SPRING/SUMMER 2020 SEA Island LIFE BUBBLY BEVERAGES ADD SOME FIZZ WITH CARBONATED COCKTAILS CELEBRATE THE DATE BIRTHDAYS, ANNIVERSARIES AND MORE AT SEA ISLAND Wedded BLISS TRENDS FOR TYING THE KNOT
6 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 W ith warmer weather and more hours of sunshine to enjoy it, spring and summer are ideal for spending time relaxing by the pool, playing a round of golf or going out on the water. If you’re looking forward to trying something new this season, our outdoor experience guides are ready to help you dive in (page 36). They are well-known for both their expertise and friendliness, and they create comfortable, fun environments for first-timers interested in hunting, kayaking, paddleboarding, sailing, fishing and more. When it comes to fishing, even experienced anglers are likely to find something new on the Island. Members and guests can cast a line in the marsh, ocean or river, or use a new technique, like sight-fishing (page 26), to make a catch. Another new experience can be found at the King Cottage, which opened last year in the structure that was home to our former Golf Performance Center (page 98). The 4,200-square-foot space is especially popular with golfers, as it features a private indoor hitting bay that opens onto the driving range. With four bedrooms, a huge great room, a full kitchen and dining space, and multiple porches with views of the Atlantic, it’s a wonderful option for golf groups traveling together. We often have parties of family and friends visiting the Island to commemorate special occasions. Whether it’s an anniversary, birthday or other major event, we’re always honored to host such meaningful celebrations. You can learn more about milestone travel and get expert insight about how to make the most of the experience on page 72. Speaking of celebrations, spring is one of our favorite times of year, as that’s when we host a special dinner for our Quarter Century Club members—employees who have been part of the Sea Island family for 25 years or more. On page 76, meet just a few of the people who have brought joy to guests and members for decades. Whether you are visiting for a special occasion, a family vacation or just a relaxing getaway, we’re thrilled to have you here. Thank you for staying with us. Sincerely, Scott Steilen President and CEO, Sea Island Welcome to Sea Island! WELCOME
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10 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 36. 42. 48. 54. 60. 66. 72. 76. FIRST-TIME FUN With expert guides and scenic settings, Sea Island provides ideal opportunities to try new activities in the outdoors. By Nancy Dorman-Hickson HIGH-TECH TRAINING The Golf Performance Center at Sea Island equips top-flight instructors with the best teaching tools in the sport to create a rewarding and fun learning atmosphere. By Dale Leatherman BETTER WITH BUTTER Whether it’s clarified, cultured or grass-fed, foodies can’t seem to get enough of this flavorful fat. By Jennifer Walker-Journey TRADITION MEETS TREND Craft tea is on the rise, bringing a fresh appreciation for the quintessential Southern beverage. By Jessica Farthing DRESS TO IMPRESS From full-bodied frocks and over-the-top embellishments to classic silhouettes with contemporary flair, the latest wedding dress trends offer exciting opportunities to showcase personal style. By Ashley Breeding THE ART OF THE WRITTEN WORD Southerners turn to everything from handwritten letters and personalized thank-you cards to calligraphy-adorned invitations to celebrate the importance of writing. By Ashley Ryan MARKING A MILESTONE Celebratory getaways ensure that special occasions are one of a kind. By Katherine Duncan QUARTER CENTURY CLUB Kelli Hyde and Robert Davis, who have been part of the Sea Island team for over 25 years, reminisce and share the secrets of making members and guests feel special. By Amber Lanier Nagle 48 60 42 BOTTOM LEFT: COURTESY OF TRACKMAN; BOTTOM RIGHT: ALLAN ZEPEDA Contents | Features Spring/Summer 2020
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12 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 WELCOME LETTER SEASONAL FLAVORS: PRIZED PRODUCE Georgia’s state vegetable, the Vidalia onion, has a distinctive history to match its one-of-a-kind taste. LIBATIONS: CRAVING CARBONATION As the popularity of bubbly drinks skyrockets, Sea Island bartenders get creative with their effervescent offerings. SOUTHERN STYLE: CHIC CROCHET This woven detail is being sewn into various lightweight looks this spring and summer. MIND + BODY: JUST BREATHE Mindful inhalation and exhalation can enhance both physical and mental well-being. GET FIT: FITNESS ON THE GO Sea Island trainer and instructor Trish Welch shares her tips for staying active while traveling. FAMILY FIRST: ALL FUN AND GAMES Soak up the excitement of these competitive Sea Island offerings as a family. OUTWARD BOUND: I SPY In addition to the traditional wait-and-see experience, anglers at Sea Island can try their hand at sight-fishing, an exciting opportunity to target specific fish in hopes of luring them to the line. 6. 16. 18. 20. 22. 23. 24. 26. IN THE SWING: A NEW WAY TO PLAY The Topgolf Swing Suite at The Inn at Sea Island offers fun for sports fans of all ages. FAVORITE THINGS: SWEET SUMMERTIME Soak up the sun while celebrating holiday traditions, seasonal activities and more at Sea Island. MEET THE CHEF: GARDEN FRESH Paula Garrett, chef de cuisine at Broadfield, A Sea Island Sporting Club and Lodge, creates custom culinary experiences that highlight the ingredients grown on-site. HISTORY: KEEPING WATCH More than a simple painting, a compass rose illustration that adorns a Sea Island ceiling reveals the strength and courage of local volunteers during World War II. EXPERIENCE SEA ISLAND This guide includes what’s new, dates to save and other Island notes. CONNECT VIA SOCIAL MEDIA Discover what’s new on the Island. EXPERIENCE THE BROADMOOR Learn about our sister property, The Broadmoor, and discover its news and latest events. SEA ISLAND STYLE Find the latest looks from your favorite brands, plus sporting gear, gourmet goods and more at the wide variety of resort shops. THEN AND NOW: KING OF THE COURSE The former Golf Performance Center has transitioned into a golfer’s paradise, complete with a private hitting bay. 28. 30. 32. 34. 80. 84. 86. 88. 98. 36 SPRING/SUMMER 2020 SEA Island LIFE BUBBLY BEVERAGES ADD SOME FIZZ WITH CARBONATED COCKTAILS CELEBRATE THE DATE BIRTHDAYS, ANNIVERSARIES AND MORE AT SEA ISLAND Wedded BLISS TRENDS FOR TYING THE KNOT FC_SI15.indd 1 3/11/20 2:26 PM MODERN BRIDES ARE SHOWCASING THEIR PERSONAL STYLE; ON PAGE 60 PHOTO BY ALLAN ZEPEDA Contents | Departments Spring/Summer 2020
136 Marsh’s Edge Lane • St. Simons Island, GA 31522 (912) 324-3028 • Marshs-Edge.com Georgia’s Premier Life Plan Community A world to explore, a vibrant community to come home to. A lifestyle that embraces true independence, friendships, culinary celebrations and the safety of community. It’s time to enjoy retirement the way it’s meant to be.
