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If you're looking for a stay in a hotel with personality in Fort Myers proper, you're not going to find it. For that, you'll have to head to Fort Myers Beach. But if you're looking for bargains and don't mind driving to the beach, Fort Myers has just about every chain hotel imaginable. Most are quite clean and reliable.

As in the rest of South Florida, winter room rates here are highest, and reservations essential, from mid-December to April. Even the chain hotels and motels along U.S. 41 in Fort Myers -- most brands are represented along this thoroughfare -- charge premium rates then. During the off-season, however, prices drop by as much as 50% or more.

If you can't get a room at the properties mentioned below, the Lee Island Coast Visitor and Convention Bureau operates a free reservations service (tel. 800/733-7935), covering many more accommodations in Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, and Sanibel and Captiva islands.

A few blocks from the Edison and Ford homes, the Hibiscus House Bed & Breakfast, 2135 McGregor Blvd., at Clifford Street (tel. 239/332-2651; fax 239/332-8922; www.thehibiscushouse.net), is a must-stay for B&B fans, with five comfortable rooms, each with private bathroom, in a charming, nearly 100-year-old wooden house. The building was later split in two, floated across the river, and nailed back together. The inn's owners, Leslie and Bill Seiden, bring 20-plus years of culinary experience (as the former owner of haute caterer A Moveable Feast in New York's tony Hamptons). Rates are $119 to $169.

Chain lodgings in the area include Courtyard by Marriott, 4455 Metro Pkwy., at Colonial Boulevard (tel. 800/321-2211 or 239/275-8600; www.marriott.com); Fairfield Inn by Marriott, 7090 Cypress Terrace, off U.S. 41, a block south of Daniels Parkway (tel. 800/228-2800 or 239/437-5600; www.marriott.com); and Super 8, 2717 Colonial Blvd. (tel. 800/800-8000 or 239/275-3500; www.super8.com).

Many business travelers opt for the Art Deco Holiday Inn Historic District, 2431 Cleveland Ave. (U.S. 41), at Edison Avenue (tel. 239/332-3232). Its location, a 2-block walk to the Red Sox training facility and a short drive to the Edison and Ford homes, is a plus for vacationers, too. Minor-league hopefuls stay here during spring training, so you could meet a future major-leaguer.

All hotel bills in Southwest Florida are subject to an 11% tax.

The only campground with tent sites near here is Koreshan State Historic Site.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.