Not for nothing is St. Petersburg in Florida nicknamed the “Sunshine City.” This gorgeous Floridian coastal city sits happily sandwiched between Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. This Northwest Floridian city might be famed for its arts and cultural scene, but it’s also known to be home to the finest, most pristine, white sand beaches in the state. In fact, there’s never been a better time to lather on the sunscreen, don your bathing suit, and hit a postcard-perfect beach here. Of course, nothing beats staying in a beachfront hotel in St Petersburg, Florida (FL). Not only do they range across its beach neighborhoods, but they also range across budgets and property sizes. So, whether you’re looking for a luxurious seaside resort or a small boutique inn, St Petersburg, Florida (FL), has a beachfront hotel for you.
Table of contents
- Plaza Beach Hotel Beachfront Resort, St Pete Beach
- TradeWinds Island Grand Resort, St Pete Beach
- The Hotel Zamora
- The Don CeSar
- Postcard Inn on the Beach
- RumFish Beach Resort by TradeWinds
- Sirata Beach Resort
- Sea Breeze Manor Inn
- The Birchwood
- Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort & Golf Club
- Beach House Suites by the Don CeSar
- Recommended Beach Bars/Restaurants in St Petersburg, FL
- Recommended Things To Do in St Petersburg, FL
- Best Beach Areas in St Petersburg, FL
Plaza Beach Hotel Beachfront Resort, St Pete Beach
Best value for money. The Plaza Beach Hotel Beachfront Resort is the best beachfront hotel in St Petersburg, Florida (FL). Relaxation is the order of the day at this beachfront resort, which sits right on the sands of St Pete’s Beach. Start your day with a swim in the sea or the outdoor pool, followed by a lounge on the daybeds by the beach. Enjoy a picnic lunch in the picnic area with barbecue grills. Afternoons are best for rest, after which you can indulge in a spot of workout or a game at the volleyball court. All this happens on the resort’s private beach! That’s why it’s so value for money, as it’s one of the best cheap hotels in St Petersburg, Florida.
You’ll also love the rooms and suites, all of which come with kitchenettes for whipping up your own meals. What’s more, they all have charmingly retro features such as black-and-white wall art and old phones. Envrionment-loving travelers will love the resort’s efforts to recycle and reduce waste. It even holds a “Green Certificate” for its conscientious eco-initiatives.
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TradeWinds Island Grand Resort, St Pete Beach
Best for family fun and activities. The TradeWinds Island Grand Resort is practically a mini-city in itself. Indulge in some serious Florida fun at this giant resort, which sits right on the southern sands of St Pete’s Beach. Families with kids will especially love activities like paddleboarding, kayaking, parasailing, snorkeling, watching movies at the pool cinema, and splashing through the floating water park. At the same time, it has some quality-conscious ‘grown-up’ touches, such as the beachside hammocks, fine-dining restaurant, and spa. Other amenities include a dog park, mini-golf, waterslides, and a video arcade – phew!
The rooms, which include 200 suites and 6 penthouse suites, are simple but very spacious. They’re decked out in soft lighting, comfy beds, and subtle tropical décor but also come with kitchenettes, cable TV, and Wi-Fi. The suites are perfect for larger groups or kids with families. The seafront rooms with balconies are the best, so request them upon booking.
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The Hotel Zamora
If you’re looking for a smaller, characterful beachfront hotel in St Petersburg, Florida (FL), then consider The Hotel Zamora. It sits on Gulf Boulevard just south of Gulfport, right next to the marina, with the beach hardly a minute’s walk. In fact, it’s one of the most romantic hotels in Tampa. The Spanish-inspired boutique hotel boasts a stunning 360-degree rooftop that offers happy hour deals on delicious cocktails. Even more rest and relaxation await you in the rooms, with a host of great “stay well” features like aromatherapy, air purification systems, terrycloth bathrobes, and soaking tubs. What’s more, some face the Intracoastal Waterway, while the others face the street – and the beach.
That said, you’ll love the outdoors here too. Swim in and lounge by the swimming pool and whirlpool, which offer lovely views of the Intracoastal. There are even covered areas with lounge chairs for when the sun comes up. Not only does the place have a full restaurant and two bars, but it also hosts a daily complimentary canapé and wine hour. The best bit? You can use the beach cruiser bikes and kayaks for free.
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The Don CeSar
There’s no way of talking about the best beach hotels in St Petersburg, St Pete’s Beach, or the Tampa area without talking about The Don CeSar. Not only is it one of the world’s most iconic hotels, but the legendary “Pink Palace” is also one of the most Instagrammable places to stay in the world. Plus, it’s also one of the top gay-friendly hotels in St. Petersburg, Florida, so gay travelers will certainly love the “pink vibe” here.