14 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 EDITORIAL & DESIGN EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Steve Zepezauer CREATIVE DIRECTOR Sonia Chung GROUP EDITORS Katherine Duncan | [email protected] Sharon Stello | [email protected] MANAGING EDITOR Ashley Ryan ASSOCIATE EDITOR Ashley Besing MARKETING DESIGN DIRECTOR/ART DIRECTOR Paul Graff SENIOR GRAPHIC DESIGNER Shaylene Brooks CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Debra Bokur, Ashley Breeding, Sue G. Collins, Nancy Dorman-Hickson, Jessica Farthing, Stephanie Kalina-Metzger, Dale Leatherman, Michelle Franzen Martin, Amber Lanier Nagle, Judd Spicer, Jennifer Walker-Journey DIGITAL MANAGING EDITOR Kim Zepezauer SALES ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER NATIONAL ACCOUNTS DIRECTOR Carrie Robles [email protected] 305-431-5409 SALES EXECUTIVE Yolanda OHern PRODUCTION MANAGER Tina Leydecker PRODUCTION ASSISTANT Megan Shelhamer FINANCE ACCOUNTING MANAGER Tiffany Thompson CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER Steve Zepezauer CHIEF REVENUE OFFICER Scott Sanchez PRESIDENT & CEO Scott Steilen CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER Parra Vaughan MANAGER, MARKETING & CRM Jessica DiVincent STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Eliot VanOtteren ©2020 BY FIREBRAND MEDIA LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. NO PART OF THIS PERIODICAL MAY BE REPRODUCED IN ANY FORM OR BY ANY MEANS WITHOUT PRIOR WRITTEN CONSENT FROM SEA ISLAND LIFE. THE VIEWS EXPRESSED HEREIN ARE THOSE OF THE AUTHORS AND ADVERTISERS AND DO NOT NECESSARILY REFLECT THOSE OF THE OWNERSHIP OR MANAGEMENT OF THE MAGAZINE OR SEA ISLAND. TO OUR READERS: Sea Island Life invites you to share with us your reactions to our magazine. Send your correspondence to Editor, Sea Island Life, 580 Broadway, Ste. 301, Laguna Beach, CA 92651 or to [email protected]. The magazine accepts freelance contributions; however, unsolicited materials cannot be returned, and Sea Island Life accepts no responsibility for loss or damage to unsolicited materials. ADVERTISERS: For inquiries, please contact Carrie Robles at [email protected]. Sea Island Life, 580 Broadway, Ste. 301, Laguna Beach, CA 92651; 949-715-4100. SEA Island LIFE
PD The Dunn Team PATRICK DUNN KNOWS SEA ISLAND • #1 Agent, 2012-2019, Glynn County • $611+ million sold since 2012 • $80+ million sold/pending in 2019 Patrick Dunn patrickdunn.net C 912-222-0142 O 912-638-5838 [email protected] Equal Housing Opportunity. If your property is currently listed with another real estate firm, this letter is not intended to be a solicitation for your business. The price information and material contained herein, is intended to provide general information about the properties of Sea Island Acquisition, LLC. These proposed prices are subject to change or cancellation at any time. We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the nation. We encourage and support an affirmative advertising and marketing program in which there are no barriers to obtaining housing because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.
