My husband and I planned a Budget-Friendly Trip to Key Largo for a little break during the gray Michigan winter. For part of our trip, I was able to book a 3-night stay at Baker’s Cay Resort Key Largo, part of the Curio Collection by Hilton.
We would have stayed longer, but they were booked for a few of our dates. Keep in mind when making a reservation here that they host a lot of weddings onsite and the property seems to fill up fast, especially on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.
As a Hilton Diamond Member, I never book “the best” room initially because I am hopeful that I will get an upgrade. About 5 days before our stay an upgrade came through moving us from a Hammock Wing 2 Queen with a water view to the perfect Coconut Wing Oceanfront King Room.
Baker’s Cay Resort charges a $45 per night Resort Charge. But since we booked an Award Stay using Hilton points, the Resort Charge was waived. The best part is that we still received all of the benefits! Definitely worth being a Hilton Honors Member.
It’s always good to know what is included when a hotel charges a Resort Fee so that you can get the most bang for your buck. As you can see from this list, there are a number of useful items included in the Resort Charge at Baker’s Cay like the use of bicycles, kayaks, paddle boards, lounge chairs, and beach towels.
Check-In and Checking Out the Property
Check-in at Baker’s Cay Resort is 4pm. When I was reading reviews before our stay, several of them mentioned not to expect an early check-in. With that in mind, we enjoyed a relaxing morning at our hotel in Miami, checked out at 11 on the dot, and took our time driving to Key Largo. Even with a few stops, we still arrived around 3pm. I took a chance that our room might be ready but as expected it was not. They took my number and said that they would text us when it was ready.
When we still hadn’t received a text at 4:30 we checked back in at the desk and found that our room was indeed ready. I was a little disappointed that given their later check-in time and knowing that we were waiting on the property, they didn’t follow through as promised with a text.
We were each given an aluminum reusable water bottle at check-in that was filled with cold filtered water. There are water filling stations located in a few different areas around the property. The hotel also offers Hilton members an $18 per person per day Food & Beverage Credit. The credit can be used at any of the restaurants, bars, poolside snack stands, or for grab-and-go food items at the lobby store.
Exploring the Property
The Lobby area is huge with an expansive library, restrooms, lots of seating, a Scrabble board on one wall, and a pool table. We decided to shoot a game of pool to pass some time while we waited for our room.
After finishing a game of pool and checking out the lobby, we ventured out to tour the rest of the property. The first thing we found was the Hammock Forrest which is a secluded beach path through their hammock tree grove. There are seating areas and beach access points dotted throughout the trail. Other areas we located on our self-guided tour were:
- The Spa
- The Adult and Family Pools
- Outdoor Game Area with a ping pong table
- The Beach and dock
- The Lobby Store (Has a bubbly vending machine)
- Both Calusa and Dry Rocks restaurants
- The Watersports Rental Hut
- The Beachfront Bar
- The Bike Livery
I was ecstatic when we finally arrived at our room as it had been a long day and we had plans that evening so we were looking forward to freshening up. The room was spacious with a comfy king bed, a large living area, a workspace, a mini fridge, and a tv. But the first thing I really noticed was the VIEW!!!
The patio was just big enough for a small table and 2 chairs but I immediately fell in love with the fantastic ocean view. I kept the curtains open most of the time during our stay and it felt like we were right on the water. The patio was also a great vantage point to see what was happening on the property.
I am the type of traveler that unpacks immediately when I arrive in a room. The closet had 3 small drawers, a safe, a luggage jack, and an iron. Oddly, the coffee maker was also located in the closet. Since there was no plug in the closet we had to carry it out to the tv stand in order to use it.
The small drawers in the closet were the only ones in the room and didn’t really provide enough space for the contents of both of our suitcases. We made do by utilizing the shelf at the top of the closet and some shelves under the sink in the bathroom and it worked out fine.
The room also had a handy wall rack which was a great place to hang my purse, hats, and a jacket.
The bathroom was clean, modern, and had very good lighting. I loved the funky shower tiles. There were plenty of towels and the shelves on either side of the mirror provided extra space for some of our toiletry items. I am picky about hotel bathroom lighting and I must say that the lighting options here were very nice. It even had a dimmer switch that allowed us to adjust the lights to a soft glow at bedtime.
Dining & Drinks
It’s always nice when you are staying at a property that has more than one dining option. Baker’s Cay has a full-service restaurant, a very cool bar with a great menu, a pool bar with a food truck, a tiki bar on the beach, and room service. You can even sign up for their Dock To Dish program which begins with a fishing excursion and ends with you having your own fresh catch for dinner.
