A beachside pool complete with a lazy river, watersport equipment rentals and a military rooftop radar station — the Fort Walton Beach Holiday Inn Resort truly has it all.
Known as the Eglin Air Force Range Test Site A5 to military personnel, the resort, located on the Gulf of Mexico in western Florida, caters to a mix of families looking for a relaxing tropical vacation and military staff looking to monitor training, according to Florida Today.
The combination resort hotel and military test site opened in late May in an unusual partnership between the military and private business in a time of tighter military budgets. In exchange for allowing the Innisfree Hotel company to build the 152-room resort on Air Force land, the military was able to construct a rooftop station that receives radar signals and a secure conference room for classified meetings. The dome hiding the military equipment is painted red, white, blue and yellow like a beach ball.
Most vacationers stay at the resort without ever knowing of the military presence, as operations are limited to a few, non-uniformed members who work on the roof, Florida Today reported.
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