16 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 Spring and summer bring an abundance of fresh produce, filling farmers markets and stores with colorful, delicious choices from local farms. This time of year, there is no greater anticipated harvest in Georgia than that of the state vegetable, the Vidalia onion. Trademarked and protected, this sweet seasonal variety will spoil the palate for any other. Planted and harvested by hand for over 80 years, the Vidalia onion is treasured in recipes used by both professional chefs and Southern home cooks; now, thanks to smart marketing and wide distribution, they are also available to culinary enthusiasts across the country who are looking to incorporate the unique taste into their meals. During the Great Depression, a farmer named Moses Coleman in Vidalia, Georgia, harvested the onions he’d grown only to discover that they lacked the sharp flavor he anticipated. Instead, they were sweet. He was intrigued by the strange crop and set out to try to sell them. His customers were a little hesitant, but he finally convinced them of the worth of his product, selling the vegetable for a hefty price. As the Depression era hit farmers hardest of all, they jumped at the chance to grow these onions, and the city of Vidalia began to produce the crop in earnest. The 1940s saw the launch of a farmers market in the area, right at the junction of a few major highways. Travelers began to spread word of the onions’ mild, savory taste. It was a souvenir of a trip through southern Georgia, a gourmet anomaly that some said could even be eaten like an apple. As popularity increased, regional grocery chain Piggly Wiggly started stocking the shelves seasonally with Vidalia onions. Around the same time, home cooks—especially in the South—began to embrace the special sweetness of the crop. Bob Stafford, executive director of the Vidalia Onion Business Council and manager of the Vidalia Onion Committee, explains why the growing conditions in the region created this culinary delight. “The soil combined with the temperature and the right amount of … [rain]fall—[everything] seems to fall into OPPOSITE PAGE, BOTTOM: DOMINIQUE JAMES/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM The Vidalia onion is used in various dishes at Sea Island restaurants. Prized Produce Georgia’s state vegetable, the Vidalia onion, has a distinctive history to match its one-of-a-kind taste. By Jessica Farthing SEASONAL FLAVORS
SPRING/SUMMER 2020 | SEA ISLAND LIFE 17 place in that area of Georgia. It’s the sulfur content that puts the heat in onions. In that sandy soil, it leaches out, which … [produces] the mild onion in Vidalia.” Eventually, the state saw a need to protect the brand. After all, Vidalia onions were particular to the area and, therefore, that space needed to be defined. In 1986, the legislative Assembly for the state of Georgia passed the Vidalia Onion Act, naming 20 different counties that could grow Vidalia onions and bring them to market. Surrounding Vidalia’s Toombs County, the borders of the district are as far away as the South Carolina state line. Altogether, there are between 9,000 and 12,000 acres planted annually, yielding a bounty of sweet onions from April through August. Only one county removed from the Vidalia onion district, the chefs at Sea Island use the vegetables in their dishes as soon as they become available. Eric Fullem, the executive chef of events, isn’t originally from the area, but the very first time he tried one of these prized onions, he was hooked. “When it’s Vidalia onion season, we use it on anything and everything that we can. They order them across the resort to highlight the local ingredient.” The crop plays a prominent part in the Beach Club’s oceanfront dining experience, integrated into dishes that reflect Hawaiian, Baja, Jamaican, Gullah and Southern coastal cuisines. One recipe that has become a Sea Island staple is hush puppies, simple fried concoctions that are enhanced by the mild flavor of the Vidalia. Southern Tide serves these hush puppies solo or along with fried, chilled or steamed wild Georgia shrimp and fries. “Vidalias are cleaner, crisper and sweet,” Fullem notes. “Sometimes you eat an onion and get that bitter taste in the background. You don’t get that with Vidalias.” The Sea Island Shrimp & Grits is another Southern Tide offering featuring Vidalia onions. Here, they are presented along with sweet peppers in a Cajun-spiced andouille sausage broth. Now that distribution has stretched beyond Georgia, the crop is a challenge for modern farmers. The seeds are put in the ground by hand, with harvesters also hand-picking the onions by clipping both the root and the top of the onion to free it. This labor-intensive process could be improved by modern machinery, but the very nature of the sweet vegetable makes it nearly impossible to avoid bruising by machines. The softness just won’t allow them to make it through the process. Stafford knows mechanical harvesting is likely the future for Vidalia onion farmers, they just haven’t gotten there yet—though the state’s competing colleges are working on new technology. “Those Bulldogs in Athens [at the University of Georgia] might come up with it. Georgia Tech says they’ll come up with it,” he says. “You get them competing against each other, … [one of them will eventually] come up with it.” Until then, we’ll all benefit from the artisanal aspect of Vidalia onion farming. Whether they are charred on a grill, baked whole and stuffed with bread crumbs and herbs, pickled and placed atop a juicy burger, or fried into sweet onion rings, Vidalia onions are a one-of-a-kind, mouthwatering ingredient that signals the start of the warm Southern season. m Hush Puppies Servings: roughly 100 1 quart Atkinson Milling Co. hush puppy mix 1/2 small red bell pepper, diced 1/2 small green bell pepper, diced 1/2 small yellow bell pepper, diced 1 cup corn, removed from the cob 1/2 small Vidalia onion, diced 1 small jalapeño, brunoised Cooking oil, as needed Sparkling water, as needed Place all ingredients except sparkling water in a bowl and mix. Slowly add water while stirring until the mix is thick. Refrigerate dough for at least 1 hour. Heat oil to 350 F in a heavyduty pot. Roll dough into 1-ounce balls and drop them into the oil using a small ice cream scoop. Fry until browned and cooked thoroughly (approximately 4 minutes). Remove and place on paper towels to drain excess oil. Immediately season with salt, then serve. Also known as Georgia’s state vegetable, these onions are native to the Vidalia area. Incorporate Vidalia onions in your next party with Sea Island’s recipe for flavorful hush puppies (right).
