My new favorite place on earth might be Alys Beach on the 30A highway in Florida. Less than a mile from where we were staying in Rosemary Beach, it was an easy little bike ride on our rented cruisers for coffee and donuts and a quick perusal of this beautiful little gem. It’s a new community, so it’s slowly filling in – but what’s already there is stunning. These communities are planned to the hilt – not much is left to chance, and when you enter them, it’s evident that there’s a master plan at work. The town’s designers, in fact, are “widely recognized as a leader of the international movement against the proliferation of suburban sprawl.” And after experiencing the entire idea of New Urbanism in Rosemary (everything within walking distance – shops, restaurants, etc – plus pedestrian-friendly paths and boardwalks) firsthand, I can 100% get on board with the concept. It’s kind of like having my downtown dream come true.
While there’s not as much to Alys right now as there is in comparison to Rosemary Beach, I’m excited to see how it will grow. White walled buildings with Mediterranean influences, colorful shutters, water features galore — it’s a total oasis.
Check our our favorite spots after the jump —
One of our favorite things was getting donuts bright & early from the famous Donut Truck. Get there early because once the donuts are gone, the truck shuts down! Our faves were the sour cream donut and – of course – the red velvet.
While we didn’t get to eat there, the Caliza restaurant is stunning, set within the perimeter of the eponymous pool. We peered over the wall – isn’t it stunning?
But we did take advantage of the delightful Fonville Press, with its espresso & other goodies, and quite possibly the best playground ever.
There’s also a cute little shop that has all kinds of pretties – oh, and wasn’t my yellow bike just the prettiest thing ever?
But my favorite spot in Alys was George’s, hands down. Part of a great local restaurant group (similar to Good Egg here in OKC, I’d guess), we also enjoyed checking out La Cocina – but George’s takes the cake with their delicious Southern-inspired menu and delightfully designed patio. But better yet – everything we did was totally kid friendly. Why shouldn’t kids enjoy good design too?
Finally, we watched the sun set one evening over the lovely pavilion —
Are you ready to move yet? Ugh – if these photos aren’t enough to get you excited, do some real estate stalking over at the Alys Beach vacation rental site (OMG!).