Sea Oats

Monday, August 8, 2011

Jekyll Island, Georgia

                                                          TheJekyll Island Club
                                                     Southern Comfort At Its Best.
Photo courtesy of the Jekyll Island Club
"Have someone bring up some coffee, and strawberries in fresh cream, please.  Thank you." You replace the phone and stroll out onto your balcony. The soft click of croquet balls reaches you. Below, ladies in traditional white, move silently around the green velvet carpet of grass, lining up their next wicket shot.
Photo courtesy of the Jekyll Island Club
The sun is still below the tops of the one hundred and fifty year old oak trees bearded in Spanish moss. Turning back into the room you ask, "Should I have the Rolls brought around?" On this island it's hard not to imagine yourself as one of the elite in a bygone era. Here, the crème de la crème once sought quiet months of solitude hidden away from the pressures of business. Yet, in the paneled smoking rooms of the Jekyll Island Club, the very foundation of modern banking, the Federal Reserve System was hammered out. Even here, in the quiet solitude that only the richest of the nation's capitalists could afford, the demands of business interrupted vacations.
The Turret Room. Great romantic rental. Photo courtesy the Jekyll Island Club
All that has changed for the better. Where once the captains of industry strolled, couples now ride bikes and walk wooded trails. At the dock where J.P. Morgan tied up his 340-foot yacht, the Corsair II, lovers watch the sun set over the salt marshes of Georgia's Golden Isles. Jekyll Island retains the ambiance of its moneyed past. Quiet lanes wind past private homes with lush green lawns. The multimillionaire's summer cottages of  yesteryear, which even by today's standards are luxurious homes, sit silently, their vacant windows overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway. Jekyll Island is for those wanting to immerse themselves in the restive atmosphere of what was once called ". . . the most exclusive playground in the United States," without breaking the bank.
For modern day business moguls and mavens looking for a way to unwind, Jekyll Island has much to offer. There are four golf courses, including the nine hole Oceanside Course, which has been played for almost a century.
Circling and intersecting the island are twenty miles of bike and jogging paths. The paths parallel the roads around most of the island. There are very few instances where you will share the roadway with vehicles, making it a safe and enjoyable way for to tour the island. And what jogger wouldn't be inspired on their early morning run by spotting the fleet-footed deer as they make their way through the pines that line the paths?
Biking is a great way to spend a day touring the island. Bikes are available from several different vendors. You can rent them from the mini-golf course, most hotels, the airport, the Jekyll Island Marina, or at the campground. Have your hotel pack you a picnic lunch and head to the beach.
One of the most underrated activities is hardly an activity at all. Lounging. At the Jekyll Island Club, balconies and porches with wide brimmed overhangs, surround the hotel. Pull up a comfortable chair or lounge, order a drink from the bar, and pretend you own the place. Or you may wish to go beach combing, strolling the nine miles of sand on the island, while the Atlantic washes away your footsteps. If you would like to wet a line, there is a fishing pier that juts into St. Simon's Sound at the north end of the island.
King Room with Jacuzzi. (Not shown.) Jekyll Island Club photo.
The Jekyll Island Club is a Four Star, Four Diamond, Radisson Resort. Paneled walls, wide wooden staircases, and beautiful appointments take you back to an era when even "regular millionaires" weren't invited to spend the summer. Pearl Johnson, a concierge at the club says, "The Club was completely restored in 1987, just in time for the 100th anniversary. The deluxe suites have Jacuzzis and some have double fireplaces. Each room has been furnished with faithfully reproduced 19th century custom furnishings. If the original founders of the Club, the J.P. Morgans, the Pulitzers, and the Rockefellers, were to come here now, they would be very pleased. Everything has been upgraded. It's all very nice." Ask Ms. Johnson to show you the hall of mirrors. They are slightly concave, and you can see yourself endlessly in their reflections.
If you want to dance the night away, take the short ride to world famous St. Simon's Island. Just ten miles up the coast from the Jekyll Island Club, it offers a variety of shops, restaurants, boutiques, and night clubs.
The Jekyll Island Club offers several accommodation packages. A very popular option is the "Romantic Fantasy." It includes a deluxe suite with  Jacuzzi for two nights, continental champagne breakfast in bed one morning, long stem roses at turn down, and gourmet chocolates upon arrival. You also receive free use of a bicycle for one day and a complimentary picnic lunch. If you have any energy left, free tennis is also included. And to help you save the memory of your interlude, you'll receive a commemorative photograph. Rates are $169 to $439 per room, depending on the season. Other packages, including golf and tennis combinations, are also available.

The Jekyll Island Club gives you the chance to feel like a millionaire, without spending like one.

Hotel offers a smoke free environment in all sleeping rooms and public areas.

Room Amenities

  • iPod Dock Clock Radio
  • Color 32″ LCD Flat Panel TV with Cable and DVD Player
  • Iron / Ironing Board
  • Hair Dryer
  • High Speed Wireless Internet Service
  • Phone with V/M & Data Ports
  • In Room Safe
  • Refreshment Center
  • Coffee Maker

Meal Plans

  • Full American Plan (3 meals daily, breakfast, lunch and dinner) – $92.00 per person per day*
  • Modified American plan (2 meals daily, breakfast and dinner) – $72.00 per person, per day*


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