18 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 With sales of Champagne, prosecco and sparkling wine booming, and the premium mixer sector continuing to rapidly expand, it’s clear that bubbly libations are currently on trend in the beverage world. Hard seltzer in particular is experiencing what industry experts refer to as a “meteoric rise,” and sparkling water—which includes both club sodas and seltzers—is also soaring in popularity as consumers seek out healthier alternatives. “Consumers today are pursuing wellness, in part, by reducing their consumption of sweetened beverages like traditional carbonated soft drinks,” says David Portalatin, vice president and food industry adviser at The NPD Group, a New York-based market research firm. “Rather than just switch to plain water, sparkling water provides variety—including flavored options that typically contain less sugar, no added sugar or use alternative sweeteners. As our tastes moved in this direction, sparkling water/seltzers found their way into cocktails, and hard seltzers became an extension of the trend for alcoholic beverage occasions.” Jeff Montaigne, lead bartender at The Oak Room at Sea Island, cites science when interpreting the carbonation craze. “Carbonation actually activates the same receptors that are activated by eating spicy food,” he says, a phenomenon that some have described as a thrill without any risk. But bubbles serve another purpose as well, according to Montaigne. “They help release aromas and flavors, making the libation more intense,” he says. “Tiny bubbles are preferred in Champagne. The more bubbles per surface [area], the more intense the flavor that rises to the top.” Discover some of the resort’s most popular carbonated cocktails, and learn how to make them in your own kitchen. Masters G n T The Masters G n T hits a hole-in-one when it comes to drinks that are evocative of seasonal florals at Sea Island. This light and refreshing LIBATIONS Craving Carbonation As the popularity of bubbly drinks skyrockets, Sea Island bartenders get creative with their effervescent offerings. By Stephanie Kalina-Metzger Summer in Kyoto
SPRING/SUMMER 2020 | SEA ISLAND LIFE 19 cocktail is inspired by springtime in the South, when scents of honeysuckle and jasmine fill the air. In fact, St. George Spirits’ Botanivore Gin, one of the drink’s main ingredients, has been described as reminiscent of a meadow in bloom. Members and guests can lift a glass to each other at The Lodge, both at The Oak Room and the Pool House, while enjoying the relaxing refrains of a bagpiper who entertains at sundown each evening. Recipe: 1 1/2 ounces St. George Spirits Botanivore Gin 1/2 ounce St-Germain 3 1/2 ounces Fever-Tree Premium Indian Tonic Water 1/2 ounce lemon juice 1 sprig rosemary, for garnish Combine gin, St-Germain, tonic water and lemon juice in a double rocks glass, adding ice. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary. Chipotle Mule Mule is the name given to a family of historic mixed drinks that combine either ginger ale or ginger beer with a variety of base liquors. According to Montaigne, the inspiration behind the Chipotle Mule relates to the fact that mule cocktails were originally called bucks, which helped to bring vodka into the mainstream bar scene. An ever-popular choice among Sea Island members and guests, mules are served resortwide in traditional copper cups, which are said to maximize fizz as cold copper increases the amount of bubbles found in the carbonated ginger beer. On top of the tingle from the bubbles, “a spicy component gives it an extra kick,” Montaigne says, in reference to the vodka. On property, find this classic-with-a-twist on the menu at River Bar & Lounge at The Cloister. Recipe: 1 1/2 ounces St. George Spirits Green Chile vodka 1/2 ounce John D. Taylor’s Velvet Falernum 2 ounces ginger beer 1 ounce lime juice 1 lime wheel, for garnish 3 slices red pepper, for garnish Combine vodka, Velvet Falernum, ginger beer and lime juice in a copper mug. Garnish with a lime wheel and red pepper. Summer in Kyoto At The Oak Room, find the perfect summer drink to sip by the pool: Summer in Kyoto. Inspired by one of Montaigne’s favorite combinations—sake and soda water—this cocktail was one of the most popular drinks offered last summer, merging both sake and sparkling rosé with the fresh flavors of blackberry and basil. The result is a refreshing beverage that is on the menu again this season. Recipe: 2 ounces Koji Sake 2 ounces Lucien Albrecht Crémant d’Alsace Rosé 1 ounce blackberry-basil syrup (recipe follows) 1/4 ounce lemon juice Salt, to taste 1 blackberry, for garnish 1 basil leaf, for garnish Combine sake, rosé, blackberry-basil syrup, lemon juice and salt in a stemmed Bordeaux wine glass. Stir and add ice, then finish with blackberry and basil leaf garnishes. Blackberry-Basil Syrup Four 6-ounce containers of blackberries 10 ounces fresh basil 1 cup sugar 2 cups water Combine blackberries, basil, sugar and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then let simmer for 20 minutes. Pour through a fine mesh strainer to remove seeds. Tavola 75 It’s only fitting that Sea Island’s Italian restaurant, Tavola, would be home to a drink crafted with prosecco, sparkling wine produced in Italy. The inspiration for this bubbly drink was the French 75, a Champagne cocktail made with gin, lemon juice and sugar. Here at Tavola, Montaigne says they substitute prosecco for a proper Italian flair, but also replace the lemon juice with grapefruit. All things considered, the Tavola 75 is the perfect libation for toasting, reminiscing or simply sipping. Recipe: 1 ounce Death’s Door Gin 1 ounce simple syrup 1 ounce grapefruit juice 3 ounces prosecco 1 grapefruit twist, for garnish Combine gin, simple syrup and grapefruit juice in a shaker. Add ice, then shake. Strain into a Champagne flute. Top with prosecco and garnish with a twist of grapefruit. m For a little fizz, try the Tavola 75, which is made with both prosecco and gin. The Chipotle Mule, made with chile vodka
20 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 This season, crochet isn’t simply your grandma’s favorite hobby: This intricate design is weaving its way into becoming one of the most popular fashion finds. From subtle detailing on a jacket to a dress completely interlaced with texture, these modern yet slightly nostalgic pieces can be found in closets throughout the South as the weather gets warmer and calls for the casual yet elegant woven trend. A personal stylist with more than 17 years of experience with highend brands—not to mention three degrees in fashion apparel studies and fashion merchandising— Michelle Price is no stranger to the popularity of crochet. Price, who splits her time between Atlanta and southern Florida, has turned to this chic style numerous times through her wardrobe styling company, Ladyfied. She has recognized a sudden resurgence of interest in this age-old trend—but, now, with new twists. “Although crochet can be traced back to the early 1700s with a revival in the 1960s and 1970s, many designers incorporated this vintage look into their 2020 collections in fresh new ways,” Price says. As local temperatures rise, the various