However, this being the last ever Shuttle launch in the 30 year history of the programme, accommodation was at a premium - hotel prices treble the normal rates and self-catering condos seemingly all booked for this week in July.
As the official target launch date for Atlantis was only confirmed towards the very end of June so there was not much room for manoeuvre or advance booking. But with my flight ticket reservation within hours of expiring I struck gold.
Shelly Suttle (if ever there was an omen in a name) of the Pelican Landing Resort got back to me to say there had been a cancellation for exactly the dates I required. Things were slotting into place.
My ‘home’ for the eight day trip would be at 1201 South Atlantic Avenue, Cocoa Beach, a former two-storey motel now converted into a 10 individual apartments each for two people, located about 1.5 miles south of downtown Cocoa Beach.
I knew from the description on the Pelican Landing website that it was located on a relatively isolated section of the beach amongst the sand dunes and a stone’s throw from the Atlantic.
But even that didn’t prepare me for the stunning view from unit number six on the first floor with its panoramic picture window overlooking the beach and sea, and the glorious early morning sunrises.