This past week brought many spring breakers to St. Simons Island. With many schools on break, The King and Prince was filled with families and visitors looking for some sun and fun. We had many festivities planned all week long for our guests. From sunrise stretch to face painting and beach games, there was something for everyone to enjoy. The brand new pool complex was packed with people soaking up sun and enjoying tasty treats from the Ocean Terrace Grille. To celebrate the holiday weekend, The Resort put on an Easter Egg Hunt with the a special visit from the Easter Bunny. It was a great week for young and old alike. Take a look at the fun:
Posts Tagged ‘The King and Prince’
We are excited to announce the opening of our new state-of-the-art luxurious oceanfront pools! All through the winter, the pools were renovated and we have been anxiously awaiting the finished product. Along with the pools, we have opened the Ocean Terrace Grille for a true oceanfront dining experience. The terrace, just steps away from the ocean, is an ultra casual dining option.
Michael Johnson, Vice-President of Resort Operations, states “The staff of our Resort has been anticipating the unveiling of this spectacular pool complex renewal for many months. We are all thrilled with the results created by our designers and landscaping artisans. Excitement is high as we eagerly await our Spring and Summer guests’ arrival, anticipating their desires whatever their age.”
The new pool complex includes three unique pool offerings surrounded by various seating options for swimmers, readers and water spectators. It will tempt all of the senses with well designed amenities:
- Sound – ambient music system that allows guests to also enjoy the waves crashing beyond the Hotel’s sea wall
- Smell – landscaping that embraces aromatic flowers and indigenous plantings
- Sight – broad open sightlines for pool guests and guestrooms around the deck
- Touch – contemporary new finishes throughout the deck, pool and outdoor seating
- Taste – the new Ocean Terrace Grille offers a refreshing menu of Southern culinary traditions
This past weekend we had our fist visitors to the complex and they loved it!
We are excited to announce that our very own Rick Mattox, King and Prince Golf Course General Manager, received the 2011 Bill Strausbaugh Award. The award is presented to PGA members who have shown outstanding integrity, commitment to mentoring PGA Professionals and who have made a significant impact on the careers of others. We love having Rick a part of our King and Prince family!
Southern Living has posted 10 destinations as the “Ultimate Spring Escapes.” St. Simons Island was chosen as one of the destinations and The King and Prince was listed as a place to stay.
Ultimate Spring Escapes
Slather on the sunscreen and prepare for bliss at one of our favorite spring vacation destinations.
St. Simons Island, GA
The beaches and golf courses of this Atlantic escape hnvie for king of the island. About 80 miles north of Jacksonville and 85 miles south of Savannah, St. Simons has multiple golf courses, pristine coastlines, and plenty of outdoor activities to fill those sun-drenched Spring Break days. If you’re bit by the shopping bug, venture to the island’s southern tip to Pier Village to pick up an extra pair of sandals or an easy beach read. Local restaurants specialize in seafood dishes, and The Coastal Kitchen offers a raw shrimp and oyster bar.
Lay your head in luxury at the beachfront King and Prince Resort, where Southern hospitality and deluxe amenities are at their best. Hodnett Cooper Vacation Rentals offers condos and villas for couples or families on any budget, including daily and weekly rentals.
Read below to see Christine Tibbetts’ article from TibbettsTravel about exploring St. Simons and activities and The King and Prince Resort & Golf Course.
King and Prince: A forward-looking resort with history on St. Simons Island
Sunday, December 11, 2011
By Christine Tibbetts
ST. SIMONS, Georgia — Elegance and longevity. Fresh new cuisine wrapping around 76 years of resort history on a barrier island that began forming 200 million years ago.
Grand combination for a holiday at the King and Prince beach and golf resort on St. Simons Island.
Some pleasant places are only fancy; this one has depth too, and neighbors who stay. Here’s how that translates to tourists.
Long-time pleasures keep on happening but change filters in, everything hand-in-hand on this handsome property and throughout the barrier island.
For example: the King and Prince has long served peach cobbler for breakfast. Tradition continues. Now they’re also squeezing juice from their courtyard grapefruit trees for a Prohibition cocktail reflecting one of their historic eras.
Seven decades of menus and history with more in the making.
Well-balanced spirits are only one passion of the new King and Prince cuisine director. Fresh Georgia foods are too, and wines from near and far.
Vinny D’Agostino is his name, steeped in the flavors of his Italian family and schooled at Johnson and Wales College of Culinary Arts in Providence, Rhode Island and North Miami.
A member of the Court of Master Sommeliers, D’Agostino holds a string of accolades from Bon Appetit and Food and Wine magazines for restaurants and bars he’s owned and operated.
He speaks as easily of his time as a youth on family farms and vineyards in Fornelli, Italy as he does now about the wonders of wild Georgia shrimp.
“Food and drink,” D’Agostino says, “are tied to the history of place in so many significant ways. Our menus reflect that, and our chefs incorporate their Island family histories along with their professional training.”
Fine eating happens often, at the resort and around the island. In between meals, I listened to local stories on the Lighthouse Trolley, first-person tales since the owner/driver Cap Fendig hails from a family arriving here in the 1800s.
