Hot Tub Control

The hot tub can be turned on and off with the touch of a button.

The button is located on the post, in the lanai. You can see the button panel from the hot tub.

The only button that controls the hot tub, or anything else, is the top button, the upsidedown number one.

The 2, 3 and 4 buttons are not connected to anything.

Firmly press the top button once.

The center of the panel is a red light. The light will come on when the tub is activated. The heater stays activated while the tub is on.

When the heater is working, heating the water, the red light will blink.

When the heater has reached temperature, it will stop blinking.

Hot tub temp is preset to 100”F.

The hot tub is preset to turn off after 90 minutes

To turn off the hot tub, press the top button.

The red light will remain on while the heater is cooling.

Ceiling Fan and Light Controls

Ceiling fan and light controls are located throughout 244 Flamingo.

The bottom on/off switch must be in the on position to operate the fan and light.

The “8” shaped button at the top of the switch operates the light. One press turns the light “on” or “off”.

Pressing and holding the button will cause the light to go through the dimming and brightening cycle. Release the button when you have reached your desired light level.

The circle shaped button controls the fan. One press to the center square turns the fan “on” or “off”.

One press to the single, double, or triple dots changes the speed from slow, medium or high.

If available on the particular fan, one press to the bottom arrows changes the direction of the spin.

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Distinctive Beach Rentals is the local property management company and they can address any immediate, or repair issues.

Beach toys, chairs, coolers, and fishing gear

There is usually a collection of beach toys, chairs, coolers and fishing gear in the garage. These are things that previous renters have brought to the house, used on their vacation, and left in the garage. I can not guarantee the condition or quantity of these things. Please enjoy them, add to them, and dispose of objects that are broken. 

Please be cautious around the fishing equipment. I have found fishing hooks and lures randomly scattered among the beach toys. I do not fish, and do not know anything about the equipment that is there. Please be tidy and careful returning the equipment to the garage.

Can’t find what you need? 7-11 has a limited selection. CVS and Publix have a very nice selection of beach accessories.  Sun Hardware and the Store at Fish Tale marina include fishing equipment.

Where to go and what to do at the South end of Fort Myers Beach

Places to See, Things to Be!

In no particular order, here are just some of the many fun things you can do while visiting Fort Myers Beach.

Santini Marina Plaza

7205 Estero Blvd. FMB, FL 33931

Boutique shops, book store, liqueur store, restaurants, bars, etc. Santini plaza is approximately 1 mile away. You can walk on the beach and cut back to Estero Blvd at Pinchers. I like to ride my bike there.

Santini Fresh Market

Tuesday and Thursdays from 8:00 am-1:00 pm, mid October til April. Food and local artisan booths are set up in the Santini Market parking lot. Always fun, interesting and full of wonderful things.

Santini Fresh produce trailer

The trailer is located in the Santini parking lot. They have a lovely selection of fresh produce, break, juice, and more. Posted hours are 8:00 am – 3:00 pm daily, but if the weather is bad, they probably wont be open.

Play on the Beach!

For an elevated experience, you can rent a cabana from Outriggers to Pinchers at the Wyndham. Inquire about rentals at Outriggers beach hut and the Mid Island Water Sports beach booths. You can book waverunners, jet ski dolphin tours, parasailing, paddle boards and more.

Rent Bikes

Bike ride on the beach or in the bike lanes. Sometimes traffic can get crazy, but you will have no road rage as you glide by on a bike. If you like to have a bike for the entire week, I like Fun ‘N’ Sun. They will drop off the bikes off and pick them up from the house. the bikes come with a basket and a lock. If you are looking for just a few hours or a day, Dolphin Inn is a convenient place to rent a bike.

