10 Reasons Why to Travel To Scrub Island

If you’re looking for a place to completely disconnect, clear you mind and revitalize, I have the answer. After coming off huge work deadlines for food and travel media clients and the first issue of the launch of Healthy Travel magazine in March, my trip to Scrub Island couldn’t have come at a better time. Whether you’re looking for a family getaway or romantic retreat, this special private island has something for everyone. Here are the top 10 reasons why to visit Scrub Island:

  1. Its Beauty-You will enjoy some of the most breathtaking views in the British Virgin Islands from any room, suite or villa on the island. Relish the picturesque views of the marina, the beaches and mountainous views.
  2. Complete Relaxation- The newest private island resort built in the British Virgin Islands in over 15 years, Scrub island is peacefulness at its finest.
  3. Terrific Service- You’ll experience optimum service at Scrub Island. From the moment you step off the Scrub Island Ferry, you’ll be hosted by the friendliest and most hospitable staff. No detail is left undone.
  4. Sublime Spa-Set in a 3-bedroom villa, the Ixora Spa is the perfect location for spa bliss. Come early and relax poolside by the infinity pool overlooking the ocean. Choose from a huge variety of spa services. I loved the Eterno Massage, a signature deep tissue combined with heat to relax the spin and the mind. I was also lucky enough to receive fresh aloe from a little too much time in the sun.
  5. Beaches Enjoy your choice of three beaches on Scrub Island. The beach alongside the marina is called Pavilion Beach where you can relax with easy access to the main pool or restaurants. You can also take a kayak from there to honeymoon beach which is an amazing private setting. If you want more seclusion, head to North Beach where all you can hear is the surf. Be sure to have grab a drink and have lunch at One Shoe Beach Bar located on North Beach.
  6. Food and Beverages-Chef Davide Pulgliese, is a star on his own. From Florence to Utah, his knowledge and creativity is unparalleled. Some of my favorite offerings (although I loved everything) were the Homemade Muesli for breakfast, Watermelon Carpaccio with Fresh Beet appetizer, and Grilled Salmon with Guava Glaze served with Sweet Potato Mash. Scrub Island also offers creative Caribbean beverage list. One of my local favorites the Ting and dark rum (Ting is a Jamaican carbonated grapefruit beverage). See more information on Davide in the February issue of Coastal Living Magazine.
  7. Water-Sports– Enjoy two pools at Scrub Island. One, with a swim-up bar and a slide, and the other, with an infinity pool and hot tub. Be sure to check out Dive BVI and their fabulous programs such as sailing lessons for kids, daily excursions such as island hopping, paddle boarding, snorkeling, kayaking and the beachside water trampoline.
  8. The Accommodations-You’ll enjoy luxurious and large accommodations with tremendous bathrooms filled with extra large sunken in tubs and stand up showers. Every suite is equipped with a top of a line kitchen with a wolf cooktop and oven, subzero refrigerator, washer and dryers and spacious closets.
  9. Location, Location, Location-Only a 15-minute ferry ride from Tortola, Scrub Island is perfectly tucked in the BVI, only a short boat ride to many other beautiful islands.
  10.  Versatility-Whether you are on your honeymoon, need to fuel romance in your life or want to take a family getaway with kids, Scrub Island fills every need with ease, beauty and hospitality. I can’t wait to go back!

For more information see Scrub Island or call 877-890-7444. Look them on Facebook or twitter. Email me anytime if you want to hear more or see my photos on Twitter and Facebook.

Travel Tuesday Vacation Destination: Sandestin A to Z

Welcome to my new weekly column “Tuesday Travel”. I am so thrilled to be doing a great deal of “freelance traveling writing” for various media outlets this year, and I am looking forward to also sharing my travel experiences as well on Ingredients, Inc. every other Tuesday.

I am so lucky to live only 4 hours from the beautiful beaches of South Walton in Northwest Florida and the stunningly amazing golf and beach resort, Sandestin.  My family and I had an incredible opportunity to visit Sandestin this Spring Break, and when my youngest son called it, “a mini Disney World” at the beach, I could truly see why. I had so much to say about this comprehensive resort experience that when I sat down to write about it, I wondered how I could say it all. I am hoping this post on “Sandestin A to Z” will give you a short tour of why you should come to Sandestin for a visit.