When I’m getting local history from someone whose granddaughter goes to the same elementary school he did, plus his grandfather, I feel grounded.
St. Simons Island is a different experience from resorts with passing-through, seasonal workers.
This bit of the Georgia coast has more residents than visitors: 65 percent full time, Fendig said.
Everyone I talked to loves the tidal marshes, maritime forests, freshwater sloughs and the spartina sugar cane grasses that make local shrimp sweet. They gather at Neptune Park, which visitors do too, so mixing it up is an easy pleasure.
There’s a pier for fishing and gazing and a smooth brick walkway hugging the water, leading to the lighthouse. Talk to Curt Smith; he’s the modern executive version of a light station keeper and an enthusiastic St. Simons Island historian.
Picnic tables and trees galore make Neptune Park a lingering place; for $7.00 get an all-day pass to the big swimming pool.
That where Tim and Melissa Wellford have been serving legendary eggs, muffins, grits with or without shrimp, French toast, sausage, bacon and more for 24 years.
Local people seem honored to live on a barrier island; Fendig says only two percent of the world’s coasts have barrier islands. Made me feel like a new frontier explorer.
Georgia has 15 barrier islands; four are auto accessible. Good idea to be OK with bridges when you go. 1924 was the first year St. Simons was connected by a causeway to the mainland.
Short and wide is the nature of these islands; North Carolina’s Outer Banks are long and ribbon-like.
Curious facts like that are easy to pick up at the Coast Guard Maritime Museum, a handsome Colonial Revival style structure, one of 80 built as WPA projects.
Definitely watch the documentary to understand the territory; National Geographic says this coast is one of the 20 most diverse in the world. Museum exhibits are clear and clean, not too much reading, good graphics.
One section pinpoints a different kind of amazing history: World War II right off this coast. German subs targeting the beaches. Two oil tankers sank. Dogs trained as defense partners for sentry guards.
Then return to the King and Prince with a different eye knowing today’s elegant pale yellow resort became a radar training school.
The hotel opened to the public July 2, 1941 and in the winter of 1942 was reserved solely for the U.S. Navy and the war effort.
This was the gathering place for families learning their sailor had died because nearby Jacksonville, Fla. was the military point of return.
Looking up in the former ballroom to stained glass window scenes installed in 1938 when this was a private club, and looking out to the Atlantic Ocean, I mused about that war effort, and ours today.
King and Prince staff seem well versed in that history, and proud to be part of a place that sacrificed for the nation. My musing? Who is sharing any thing or any place today? Only our troops?
mine to act on the thoughts the journeys trigger.
Lighter thoughts swirled in the ballroom too, wishing the King and Prince would reinstitute dancing dominant there decades ago.
My New Jersey parents waltzed often at the nearby Cloister Hotel on Sea Island but I found a gentler, more personable charm at the King and Prince.
Elegance to enjoy, exquisite details shared with pleasure seem the formula here. Bud St. Pierre has directed the sales and marketing for 10 years, happy he and his wife are raising young sons on this barrier island.
“We hire nice people here,” he said with almost a giggle. And I observed hotel and resort staff treating each other like they thought so too.
Many choices at the King and Prince for where to rest starting with oceanfront suites, villas, towers and rooms with balconies overlooking the tennis courts.
G.W. and I stayed in the luxurious Tabby House, a separate structure with space to share and a kitchen; could have brought some of the family.
The Meadows is also a stand-alone house, this one rich with fine and folk art and lots of levels and stairways.
Allow sufficient time when you reserve accommodations to savor the options.
twice on my morning cruise.
Look fast because back into the water is the mission, tallying life and returning to nature.
Exceptional catches require measuring, like the green sea turtle weighing 30 pounds that surprised Clifford Credle, my 18-year-old eco guide who started learning the estuary life when he was nine with his dad Larry who captains this vessel.
Wild Georgia shrimp caught in this net don’t go back to sea; they’re cooked five minutes later and served to Lady Jane passengers.
A King and Prince holiday merges easily with St. Simons Island discoveries, not always the case with resort vacations. Sometimes they lock you in, or so it feels. Isolated.
I think I figured out the difference. King and Prince personnel really live on this island. I kept seeing them in community places as well as the hotel and grounds.
Even food and beverage director Vinny. Saw him, chowing down on ribs and Brunswick stew at Southern Soul BBQ. Good sign I thought, the pile of local oak in the front yard. Separate smokers for each kind of meat.
I’m no golfer but the King and Prince’s Hampton Club gave me hope. Most encouraging lesson I’ve ever had was with General Manager and Head Pro Rick Mattox.
He just received a major PGA award for outstanding integrity, charity, mentoring and service to community. Golfers would recognize the Bill Strabaugh award name.
For real golfers, this course features four holes playing through the marsh, built and maintained with strict regulations, Mattox says. Marsh golf is not to be found anywhere else.
Wannabe golfers like me have a good chance of being allowed to borrow a cart in the late afternoon and experience the beauty of greens and marsh. The view stretches forever.
Driving to the Hampton Club offers a chance to see island ecosystems, and to visit at least three historic sites: Fort Frederica, Christ Church and the Wesley Memorial and Gardens.
