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FORT MYERS BEACH STAPLE: Lani Kai booking rooms for August

Posted at 11:08 PM, Apr 12, 2024

FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla. — Lani Kai, a landmark with over 100 rooms, will soon be among the nearly 41% of hotel rooms on Fort Myers Beach that have reopened.

According to Melissa Schneider, Marketing Director of Lani Kai, the resort has long been compared to "a huge beached cruise ship."

It offers guests four restaurants, eight bars, and a nightclub, all of which were operational until Hurricane Ian struck.

Despite the storm's ferocity, the resort's structure remained sound, which Schneider credits for the rapid pace of rebuilding.

Currently, only the beach bar is operational, but plans are underway to gradually reopen additional floors.

"It won't be 100 rooms immediately, but we're looking to open up maybe one or two floors of rooms, and then we'll go in stages there, opening more and more rooms, until we're fully open," Schneider explained.

Nearby, the Pink Shell Resort has also made significant progress. General Manager Bill Waichulis shared that aside from one remaining pool, the resort is fully operational.

"We're pretty much 100% back online," Waichulis said. "It's fun to get out of the construction mode and back into making memories."

Aerial photo of Pink Shell Marina with yachts parked and the resort in the background

Despite the end of the high tourist season, local resorts are still attracting a strong turnout. Waichulis noted that Pink Shell's occupancy rates are "averaging anywhere from sellout to about 90%."

Joe Conidaris, son of the Lani Kai founder, also shared a similar outlook.

"I was afraid that we weren't going to get the crowds, but the crowds are coming which is great news, not just for us but for the whole beach in general," he said.

Mr C Bar at Lani Kai with every seat filled and people smiling

While no specific date has been set for the full reopening of Lani Kai, the resort has started accepting reservations for August, signaling that the doors will likely open shortly after.