Rent a Boat

Fish Tale marina is our favorite place to rent a boat. The marina is the closest to the house, and the boat selection is great. For bigger parties we usually rent a pontoon. The pontoons can not go outside of the back bay, but most passengers prefer those calmer waters anyway. At the north end there are many restaurants you can tie up to, or check out the beach on the bay side of Bowditch Point. South of Fish Tale is Dog Beach, Pelican Park, the beach at Big Carlos Pass, and Flippers at Lovers Key has wonderful food. In between are mangroves, oyster beds, dolphins lot’s of birds, great fishing, and Bayfront Bistro, near Publix.

If you would like to get out onto the water, but would like someone else to captain, Fish Tale also has a dolphin tour, sunset tour and a few other charter options.

Go Fishing

There always seems to be some fishing equipment in the garage at the house. If you don’t like that selection, bring your own, or find the perfect gear at the local marina shops.

In quieter months, I have seen some fishing at the beach. If you choose to attempt this, please be cautions of swimmers and bikers.

I have been on a couple fishing charters in the back bay and one in the Gulf. All were on smaller center console fishing boats. We got sun burnt in the back bay and needed motion sickness pills for the Gulf, but we always came home with fish. The captains clean and filet the fish, (The pelicans love the spoils!), sending you home with ready to cook fresh catch. Most of the local restaurants will happily prepare your filet for you, or you can cook it yourself at the house.

Enjoy Fresh Gulf Shrimp

Restaurant Dinning on FMB

Beach front dining

Fort Myers Beach Events

Enjoy Fresh Gulf Shrimp!

Where to purchase, and how to clean, cook, and enjoy!

Locally caught gulf shrimp are delicious, pink, and a real treat. There are several shrimping boats and stores located on the north side of the Mantanzas Pass Bridge. I usually end up purchasing from Trico Shrimp and Seafood Market.

The shrimp boats go out at all and various times of the night and day. Sometimes you can see the boats way off shore from the beach. When you are on the water in the Mantanzas Harbor, you will see several of them docked.

Gulf shrimp is a real treat, and can get expensive if you like to eat it as frequently as I do. So, take a short ride over to the shrimp docks for the freshest selection. Better yet, plan to have lunch at one of the numerous channel side restaurants first, the boat traffic can be very entertaining. Dock Fords, Bonita Bills and Parrot Key never disappoint. *These restaurants are also a great destination if you rent a boat. *

Trico Shrimp Co. is always busy and has a wonderful selection of fresh shrimp, and other yummy seafood.

The store carries shrimp in several sizes. The shrimp will be labeled with their size, approximately pieces in a pound, and the price per pound. These shrimp come in the shell, with the heads removed. The store also has another option where the shrimp are not sorted by size and include the head intact. This is usually the cheapest per pound price.

Make your selection! Add cocktail sauce and de-shelling tools (see below) if you like. Get those shrimp home cold! The shrimp you are purchasing here were harvested hours ago, and have not been frozen, but they must stay cold. Shrimp loose their freshness very quickly if allowed to get warm. You can store the bagged shrimp in the fridge at the house with the ice for a few hours, but seriously, quit your dawdling, and lets get these babies cleaned.

Clean Shrimp = Yummy Eats!

I purchased some unsorted shrimp with the heads on
($9.95/pound) and some Jumbo headless ($14.95/pound). I also purchased a container of cocktail sauce ($2.99) and a shrimp deveiner tool ($2.99). I have always used a fork to devein shrimp, but the girl in the store demonstrated the new tool and said it has saved them tons of time.

Trico packages the shrimp in a plastic bag and asks if you would like ice. It is very important to keep the shrimp chilled, so yes to the ice.

I have never minded cleaning shrimp, I find it kind of relaxing. Maybe it is because it is the one thing I remember doing with my Grandmother. Standing at the sink in her Key West home, her showing me how to clean the shrimp and what spices to cook them in…

Anyway, Don’t be scared of shrimp with heads; they are easy to remove. I Googled “What to do with shrimp heads and shells” The number one answer is, make Shrimp Stock, of course. I don’t usually do that kind of cooking while I am staying at the FLouse, but I bet it is yummy!

For me, not saving the heads is going to produce much more garbage !stinky garbage!

Just pull with a little twist to remove the heads, and then set aside or discard.

