Charming inns, rustic getaways easily missed
By Herb Hiller, special to the Miami Herald
You know you had it -- that little scrap of paper with the name of the perfect Keys hideaway. Of course the paper is missing, and you can't remember who recommended the place and nothing in the Yellow Pages seems anything like the name you remember.
That's how it is with hideaways: they're small, easy-to-miss places that flourish mostly by word of mouth. They're exactly what you're looking for now that your taxes are filed and the lower, post-Easter rates are in effect. You're sure the Keys must be full of such places -- if only you could find them!
It's true -- the Keys are full of great little getaways. As a general rule, peak season is Dec. 15 to Easter and special or holiday weekends.
Ragged Edge Resort
This is a surprisingly spread-about grassy, good-idea-of-a-place, a far quarter-mile off the highway. The ten units are at the ocean end of their road.
The compound is rustic in the same way that informal means a madras jacket with no tie -- which is to say neat and tailored, akin to Coral Gables in the Keys. Still, you can do as you please here.
Efficiencies and apartments are arranged one above the other, all beautifully furnished, beautifully maintained, with rustic planks outside. Inside you'll find pine, tile and carpet, with chintz-covered furniture and matching drapes; kitchens with island counters and chopping blocks; lots of cabinets; irons and ironing boards and large tiled bath suites.
Ragged Edge feels expensive but is surprisingly affordable. (There are no extras or staff to speak of). The large dock is a virtual rookery when boating activity isn't disturbing the birds. Pelicans, herons, anhingas and