This 1928-founded beachfront hotel sits right on St Pete’s Beach, with the stop for the beach trolley right outside the hotel. It runs up and down the length of the coast, which means that you have the entire beach right at your doorstep. Besides the trolley, you can play beach volleyball, swim in the sea, and lounge on the daybeds while sipping cocktails from the beach bar. Back at the hotel, you have two heated outdoor pools, a full-service spa, and a fitness center, and a studio. Tropical gardens surround the place, giving it a very romantic vibe.
Rooms and suites feature sky-blue/white décor and a bevy of luxury and entertainment amenities. For more space or something more luxurious, go for the spacious suites or one of the higher-floor sea-facing rooms, which come with balconies.
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Postcard Inn on the Beach
Best budget. Postcard Inn on the Beach is not just the best beachfront hotel in St Petersburg, Florida (FL), but also one of the best boutique hotels in St. Petersburg, Florida. This 1950s beachfront motel right on the sands of St Pete’s Beach gets a cheerful and chic makeover, making it perfect for budget travelers. You’ll love the playful but sophisticated design elements, such as the lush tropical garden, outdoor games, pool cabanas, beach furniture, and summer ‘Dive-In Movies’ by the poolside. When you finish lounging on the beach, the main pool area is equally inviting. Videos, books, games, garden games, and a fitness center aside, the place also has volleyball on the beach and bikes for rent, along with the PCI Beach Bar serving amazing cocktails amidst live music.
Choose from three kinds of rooms, each with a garden, pool, or beach view. Moreover, they all have small but clean and modern bathrooms and thoughtful touches such as coffeemakers, mini-fridges, and bottled water.
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RumFish Beach Resort by TradeWinds
You can’t be confused about where you are when you’re at the eye-catching RumFish Beach Resort by TradeWinds. This place takes the ‘sea’ in ‘seaside’ very seriously, with a maritime theme throughout the property. For one, it sits right on the sands of St Pete’s Beach, so the journey from the beach to your rooms takes no more than a minute. What’s more, the entire property has a lively beach vibe with rich water features, tropical vegetation, and even a “Touch Tank” experience with various marine creatures – think everything from horseshoe carbs to sea stars.
After spending time at the beach with cabanas and hammocks, you might also want to spend time by the two pools in the tropical gardens (one is adults-only). There’s also a firepit for toasting s’mores in the evening, beach sports, and four restaurants and bars. If you were impressed by the amenities, wait till you see the rooms, most of which are actually suites with balconies/floor-to-ceiling windows and mini-kitchens. Modern amenities aside, the best rooms are the Gulf Front view ones for the balconies or the ground-floor pool patio ones to be just steps from the beach literally.
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Sirata Beach Resort
Best private beach. The stunning Sirata Beach Resort is the most exclusive beachfront hotel in St Petersburg, Florida (FL). Set right on a quiet stretch of sand at St Pete’s Beach, this resort boasts a tropically chilled vibe and plenty of onsite amenities. These include beach activities, watersports, an X-Box games room, and a children’s splash area right next to the swanky main beachfront pool. Adults will love lounging at the beach before returning to the quiet adults-only secondary pool. You could play beach volleyball or lounge by the pool cabanas if you love activities. Later on, relax on the huge outdoor patio/sundeck, which is never crowded. And while there are three full-time restaurants, the two outdoor bars, with their beach views and all-day menus, are the place to be.
The rooms are lovely, generously sized, and boast a seaside vibe with nautical decor and blue-and-white color schemes. Moreover, all come with well-equipped kitchenettes and either huge windows or balconies. Our recommendation is the ground-floor Lanai Rooms, which open straight onto private beach patios.
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Sea Breeze Manor Inn
Best beachside inn. If you don’t want to live in a sprawling beach resort, then Sea Breeze Manor Inn is the place for you. Nestled in quaint Gulfport right across the street from Boca Ciega Bay’s sandy beach, this place is laidback to the “T.” Choose from its luxurious tropical-themed suites, all of which come with private balconies with either the garden or the bay views. What’s more, they all have Wi-Fi, TVs, and modern bathrooms for the ultimate comfort. Are you traveling with Fido? There’s even a dog-friendly cottage with a private patio. Your day begins with a wonderful breakfast, after which you can spend time at the beach. When evening comes, the grounds of the inn feature gorgeous lights all over, making it one of the most romantic places to stay.
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The Birchwood is a gorgeous beachfront hotel in St Petersburg, Florida (FL)’s Downtown. If you want to live in Downtown St Petersburg with water views, then a few things are as emblematic of its Beach Drive as this boutique hotel. The 1924 facade of this former apartment building might be old, but its interiors are spanking new, with the mishmash extending to the furnishings and decor. Choose from a host of rooms with luxurious canopy beds, bathrooms with glass-door showers, and European clawfoot bathtubs. We recommend the rooms with views of Beach Drive, but the real views are at Canopy, the hotel’s überhip rooftop nightlife spot. After you’ve enjoyed cocktails on the rooftop, head to the ground-floor restaurant for dinner. And, of course, the waterfront with mesmerizing views of the marina and Tampa Bay.
