The hotel sits on six acres in the heart of horse country, a region in central Florida known for its polo matches, horse farms, and lavish private estates.
A Clydesdale named Buddy lives in a grass paddock out back—you can feed him snacks provided at the front desk.
The hotel offers weekly entertainment such as Friday night happy hours with drink specials on the patio, and live jazz every Saturday at Arthur’s Restaurant.
The Starting Gate Lounge boasts a top-notch bourbon selection and a list of chilled martinis.
Guests can soak up the Florida sunshine on the multilevel pool deck.
The hotel is located near several noteworthy attractions including the Appleton Museum of Art and Silver Springs, an ecological theme park.
Ocala, Florida: Equestrian Farms and Historic Downtown in the Heart of Horse Country
Ocala is a charming city located in a region of central Florida known as “horse country.” As the name suggests, it’s an area marked by all things equine: sprawling horse farms, international polo matches, a horse-and-carriage tradition—there’s even a set of horse statues downtown. The local farms and training centers that dot the countryside have produced a number of award-winning thoroughbreds over the years, including Triple Crown winner Affirmed in 1978. At Florida Horse Park, you can watch Olympic-level competitions such as hunter/jumper and dressage events. Additionally, several ranches throughout the area offer guided horseback riding and even swimming with horses in the Ocklawaha River.
Other ways to explore the landscape range from canoeing down the waterways of the Ocala National Forest to taking a cruise on a glass-bottomed boat at the Silver Springs natural theme park. Take a stroll along Fort King Street in downtown Ocala to look at Queen Anne and art-deco buildings framed by blooming azaleas and dogwoods.
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