HB’s on the Gulf is the only true beachfront restaurant in Naples. Located inside the Naples Beach Hotel on Gulf Shore Boulevard, it is a rarity these days…a family-owned resort that is a vibrant, thriving hub of activity in Naples. How lucky we are to have the Watkins family as responsible stewards of this hotel and golf course that sits on 125 acres right in the heart of the City of Naples. Every club in town seems to have their lunch meetings here, and everything from small trade shows to romantic beachfront weddings fill this hotel almost every weekend. The golf course is currently undergoing a complete renovation by Jack Nicklaus and John Sanford and should reopen in December.
HB’s is named for Henry B.Watkins, who bought the original hotel that was located just a couple of blocks from the Naples Pier. When Hurricane Donna damaged the original hotel in 1960, he rebuilt on the present site at Gulf Shore Boulevard and 7th Avenue North and added the 18-hole golf course across the street, the only public golf course within the City of Naples.
I always feel like I’m on vacation when I visit the Naples Beach Hotel. HB’s is located right on the beach next to a big green lawn where there is often a beachfront wedding taking place. It’s a breathtakingly beautiful and peaceful spot. There are inside tables in the air conditioning, but unless it’s raining get a table on the patio facing the Gulf of Mexico. There is no nicer spot for lunch in all of South Florida. And at dinner you are seated in the front row for those beautiful Gulf sunsets. Try their ever-popular curried chicken salad in a pineapple boat that has been on the menu for years. At night the choices are a bit more elegant and the restaurant turns into a romantic dining room under the stars with the soft waves providing the house music.