Once you have removed the heads, cleaning these shrimp is the same as as the jumbo shrimp.

Since I am in controll, all of the shell, including the tail shell, is removed. Who wants to get their fingers full of food if they dont have to.

The old school method of cleaning and de-veining is with a fork tine. Insert the tine into the mud vein, then push towards the tail and rip through the top. Pull off all the shell and rinse off the mud vein and any other debris.

The last time I was at Trico, they introduced me to the shrimper, by Morty the Knife Man. The sales lady demonstrated how easy the too made cleaning the shrimp and said it is saving them time. They are able to clean pounds of shrimp much quicker than before.

Marinate the shrimp

Once the shrimp is cleaned and the shells removed, it’s time to marinate. The quickest easiest and yummiest is to put the shrimp in a bag or bowl and toss them with Italian dressing.

Ken’s Steak House dressing was in the fridge; so that is what I used. Through all of the cleaning, it is important to keep the shrimp chilled. Get the marinating shrimp into the fridge as soon as you can. Then find a cool drink and something fun to do until it is time to cook!

As a point of information, this is a visual of the difference between the garbage generated by shrimp shells alone, and garbage generated by shrimp heads and shells. Unless I’m making stock, I’m skipping the heads next time.

Cook the shrimp

Saute the shrimp in a pan on the stove, or toss them into a grill pan and enjoy shrimp on the barbi (barbecue grill). It doesn’t take long to cook the shrimp. As soon as the color goes to an opaque white, they are done!

Drizzle with butter and a little lemon if you like. Cocktail sauce can also be served on the side. They are fresh and delicious, and best enjoyed al- fresco in the Gulf salt air.

Where to go and what to do at the south end of FMB

The Convenience of 7-11

The closest 7-11 store is located at the corner of Driftwood and is a short 5-minute walk from the FLouse.  The store is always open and is clean, friendly and well stocked.

They carry a selection of wine and beer, sodas, snacks, milk, eggs, deli salads and sandwiches, bakery sweets, ice cream, pizza, simple groceries, coffee, and a Citibank ATM. They usually carry some beach toys and coolers too!

The convenience and selection will help make everyone in your vacation party happy.

My kids enjoy strolling to the store every morning for coffee and churros. We have taken a bottle of wine to the beach after sunset to enjoy the stars. 

There is a cut through to Outriggers which is located across the street, this makes stopping at 7-11 on your way back from sunset even easier!

Restaurant Dinning on FMB

There are so many wonderful places to enjoy a meal or snack on Fort Myers Beach. Some are within walking distance and some require wheels. Choices range from beach or marina side, dark and quiet, classically breaded, or gourmet sea food, steaks or burgers.

The Outrigger Tiki Bar and Deck side Cafe

This is the closest beach side dining and cocktail establishment. A great place to enjoy the sunset. There is live music by the tiki from 5:00pm – 9:00 pm M-F and 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm Sat and Sun. The Deckside Cafe is open daily 7:00 am – 9:00 pm. Enjoy your meal on their expansive deck or get take out, it’s all good! Wine down Wednesday is half price bottles of wine!


Pinchers Tiki restaurant beach side at the Wyndham has great food, and live entertainment. Sometimes people play sand vollyball there too. The annual sand sculpture fest is here on the beach. Download the Pinchers app for coupons and deals. Say hi To Henry, he thinks he owns the place.

Fish Tale waterfront dining

The restaurant is located behind Santini Plaza, adjacent to the Fish Tale marina. It is where the Fish House used to be a few years ago. The building and amenities were upgraded beautify. The restaurant has great food and drinks and is a very nice place to watch the boats entering and leaving from the marina. They are known for their polished fresh caught sea food dishes. They have happy hour daily from 3:00-6:00pm with a great small dish menu. A favorite day or night! And yes, they will cook your fresh catch too!

