The Luminary Hotel, Fort Myers, Florida

Let me tell you about our hotel in Fort Myers. We were spending a couple of extra days after a Friday to Friday stay at the Marriott Crystal Shores, probably our favorite vacation spot. Where to stay? In February, beachside hotels cost a king’s ransom. We settled on the Luminary Hotel in downtown Fort Myers, and it was a great choice.

The Luminary is part of Marriott’s Autograph Collection, which means it’s a hotel with character. Nancy and Liza recently stayed at another Autograph Hotel, the Algonquin in Manhattan, where they were upgraded (a lot!) to the suite in which Noel Coward had lived. The Luminary opened in 2020, and its character is sleek and modern, but with vivid accents.

There was a brief wait for check-in, during which Tate regaled us with local advice. We were given a corner room with windows facing the broad Caloosahatchee River to the north and the riverside area to the east, below.

The room was very comfortable, with a reading chair and a reclining couch, as well as a desk chair. The bathroom was spacious and stylish, and there was an “artisan pantry” with snacks and beverages at remarkably reasonable prices, and a refrigerator with cold drinks as well as room for some of our Marco Island leftovers. The coffee maker was a very sophisticated model, so it took a while to figure it out, but it made great coffee.

The Luminary has an indoor-outdoor fitness facility and an outdoor pool, grill, and deck on the fourth floor, shown here,

and a bar and event deck on the roof, all overlooking the river. The ground floor boasts a restaurant. a bar, and a large cooking theatre used for food and drink presentations and classes, and various other events. Self-parking is plentiful and (drum roll) five dollars a night. Honest.

The hotel’s name celebrates luminaries with names like Edison, Ford, and Firestone, all of whom wintered in Fort Myers. Indeed, unbeknownst to us, our stay landed in the Edison Festival of Light weekend, with a huge parade and a host of other events on Saturday. As the first post-COVID parade, this year’s drew a mob, with families reserving their spots early in the day. Having the best position for the parade, the Luminary was packed. We were delighted with our view of the parade and the fireworks.

The parade meant lots of blocked streets on Saturday, which foiled our plan of going out to the beaches to try a beachside dive or three. Instead, we had a great day exploring the downtown adjacent to the hotel, the many Festival events, and the Edison estate. It was a great day, and a great hotel. You can’t beat the beach, but Fort Myers has a lot to see. You should give it a visit and, when you do, stay at the Luminary.


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6 thoughts on “The Luminary Hotel, Fort Myers, Florida

  1. Not this trip. My research had been into beach bars with good food, and it was all wasted as we ended up trapped downtown by the big festival — the route into town was closed until we’ll after 11:00 pm. These tips will stand us in good stead next trip. I really need to consult you in advance. Is there netting we haven’t discussed win Eastern north Carolina? We’ll be going to the beach near Morehead City this summer.


  2. So we paid the $15 a night for parking on check in, not realizing you could have taken a ticket and paid the $5 for each in and out over 6 hours apart. In a five day stay, only taking the car out once. Learned that one the hard way.

    Ella Mae Diner is awsome and had trouble using the $30 voucher for food as a Bonvoy Plat. Always had Money left over. Left tips separately.

    Izzys seafood was good. The Lodge BBQ on First Street was awsome. We had the $45 combo platter that had a rack of ribs, 2 1/4 chickens, pulled pork, brisket, two sides and cornbread (new menu with price increases in 2 weeks)

    Liked by 1 person

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