Opened up during the worst travel slump in decades, the Luminary Hotel Fort Myers has nevertheless gotten popular in a hurry as a welcome downtown addition. As part of Marriott’s Autograph Collection, it also offers the ability to earn or cash in some loyalty points.
While this fast-growing region of Florida has seen a building boom over the past decade and new resorts on the outskirts like Hyatt Coconut Point, the central core hasn’t seen as much activity. There hasn’t been all that much to choose from for downtown Fort Myers hotels in the past, so there’s been a lot of anticipation for this high-rise property in the River District by the convention center.
Because of this location, The Luminary was designed to be a business hotel, which explains the rather modest size of the pool and the fact the signature restaurant is closed on Sundays. With business travel still rare at this point though, most of its guests have been leisure travelers visiting Ft. Myers attractions like the Edison Ford Estate or just enjoying the strip of restaurants and shopping one block over.
Luminary Hotel Restaurant Options
The big attraction at this high-rise hotel is the Beacon Social Drinkery roof deck bar on the 12th floor. It offers panoramic views of the wide Caloosahatchee River flowing to the Gulf of Mexico and Cape Coral on the other side. This open-air dining and drinking spot is indoor-outdoor with lots of air flow, so it has been a popular spot since opening. It’s a great place to grab a cocktail and take in the view.
The main restaurant for dinner is seafood spot Silver King Ocean Brasserie. The chairs and artistic fish mural are silver-colored and the whole place gleams with contemporary style. It’s on the first floor by the lobby, with a wall of windows facing the street. Named after the fishing target Atlantic Tarpon, it naturally serves a variety of seafood from a region where it’s abundant.
With a separate entrance a few steps past that is Ella Mae’s Diner, a whimsical recreation of a classic diner, but all gleaming and pretty, with a curtain of strung-together clear Coke bottles at the front setting the tone. There are tables inside and out, as well as a long diner-style bar where you can order a milkshake or a burger and fries. We ordered some fish & chips, mac and cheese, and salads and were quite happy all around.
There’s also a lobby bar that serves up some signature cocktails with your spirit of choice. We got this array: two with rum, a Palm City Cosmo with vodka.
Also off the lobby is the Dean Street Coffee Bar, which is good for a quick bite in the morning if you don’t want a full breakfast from Ella Mae’s.
Autograph Collection Rooms
Rooms at The Luminary Hotel are more “Autograph” than “Marriott,” meaning stylish and contemporary rather than cookie-cutter business style. They present a few different looks depending on where they are in the building, with higher floors having a great view.
My room was one of the Corner King with Balcony ones, which meant a rather unorthodox layout, but great views from two sides plus a balcony to step onto for a panoramic one.
This room had a comfy chair to sit in, a closet with ample hangers, and a desk with leather work chair. Then after a short corridor was the bed itself, facing an extensive minibar by the window and a TV to the side of the bed. There were plenty of well-placed outlets for charging devices and the included WiFi worked well. Very effective blackout curtains kept the room dark in the morning when the sun would otherwise be filling the room through the glass wall.
Rooms feature a silver-gray carpet, marble desktop, attractive lamps, and a padded headboard with individual adjustable reading lights. An array of pillows, comfy mattress, and duvet ensure a good night’s sleep. Shower-only bathrooms come with an array of toiletries and a make-up mirror, plus robes are included. Room sizes average around 350 square feet, with a few suites in the mix that are larger.
Fort Myers Hotel Pool and Gym
The swimming pool area of The Luminary Hotel was meant more for functions and corporate events than actual swimming: there’s a covered bar and lounge area that’s much larger than the pool part in the sun.
So you won’t be coming to the pool to do laps and if there are more than 20 guests coming to use it, you won’t be lounging next to it either. The view from the pool is stunning though and it’s a relaxing place to catch some sun while your significant other is at meetings.
There’s also a well-equipped gym on site on the same level as the pool, with a wide variety of aerobic machines, weight machines, dumbbells, and accessories for a a good workout.
The Luminary Hotel is definitely a shining light in downtown Fort Myers and is in a great location for strolling and eating out. When conventions and meetings start picking up again it will be full of business travelers, but it’s worth considering for at least a night if you’re on vacation in the area too.
Valet parking is available at a rate of $24 per day. Rates at the property generally start between $240 and $340 depending on the season and day of the week. See the room options here and check availability, or book at Hotels.com.
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Editor Tim Leffel was hosted one night at the Luminary Hotel in Fort Myers for purposes of review.