patterns in these knit looks make them the perfectly breezy solution for the warmer seasons. The breathable fabrics, paired with vibrant colors, are reminiscent of only the best beach vibes: relaxing near the coast, sunshine all around, as the waves roll in and out. “Crochet[ed] fabric is very light and airy—making it ideal for the warmer temperatures in the spring and summer,” Price notes. “With the heat and humidity here in the South, clothing that is lightweight … is essential.” Some of the best ways to wear this trend include dresses, skirts and intricate tops. The frilly design can even make a statement by the water, whether as a bathing suit design or in between swim sessions in the form of a flirty cover-up. “Pairing a crochet dress or skirt with your bikini or one-piece swimsuit creates a very feminine and fashionable poolside look,” she explains. Whether it’s a crocheted dress paired with a swimsuit, a detailed jacket slipped over a blouse or a unique pair of pants in an interesting color scheme, there is no doubt that the complicated pattern draws a lot of attention. As such, Price says it’s important to make sure that the look isn’t too overpowering. “Crochet makes a strong statement on its own. Balance outfits that feature crochet with more subtle accessories,” she suggests. Price also recommends avoiding stacked or layered crochet; instead, opt to pair crocheted looks with a piece that’s more subdued. Sometimes the crocheted design itself is the perfect accessory to complete an outfit. Stocking up on crocheted statement pieces is a fun, easy and fashionable way to incorporate the trend in your wardrobe, Price says. From classic headbands, hats and scarves to belts, shoes and even jewelry, these stitched additions can liven up an otherwise dull outfit and draw attention to a desired area on your frame with the help of a little added texture. In fact, one of Price’s favorite accessories is a crocheted handbag, which can create a chic, casual aesthetic when paired with a flowy dress. “[These accessories] can add unique charm and character to many understated outfits,” she explains. Whether it’s an accessory or an entire jumpsuit, the crochet look is quickly finding its way from the runway to the pool this season. And with the growing interest and popularity, there are plenty of crocheted items readily available—without having to pick up a crochet hook and some colorful yarn. m Chic Crochet This woven detail is being sewn into various lightweight looks this spring and summer. By Ashley Besing SOUTHERN STYLE OSCAR DE LA RENTA PRINTED RAFFIA STRAPLESS DRESS, $5,490 (OSCARDELARENTA.COM) FILIPPO FIOR/GORUNWAY.COM
SPRING/SUMMER 2020 | SEA ISLAND LIFE 21 1. MARC JACOBS CROCHET COLLAR SWEATER, $350 (MARCJACOBS.COM) 2. ROBERTO CAVALLI HENNA TATTOO CROCHET DRESS, $2,070 (ROBERTOCAVALLI.COM) 3. DOLCE & GABBANA SMALL SICILY BAG, $1,995 (US.DOLCEGABBANA.COM) 4. MARY KATRANTZOU WORRY LESS TOP, $1,400 (MARYKATRANTZOU.COM) 5. YSL COTTON CROCHET HAT WITH CRYSTALS, $1,105 (YSL.COM) 6. GUCCI RAFFIA CROCHET FLOWER SANDAL, $750 (GUCCI.COM) 7. FENDI YELLOW INTERLOCK KNIT POLO SHIRT, $1,980 (FENDI.COM) 1. 3. 5. 4. 6. 7. 2.
22 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 SPREAD: ILLUSTRATIONS BY SHAYLENE BROOKS During stressful situations, it’s common to hear the suggestion to “just take a deep breath.” As it turns out, a wealth of research supports the wisdom of that advice. The path to healthy living may very well begin in your lungs—and the best way to access that path is by incorporating regular breathwork into your daily activities, or even approaching it as a dedicated exercise of its own. The consistent practice of deep, rhythmic abdominal breathing, called “pranayama” in yoga, results in proven chemical changes in the brain and body that lower blood pressure, reduce stress and promote feelings of wellbeing. In addition to calming, anxiety-relieving perks, Sea Island’s Fitness Programming and Training Manager Martha Walker says that some breathing techniques even have the ability to increase energy and potentially alleviate depression. An experienced Yoga Alliance certified instructor who studied the practice of pranayama in India, Walker points out that the many physiological benefits of breathing exercises stem from improved circulation and enhanced delivery of oxygen throughout the body. “At Sea Island, all of our yoga and stretching classes incorporate breathing techniques for centering and relaxation,” she notes. “Our spa massage therapists also use breathing techniques to help guests relax so that therapists are able to go a little deeper into delivering body work.” One basic breathing technique is to inhale deeply, allowing the abdomen to expand, and to exhale fully and slowly as the abdomen collapses. In meditation, mindful breathing can help intensify relaxation and facilitate the achievement of a meditative state. “I don’t think breathwork or pranayama is necessarily more effective combined with yoga or meditation, but in our busy world, it’s helpful to have an all-inclusive practice,” Walker says. “Yoga, for instance, offers breathwork, meditation and physical practice all in one, which can be helpful to those with limited time to devote to a mindfulness practice.” This April, The Fitness Center at Sea Island will offer a workshop led by Walker called The Art of Breathwork. Meanwhile, those who are curious about breathing exercises can learn more about pranayama, breathwork and meditation via smartphone apps that lead both beginners and advanced practitioners through routines designed to build breathing and other wellness skills. Apps to try include philosopher and neuroscientist Sam Harris’ Waking Up course, which includes guided meditations of various lengths that are supplemented by conversations and mindfulness lessons; The Breathing App, a breath-specific program developed by wellness experts Deepak Chopra and Eddie Stern as well as musician Moby; and Headspace, a collection of resources that include guided sessions, videos and articles created by Andy Puddicombe, an author and former Buddhist monk who also studied sports science. Whether you choose to use an app, visit a class at Sea Island or try both, breathing techniques are sure to offer myriad benefits that will leave you happier and healthier. m MIND + BODY Just Breathe Mindful inhalation and exhalation can enhance both physical and mental well-being. By Debra Bokur
