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  • Writer's pictureChelsea Susan Bednar

Motel Makeover: Exterior Transformations at our Space Age Inspired Motel

One of our favorite things to share here is a good before & after photoshoot. With our renovations on the Retro Motel having been completed, we are able to share some of the most satisfying transformations of the exteriors on property. While some of the cottages have had additional ‘mini murals’ painted outside their doors, the photos still stand true to what the space looks like. We hope you enjoy these side by side comparisons of Sunset Inn & Cottages.



The Main Building | Front View:


Inspired by the Space Age aesthetic, the exterior of the Main Building poses a striking before & after image with colorful murals and bold horizontal stripes. While we loved that the previous color referenced the green of the building’s original color, adding the painted banding to the main building gives it the retro look we were striving for.


The Lookout Mural:


On the side of the main building is the before & after view of The Lookout’s deck. The Sunset Mural references the style of Mid Century Motel roadside signs, our nod to the era. The bright orange marquee letters were custom ordered through Junk Art Gypsyz, an artist who specializes in vintage inspired signage.



The Captain:


The cottage formerly known as MacDill was named after the Tampa Air-force base. In honoring it’s roots, we renamed it to The Captain’s Cottage, with a cleverly incorporated plane within the mural design. We added pops of color with cheerful orange Adirondack chairs to utilize the little front deck that overlooks the main building.



Gulf View


On the corner of 79th Street & Gulf Boulevard is The Gulf View Cottage, our beach bungalow with the most stellar view of the oceanfront. We brightened the palette with a vibrant blue base with lime green trim. Not featured in these photos is the mural added to the side of the building, with a vintage-inspired logo mural and a smaller wave mural by the front door.



The Blue Lagoon


In themeing the cottages with a retro concept in mind, we scrapped the name ‘vino’ and went with The Blue Lagoon. The mural was inspired by the vintage illustrated mermaids (like the ones in Disney’s Fantasia), while incorporating retro blues and oranges into all the elements of the cottage’s exterior.



The Cabanas


Our second oceanfront building was reimagined as Cabana 1 and Cabana 2. We didn't have an exterior view of what the Cabana Cottages looked like, but we did have this image of the courtyard side entrances to compare to. The hand painted murals feature illustrations of vintage cabana tents, labeled on both the street side walls and right next to the front doorways (to illuminate any confusion to which side you’re entering)!



Coral Lee


As a nod to the historical roots of our property, we renamed the Sunkissed Cottage to The Coral Lee. Inside the Dining Room of this private bungalow is a framed collage of vintage hotel photographs since its opening in the 1950s, an homage to the years gone by.




We hope you enjoyed scrolling through these before & after photos. Thanks for reading, we hope to see you soon!



The Sunset Team



Partying it up in Key West? Visit our sister property Marrero's Guest Mansion with {verdigreen} Hotels.


Stay in touch! Follow us on Instagram and Facebook, and tell us about your stay over at Trip Advisor. Feel the ocean breeze yourself - come visit us at Sunset Inn at Treasure Island, Florida.


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