Learn More About Our Key West Hotel
On New Year's Eve 1920, Casa Marina, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, opened its doors as Key West's most glamorous destination. Conceived by American railroad tycoon Henry Flagler, the resort was intended to accommodate wealthy customers of Flagler's Overseas Railroad, which spanned from Key West to the Florida mainland.
Although Flagler died before the hotel’s construction began in 1918, architects Thomas Hastings and John M. Carrere – who also designed New York's Metropolitan Opera House, New York Public Library and the Senate and House of Representatives office buildings in DC – wanted the resort to serve as a monument to the magnate's memory. Six and a half acres and 1,200 square feet of beach were purchased for $1,000, providing a spectacular natural backdrop for the hotel. The two architects handled the hotel’s interior and exterior, ensuring every detail honored Flagler's original vision.
Three days after the resort's grand opening, President Warren G. Harding came to visit, establishing Casa Marina as an exclusive destination. In 1942, the property was bought by the U.S. Navy, and used as officer's quarters for the duration of World War II. Casa Marina re-emerged as a luxury hotspot in the 1950s, and played host to celebrities such as Gregory Peck, Ethel Merman, Ezio Pinza, Rita Hayworth and Gary Merrill.
During the Cuban Missile Crisis, the hotel was used by the U.S. Army's Sixth Missile Battalion. Soon after, Casa Marina fell into a period of decline, which was exacerbated by piecemeal renovations in 1978 and 1984. With the completion of a recent overhaul in 2008, however, this splendid Hilton hotel in Key West has been restored to its original grandeur. All of our Key West accommodations have been revamped with sophisticated furnishings and luxury Key West resort amenities, including LCD televisions, iHome docking stations and espresso machines. Eye-catching new event space and outdoor areas complete the renewed atmosphere of refined Floridian splendor, truly delivering luxury for our time.