Last month Tarrian Grant-Burnett had the opportunity to spend time at Portofino Island Resort in Pensacola, Florida. In a five and one half hour drive from Atlanta you can have the weekend of a lifetime!
Friday: first stop at the Cobalt Bar for a refreshing arrival drink. Afterwards take a cruise over to the Pensacola Boardwalk via Portofino I, the resort’s sixty-three foot catamaran. The breezy, twenty-minute voyage through the Santa Rosa Sound offers a breathtaking view of the island with dolphins along the way. The boardwalk is buzzing on weekend nights. Live music fills the air and street entertainers line the walkways of this beachside shopping and dining destination.
On Saturday, get up and get going. A morning bike ride or run along the Gulf Islands National Seashore is the perfect way to clear your mind and reconnect with the glorious surroundings of Portofino. The hiking trails and bike paths make exploring the seashore a comfortable experience.
After your ride, you’ll be ready to cool down and take in some spa pampering. Nothing beats a couple’s massage under a private canopy beside the quiet waters of the Santa Rosa Sound. Acclimating to the activities around you, go with the flow and head to the beach. Umbrellas and chairs are as plentiful as the sugar white sands; they’re also complimentary for Premier Club guests. When the mood to move strikes, take advantage of the water toys. An air mattress fits the bill if you’re still not quite ready to get vertical. Or try a YOLO paddleboard and navigate the waves.
When you are ready to take a drive, it’s just a quick twenty-minutes from Portofino to downtown Pensacola. Pensacola retains the laid-back vibe of the beach while delivering big city amenities and activities. Popular Palafox Street is peppered with its unique locally-owned shops and eateries as well as museums, art galleries and music venues. Portofino offers a Palafox Hop excursion on Gallery Night, bringing guests to and from downtown in the comfort of its luxury limo bus, The Experience.
Before you depart on Sunday explore Pensacola Beach’s historic side with a trip to Fort Pickens. Believed by many to be a ghostly monument, the fort played roles in the Mexican-American War, the Civil War, the Spanish-American War and World Wars I and II, and served as a prison for the historic Apache leader Geronimo and his fellow warriors.
Beautiful brick archways, built to support the weight of the battlements above, make a distinctive backdrop for vacation pictures. Bring a picnic and enjoy brunch in the surrounding park’s picnic area before you head home.
The variety and combinations of activities at Portofino create so many possibilities that no two days or vacation experiences would ever need to be the same. The key is to make your stay what you want it to be. Regardless of your timeframe or agenda, life is better at the beach!
BBbyT Weddings, Travel & Events, LLC