Special Statement on Hurricane Irma
UPDATED SEPTEMBER 16: Parmer's Resort is currently closed due to Hurricane Irma. We sustained a direct hit and had not been allowed to enter the Keys. As much of Florida was impacted by the storm, we have been criss-crossing the state trying to stay ahead of the storm and then in search of power and internet to find out what happened at home and keep you updated. I am sorry we have not been able to keep this page as current as we hoped. We seem to be able to post more reliably to our facebook page, Facebook.com/ParmersResort.
THE WEEK AFTER THE STORM: Two of our staff stayed at the resort through the whole storm and the following week. There was no communication as many utility lines were down, including cell towers. For a few days after the storm US1 was impassible with washouts, debris and downed power lines. Rumors were flying. We finally saw aerial photos of Little Torch Key that showed Parmer's still standing, a little bruised but pretty good considering she took a direct hit from a Category 4! On Wednesday, we were able to obtain a police escort through the checkpoints to get to the Lower Keys that were still closed. With the Lower Keys opening to residents tomorrow, I came back up to Homestead (for supplies and internet).
WHAT WE FOUND: Yes, it is pretty bad down there. Our beautiful islands have taken a wallop. But not as bad as we had heard or expected. First off, utilities. Power is being restored with Key West and the Upper Keys mostly energized. The Main line is fully completed and they have been working on secondary streets. I heard up to Sugarloaf was completed tonight. We saw crews all over Sugarloaf, Summerland and Big Pine today. There are still poles down on Little Torch and Big Pine Key but they have accomplished so much in such a short space of time (less than a week), that part should not take much longer. Water is on down to Marathon and in Key West up to Big Coppitt and some parts of Big Pine. Crews are trying to isolate the trouble spots to get water to as many as possible as fast as possible. Key West has internet and television but I have no information on how far up this has been completed. AT&T has portable cell towers that are placed up and down US1. Sprint service is more spotty and seems to turn off at night. Frankly, we have never had such great cell service as yesterday. Cellular Internet is less reliable but getting better, mostly on AT&T.
Secondly, our islands. We have lost a lot of trees, either the whole tree or just the leaves. A little bit of rain will get them to green up again but we can see neighbors we never knew were there. Waterways are dangerous. I did see a few boats out but there is a lot of debris in the water with some under the surface. A lot of channel markers were lost and many boats were tossed up on shore. We do have every branch of law enforcement in the Keys helping out and that includes clearing the waterways. These are as important to us as the roads and are marked as a priority. The Key Deer are fine. Our little doe that has made Barry Avenue her home for the last few months was walking down the street the other morning. And I saw many others out and about on Big Pine Key. Lots of birds, lizards, a rabbit and yes, iguanas. Even saw some tarpon jumping. And no mosquitos!
Thirdly, Parmer's. Initial assessment, we have 15 rooms with no damage. The remaining 29 rooms have either some roof damage from minor to major, some flooding again minor to major, a combination of both or something else (Hogfish lost its stairs). The staff that stayed has been clearing debris, repairing power connections on the property, cleaning and getting us ready to open again. Our staff that evacuated to Homestead with be returning with me tomorrow with the others not far behind. As soon as we get power and water restored, we would love to welcome you back. Right now, we will cancel all reservations through October 15th. If we are on-line before then, and the powers that be have opened the Keys to tourists, we will let you all know! When we get back, we can unpack our server, get set up and try to catch up on the paperwork. We know we have a lot of deposits to refund and will work through the week to get that accomplished. We will try to keep this statement updated as often as possible. If you have any questions, our phones have been forwarded to an AT&T cellphone, just call our main number 305-872-2157 or email us at email@example.com.
We are okay and getting better everyday!
Our office is open from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. every day. For check-ins after 8 p.m., please contact us directly for late arrival procedures. We do have staff on-site for after hours emergencies.
We value your privacy and so have eliminated room phones and daily housekeeping is by request only at a small additional charge. Of course, fresh linens, coffee and room amenitities are always available through the office. More Here