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Life With Drawl

I’m a sucker for an accent—it’s like a lens through which everything is filtered. And on a recent trip to America’s Lowcountry, while literally basking in the expansive local drawl, I fell head over heels for the Inn at Palmetto Bluff.

First off, the sheer scale of the property is astounding. A 22,000 acre private nature reserve between Savannah & Charleston, it is defined by wild rivers, marshes and coastal forests teeming with life. Kilometres of bike paths meander under canopies of Spanish moss; modern stables and forest trails entice horseback riders; and the May River almost guarantees dolphin spotting and fresh oysters whether you are on a day’s outing to Dafuskie Island or just sipping cocktails on a sunset cruise. In addition to all the activities, the staff love to stage surprises, and with multiple private event spaces including tree-houses and river landings, it is the ultimate destination for large family vacations and reunions.

For all the families I met during my stay, I met an equal number of honeymooners and romantic couples celebrating anniversaries. The Inn was just rated the country’s top spa resort by Travel & Leisure Magazine, and the Jack Nicklaus Audubon-approved 18-hole golf course is among the country’s finest. There are two large pools and fitness centres, one for adults only. After kayaking on the May River at sunrise and a few hours spent canoodling in a customized outdoor bath prepared by the spa, lovers can be seen pedalling leisurely back to their cottages for an afternoon of porching—sipping boozy lemonade while swinging hand in hand under a fan.

I could go on endlessly about all there is to see and do at Palmetto, but more than anything it’s a feeling. A good ol’ southern accent seems to wash everything in kindness, and for the entirety of my stay I couldn’t stop smiling. It was the warm, fuzzy, intoxicating feeling of nostalgia for a simpler time. For New Yorkers, Palmetto is the ultimate antidote to city life—a short direct flight from LaGuardia and yet it feels a million miles away. Beach vacations are relaxing but rarely memorable. For travellers who prize authenticity and a sense of place over vanilla luxury, this little corner of the south is hard to beat.

Get in touch with Greg if you’re interested in a trip to America’s Lowcountry for some gumbo and porching.

A good ol' southern accent seems to wash everything in kindness, and for the entirety of my stay I couldn't stop smiling.

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