Vero Beach, Florida, may just be the most under-the-radar beach town in the Sunshine State. Sure, everyone’s heard of it, either because their Bubbie calls it home or their college roommate got married at this white-beach destination. Its main draw is social tourism—as in, traveling for an event or to spend time with a loved one.
But you don’t have to know anyone in the 32963 zip code to head on down and check into Kimpton Vero Beach Hotel and Spa. Here’s why.
We don’t want to leave our best friends at home either
If they can fit in the door, they are welcome—that is the official pet policy of all Kimpton Hotels, including Kimpton Vero Beach Hotel and Spa, Florida, located two hours, 30 minutes, north of Miami on the Atlantic Coast.
The ability to accommodate all pets, from Chihuahuas to Great Danes, is great news—especially now, as we have seen a massive resurgence of the road trip, and with it, the desire to bring your canine navigator on the journey.
For me, it’s a huge bonus to tote along my rescued Border Collie, Pippy. I could say it’s because she’s stressed to be left home with a sitter, but truly this benefits me more as I’ve grown inseparable from her since the pandemic.
Walking my dog on the sloping beach just in front of the hotel—as well as on Ocean Drive leading to coffee shops, a Saturday farmers market and the local-favorite sandwich shop that is Casey’s Place—all feels like such a much-needed bit of comfort and normalcy.
As added perks: Kimpton offers dog beds upon request, as well as ‘Pet in Room’ hang tags for the door to alert housekeeping and other staff when there is a pooch present.
For a Florida beach town, Vero is still a quiet, nature-first locale
Caption: Vero Beach has always been a well-kept secret for Floridians who like to escape the busier areas, and it certainly offers plenty in terms of a quick retreat.
Vero Beach isn’t the best known or most popular destination when it comes to Florida beach towns—but that’s why we love it.
One, it has incredibly low light pollution. So much so that this beach town often ranks highly when it comes to best places to view full moons, including Halloween 2020′s Blue Moon. It’d also be a choice spot for meteor showers, including the one happening April 22-23, 2021, as well as the total lunar eclipse on May 26, 2021.
This area, from Melbourne to Jupiter, is also a prime breeding ground for sea turtles. Kimpton hotel guests visiting from June to August will likely see turtle tracks if taking a beach stroll in the early morning.
Water types will have a field day
It’s called the Treasure Coast for a reason. What was a navigational hazard for centuries is now a point of interest for anyone snorkeling, kayaking or paddle boarding—all of which can be arranged by Kimpton’s onsite water sports concessioner, Paddles by the Sea.
The wreck nearest the resort is just a few minutes’ paddle and lies just 250-300 yards from shore. The mast of the S.S. Breconshire can be seen most easily in the summer months, when less wind stirs up the water—and the visibility is ridiculously clear. Still, even when water conditions aren’t martini clear, it’s hard to miss the mast poking up from the drink during low tide. This schooner-rigged, steam-and-sailing vessel now lies in just 15 to 20 feet of water—making it a perfect target for newbie snorkelers.
For paddle boarders, you can just stay on the board while taking in the sight below. It’s a tour you can DIY or pay for Paddles by the Sea to serve as guide while sharing the story, as well as making sure untrained eyes don’t miss spotting sea turtles and other wildlife that often linger at the location.
Beyond tours of the wreck, Paddles by the Sea also rents skim boards, boogie boards and surf boards, and has locations on the Atlantic just in front of the hotel, as well as a few blocks down on the Intercoastal—helpful for anyone wanting to try paddle boarding or kayaking on flatter water.
This room choices offer more than one-size-fits-all
Most travelers want more options from resort rooms than simply a king or two queens. At Kimpton, I booked a Resort View Two Bedroom Studio Suite, which is perfect given that I am traveling with one of my closest friends, and we are too old, really, to sleep in the same room. Two bedrooms with two separate doors and one shared bathroom are lovely both for privacy, and for connection.
In the morning, I can hear when she’s up, and crawl into bed with her as we chat about where we are going to get our morning coffee (we choose Coffee House 1420 across the Intercoastal, in Vero Beach proper, for their strong oat milk lattes).
Another option, ideal for families and travelers wanting to bop back and forth from the pool and ocean, are the lanai rooms. Located on the ground floor, they open via sliding glass door to the pool for easy access.
We also love all of the “grand suites” room categories—not just for their sweeping balconies, but also for the in-room Plum Automatic Wine Dispenser, found in most. At the time of travel, this new best friend was stocked with two offerings—a Lyric pinot noir and a Sonoma-Cutrer chardonnay—kept at the recommended best temperature for on-demand pouring. Slip your glass under, press a button and happy hour continues (contact free, let us point out).
For guests not staying in these upgraded room categories, Kimpton still has you covered. Technically, their social wine and beer hour is from 4 to 5 p.m., but they’re liberal with the policy, offering guests a pour or cold one whenever.
Because that’s where Kimpton stands out. Yeah, you come for the beaches, but they win you over with their warmth—making you feel that, come time to check out, you have indeed made friends, giving you reason to come on back anytime to visit Vero.
(Before booking or traveling, please consult with Kimpton Vero Beach Hotel and Spa’s health and safety protocols, that included mandatory mask use in all public areas, as well as IHG’s overall travel advisory policy and the latest updates from Indian River County.)