SPRING/SUMMER 2020 | SEA ISLAND LIFE 23 No matter how well-established or enjoyable, fitness routines can be challenging to keep up with when traveling. Even for the most diligent workout enthusiasts, getaways may serve as an excuse to power down, sleep in and consume an overabundance of, well, everything. Trish Welch, a certified group fitness and Pilates instructor as well as a personal trainer, says there’s no reason to lose sight of wellness goals when all it takes is a little prep and planning to keep your efforts on track. Here, Welch offers her best tips for not dropping the fitness ball while on the road. Sea Island Life: How do you personally stay motivated when traveling? Trish Welch: Embrace the surroundings. You don’t need four walls or a gym. Take a walk on the beach, hike the hills, use the local parks or find a playground with some benches and monkey bars. An outdoor body-weight workout can benefit anyone. SIL: What if the temptation to skip the squats and just explore is too overwhelming to resist? TW: Then take a walk—and remember to use the stairs. Most smartphones have a pedometer app. Aim to get in roughly 10,000 steps each day of your vacation. It’s a great way to make sure you stay moving. SIL: What advice do you have for someone traveling with kids who may never make it to a class? TW: Body-weight exercises are a great way to stay on task. There is always space in your room to do a few sets of squats, pushups, lunges and crunches. You only need to spend a few minutes before you hit the shower and start your day. You can even stay motivated and track your progress with a smartphone app. Download a few before leaving home. There are lots to choose from—one great option is MapMyFitness. … You can find a Tabata [a type of high-intensity interval training] timer app that will keep the clock and you can pick and choose your own movements. … You can also use HIIT timers to get the job done. The idea of HIIT is to do interval sets of strength or cardio movements that drive the heart rate up and then have recovery periods in between. SIL: Which activities are best for someone who needs some structure? TW: You can always take advantage of the hotel gym. The Fitness Center at Sea Island has an incredible facility and offers over 30 classes a week at various times of the day. If you’re a class junkie, there are several participating gyms worldwide that accept ClassPass [though Sea Island is not one of them]. It’s fun to go and try different class options, and even different instructors. SIL: Any other tips you’d like to share? TW: Try to maintain your daily schedule the best you can. Think about your eating, sleeping and water intake. These three things can help just as much as exercise [can] to make you feel like yourself while on the road. m GET FIT With some prep and planning, it’s easy to stay active while traveling. Fitness on the Go Sea Island trainer and instructor Trish Welch shares her tips for staying active while traveling. By Debra Bokur
24 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 FAMILY FIRST During childhood, few things are more exciting than playing games. And traveling as a family means that adults can join in on the fun as well. Sea Island has plenty of activities to keep members and guests entertained and engaged during short and long visits. Healthy competition has many advantages for children, according to the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service. It can help them learn to set goals, discuss their limitations, enhance problem-solving skills, work as a team, follow rules and more, in addition to the coordination and cognitive abilities associated with certain activities. On top of the developmental benefits, playing games as a group can be a great way to bring relatives closer together. “What we’ve seen it do is just get people together to have conversations they wouldn’t typically have,” says Daniel Whitford, Sea Island’s activities and programming manager. “If you’re playing a game with your mom or dad or uncle— whoever it is—you’re bound to have more genuine conversation than, say, at dinner. It can bring out a competitive nature and it can also just help guests unwind.” Creating these positive memories reinforces the familial bond while also giving children the chance to develop their character and confidence in a safe space. Whether it’s tossing a bowling ball down a wood-paneled alley, beating the high score on Ms. Pac-Man or shouting out “bingo,” cross each and every one of these fun games off of your Sea Island bucket list this year—and do so as a family. Bingo is ideal for members and guests of all ages at Sea Island. All Fun and Games Soak up the excitement of these competitive Sea Island offerings as a family. By Ashley Ryan Bingo Night One of the games that is quick to bring families together is bingo, a Sea Island tradition that brings joy to everyone from ages 2 to 100. The versatile experience is hosted by emcee Ringo Bingo at The Cloister, in both the Mizner and The Cloister Ballrooms. As soon as the lights dim and the spotlight appears, the game’s host is firing off jokes that are sure to entertain those young and old. Cards—which are reusable—are purchased at check-in and the winners of each game receive a cash prize. Offered during the spring and summer months, as well during various holidays throughout the year, repeat visitors are often in attendance. “We have guests that join us who have been coming to bingo for over 40 years and are bringing their children back to play,” explains Kaylee Crane, the director of Sea Island events. After about six rounds, everyone enjoys line dancing followed by a snack of milk and cookies to close out the experience. Game Room While Sea Island is filled with areas for socializing and dining, there are also plenty of settings that inspire play. The Game Room, for example, is the perfect place for families to relax and let loose. “They come to the Beach Club and it’s a completely different atmosphere than the rest of the resort,” Whitford explains. Open every day of the year, the Game Room is designed for fun, offering everything from classic arcade games like Galaga and Ms. Pac-Man to more modern adventures like the Hyperdrive racing
SPRING/SUMMER 2020 | SEA ISLAND LIFE 25 game. On top of that, games are switched out for a rotating selection that ensures more variety—and the number of games increases in the summer months. Aside from these favorites, families can enjoy air hockey, foosball and table tennis. Sea Strike & Pub With six bowling lanes available to guests and members, the resort’s new Sea Strike & Pub at the Beach Club is the ideal gathering place for families looking to blow off steam with some healthy competition. Having just opened in fall 2019, this combination bowling alley-restaurant offers pay-by-thehour bowling, food service ranging from shareable snacks to flatbread pizzas and burgers, plush seating and more. “We have so many incredible outdoor activities, but this is a good year-round indoor option,” says Anne Harvey, seasonal services manager. In addition to the bowling experiences, visitors can take advantage of a number of other games, including shuffleboard, darts and oversized Scrabble, which is played on a nearby wall. There are also nine big-screen televisions and two projector screens that can be used to air sports games and other broadcasted events. Sports Court For a little bit of fitness mixed with fun, head to the oceanfront Sports Court, a favorite amongst older kids, according to Whitford. “We have so many activities to do, but [the Sports Court] … is something that teenagers are a bit more drawn to.” Also located at the Beach Club, this half basketball court is accompanied by a four square grid, giving active families options on which game to play. A stash of basketballs is always kept at the court. On occasion, Sea Island hosts seasonal tournaments, pitting three against three, but it’s also a great spot for families to play a