Visit the Don CeSar Hotel in St. Petersburg
By Kara Franker
Situated on the sugary white sands of the Gulf of Mexico, the Loews Don CeSar Hotel was built in the Great Gatsby era of the 1920s.
Today the Mediterranean-style castle by the sea, also known as the Pink Palace, is a luxurious landmark on St. Pete Beach.
The resort was the dream of Thomas Rowe, who opened the hotel in 1928. Construction costs totaled $1.2 million, which may not sound like much today, but it certainly was a boatload of cash for the Roaring Twenties.
Listed among the Historic Hotels of North America and the National Register of Historic Places, the resort features 277 luxurious rooms, including 40 spacious suites.
The Don CeSar has been hosting families from around the world for decades. Notable guests throughout history have included American author F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife, Zelda, baseball great Lou Gehrig and mafia gangster Al Capone.
Ready to plan your own family vacation? Here are eight ways to have the most relaxing vacation you can imagine at the Pink Palace:
1. White Sand Beach
Toast to a little romance while you’re on vacation and kick back in one of the lounge chairs on the white sand beach.
2. Oceanfront Pools
Go for a swim in one of the sparkling oceanfront pools. Or book a spa treatment at Spa Oceana.
3. Views of the Gulf of Mexico
Enjoy the year-round perfect weather that Florida is famous for and soak up those spectacular views of the Gulf of Mexico.
4. Don CeSar Penthouse
Book the recently renovated penthouse. Check out this timelapse-styled video for an overview of the makeover and a little history lesson, too:
5. Beachside Hammock
Grab a good book and lounge around in one of the beachside hammocks.
6. Old-Fashioned Ice Cream
Indulge your sweet tooth at Uncle Andy’s Ice Cream Parlor. This old-fashioned ice cream shop offers yummy banana splits and strawberry shakes that are homemade and deliciously authentic.
7. Maritana Grille
Dine at the award-winning Maritana Grille, which features an array of gourmet choices, including delicious local seafood dishes.
8. Gulf Coast Sunset
Watch one of Florida's beautiful Gulf Coast sunsets.