Rosie and I set out the first part of this month for our favorite destination, Charleston, SC. We have been loyal Wild Dunes/Isle of Palm visitors for the past 20 years or so, but I had a notion to try a new spot out side Charleston this year. I visited Kiawah when I was younger and though things had changed a bit, in a way they hadn't at all.
We were all smiles upon arrival at the Sanctuary hotel. It was like stepping into a grand southern estate- tucked back in mossy oaks - subtle yet substantial. We immediately decided one of the two grand staircases were great for a photo opp.
The babes decided to explore the pools and we decided it was a great idea to cool off after 8 hours on the road.
We went for a quick beach walk then ordered room service for dinner. The kids said it was the best cheese pizza they had ever eaten. Of course being hand fed laying in bed might have had something to do with that ;)
The next day and rest of the week for that matter we lunched poolside and rotated between the pools at the resort.
A few quick facts-
** The lunches at the grill by the pool at the Sanctuary were legit awesome. As good if not better than you would get in an upscale restaurant.
**There are 2 pools at the hotel-one adults only and one 3-4' pool you see in the pic below. Certain times of the evening you may luck out and get it all to yourself as it doesn't close until sunset.
(Does tossing kids in the pool count as cardio?)
** Upon arriving at the pool someone would get you fresh towels, walk you to lounge chairs at your request, open an umbrella for shade, and roll up a towel for a headrest. An icy water with lemon would follow that immediately. (At this point I'm realizing you might be wandering why we came home #didntwantto)
**Same scenario at the beach where they came around to your chair taking food and beverage orders and handing out chilled waters.
** Not one day would I say the pool or beach was "crowded."
**We did not manage to have dinner at a restaurant inside the hotel the entire trip. I had heard great things but we preferred to get out and do a little exploring in the evenings.
The second night we ventured to nearby Bohicket Marina on Seabrook Island for dinner. Some people recommended a restaurant named Lokal.
We arrived around 5:30 and enjoyed a light dinner because I had promised the babes ice cream for good behavior. It started getting really crowded as we were leaving so I would suggest arriving early if you have hopes for dinner.
We wound up at Fresh Fields Village, which is located just between Kiawah and Seabrook Islands later that evening.
The kids munched on ice cream from a cute drugstore named Vincents. Afterwards Rosie and I checked out the Lilly Pulitzer store. The girls there were so friendly and when we went back later in the week the kids made me take their picture in the dressing rooms.
We were a little exhausted when we returned.
We took advantage of the complimentary shuttle to one of the resort's other pools the next day.
**Note- We never waited longer than 5 minutes for any shuttle or for valet to get our car like in a lot of hotels.
The pool here was super shallow with one 4' end with water slides. I think this was Hank's favorite part of the trip. I have a great video of him on insta coming down the slide with no puddlejumper! He was so proud of himself.
And the tradition continues..
We got cleaned up early that afternoon and made the 1 hour trek into Charleston for a little shopping and dinner.
(OOTN- JCrew dress)
We tried to get into Hank's per my Hank's demand but after waiting 30 minutes we headed over to Blossom on East Bay.
Can't be a blog post about Charleston without a picture of some crab cakes. Carsyn even gave them a thumbs up!
The babes have been asking for 2 years when they could swim in the fountains in their bathing suits and this year I finally caved. After dinner we changed their attire and turned them loose.
Day = Made
I ventured into Peninsula Grill for some coconut cake to go that evening and got talking to the bartender about Charleston restaurants. I was explaining that it was just such a friendly city but I didn't push the envelope and bring my kids to eat dinner there. He laughed and said he understood but that most Charleston restaurants were becoming more lax with their dress code and such. And that we were welcome anytime. Figured that was pretty useful information to keep hold of.
Can't miss an opportunity to send dad a picture of his favorite girl eating his favorite cake.
Back to the beach for day 4!
Carsyn had a run in with a horseshoe crab earlier in the week and got a little intimidated of the big ocean, but rallied back.
We went back to the pool that afternoon and I did a little poolside planning with my new favorite agenda folio.
Evening beach stroll and lawn shenanigans before a late dinner.
Playing on the lawn was one of our favorite things to do at night. You can grab a glass of wine and go sit in one of the adironadack chairs and watch the kids play. I highly recommend bringing plenty of rocket copters as some are likely to land on the roof.
We wound up with a late reservation at the Fat Hen on John's Island that evening. The kids loved eating in "the coop."
Honestly, one of the best meals I've ever feasted on. Of course I had the crab cakes. Hank recommends building a house out of jenga blocks.
One last visit to Fresh Fields!
Thank you Kiawah for being so good to us. I cannot recommend the Sanctuary on Kiawah Island enough. The staff went out of their way to accommodate and the atmosphere was so relaxed. Maybe next time I'll make it to the spa that everyone raves about ; )