There's no shortage of charming, laid-back places to stay on or near Anna Maria Island on Florida's Gulf Coast, whether your looking for a waterfront resort or a beachy cottage.
Here are just a few of the choices:
• Compass by Margaritaville, Anna Maria Sound. When a dog greets you at the reception desk, you know you are staying at a laid-back hotel. Another clue is the Jimmy Buffett music drifting through the 123-room property. This is a smaller, quieter version of the musician's Margaritaville resorts. With a large, oval-shaped pool near the hotel bar and rooms overlooking a marina or a nature preserve, the Compass is just a drawbridge away from Anna Maria Island.
• Anna Maria Beach Resort. Most rooms and suites at this Holmes Beach property near the center of the island offer glorious views of the Gulf of Mexico. A recent renovation upgraded the property's 31 suites and rooms, all of which now have private balconies or patios. The oversize pool along with private cabanas and complimentary beach set-ups with food and drinks ensure guests maximize their relaxation time.
• Waterline Villas & Marina, Autograph Collection. The condo-style hotel accommodations at the Waterline include units with gourmet kitchens and a marina where guests can tie up their whalers or sailboats. Rooms with balconies offer tranquil bay views; the white sand of Holmes Beach is just steps away. Pets are welcome, and bicycles are available for guests to this boutique hotel by Marriott.