Lauderdale Beach offers studios to three-bedroom terrace suites that are spacious (480 to 1,700 square feet) and residential (all have kitchens and there is an ownership program) as well as a heated outdoor pool on the 6th-floor Sky Deck, a 24-hour fitness center, and four eateries, including Terra Mare for locally sourced land and sea entrees and small plates designed to share.
Vibe: Sleek and understated with a Zen-nautical ambience—although construction has just begun on the Four Seasons residences next door, so south-facing terraces might not be so tranquil during the day.
Best for: Seabourn, Silversea, or Crystal passengers seeking spacious accommodations and a sophisticated ambience.
The manager calls this 18-room property Fort Lauderdale’s “hidden oasis,” and we have to agree. Tucked away on the Intracoastal Waterway not far from the high-rise hotels, it’s a quiet haven for couples. The rooms and suites channel an updated British Colonial look with louvered shutters and black-and-white photos; striped loungers surround a small palm-lined pool and face the Intracoastal for sunset viewing.
Vibe: Understated plantation-style romance with personal service and a guest-only restaurant—but with easy access via water taxi to the dining scene on Las Olas.
Best for: Couples who love the small-ship experience of Silversea or Seabourn and want to continue to unwind.
Fresh off a $100 million renovation, this 1,000-room hotel that’s now part of the Hilton portfolio, is located on the beach in Hollywood about 20 minute’s south of Port Everglades. Guests can opt for Sunrise (ocean views with beige and blue decor) or Sunset (Intracoastal views with orange and pink decor) “coastal contemporary” rooms or suites, all with balconies, and enjoy culinary creativity at 10 bars and restaurants, including Point Royal by Geoffrey Zakarian and Monkitail by Michael Schulson.
Vibe: Pool- and food-centric (the beach is narrow here) with room service available from all on-site restaurants.
Best for: Princess, Holland America, or Celebrity passengers (both couples and families) who prefer a large resort with onsite dining.
There’s no mistaking a W hotel and this 450-room property, which just completed a $55 million renovation and is centrally located overlooking Fort Lauderdale Beach, has the striking décor and youthful amenities its loyalists love. Rooms have ocean views and balconies and range from 363 to 606 square feet (suites, many in the adjacent residential tower, range from 632 to 2,607 square feet). Also on premises: Steak 954, Sushi Bar, and Mexican hot spot El Vez (opening in January 2018).
Vibe: See-and-be-scene, especially in the lively Living Room and on the WET East pool deck with its rentable cabanas and bottle service.
Best for: Celebrity passengers under age 40 who are looking for high-impact design and a lively social scene.
This 156-room Noble House Hotels resort is located at the northern end of Fort Lauderdale Beach—directly on the sand with a low-key beach-plantation ambience. With the Ocean2000 restaurant and 02K Lounge, the grab ’n go Emporium, Pure Spa, and an oceanfront pool, it’s large enough to offer everything you need during your stay, but also intimate enough for couples seeking romantic charm.
Vibe: Old Florida—there’s a wide porch with rockers overlooking the beach that’s a favorite spot for reading or sipping a cocktail—and 105 of the 156 rooms are two-room suites.
Best for: Cunard loyalists who enjoy a traditional ambience in a beach-front location that feels residential.
Located at the intersection of A1A and Sunrise, this 240-room hotel is modern, bright and cheery—all rooms have large windows (but no balconies) and ocean views—with a lively lobby bar featuring small plates and complimentary “Daily Delights,” such as Tapas Tuesday and Wine Down Thursday. There’s also a small pool with cabanas and a restaurant.
Vibe: Affordable, sun-filled chic that makes a great base from which to enjoy the beach as well as kayaking, biking, and hiking in adjacent Hugh Taylor Birch State Park (also home to craft brewery Park & Ocean).
Best for: Active, budget-conscious couples who cruise on Costa or Carnival and want easy access to outdoor activities.
Source: Sherman’s Travel