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Tortuga Inn Beach Resort.
Old Florida Charm & Old Florida Style.
 
Spend the day sailing or relaxing on the beach.

Privileges include a private entrance to the guest only beach.

Lush grounds surround the resort.
Large comfortable beds and the tropical décor in the guest suites.

Story by Ken Panton
Photography by Milo Vega

To meet ever-changing travel needs of our readers we have been looking at great nearby getaways that seem to be far from the madding crowds, relaxing, luxuriously personal and distinctive. For many the ease of a vacation that is a short flight away or even within driving distance is an option that fits their plans this year. Nearly a well-kept secret Florida's Gulf Islands, including Anna Maria Island and Long Boat Key, have been a winter haven for those in the know. The area is a nature lover's paradise and development has been controlled so that the glorious true feeling of Old Florida remains. Today this year-round destination is complete with gourmet dining, exceptional water sports and outdoor recreational opportunities, world class nature centers and even sophisticated shopping.

As you retreat to your Resort, you feel that life has slowed down and that you are in natural Florida. In lovely Anna Maria Island. The Tortuga Inn Beach Resort is such a place. This beachfront resort complex is made up of four distinct properties and guestrooms including one- and two- bedroom units, studios and hotel rooms, as well as larger 3 bedrooms, 2 bath suites with full kitchens; some are complete with semi private pools making them the perfect fit for families (including nannies) or 2 or 3 couples. The resort's private beach on the Gulf of Mexico is just steps away from all parts of the complex and there is a private dock with 14 slips on Anna Maria Sound directly nearby. At the Tortuga Inn Beach Resort the old Florida ambience is matched with modern technology and prime amenities. DVD's and wide screen TV's are a welcome diversion, especially for families, in the evenings or during an afternoon rain. Your accommodations quickly become your own 'beach house', as if it has been yours for a long time, and the quaint traditional "Inn" feeling that prevails will take you back to a simpler time when sitting silently at sunset with family or friends, listening to the sounds or nature, was the most relaxing time you can remember.

On the beach complimentary amenities including beach umbrellas and chaise lounge chairs ensure the comforts of a day at the beach. There are charcoal barbeque grills on the beach and nothing can complete a perfect beach day better than an evening cookout. For those who must be wired at all times, The Tortuga Inn's free wireless high speed access should fit their needs, and if your cell phone signal is weak the resort also features free long distance calls within the US. For more information about the Tortuga Inn visit www.tortugainn.com and to see what's going on at Anna Maria Island visit www.floridasgulfislands.com.

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