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Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort & Golf Club
If Downtown waterfront luxury is what you’re looking for in St Petersburg, then consider the Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort & Golf Club. This luxurious resort, which offers splendid views of the waterfront gardens, the marina and yachts, and Tampa Bay, was built in 1925, which makes it just as vintage as the Don CeSar. What’s more, it sits on the National Register of Historic Places, thanks to thoughtful renovations that retain its yesteryear glamour. The best rooms are the ones on the bay side with views of Tampa Bay, of course, and the beaches are just 10-15 minutes away. But, the Vinoy is within walking distance of St Petersburg’s amazing historic sights and attractions.
Other amenities include three restaurants and a golf course with a stunning clubhouse. Besides the expansive private marina, the highlight is the outdoor pool with daybeds, cabanas, and pool attendants who zip about delivering drinks.
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Beach House Suites by the Don CeSar
Beach House Suites by the Don CeSar is the best beachfront hotel in St Petersburg, Florida (FL). It lies half a mile down the beach from its sister resort Don CeSar, and one can easily shuttle between them via the Beach Shuttle. This all-suite hotel is perfect for travelers who want a beachside stay with the services of a hotel and the comfort of residential-style accommodations. The modern pink-and-white beachfront facade perfectly complements the sandy beach and blue waters right out front. Moreover, all suites boast either partial/complete views of the ocean, along with featuring mod-cons and balconies in all of them. The rest of the property is equally impressive, with a restaurant, an ice cream parlor, and a games room. A spa and a fitness center round up the amenities here.
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These beachside hotels in St Petersburg are all amazing. That said, we bring you a specialized list of hotels with their best attributes:
- Best value for money: Plaza Beach Hotel Beachfront Resort, St Pete Beach
- Best budget: Postcard Inn on the Beach
- Best for family fun and activities: TradeWinds Island Grand Resort, St Pete Beach
- Best private beach: Sirata Beach Resort
Recommended Beach Bars/Restaurants in St Petersburg, FL
- Palm Pavilion: This open-air Gulf-front restaurant has been a Clearwater Beach landmark since 1926 and the perfect spot for sunset gazing on Clearwater Beach. It’s famed for its come-as-you-are vibe – even flip-flops are welcome here! Dig into their famous beach burgers, smoked ribs, shrimp and crab chowder, seafood and chicken wraps, sizzling steak, and great seafood at this easy-going bar and grill.
- Frenchy’s Rockaway Grill: This brand of restaurants is practically an institution in the Clearwater/St. The Pete area, but the Rockaway Grill sits on the sand and offers splendid Gulf views. Dig into delicious “Floribbean”-style dishes, She Crab soup, sandwiches, and their large selection of fresh seafood as you enjoy the views.
Recommended Things To Do in St Petersburg, FL
- St. Petersburg Sunset Cruise with Sunshine Skyway Bridge: There’s no better way to end the day in St Petersburg than enjoy an evening cruise. This amazing sunset cruise sets sail from St. Petersburg and cruises through the gorgeous waters of Tampa Bay. During the cruise, you also pass under the stunning Sunshine Skyway Bridge and might even spot playful dolphins against the background of a beautiful Floridian sunset.
- St. Petersburg, FL Weedon Island Kayak Tour: Kayaking enthusiasts, this one is for you. This relaxing kayaking tour takes you through the stunning vistas of Weedon Island Preserve, which include shallow seagrass meadows, pristine blue waters, and mesmerizing mangrove tunnels. Your guide will also tell you about the local wildlife as you paddle.
Best Beach Areas in St Petersburg, FL
Every beach lover has a favorite kind of beach, whether it’s an active one with sports or a quiet stretch of pristine sand. No matter what you’re looking for, there’s a perfect beach neighborhood for you in St. Petersburg.
We begin with Downtown St. Petersburg, which sits overlooking the North Yacht Basin and Tampa Bay. So, while it offers superb waterfront views, it’s a 10-minute drive to the beaches. That said, Downtown is a culture lover’s paradise and is home to some of the world’s best museums, including Salvador Dalí’s largest collection of work outside of Spain.
Next, there’s Gulfport, which might be off the main tourist trail, but it’s one quirky, artsy community. It sits between Downtown and St. Pete Beach and overlooks the Boca Ciega Bay Aquatic Preserve. Next, there’s Treasure Island, which is one of the best beach neighborhoods to stay in. It’s got everything from beaches to sights and is famous for its thriving restaurant and bar scene.
While North Redington Beach isn’t as popular as the others, it has a quieter atmosphere, perfect for couples or families with kids. Madeira Beach is the opposite and is preferred by holiday-goers looking for a fun and active beach holiday. Finally, we have St. Pete’s Beach, which was originally St. Petersburg Beach. This northern shore coastal community has the longest stretch of undeveloped public beaches. Besides the shallow, clear water, watersports, and gorgeous sand, it’s also home to award-winning resorts.