How Do We Get in the House?
Your vacation rental will be left unlocked for you. Our housekeeper will come to the house immediately prior to your arrival and will leave the house open. If it is locked, lock box information is provided in your arrival letter which will be sent out via email roughly two weeks to 10 days prior to your arrival. If you call our concierge and let him know your water taxi time, he will meet you at the dock and help transport luggage and groceries to the house for you. Generally, it is not necessary to lock the house during your stay. The island is very safe.
How Far is it From the Dock to the House?
The island is only about 100-200 yards wide in most spots....so even if you choose not to use the concierge, it is never more than a 3-4 minute walk from the dock to the beach. We do recommend you call him just to make sure you find the right house!
Do You Allow Dogs?
Yes. Little Gasparilla Island is very dog friendly, and since there are rarely-enforced leash laws, there are often many dogs on the beach swimming, chasing birds, digging in the sand and chasing frisbees. Because of this freedom, aggressive dogs are generally not tolerated unless they are restrained. We also request that any pets staying at our rentals must be on preventative flea control, and that you properly dispose of pet waste on the beach around the outside of the house. Most of our vacation rental owners charge a $100 non-refundable pet fee to help cover additional cleaning costs for furry friends. Most of our cottages are pet friendly, but please be sure to confirm before you bring a pet because some cottages do not allow pets, some require a pet fee and in all cases we MUST be notified in advance before you bring a pet.
Are Linens Included?
Yes, all linens are provided, including beach towels.
Is The Kitchen Fully Stocked? What Will Be Provided During Our Stay?
All kitchens include refrigerator, electric range, microwave, coffee maker, and blender.
All basic kitchen utensils, silverware, and dishes are provided. You will also find all necessary cookware and bake-ware.
WASHERS AND DRYERS
Each and every house has a washer and a dryer.
Each house has a grill for cooking outdoors. Some grills are charcoal, some are gas, and some are electric. When you book, we will confirm the details on the type of grill in your cottage.
Most houses have an outdoor, after-swim shower for rinsing off salt water and sand.
Most homes offer a varied selection of pantry items such as saran wrap, aluminum foil, paper towels, napkins, coffee filters, etc.
The house cleaners have been instructed to leave condiments in the refrigerator during the months of high usage. Some people like to have pickles, mustard, ketchup and other condiments left for them. (If you are offended by an opened jar of pickles, please feel free to throw it away.) Since there are no grocery stores on the island, sometimes it is helpful to have additional supplies in the house. Think of it as staying at a friend's home and having access to their refrigerator and pantry. If there is something you absolutely cannot do without, you should plan to bring it with you. Otherwise, you are welcome to use whatever is available in the house.
What Happens if Something Breaks or There Are Other Problems That Need Attention During Our Stay?
Our Housekeeper and our Guest Services Manager live on the island and can usually be reached via cell phone. We also have an on-island handyman, and we can often take care of minor problems within a few hours. We live just 15 minutes from the marina, but we do need to get our boat out of storage to come to the island. We will do our best to get problems taken care of as quickly as possible. But, due to the nature of island living, instant repairs are not always possible. AC repairmen, electricians, etc. have to come over on the water taxi just like everyone else. Please be aware that during summer thunderstorms or periods of high winds, it is not unusual to lose power on the entire island for a few hours. So be forewarned that repairs ALWAYS take longer on the island! A "go with the flow" mentality is essential to deal with repairs on the island.
Are Your Rental Homes Handicap Accessible?
Unfortunately, due to building restrictions on the island, all newer homes are built on pilings, with at least one flight of steps up to the house, and the homes do not have elevators. Our concierge is available to help carry groceries and luggage up the steps for our guests, so those with limited mobility may be able to enjoy the island, but our homes are not wheelchair-accessible. We have a few cottages with fewer steps that are closer to the ground, so if access is an issue, please let us know and we will recommend cottages that are easiest to access.
What If There Is An Emergency?
There is 9-1-1 service on Little Gasparilla Island, and there are actually first responders, a fire department, and paramedics on the island 24/7. There is a non-emergency number on the island that you can also call if you have non-emergency questions about allergies, rashes, bee stings, and other minor issues while on the island. There is a hospitality nearby in Englewood just 10 minutes from the marina, and if there is a serious emergency, they will arrange evacuation from the island.
Do I Need to Bring Drinking Water?
The island water is safe and drinkable. All of our homes are now either connected to municipal water OR have expensive reverse osmosis water systems. You do not need to bring drinking water to the island with you.