The Vanderbilts, the Studebakers, the Du Ponts. Even Babe Ruth, Henry Ford, and Thomas Edison. They’ve all retreated to the historic Belleview Inn, which was first erected on the bluffs overlooking Clearwater Bay in 1897. Today, as the centerpiece to Belleview Place, this resort comes with all the luxury and seclusion of a private country club.
STAY: Where History and Comfort Meet
The Belleview Inn is a restored 38,000-square-foot section of an original Henry Plant hotel that was first erected 120 years ago. A thing of true Gilded Age grandeur, she retains all her original charm, including heart pine wood floors, Tiffany Glass ceiling panes, wide shaded verandas, and grand staircase. The 35 original guestrooms have been updated to reflect modern tastes, which blend beautiful classic architecture and design with modern amenities like mini-fridges and Keurig coffee makers in every room.
EAT: With Unparalleled Views
In addition to the on-site Maisie’s Marketplace (serving coffee, ice cream novelties, smoothies, and beer and wine), guests also have access to the dining options at the Belleair Country Club. Expect three distinct dining options that range from casual to formal to a lounge atmosphere, all boasting spectacular views of the golf courses or Clearwater Bay.
PLAY: Your Own Private Playground
Today, just as the hotel’s Gilded Era grandeur has been restored, so too has its plethora of pastimes, meaning you don’t need to stray far from your guest room to find an activity that suits you. All of the amenities of the Belleair Country Club are at your fingertips, including the two Donald Ross–designed 18-hole golf courses, tennis courts and pickleball courts, and the resort-style swimming pool that is the biggest in Pinellas County. For guests looking to take things at a slower pace, a one-mile walking path is the place for tranquil rambling around the grounds, while the rocking chairs on the shaded verandas are perfect for whiling away the evening.
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Be sure to check out the little nods to history that appear around every corner, like The Tiffany Room, a ballroom that was part of the original property, was recreated on the first floor and features 24 of the original 100 pieces of Tiffany glass to mimic the room’s famous curved ceiling. Morton’s Reading Room (named for Henry Plant’s son), a wood-paneled study, contains artifacts from the hotel’s heyday, including dishes, postcards, bellhop uniforms, even a sketch of the original golf courses signed by Donald Ross.