At Calusa, you can dine indoors or outdoors with a stunning view of the ocean. This full-service restaurant has a Carribean charm and great service. We found it to be a very relaxing place to enjoy our breakfast and use up our Daily Food and Beverage Credits. Both the coffee and food were very good and everyone was in love with the pineapple-shaped beverage glasses.
You can also get lunch or dinner at Calusa, but by then we were usually deep into activities or checking out one of the many other local dining options.
Dry Rocks is an oceanfront bar with a strong focus on Tequila. Their menu features Mexican dishes that pair well with tequila as well as lobster, snapper, salads, and burgers.
We enjoyed dinner and trivia on the deck at Dry Rocks on Taco Tuesday & Trivia night. Every Tuesday tacos are half off and they have fantastic BOGO margaritas. We had a great time teaming up for the trivia competition with 2 couples we met earlier that day on a sunset tiki boat cruise.
Baker’s Cay Resort offers so many different types of activities it would be nearly impossible to get bored here during your stay. They have a weekly events schedule with Yoga, Taco Tuesday & Trivia, Outdoor Movie Night, and more. I appreciated that they printed the activity schedule inside the key card envelope along with QR codes for all of the dining locations on site.
If you have a Hilton Aspire credit card which includes a $250 Resort Credit, Baker’s Cay Resort is a great option because it has so many dining and activity options that will apply.
Pineapple Scavenger Hunt
As we were walking around the resort, we spotted some pineapple statues attached to wooden boxes with a letter of the alphabet on them. After seeing a few of these, I inquired at the front desk as to what they were. They are part of a Pineapple Scavenger Hunt on the property. There is a prize if you correctly complete the challenge. You can pick up a dry-erase marker and the clue list from the beachfront towel cabana. We gave it a shot one day and I was able to solve the clues and find all but one of the pineapples. It was still fun.
My husband took advantage of the fishing poles included in the resort charge and spent a few hours fishing off the dock one morning. They gave him a small bucket of shrimp to use as bait and he was able to catch and release a few small fish.
Baker’s Cay has 2 pools that sit back to back and are divided by a waterfall feature. One side is the Adults- Only pool (which is where we hung out) and the other side is the Family pool. There is a Pool Bar and Food Truck that services both pools. Pool chairs and shade umbrellas are limited so you may want to visit the pool early for the best availability.
I enjoyed chilling in this cozy cabana while my husband swam. We also had fun watching some iguanas sun themselves on the rocks above the waterfall.
Baker’s Cay Resort is oceanfront with a long sandy beachfront. The water is very clear and remains shallow for a long way out which is nice for families with small children.
There are several different seating areas on the beach each with plenty of lounge chairs available. The Cabana Bar is situated right in the center. They do have a small waitstaff that comes around and takes orders, but there are also QR codes that you can use to order food or beverages from located on all of the side tables.
Also located on the beach is Scuppers Watersports. They are the hub for all watersports and beach activities. There is no charge for using many of the items because they are included in the Resort Charge. But you can also book fishing excursions, tiki boat cruises, and rent jet skis.
It was fun watching people utilizing the big water bikes, kayaks, and stand-up paddle boards.
Sunset Tiki Boat Cruise
You can reserve a spot on the Sunset Tiki Boat Cruise for $110 (plus tax) per person. It was a 2 Hour Cruise that included soda, beer, and flavored alcoholic beverages. Our Captain was a lot of fun. He provided fun facts about the areas we passed, played some awesome tunes, and then took our pictures at sunset. We made friends with the other 2 couples who sailed with us and ended up all going to Trivia together later.
We had an absolute blast and experienced a perfect sunset. This is a must people! You can book a cruise using a link on the Baker’s Cay website which will secure your spot and you will pay at that time. I had them bill it to our room so that I could use a Hilton Resort Credit that I had and it covered the entire cost.
If you decide to book this cruise, be sure to read the cancellation policy carefully. Keep tabs on the weather as they will not sail in bad weather conditions.
Although we got off to a bumpy start getting into our room, we absolutely loved our stay at Baker’s Cay Resort. The rooms and all of the facilities were well thought out and maintained. They literally have everything you could want there and you would never have to leave the property. We really liked how many different options for dining and activities were available to us on the property.
The resort is centrally located in Key Largo making it easy to get around when we did venture out to explore the area. We like to mix up our vacations and not go to the same place twice in a row, but I am really looking forward to planning another stay soon at Baker’s Cay Resort.
Dream, Plan, Save, Adventure!