game of pickup basketball, shoot hoops or play horse. Topgolf Swing Suites Last summer, The Inn at Sea Island became the first place in the region to offer the innovative Topgolf Swing Suite, two simulator bays featuring interactive digital gaming experiences. “The Swing Suite is a great opportunity for the whole family to get together, from toddlers to grandparents,” says D.J. Tate, rooms manager at The Inn. Play signature Topgolf games, like TopContender and TopPressure, the latter of which is a version of darts for golf. Or opt for sports simulators, including Hockey Shots, Soccer, Quarterback Challenge, Baseball Pitching and Zombie Dodgeball, or carnival games such as breaking plates, popping balloons and knocking down bottles. Tailor the experience to the age groups and skill levels of your crew. Each of the two bays can fit up to eight people, and the adjacent bar offers beer and specialty cocktails in addition to bites like a giant soft pretzel or grilled chicken nachos. On top of the already monumental appeal, the Topgolf Swing Suite is a great place for hosting birthday parties or other group events, giving guests a way to ensure games at Sea Island are the highlight of any trip. m Holiday crafts at the Beach Club Sea Strike & Pub offers pay-by-the-hour bowling as well as shuffleboard, darts and Scrabble. The oceanfront Sports Court
26 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 Capt. Reid Williams can talk for hours on end about the challenges and excitement of sightfishing—the sport of hunting for fish, knowing which are ready to strike, then waiting patiently to accurately cast when you’ve finally eyeballed the potential catch. The intricacies of the hunt are many, as anglers must understand when and where the fish school, spawn and feed, as well as how they startle. Williams joined the team of experienced guides at Sea Island 10 years ago and knows the landscape like the back of his hand. The waterways that surround the resort and its barrier islands offer some of the best year-round fishing on the East Coast. The plethora of saltwater marshes (more than any other coastal state in the region) offer nutrientrich waters that make anglers swoon. Sea Island’s guides and a fleet of customized fishing boats take members and guests along the shores and up to 80 miles offshore to fish in the Gulf Stream for a tailored experience. Michael Kennedy, the resort’s director of recreation, promises a customized trip that will surely exceed expectations. The captains are ready to share their passion and expertise, providing all the toys, tools and tackle needed for a memorable day on or near the water, he says. Guides know the habits of the fish, the nooks and crannies of the marshes, and the schedules and sizes of the tides along OUTWARD BOUND I Spy In addition to the traditional wait-and-see experience, anglers at Sea Island can try their hand at sight-fishing, an exciting opportunity to target specific fish in hopes of luring them to the line. By Sue G. Collins
SPRING/SUMMER 2020 | SEA ISLAND LIFE 27 Georgia’s nuanced coastline. Artificial and natural reef structures offer action all year long at Sea Island. “We sight-fish the low water with mainly flies, but can use light spinning tackle, depending on the guest’s comfort level and skill,” says Kyle Meyer, one of the guides. “Beginners are welcome, of course, but anglers with a decent distance in their cast—40 to 60 feet, with haul and double haul confidence—will have good success. Accuracy is also important.” The fleet consists of six Rambo-27 center console open sport fishing boats as well as a 39-foot Contender, which boasts three 350-horsepower engines that whisk anglers effortlessly offshore, up to 80 miles away. An inshore chase across the flats surrounding Sea Island can be done from an 18-foot Gordon Boatworks Waterman skiff, a classic Tom Gordon design hallowed by anyone who is serious about sight-fishing. “Guests are welcome to bring their own gear, but we have rods and we tie all the flies,” Williams says. There are boatloads of opportunities for sight-fishing from spring through early fall, with a wide variety of fish in local waters, including tripletail, tarpon, cobia and redfish. “The redfish will be the easiest target for a beginner trying to sight-fish,” Meyer explains, adding that they live in the shallow water of rivers and flats as well as travel in large schools—two things that make them quick to spot. “The tripletail can also be seen relatively easily,” he says. Up for more of a challenge? “I would say the tarpon is going to be the most challenging fish, as they run in the ocean and do not always present [themselves easily] for sight-fishing. They also will refuse a bait or fly if not in the right mood,” Meyer says. “However, they are an awesome catch when located and hooked.” Tarpon is a bucket-list species for many, sending anglers flocking to the shores of Mexico, Central America and coastal Georgia to catch the “silver king.” Sea Island’s guides have a vast understanding of both marine biology and local weather, which helps them provide expert service for Sea Island visitors that are interested in sight-fishing. “The guest’s experience is our priority,” Meyer says. “We like to allow at least four hours for an excursion and are flexible, running a trip when the conditions are most favorable.” When fishing specifically for redfish, they make sure to study the tide carefully. “We want to fish the last two to three hours of the outgoing tide and the first hour of the incoming tide,” he explains. “Bottom fishing at the reefs [that are] 7 to 40 miles out can be good all year—[we] just have to go farther in the summer with the warmer water.” Sight-fishing is not necessarily about instant gratification, Meyer notes. “It’s a game of cat and mouse,” he says. “You really have to work for it, but that’s what makes the experience so special.” m BOTTOM: VLADIMIR WRANGEL/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM Top: Sea Island’s guides are experts in their field, taking everything from weather to the biology of the fish into account. Bottom: Atlantic tarpon
28 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 Globally known for a groundbreaking mesh of swinging and socializing, the Topgolf Swing Suite has garnered enthusiasm at nearly 60 domestic locales. Last summer, it debuted at The Inn at Sea Island, where the boutique experience is now available daily. The two simulator bays offer a fun, casual environment with a wide range of entertaining options for sports fans, and they are open to members, guests and the general public. The Swing Suite is ideal for all ages, who can choose from 84 real courses, including Sea Island’s own Seaside Course, as well as a host of other simulator games, including Carnival games, Hockey Shots, Baseball Pitching, Quarterback Challenge and the ever-popular Zombie Dodgeball. “It keeps getting better and better … new games are constantly being added,” says Tara Kroll, IN THE SWING A New Way to Play The Topgolf Swing Suite at The Inn at Sea Island offers fun for sports fans of all ages. By Judd Spicer The new Topgolf Swing Suite has two different hitting bays as well as food and beverage service.
