Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort & Spa
This new 250-room hotel, set right on the Gulf of Mexico and the Intracoastal Waterway, may look like an average waterfront resort, but unexpected extras make it a stellar choice on Florida’s western coast, just 25 miles west of downtown Tampa. Accommodations are airy suites with balconies and fully equipped kitchens, which can be stocked by an optional grocery service. Sun-kissed families split time between the beach (located across the street) and an expansive eighth-floor pool deck, where lounge chairs have call buttons for ordering cocktails—including the hotel’s Florida Dream, a grown-up margarita and Creamsicle hybrid—and hand-mixed guacamole. Come afternoon, the Sandava Spa, which specializes in local treatments (such as the Clearwater Beach Wrap, which incorporates sand gathered from the beach), is the place to be; as the sun sets, the hotel’s SHOR American Seafood Grill is buzz-worthy for great views and not-to-be-missed crab cakes. There’s even a plan for the odd rainy day: movies are screened in the hotel’s meeting rooms, and ping-pong and foosball tables are set up for teens.