April 24, 2019

Contributed
A blender, ice, water, sink, cooler and plug-in sound system will be offered to booked Cruisin Tiki partiers.

Contributed A blender, ice, water, sink, cooler and plug-in sound system will be offered to booked Cruisin Tiki partiers.

KEY LARGO — An upright, octagonal tiki bar moving at about 5 mph on Florida Bay is what’s afloat in Dan and Laurie Cornell’s world as their Cruisin’ Tikis Key Largo business takes shape. It’s a party that they’ll be offering from Snook’s Bayside Restaurant’s dock.

The tiki, stocked with a U.S. Coast Guard-certified captain that may be Dan or Laurie, a blender, a cooler filled with ice and water, and a Bluetooth speaker system, brings the bar to the party. Tiki partiers can play their own music and rock out up to six people.

“It’s a floating party, what’s more fun than that?” Dan said.

This thatched party option hasn’t been offered before in the area. A second Cruisin’ Tikis vessel may be brought online in the near future to cruise through Blackwater Sound.

The tiki can even handle choppy seas.

“It’s built on a pontoon-like frame with barrels, so it’s really smooth,” Laurie said. “It doesn’t rock even if two boats go by on both sides.”

As to where the tiki cruises is up to the passengers, Laurie said. Each tour and group may have different wants.

Cruisin’ Tikis offers hour-and-a-half tours. The couple can provide up to five tours a day beginning at 10 a.m., with the last party catching sunset.

“It’s like an eco-tour,” Laurie said. “This is perfect for people who just want to get out on the water and don’t have a boat.”

The tiki boats can be reserved for bachelorette and wedding parties, birthdays, work events or other occasions for any length of time. The only caution is that there’s no head on the boat.

“We can always make a pit stop somewhere that has a dock,” Dan said.

Snook’s Bayside is offering dockside drinks and food for partygoers that can be packaged and brought onboard. The Cruisin’ Tikis Key Largo website, which is still under construction, will have menu options along with online booking availability.

Beer cozies and other swag will be offered to all patrons, and local and military discounts are offered. Children under age 12 must wear life jackets at all times.

Tiki-goers may float or swim during tours as well. The Cruisin’ Tikis concept has grown in popularity since its 2015 inception in Fort Lauderdale. Cruisin’ Tikis have spread across at least four states with about 20 locations.

The Cruisin’ Tikis Key Largo will make its maiden voyage in the next coming weeks. A Key Largo Chamber of Commerce grand opening reception is planned for 5 p.m. Wednesday, May 8, at Snook’s Bayside Restaurant, 99470 Overseas Highway in Key Largo.

For more information, call Dan Cornell at 734-395-9998.

tjava@keysnews.com