SPRING/SUMMER 2020 | SEA ISLAND LIFE 29 general manager at The Inn at Sea Island. Most recently, the resort added soccer to its varied lineup. Kroll has been especially amazed at the impressive range of ages that are able to enjoy these additions to The Inn. Birthday parties have been held at the Swing Suite for both the young and young-at-heart, marking milestones from 5 to 75. And, while rooted in golf, the Swing Suite’s diverse simulations present game options for all tastes as well. “Zombie Dodgeball is a lot of fun and very interactive,” Kroll notes. “It has the most noise, so it seems to attract the most people; guests are walking through the lobby, they hear that game and it calls them over.” Enhancing the experience, the Suite’s adjoining bar space provides a list of specialty cocktails, plus wine and beer, along with a menu of bar bites (the giant soft pretzel is especially popular). From Topgolf Swing Suite’s vantage, Sea Island is a perfect playing partner. “We took a space at The Inn that was underutilized and we worked together to energize that space,” says Peter Kratsios, director of sales and business development for Topgolf Swing Suite. “It’s now a reimagined place where people can hang out, be social and have some fun.” While the appeal of the simulator is clear, closely vetting potential locations has proved a key facet of Topgolf’s budding success with the technology. “For Swing Suite, it’s about finding those great partners and environments where we think the product can thrive,” Kratsios explains. “Sea Island is an incredible place; the resort, hotel and golf are all such impressive environments, and we knew that they’d be a perfect partner for us. And we have a similar mindset with Sea Island in that we don’t just rest on our laurels—we’re always pushing to get better and to think in an innovative way.” “[Topgolf is] all about connecting people in an immersive, social experience,” Kratsios says. “And for the Topgolf Swing Suite[s], it’s also about the partnerships we create with hospitality venues to deliver that fun experience for both golfers and nongolfer[s] alike.” m This experience is perfect for a child’s birthday party, as it provides varied entertainment and food. Zombie Dodgeball is just one of the games offered to groups at the Topgolf Swing Suite. TOP: CHRIS MONCUS PHOTOGRAPHY
30 SEA ISLAND LIFE | SPRING/SUMMER 2020 Sweet Summertime Soak up the sun while celebrating holiday traditions, seasonal activities and more at Sea Island. By Michelle Franzen Martin Summer is many guests’ favorite season at Sea Island. From the warm sunshine and sparkling ocean waves to the countless activities and events that take place on and around the resort, there are plenty of reasons for families to keep returning year after year. In this issue of Sea Island Life, families share their fondest memories of spending the summer on the Island, with parades, pool trips and day camps being just a few of their favorite things. JOE AND CLAIRE CRONK Claire Cronk and her husband, Joe, spent summer vacation together at Sea Island their first year of dating. Five years later, when they were married, they knew exactly where they would go for their honeymoon—and that has become their favorite memory of Sea Island. Since then, the couple has celebrated many of their anniversaries at the resort in addition to family vacations and summer camps with their two daughters, Caroline and Mary Elizabeth. And there are surely more family adventures to come. “We will continue the tradition of celebrating at Sea Island with our future grandchildren,” Claire Cronk says. FAVORITE WAY TO CELEBRATE THE SUMMER: On Fourth of July with a parade and fireworks FAVORITE PARADE MEMORY: Caroline dressed up as Betsy Ross on one of her friend’s floats. A LUCKY MOMENT: At bingo. “On our honeymoon, we sat at the main table in the ballroom of the … original iconic hotel and we won the jackpot of $200 on the final call of B1!” DAUGHTERS’ FAVORITE MEMORIES: Cookie Cutters and day camps, both at the Sea Island Beach Club, along with learning how to dive into the former dive pool EMILY MILLS While summertime is Emily Mills’ favorite season at Sea Island, she has a specific fondness for Independence Day. “There are so many things we love about our time at Sea Island celebrating the Fourth of July,” says Mills, who travels to the resort to spend the holiday with four generations of her family. “Our first family Fourth of July was in 2008 and [we have traveled there] steadily, without missing a year, since 2013, when our oldest was just 1.” FAVORITE SUMMER ACTIVITY: Swimming. “In the month of July, the pool or ocean is the best place to be.” FAVORITE CREATIVE ELEMENT: The decorated golf carts, cars and floats FAVORITE FOURTH OF JULY TRADITION: Breakfast at Tavola before heading to the parade, then games at the Beach Club and fireworks at night FAVORITE PARADE MEMORY: “Our two girls made their parade debut in our red wagon that we had fun decorating with streamers, stars and balloons.” FAVORITE WAY TO SEE RED, WHITE AND BLUE: “We love the big American flag at the entry to the Beach Club.” m FAVORITE THINGS