Last visit to 30A section of the NW FL panhandle was vacation time last year at the end of June ~ just before Independence Day ~ and the area was inundated with visitors. This trip could not have been more different. It’s February, truly off-season, and I am here for entirely different reasons.
There was one nice sunny day this trip that lured me to the beach, just to sit, read and watch the water. Otherwise overcast days were a perfect opportunity to explore other towns down the 30A county road stretch.
This is my afternoon visiting the town of Rosemary Beach towards the eastern end of 30A. It was Super Bowl afternoon, quite overcast before kickoff in the evening, so I had the central square mostly to myself. The town plan was designed by architectural partners Andrés Duany and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk of Duany Plater-Zyberk & Company (DPZ), who also designed Seaside & Alys Beach a little further west on 30A. Where Seaside is old Florida charming and quaint, Rosemary Beach is European in feel with old world influence in the central areas, reminding me of St.Augustine and the West Indies.
One must see part of the afternoon was a stop in the The Pearl hotel. Part of the Southern Living Hotel Collection, The Pearl opened in August 2012.
It fronts the western green facing the beach, though the weather kept me to the side street and less than fabulous photos. Murphy’s Law, my camera decided to misbehave, so all the photos are a mash-up of iPad, iPhone, and my partially functioning camera. You can see the beauty shots from the beach side on their site. The areas of the hotel I saw were all beautiful.
I enjoyed a Hemingway daiquiri in the Havana Beach Bar and Grill. The restaurant is gorgeous and very upscale, though I was very comfortable at the huge mahogany bar in my casual sightseeing look-of-the-day :-). I’ll definitely be back for a lovely dinner next time in the area. Here are some quick interior shots ~~~
I stayed for kick-off and the infamous muffed first Denver snap and then left to watch the game in my own snug cottage. This was the look of the square as I walked to the car ~ so pretty.
Well, we know the game was not exactly “super” but my afternoon in Rosemary Beach was ~ and I can’t wait to return to spend time on the beach, do more sightseeing and dine at The Pearl! Maybe I should make reservations now ~~~ 🙂