BETTER HOMES & GARDENS - April 2010 - LIVING/travel
Return to Glory - by Kathleen Parrish - April 2010
The Casa Marina, Jacksonville Florida
This restored 23-suite hotel recalls an old Florida when gangsters such as Al Capone and Hollywood movie stars sunned themselves on the beach by day and attended smoky lounge acts and dazzling parties by night. When hotel staff threw back the curtain on opening night in 1925, guests quaffed cocktails and danced amid Spanish Mediterranean splendor. Earlier that day, sleepy Pablo Beach woke up as Jacksonville and welcomed the dawn of the first great Florida land boom.
Today, Jax, as everyone calls it, rides a tourist boom with its mix of Southern hospitality and many family-friendly attractions. A leisurely and scenic drive south on A1A delivers you to the historic charms of St. Augustine and the playful dolphins of Marineland.