KEY WEST, Florida Keys — Petite restored cigar-makers’ cottages stand next to gingerbread-trimmed Victorian mansions in Key West’s historic Old Town, creating an architectural tapestry as colorful as the island itself.
Visitors can explore houses exemplifying that unique architectural tradition, as well as fine island-style contemporary design, during weekend home tours set for January, February and March 2021.
Old Town Key West contains what is believed to be the largest predominantly wooden historic district in the United States, featuring almost 3,000 structures. The annual tours are hosted by the Old Island Restoration Foundation, created in 1960 to promote the restoration and preservation of the city’s historically significant buildings.
Tours are planned Friday and Saturday Jan. 15-16, Feb. 12-13 and March 12-13. Each one is to showcase multiple homes chosen for their contribution to the Key West community as significant historic buildings, outstanding renovations or examples of the Keys lifestyle.
Participants must reserve a tour time in advance and are to provide their own transportation.
Docents are to guide all tours, offering insights into each property’s history, architecture and other attributes. Visitors can view interiors filled with antiques and art as well as imaginatively planned outdoor living spaces.
Organizers stress that coronavirus safety protocols are to be followed at all times, including mandatory mask-wearing and maintaining small group size and social distancing during tours.
Tickets must be purchased in advance and are priced at $40 per person, with proceeds supporting the work of the Old Island Restoration Foundation.
Tour information and ticketing: oldesthousekeywest.com
Key West visitor information: fla-keys.com/keywest or 1-800-LAST-KEY