Century-Old Victorian Inn Located on the Indian River Lagoon
Along the coast of New Smyrna Beach, the Atlantic Ocean splinters into an array of marshy tributaries known as the Indian River Lagoon, home to a diverse population of more than 3,500 species of flora and fauna, including manatees, bottlenose dolphins, and turtles. The Riverview Hotel has an intimate viewpoint of this local marine life, as its property has resided on the quiet banks of one such estuary channel since 1885. The intricate Victorian estate still feels like a relic from that bygone era with its pink clapboard siding, wraparound whitewashed balconies, and intricate trim.
Despite its antique exterior, the hotel features updated amenities tailored to evoke a relaxing atmosphere. At the full-service Spa at Riverview, massage therapists and aestheticians administer massages, body wraps, facials, waxes, and mani-pedis. During a 50-minute Ashiatsu massage, a therapist grips wooden bars suspended from the ceiling and uses her feet to work out muscle kinks and practice tap-dancing solos. Outside the spa, a small waterfall spills over a boulder and into a saltwater whirlpool heated to 102 degrees. Next door, a heated outdoor pool is surrounded by lush vegetation in an enclosed courtyard. Nearby, the Grille at Riverview sits on the riverside, offering fresh seafood on its menu.
Several rooms at the inn overlook the pool or the river, including the honeymoon rooms, which feature dark, wood-paneled walls and marina vistas. Guests can enjoy an expanded continental breakfast on their private patio or balcony each morning between 6:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. Each night, hotel staff members turn down beds, lay out terry-cloth bathrobes, and place bedtime chocolates on pillows.
New Smyrna Beach, Florida: Barrier Island Town Flush with Wildlife
The Riverview Hotel rests on the west side of a narrow barrier island sandwiched between the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian River Lagoon. Breezy shops and restaurants line the historical Flagler Avenue, which dead-ends at the shores of the Atlantic—just a half mile from the doorstep of the hotel. Guests can rent beach cruiser bicycles from the front desk for a speedier trek through the area. Due to the area's abundant wildlife, sea excursions are a popular way to take in the sights, whether one rides a kayak, pontoon boat, or the back of a friendly sea turtle.