Beach Theater

Definitely one of our most favorite places! My favorite kind of evening is when I can enjoy sunset on the beach and then get to a movie and dinner at the Beach Theater; it’s just a short walk. The seating is mostly office type chairs at a counter. There are a couple of tables with office chairs in each theater as well as some lecture type flip-up seating. The food is delicious, and they also have beer, wine and now liqueur. Service is great and they minimize in movie disruptions and much as they can. It can be a little pricey, but for us, it is a well worth the treat.

Enjoy Fresh Gulf Shrimp

Munch Box Plus


Express to Key West

The Key West Express is a fast passenger ferry that travels between Fort Myers Beach and Key West, and Marco Island and Key West. I have taken the Key West Express from and to Fort Myers Beach several times.

  • The trip is approximately 4 hours, but can vary based on weather in the Gulf.
  • If you want to choose the perfect seat, get there when boarding starts. During peak season, tickets can sell out, so plan ahead.
  • Will you get sea sick? The sooner you take a pill, the better. You can purchase a motion sickness pill from the concession stand; it made me very sleepy. Taking one the night before may be better.
  • The interior of the boat is kept very cool to help reduce the effects of motion. An occasional walk helped keep my flip-flop feet warm.
  • You will loose cell service very shortly after leaving the dock. Your on a boat, in the Gulf of Mexico.
  • The concession stand has snacks, drinks, and sandwiches. There is also a full bar. They take credit cards while they have cellular service. Out on the Gulf, there is no cell service and you may need some cash.
  • You can bring a sack lunch with you. Please check the Key West Express website for luggage restrictions.
  • There are several screens throughout the interior seating area. The trip includes a movie. On my last trip, it was Forrest Gump.
  • There are several unisex bathrooms, (heads). We have traveled on sold out trips, and never had to wait very long to get in.
  • Smoking is allowed outside at the back of the boat.
  • There is an upper exterior deck for wonderful views. It is also very windy.
  • Table seating along the windows, row seating in the middle of the boat, and lounge seating near the bar. We are a party of two, and like to sit at the tables which seat 6; three facing front and 3 facing back. We have had many wonderful conversations with our fellow travelers.

Please click here for You have arrived in the Key West Marina!

You have arrived in the Key West Marina!

The Key West Express docks at a lovely terminal in the Key West Harbor. We arrived around noon and happily paid some porters to transport out luggage to the hotel we would be checking into later that afternoon.

There are so many places to eat, drink, shop and play in Key West. I can’t even begin to cover them all, but here are my highlights.

The dock walk along the harbor. The boats are beautiful and the oysters are fresh!

Rummer has it that this big boat belongs to Beyonce and Jay-Z.

Try to spend a night our two on the island. A day trip is just a tease. Key West has forever been known for it’s nightly sunset celebration. It can get a bit crowded in season and with cruise ships in port, but it is one of a kind. Street performers, souvenirs, fun food, and good cheer.

Duval is the main drag in Key West. There are many wonderful places a block or two off Duval, but you will always come back to Duval.

Cold cocktails, chilled raw oysters on the half shell, and view of the world going by.

Upper balcony at the Whistle bar above the Bull is a great place to hang out. Last time I was there, the open third floor was for nudists.

Key west is overrun with chicken and roosters. They are everywhere, in the bars and nesting under trees. Just keep in mind that the roosters make noise from sun up to sun down, and they are loud. This is a hen and her chick keeping the bar floor clean.

All the way at the other end of Duval,

is the Southern Most Point. A must do photo. There was a really long line, so we improvised.

If you get to the south end, also check out the pier, which was damaged during hurricane Irma.

Louie’s Back Yard and Cafe for ocean side dinning at it’s finest.

Get to Mallory Square for Sunset!

The sunset celebration in Mallory Square has been going on forever. Sailboat cruises and helicopter rides are also available to worship the sun and it’s glorious set.

And if you have more time, shop the art galleries, check out the sunken treasure museum, rent a bike, ride the trolley, check out all the shells and T-shirt shops, get a bar tending job and never go home……..

Click here for Vacation Rental Shopping in old town Key West

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