Results 1-10of 19 Reviews
July 2, 2004
Also the Key West lighthouse is nearby. Not only is it historic but it has a one-of-a-kind view! And it's located across the street from the Hemingway house! Save time, do both at once!
From journal Key West Sunsets
Bayside, New York
July 22, 2004
The tour is optional, and free if you want to be led around. We opted to do our own browsing, as I was anxious to see what lay ahead. We started in the living room, which is filled with pictures of Hemingway with fish (of course, there's furniture) and one particularly impressive oil portrait of him in his macho days. The next area is an anteroom where glassware was kept and opened to the kitchen. This was cordoned off, but you could see that it was large and had all the amenities for the times. The floor tiles have fish motifs.
The hallway is replete with artwork of man and sea scenes, and one is particularly striking with a three dimensional marlin built into the canvas. The living area has some items under glass, and pictures of the real "old man" who is the subject of Hemingway's Old Man and the Sea. He lived to be over 100 or so. We also learn a bit more about the second and third wife, and yes, there was a fourth. It seemed that every time Hemingway moved from one country to another, he remarried.
I was greeted upstairs by one of the famous six-toed cats. They are totally uninterested in the visitors, as it has become routine for them.
The bedroom is sumptuous and has access to the veranda that surrounds the upper level. Green shutters adorn the windows and doors. There is another room with a fireplace with photos of the family. We see some of his children, but nary a word about any of his granddaughters. Across the way is a wrought iron staircase, which leads to his study where he did his work. The old typewriter catches the eye immediately, as do the stuffed deer heads on two of the walls. Books line the shelves, but the area, here again is sealed off though you can a fairly good look at its contents. His mantra was to write between 400 and 800 words a day, otherwise, he would consider the day wasted
You can really get lost on the grounds; Chuck and I took separate paths and I was conducting a study of the plants and came upon a small bridge which spanned a rill that was algae ridden. It is there that I encountered my two lizard friends with which I had a staring contest. I continued walking through the various paths and thought that this could be Cuba recreated here for Ernest. Trees provide the very necessary shade and are surrounded by various species of flora. The house is the only one on the island with a pool and a basement. The elephant statues positioned by the pool look anachronistic.
From journal Keys Please!
by Kim M.
Key West, Florida
January 8, 2003
While on the tour we were able to view what I would call "papabilia" on display inside the house. There are glass cases showing off such items as photos, letters, and a model of Hemingway''s boat, Pilar. The photos were very interesting, as they show Hemingway throughout his life. He looked quite a bit different in his youth from the rounder, bearded man we usually see.
The tour also includes a peek into the writing studio. This is in the upstairs of a carriage house and houses Hemingway''s typewriter. The guide told us that he rarely sat at the typewriter because it was uncomfortable. He usually laid down or paced a bit. The studio walls are decorated with some of Hemingway''s hunting trophies, and there are cases of books. I wish I could have read the titles; I''m very interested to see what he read.
The guides are pretty knowledgable and will tell stories of Hemingway''s life on Key West. For example, he once went into the restroom at the original Sloppy Joe''s in a drunken daze. Instead of pulling the chain to flush, he managed to pull the skylight down on himself and sustained a head injury. Yes, he was a colorful man.
The famous six-toed cats are still in residence at the Hemingway house, and they have their own special kitten house out back. They all have names, and the guides seem to know them all. The cats wander the property at whim, and don''t feel the need to pay attention to visitors. They will pretty much ignore you.
Over all, I enjoyed the tour and would like to go back again when my camera is working. It was an interesting glimpse into the life of one of our famous authors.
From journal Key West on the Cheap
New York City, New York
June 7, 2000
From journal Unlocking Key West
January 1, 2012
by Joy S
Manchester, England, United Kingdom
July 26, 2011
From journal Family Friendly Attractions in Key West
July 19, 2006
From journal Exploring Key West
March 5, 2005
From journal Key West
July 27, 2001
Hemingway owned the home from 1931 until he died in 1961. The home is of the Spanish Colonial style and was constructed of native rock hewn from the grounds. It is also the first to have a pool built in Key West, an absolute necessity. The pool, built in the late 1930's, cost $20,000, a fortune back then. The price prompted Hemingway to take a penny from his pocket, press it into the wet cement of the surrounding patio, and announce jokingly, "Here, take the last penny I've got!" That penny is still there. :)
The house is gorgeous, and it's a great break from the beach and the shops of downtown.
The Museum is open every day from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. The admission is: adults $8.00 and children aged 6-12 $5.00.
From journal Key West - Pure Pleasure
Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
June 17, 2003
As with many of the larger Victorian properties in Key West, the house is an impressive testament to a wealthy period in the City's history. The porches that encircle the two floors of the house and the lush gardens initiate a(nother) bout of "Why don't we live somewhere warm? . . ." "We could live here . . . "
The inside of the house is interesting with period and antique furniture that belonged to Ernest Hemingway and his wife Pauline (number two of four?). What makes the visit, however, is the tour guide with their informative and humourous commentary. A life like Hemingway's is rich material for such a tour - there's nothing like stories of excessive drinking and salacious gossip to bring life to an old house. You may have to wait a few minutes but it's the difference between "It's an old house with old stuff in it" and "Aaaah . . . now that Hemingway guy really lived!"
Don't miss the writer's studio or the cats (you'll have a job to miss those) . . . and toy around with the idea of having an old bar urinal in your garden - it'll make a great story.
From journal Key West - the best way to wind down