A: Acme Oyster House-You will get a taste of New Orleans walking around The Village of Baytowne Wharf, especially this view of the streets and the famous New Orleans restaurant, Acme Oyster House.

B: Beach-It is no surprise that Destin has been named by Good Morning America as one of “Top 10 Most Beautiful Places in America.”

C: Cantina LaredoThe Mexican restaurant, Cantina Laredo, is located in Sandestin’s Grand Boulevard shops. My kids loved it, and their favorite part was having guacamole made table side.

D: Daiquiris-Sandestin has nearly two dozen venues in The Village of Baytowne Wharf, including pub sports bars, seasonal tiki bars, restaurants, shops, and even the famous New Orleans Daiquiri and frozen drink bar, Fat Tuesday. Love this evening view of Baytowne Wharf.

E: Another Broken Egg-This is one of our favorite breakfast restaurants. There are two Another Broken Egg restaurants on Sandestin’s Property.

F: Fishing-This was my backyard for the weekend, but every lake has a “catch and release” policy which is so fun for the kids (and adults.)

G: Golf-Sandestin has four incredible championship golf courses, and it is not surprising that Sandestin has been named one of the “Top 12 Golf Communities” by Forbes.

H: Happiness-Say no more.

I: Ice Skating– In the wintertime, Sandestin adds a synthetic ice skating rink in the heart of Baytown Wharf.

J: Jet Ski-If you like an exciting or casual ride on the water, wave runners are available to rent at the Baytowne Marina. 

K: Kayaking-Kayaking is one of our family’s favorite activities at the beach. Head to the Baytowne Marina for a fun afternoon kayaking in the bay.

L: Lakes-72 lakes exist on Sandestin’s 2400 acres. They are all beautifully landscaped and very picturesque.

M: Marina-Sandestin has an 113-Slip Marina with so many fun activities, including sailing charters and lessons, sailboat rentals, pontoon boat rentals, wave runner rentals, sunset cruises, Yolo stand-up paddle boarding and more.

N: Nature TrailJolee Island Nature Park is 5 acres and the perfect place for a walk, bike ride, picnic or cookout with family or friends. During the fall, I hear that there is a great Halloween pirate themed island trail with hayrides and more.  They call it, “Get Spooked on Jolee Island.”

O: Outdoors-Where else can you get hiking, biking, beach, running, golf, tennis, beach volleyball, basketball, canoeing, paddle boarding, boogie boards and water sports all in one destination?

P: Putting CourseThe Dunes adventurous Putting Course is located beachside. This 51-par course had 18 incredibly landscaped holes of fun. It’s a great thing to do when the kids want a break from the ocean.

Q: Quintessential Vacation-The beauty in Sandestin is almost surreal. This is truly a quintessential vacation destination.

R: Ropes CourseThe Sky Trail Ropes Course is a fun challenge for kids of all ages.

S: San Gelato Cafe-Located in Baytown Wharf, we visited San Gelato Cafe every day. Owners, Guido and Simona, moved from Italy to the Emerald coast. You can find two locations in Destin which serve incredible gelato, sorbets, sandwiches, salads, coffee and desserts. Their gelato is also distributed in stores throughout the country.

T: Tennis-Sandestin is equipped with 15 tennis courts, 12 clay and 3 hard courts. This state of the art facility is built around lakes on one side and the marina on the other.

U: Umbrellas-Enjoy the view sitting or walking the seven miles of beaches and pristine bay front in Sandestin.

V: Vacation-Sandestin has 19 swimming pools. Yes, 19! This picture of my son, Zachary, by the pool, is the definition of vacation. Just chillin…

W: Water-Do I need to say more?


X: Xcellent Accommodations: From beach to bay, there are nearly 1,400 accommodations ranging from deluxe studios to four bedroom villas.


Y: Yolo boardingYolo Boards, which are stand-up paddle boards, are made in Santa rosa beach, just down the road. The combination of surfing, kayaking and canoeing is a blast for kids and adults and also an incredible core workout. Lessons and rentals are offered daily at the Sandestin Marina.

Z: Zipline-Conquer your fears in Baytown Wharf on the zipline. Anchored by two 60-feet towers, this zipline crosses 650 feet across from tower to tower. And, yes, that is me in the photo.