When you think of Ft. Lauderdale, you probably think of a beach, Spring Break, and cruise ships. The Bonaventure Resort in Weston—on the edge of the Everglades west of Fort Lauderdale—is none of that. It’s a golf resort and a place to catch some warm sun next to a nice swimming pool.
The Bonaventure Resort used to be they Hyatt Bonaventure, so you’ll still see it listed as that on some booking sites and old reviews, but it is run as an independent hotel now. It’s a AAA 4-diamond resort though and has a responsive, well-trained staff that’s seasoned.
I visited the Bonaventure the last week of November, as it was cooling off a bit in southern Florida, but the attractive pool was heated and a waiter was quick with the cocktails and food orders. The pool pictured above is just one of several, plus there is a hot tub nearby if the air gets too cool.
The main attraction here, and what brings in the corporate meetings,are the two championship golf courses on 300 acres at the Bonaventure Country Club. It’s a short hop to the entrance from the resort, or if that’s not enough the hotel has privileges at another country club 15 minutes away. There’s a 20,000 square foot fitness center on site, as well as one of the largest spas in the region: 30 treatment rooms, Hot Yoga, a dedicated Pilate’s room, plus his/hers sauna and steam rooms.
Room furnishings are straight out of the chain hotel catalog, but there’s little else to quibble about in the well-maintained rooms with excellent bedding. Most of the 500 rooms and suites look out at the grounds or palm trees and have all the amenities you’d expect to find in a Hyatt. All have ample furniture inside and a furnished balcony outside, with good climate controls and a wide choice of channels on the flat-screen HDTVs. Suites are a big step up, with at least 900 square feet, a more luxurious bath with separate tub and shower, and a living room for lounging. These also have a kitchenette and a sofa bed, so they work well for families.
Restaurants span the moods from bathing suit casual to expense account fine dining, with a large family-friendly main restaurant serving buffets for breakfast and lunch. The attractive main lounge with fish tanks joins a poolside cabana bar open during the day facing the pool and grounds.
You can tell most guests are here on business conferences: there’s a charge for internet access and the spa adds a 20% gratuity to your treatment price as a mandatory tip (unless you have the audacity to ask them to change it later.) For those favoring a golf cart over a beach chair though, Bonaventure is a pleasant resort-style hotel near Everglades tour areas, cruise ship ports, and two major airports.
Review and photos by Hotel Scoop editor and Florida resident Tim Leffel. He won a stay at the Bonaventure when his story Sidesaddle Girls at a Mexican Rodeo won a Gold “best travel writing” award from the North American Travel Journalists Association.