on October 18, 2000
Earnest Hemmingway's presence is felt all over Key West and he is permanently ingrained in the history of this small island. His pictures are in bars and restaurants and tour guides throughout town invoke his name on their tours. A vist to his home is not to be missed.
Admission to the grounds and museum is a modest $8 per person. This gives you access to the garden and grounds as well as the house and museum. Guided tours are available and well worth the short wait in between tours. Our guide was energetic and engaging, gave a comprehensive tour filled with quirky bits of Hemmingway trivia and was very willing to answer questions after the tour.
Hemmingway owned this house from 1931 until his death in 1961. The house boasts the first swimming pool built in Key West, which cost $20,000 to build in the late 1930s. The pool is surrounded by lush tropical trees and plants. The imagination doesn't have to stretch too far to envision this house as Hemmingway knew it. But, the most intriguing and popular part of visiting Hemmingway's home is seeing the cats who live there. Hemmingway himself had many cats and the staff in charge of the house today cares for 62 cats. Many of the cats have 6 toes, indicating that they are direct descendants of Hemmingway's six-toed cat Snowball. The cats lounging in the Florida sun reflect the style of life and what must have drawn Hemmingway to Key West.
Make sure to visit Hemmingway's Home. Bibliophiles will appreciate the literary significance of the site, but the legend of Ernest Hemmingway is accessible to all.
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