Over the past two months, I have had the luxury of taking two mini vacays to St. Petersburg, Florida. They really felt more like stay-cations because St. Pete is only about two hours from where I live in Orlando. It’s incredibly beautiful there and its a nice weekend escape to visit somewhere new. Both times while I was there, I stayed at The Vinoy Renaissance Hotel. One thing you need to know about me, is that I am in love with the 1920’s. So, when I found out that there was not only a pink hotel in downtown St. Pete (hello favorite color right here), but that it was built in the 1920’s and still styled after that era, I knew that I needed to stay there.
When I first arrived, I was in awe of how gorgeous the entrance architecture was. You are immediately greeted by the valet staff who help you get service and direct you to check in.
The first thing I did was go check into my room. The bellman brought all of my belongings up there, which was very nice to not have to worry about that myself. On my first visit, I stayed in the tower side with views of the bay. I had a balcony room and it was very nice to be able to eat breakfast outside and watch the sun set. On my second visit, I stayed in the original part of the hotel in a regular guest room and both of the rooms were huge. They are also under going renovations which will be complete by November this year. After those are all finished, it will be like a brand new hotel and even more luxurious than it already is.
The bathroom is stocked with quite a few goodies including Aveda products. They also have a great hair dryer in the room, so no need to pack one of those. Who doesn’t love saving suitcase room! There isn’t any turn down service in the evenings, but I enjoy my privacy anyways. There is also so much space in the bathroom also for all of your toiletries and for sharing with whomever you are traveling with.
There are three great food options while staying at the Vinoy! If you are looking for something a bit more casual then my suggestion would be Alfresco’s which is a great lunch spot and right by the pool!
If you are looking for the bar with the best old fashioned, or a more upscale dining scene, then I suggest you mosey on over to Marchand’s. This gorgeous Mediterranean decorated restaurant has a fabulous brunch, and great ambiance. The service here is really incredible. Our bar tender one night finagled getting me milk and cookies at almost midnight haha. Finally, for us slow risers, or late night snackers there is room service!! I ordered room service every morning, during my first stay at the Vinoy.
The Renaissance Vinoy has some wonderful amenities to try if you visit. I am an avid tennis player and an every so often golfer haha. My dad and I went out and tested out both facilities on my first trip and they are really lovely.
The tennis courts are right on site with the hotel and easy to book. You simply call the pro shop and request a court for the time that you need and then bring your equipment. They also have a pro shop, if you need anything.
The golf course isn’t right on site, but they have a van that will take you back and forth. I also had a lesson with a golf pro to help prepare me for playing the nine holes. You can play either 9, or 18 holes, plus there is a range. The pro shop has a huge selection of merchandise and there is a clubhouse restaurant and bar on site for lunch, or a drink after you have finished your round.
(You can see my post about my sunglasses here!)
The pool isn’t anything super spectacular at the moment, but there is great service and once the renovations are completed, it will be much nicer. I didn’t use it myself, but my kids really enjoyed it.
On my second visit, I needed my nails done for the wedding that I was attending. It was so easy for me to quickly set up a last minute appointment at the Spa and I was even given a glass of champagne upon arrival. I really loved the service that I received there because everyone was so friendly. They have many different treatments that you can receive at the spa and I would love to try something else out when I visit next.
The Renaissance Vinoy has a lot of great services for their guests. One of the best ones is the free wifi around the lobby, pool, and many other areas of the hotel outside your room. This was really great for me because I could do some of my blog work while I was soaking in the different aspects of the hotel.
The lobby is a beautiful place to relax, or work. They also have free snacks and drinks every day. I loved going down there and getting free candy and delicious fresh fruit punch!
The hotel offers a short free tour as well, so that you can learn all about the history of the hotel and see all the things that the hotel has to offer! They still have the original silverware and china in a glass case in one end of the lobby, and there is some beautiful glass art including a gorgeous chandelier by Chihuly.
Right outside the Vinoy there is very convenient public transportation on the Trolley. Part of the route right near the hotel is free and to most areas its only $0.50. We rode this around anywhere that we didn’t feel like walking.
The Vinoy Renaissance is a major hot spot for weddings and events. We took some fun photos out in the tea garden where there is a great view of one of the towers and where most weddings are held.
You can see more photos from that collaboration shoot here!
RESTAURANTS & SHOPS
Here are some really yummy restaurants nearby that you should really try!!
Bodega on Central – This is a great spot for Cubans & Frescas.
Lemon Grass Thai – This is where my best friend Rae and I had dinner one night. We took a taxi there, but then a scenic walk back to the hotel.
The Birchwood & Canopy – This is a hotel, restaurant, and bar all wrapped into one location. We ate dinner downstairs at the Birchwood, which has a fresh farm to table type menu. Then upstairs on the roof is the Canopy, which is a bar with great views of the marina.
Fresco’s Waterfront Bistro – This is a great breakfast spot to sit and watch the boats in the marina. My dad and I had breakfast here one day and the Nutella crepes are divine!!
Along Central Ave there are tons of art shops and boutiques as well. Its a great spot to go for a stroll.
CULTURAL HOT SPOTS
There are two great museums walking distance from the Vinoy in downtown St. Pete. One is the Museum of Fine Art, which we didn’t visit, but we did pass by. Then, there is the Dali Museum. This was a great spot to take the kids, learn a bit of history and soak up the cultural and colorful vibes. Check out the photos below for a few things that we got to see!
There is so much Street Art around St. Pete as well. You should really use this map and make yourself a little tour for photos. My suggestion though is to go during golden hour since its hard to plan for how the sun will hit the walls in the different locations.
I hope you enjoyed this journey into my exploration of St. Pete and The Vinoy Renaissance Hotel. If you decide to visit St. Pete, then I hope you keep these suggestions in mind. You will very much enjoy the town of St. Petersburg, FL and the Vinoy Renaissance Hotel.
*I was gifted free services in exchange for social media advertising, but all opinions expressed here are my own.