Planning your Tampa Bay getaway? Or maybe a local staycation? From sunsets over the beach to waterfront dining, Dunedin is Tampa’s hidden gem on the coast and one of the most popular spots for travel in the region. Ask any local and they’ll gush over the majesty of the Pinellas Trail, the excitement of the Dunedin Blue Jays, and the incredible caliber of the local restaurants. Natural amenities like Honeymoon Island are complemented by modern convenience in the walkable downtown district where you can find dozens of retailers. After you’ve made your reservations for Bon Appétit at sunset, all that’s left is to find a waterfront hotel to complete the experience!
Lucky for you, the Bon Appétit team has pulled together a (growing) list of our seven favorite waterfront hotels in and around the Dunedin area! Check it out below:
1. The Fenway Hotel (f.k.a. the Grand Lady of Dunedin)
One of Dunedin’s many treasured pieces of history, the Fenway Hotel is an integral part of the city’s fabric. Over the decades, it served as a place for the community to congregate and visitors to escape the harsh northern climate. Today it is a glorious property, part of the Marriott-Bonvoy Autograph Collection of hotels. For decades, however, the future of the hotel and the property were uncertain.
First constructed in 1924 as a three-story, Mediterranean Revival style hotel, the Fenway served as Pinellas County’s first-ever radio station through 1926 before opening to the public in 1927. Throughout the first half of the twentieth century, the Fenway Hotel rose to prominence as the area’s premier resort as it cycled through different owners. During this time, the Fenway masqueraded as everything from a country club to a retirement home before being purchased as a campus for Trinity College in the early 1960s. Home to Schiller University through the late 1980s and 1990s, the Fenway looked to return to its former glory when it was purchased in the mid-2000s by a hotel developer. After years of stalled progress, the bankrupted project was taken over by Dunedin’s Taoist Tai Chi Society, which transferred the property to Mainsail Lodging & Development.
Under the new ownership of Marriott Bonvoy, the hotel has flourished and once again become a beacon for Dunedin residents and visitors alike. No doubt, it is a point of pride in our community.
Nearby Amenities: The Pinellas Trail, Edgewater Park
Opened to the public in 2016, the Opal Sands Resort on Clearwater Beach lives up to its name as a true rarity – a state-of-the-art hotel with possibly the best beach view in the entire State of Florida. The 15-story hotel’s unique curvature means each of the 230 rooms comes complete with a full panoramic view of the Gulf of Mexico. We love the mixed-use style of the hotel, which boasts not only a full-service spa but a collection of art that captures the natural energy of Clearwater Beach.
Our favorite part of the Opal Sands Resort is its proximity to spectacular beachfront venues like Sand Key, where Bon Appétit’s island events team has mastered the art of hosting weddings on Florida’s shoreline. Only a 10-minute drive from your ceremony and reception, the Opal Sands Resort is a great lodging option for your entire wedding party!
Nearby Amenities: Clearwater Beach Boardwalk, Clearwater Aquarium
3. The Wyndham Grand Resort – Clearwater
Following the 2016 opening of the luxurious Opal Sands Resort, Clearwater Beach rang in 2017 by celebrating the biggest development ever constructed – the 750,000 square-foot Wyndham Grand Resort. Taking shape as two 15-story towers, the resort is touted as one of the region’s most family-focused stays. Complete with a sloping walk-in pool and a spa for mom and dad, the Wyndham Grand is Clearwater’s only hotel boasting rooms that feature local celebrity and star of the movie Dolphin Tail, “Winter” the dolphin.
Nearby Amenities: Clearwater Beach Boardwalk, Clearwater Aquarium, Caladesi Island
4. The Best Western Plus – Dunedin
Once owned by the Bon Appétit Group, Dunedin’s Best Western Plus is one of the most convenient stays for access to downtown. The hotel overlooks the majesty of St. Joseph’s Sound, and offers vacationers a window into everything that delightful Dunedin has to offer without breaking the bank. Its proximity to Bon Appétit makes this hotel a great option when you’re planning your wedding or next celebration!
Nearby Amenities: Bon Appétit Restaurant, Shops at Victoria Place, Dunedin Marina
One of the most unique stays in the area, the Meranova Inn is centrally located on Dunedin’s Main Street and offers a window into the bustling downtown. Constructed in 1910, only 11 years after the City’s conception, the inn has withstood the test of time for more than a century now. Originally restored in 1998, the inn received a facelift in 2018 that brought it into the 21st Century. While it isn’t located on the direct shoreline, it is located minutes from the Dunedin Marina and Bon Appétit on the water. Guests rave over this quaint, lush setting while enjoying nearby shopping and dining options.
Nearby Amenities: Edgewater Park, Bon Appétit Restaurant, the Shops at Victoria Place
Opened in May 2017 less than a block from downtown Dunedin, Beyond the Wall B&B is the brainchild of Michelle and Rock, two United States military veterans whose travels across the world led them back to delightful Dunedin. Their cottage-style B&B offers the perfect mix of intimate privacy, camaraderie with fellow guests, and proximity to the area’s best amenities. Furnished with old Florida-style furniture, unique art, and modern appliances, each guest stay also includes a daily breakfast service in the main house.
Nearby Amenities: Dunedin Brewery, Dunedin Downtown Market, Café Alfresco
Dunedin’s Hampton Inn by Hilton is a great option for an inexpensive, centrally-located stay in Dunedin. One of the City’s closest hotels to the immaculate Honeymoon Island State Park, this hotel offers a comfortable stay for travelers on the go. Enjoy a free hot breakfast, a fitness center, and convenient digital room keys.
Nearby Amenities: Honeymoon Island, Café Honeymoon, the Dunedin Golf Club