Rachel writes in her blog, “Time for Good Food,” about her trip to St. Simons and all the sites she saw and food she ate at The King and Prince.
Monday, November 14, 2011
Inspired by St. Simon’s Island
Marc d’Entremont writes an article at Suite101 about his visit to The King and Prince Resort and eating their Shrimp & Grits, a Southern Culinary Tradition.
King and Prince Resort’s Shrimp and Grits in a Tasso Cream Sauce
It was the end of a pleasant sunny early November day in the now quiet off-season of St. Simons Island, one of Georgia’s premier barrier island destinations. The elegant 1935 King and Prince Beach and Golf Resort , listed on the National Historic Register and Historic Hotels of America, set a table befitting its Old World heritage. The formal place settings with an array of flatware and crystal stemware lay on starched white linen lit by softly glowing candles. The guests are not what the media would identify as royalty or even VIPs. We’re nearly two dozen jaded, or nearly jaded, travel and food journalists – critics to the core.
Southern Culinary Traditions
We were the guests of The King and Prince. Our four day tour to explore the culinary traditions of southeastern Georgia was organized by Leigh Cort Publicity. Such media trips involve a considerable amount of activity, not the least of which is eating and drinking. To make an impression worthy of an article the fare has to be more than just free.
Tradition versus an Old Standby
Personally my foodie radar was picking up more an old diner standby rather than a fine tradition when the itinerary indicated that dinner would include a Shrimp and Grits cooking demonstration. Google any of a dozen recipes and discover everything from bullion cubes to extra sharp cheddar used to mask tasteless farm raised frozen shrimp mounded on top of instant grits. Believe me I’ve had my full of disappointing versions.
Chef Dwayne Austell and Vinny D’Agostino
It took only a moment after entering the dining room for my nose to detect a subtle aroma of warm smoked meat. It was emanating from the chafing dish that was keeping the sauce at serving temperature. I should have guessed that a Johnson & Wales University graduate, Vinny D’Agostino, Food and Beverage Director, and Georgia Low Country native Sous Chef Dwayne Austell would rise above the ordinary.
Wild Shrimp and Tasso Ham
Quality ingredients are essential for a great dish and there is no comparison between farm raised and wild shrimp. Fortunately, much of America’s shrimp is wild and the package will be labeled appropriately. The high tides and lush nutrient rich salt marshes of low country and barrier islands provide an excellent clean environment for Georgia’s abundant shrimp. The Georgia White Shrimp is especially plump, meaty and flavorful. Yet the secret to Chef Austell’s outstanding Shrimp and Grits is the addition of smoky, cured Tasso ham – an essential ingredient in much of southern cajun cuisine. What is actually a pork butt rather than a ham gives the cajun spiced light cream sauce a rich flavor that lingers in the mouth.
The Recipe – for 2 servings
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 2/3rd cup diced Tasso ham
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen kernel corn
- 1/2 cup seeded diced tomatoes
- 4 Tablespoons diced green onions
- 4 to 6 ounces fresh shelled wild shrimp
- 2 Tablespoons cajun seasoning mix
- 1/2 cup grated asiago cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- olive oil
- cooked grits
- First prepare grits using the best recipe I know for Creamy Stone Ground Grits
- Add just enough olive oil to lightly cover the bottom of two saute pans and heat over medium setting.
- In one pan add the shrimp and cajun seasoning. Saute no more than 5 minutes. Overcooking results in tough shrimp.
- In the second pan add the ham and corn and saute for a couple minutes. Add the tomatoes and green onions, combine and saute a few minutes more. Add the heavy cream and asiago cheese. Bring to a simmer and cook for two minutes.
- Combine the shrimp and all the pan juices into the sauce.
- Serve over the prepared grits.
Vinny D’Agostino, a sommelier as well, paired the entree with a nice Georgia Chardonnay from Frogtown Cellars. The minimal acidity of a Chardonnay, preferably unoaked, works well with the creamy sauce. A California or Washington State Chardonnay would be a fine substitute since Georgia wines are not widely distributed.
Even if you’re not dining a few hundred feet from the ocean, this fine recipe from the King and Prince Beach and Golf Resort can conjure memories of warm lazy days under oak trees dripping with Spanish Moss and sea gulls laughing overhead.
Its already November and Thanksgiving is quickly approaching.
We invite you to our home this Thanksgiving and let us be your host for A Thanksgiving to remember with your family and friends. We still have a few hotel rooms available so be sure to reserve now and take advantage of our great rates this holiday weekend!
Take a look at our buffet menu to see all of the scrumptious offerings for the Holiday!
Time: 10:30am – 6pm
Price: Adults: $39.95/ Children (Ages 6-10) $15 (Children 5 & under free)
Call: 912.638.3631 to make dining reservations
***Update: Since this post was written, the resort and restaurant have undergone extensive renovations. Click here to view photos, menus, and more information about ECHO.
So what are your plans?
Here at The King and Prince we are gearing up for a great kick-off to the summer season. Join us this Memorial day with your family and friends for some R&R at the ocean’s edge.