Bites & Pieces July 12, 2018
Harold V. Shumacher
Fortunately, at this point in my life, I don’t have many regrets and wake up truly grateful most days. That said, whenever I visit the Gulf Coast, especially along Florida Highway 30-A (basically the area between Destin and Panama City Fl.) I do get a twinge of self-doubt and the woulda/coulda/should-a’s.
We first came to this area 30 years ago and saw it’s potential but never acted upon it. Why you might ask; a combination of lack of capital, a young kid to be raised but, most importantly, it’s still a hard six-hour drive from Atlanta.
Today, as we drive the crowded two-lane road, passing through numerous communities that didn’t exist in the past (Rosemary, Alys Beach, and Seaside) or see the re-development of former one story, cinder – block construction cottages into sea-side mega mansions it’s clear the area has been discovered in a big way.
Now, it’s not uncommon to see 8-10 bedroom homes, sleeping anywhere from 20-30 people, attracting visitors from far beyond the neighboring states. You’re as likely to see a license plate from Ohio, Missouri or Michigan as Georgia or Tennessee.
The number of shops, restaurants and new residential development is also astounding, especially when I remember the days when the nearest grocery store was a 20-25 minute drive away and you were lucky to find more than one kind of sunscreen at the local market.
The biggest retail attraction remains the Silver Sands Premium Outlets, in San Destin. The sprawling center, expanded several times over the years, has virtually every outlet retailer imaginable.
National retailers were few and far between but that’s also changing as several new centers located along Highway 98 claim a wide variety of familiar names.
For the hard-core shopper, especially in the summer, avoid Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays which tend to be the busiest day as many people have tired of the beach regimen and are ready to take a break. Ironically, Saturday evening, when many people are checking in is a good night to go out to restaurants as they’re generally not as crowded.
This year we stayed in the Santa Rosa Beach community and were delighted with the following; Pecan Jack’s, a premium quality homemade ice cream stand; Shunk Gulley Oyster Bar offering a rooftop view of the Gulf plus outstanding seafood bisque and a tart, home-made key lime pie; old standby Goatfeather’s, for steamed shrimp and Stinky’s Fish Camp for fried and broiled seafood favorites.
The spot with the most current buzz is The Hub,a combination restaurant park and retail center on the eastern end of 30-A, near Alys Beach and Water Sound. At the heart of the development is a large common square offering televised sports (such as the World Cup finals), music performances, movies etc.
Not far away is the recently revamped Sea Grove Market, essentially a full-service restaurant now with a few beach items for sale. If you visit, give the shrimp po-boy a try.
If there’s a sure sign of a place being discovered look at the services offered. While the expected bike and kayak rental spots abound, today you can hire a full-service beach butler for your catering and planning needs and even a sand sculptor who’ll come to your favorite beach and keep your kids and family entertained for several hours.
Singer-songwriters also seem to abound as many restaurants/bars offer live entertainment most evenings of the week. This may be an impact of the highly successful 30-A Song Writer’s Festival, typically held the third weekend of January (the 2019 dates are January 18-21) which has drawn numerous musicians to the area.
Recent Transactions for The Shumacher Group Inc. include the following. Our thanks to all of you.
Purchase of Real Estate:
2366 Sylvan Road/East Point Ga. (Land & Building)
620 Glen Iris (Cru Wine Bar) Atlanta
Egg Harbor Café-North Point Parkway Alpharetta
Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar Hwy. 9/Roswell
Burgerim Athens, Ga.
Mission & Market and Sage Wood Fired Grill-Buckhead
Sales of the Following Businesses:
Hook Line & Schooner, Smyrna
Saltyard and Watershed South Buckhead
Kennesaw Dog House, Kennesaw
Eclectic Bistro, Atlanta
For a more comprehensive list of recent transactions please visit our website www.shumacher.com