Port D’Hiver, a local treasure of Melbourne Beach

With the help of local Melbourne Beach artisans and tradesmen, the couple spent the next few years returning the residence as closely as possible to Walter Brown’s 1920’s home. Port d’Hiver (Port of Winter) officially opened in 2007.

A retreat that is both comfortable and elegant, the B&B offers ten bright, spacious accommodations each uniquely decorated with a tropical Key West/British Colonial flair. The Sunrise room in the north cabana offers fabulous ocean views and a mahogany four poster bed along with a private balcony for cocktails or just relaxing with a good book. Handcrafted Peter Reed British linens made from the finest Egyptian cotton percale add to the luxurious experience.

Navigating St. Simons Island

As the largest barrier island in the Golden Isles, St. Simons Island lies across from the immortalized Marshes of Glynn, made famous by Sidney Lanier’s poem of the same name. Punctuated by small islands known as hammocks, the pristine stretches of marshland create the appearance of a continuous stretch of land reaching out to the barrier islands. Eugenia Price, one of the South’s most popular authors of antebellum romantic fiction, often spoke of the “special light” on St. Simons. Turning a beautiful golden color in the fall, the expansive marsh grasses are especially dramatic when lit by the setting sun.

Melbourne Beach: A Space Coast Gem

It is one of America’s magical roadways. A north/south route, Highway A1A sprawls out in sections along Florida’s entire Atlantic coast. Cruising along A1A in Central Florida we pulled into the towns of Melbourne Beach and Indiatlantic located on the barrier island between the Indian River and the Atlantic Ocean. Relaxed and unhurried, the twin sister towns offer unspoiled beaches with sparkling blue-green waters and large dunes blanketed with sea oats and native wildflowers.

Crystal River: Home to Manatee Swimming Hole

They are gentle giants. Known for whiskery faces and large, seal-like bodies that taper down to powerful flat tails, Florida’s largest herd of endangered manatees makes their annual migration to the Crystal River in November. The good-natured mammals can survive comfortably during the winter months in the natural warm springs that originate here and flow into the Gulf of Mexico.