‘Local’s Choice’ Tips from Laura Zequeira-Smith

Local flavor spices up Key West's cozy getaway spot at Alexander’s Guesthouse, where Laura Zequeira-Smith, the shining star and general manager, champions a "home away from home" vibe for the LGBTQ community and its allies. Formerly of the big leagues—specifically the Mandarin Oriental in New York—Laura accepted an offer from friends and current owners, Raul Diaz and Orlando Torres, trading the fast-paced city life for the laid-back allure of Key West. Laura’s knack for hospitality isn’t just innate; it’s elevated Alexander’s from a simple bed and breakfast to a boutique guesthouse welcoming a mosaic of guests.

Living her best life under the Key West sun, Laura embraces the island’s bright sunshine, sparkling ocean, and robust social scene with a motto that’s all about seizing the day: “Book the ticket, buy the bikini, never look back.” When she’s not mingling or making guests feel at home, she’s dining at local favorites like El Siboney for Cuban food, Sandy's Café for picadillo and La Trattoria Oceanside for the Spaghetti Bolognese or enjoying a gourmet picnic at Dog Beach with friends while watching dogs frolic in the water. 

Alexander’s Guesthouse isn’t just another stay in paradise—it's a testament to Laura’s philosophy of connecting deeply with people, turning everyday interactions into lasting memories. Whether she's unwinding at home with her husband Haig or exploring the culinary scene, Laura's approach is a refreshing blend of vibrant community spirit and personal zen, proving just how sweet island life can be.