Sea Island, Georgia
The Cloister at Sea Island
What it is
A Mediterranean-inspired hideaway with three pro golf courses and five miles of private beach.
What it isn't
New. The resort has been a beacon for Southern revelry since 1928, when it was opened by automobile kingpin Howard Coffin (founder of Hudson Motor Car Company, now defunct) and Bill Jones.
What we think
If you request an Ocean View Room at this grande dame, you may have to pinch yourself upon entering: it’s as if Director Nancy Meyers took a Georgia vacation and brought all her cinematic design touches with her. There’s the four post mahogany bed, the exposed ceiling beams, and the gracious sweep of the Atlantic Ocean just beyond your private terrace—all worthy of a starring role in any of her rom-com’s. (Bonus that the rooms are huge at 700 square feet—rare for a historic property—and stocked with soaking tubs, rainfall showers and Nespresso coffee makers). Of course, you’re not here to hole up in your suite, not when activities on offer include falconry, horseback riding adjacent dunes, and yachting alongside dolphins in the salt marshes just off-shore.
You're here because
You’re feeling like you need a shot of career inspiration, and pretty much every other world leader in history has stayed here and planted one of Sea Island’s traditional live oak trees—including Bill Clinton, Margaret Thatcher, Jimmy Carter and Tony Blair.
The Georgian Room restaurant is the only eatery in the state to have garnered a covered Forbes Five-Star award—and once you take a seat under the glimmering chandeliers, you see why. It’s as locavore as they come, and tonight’s tasting menu was worthy of the trip here alone—with dishes like chestnut agnolotti, Georgia black bass and poached king crab, and pecan sable crème brûlée. You only wish you’d skipped lunch and come ravenous—it’s that good.
Restaurants & Bars
In the Cloister:
Georgian Room - Refined Southern dining
Tavola - Family-style Italian
River Bar - French Brasserie-inspired
In the Lodge:
Colt & Alison - Southern-inspired steakhouse
Oak Room - Southern favorites and signature dishes
In the Beach Club:
Southern Tide - Coastal Southern cuisine with fresh local seafood
Flip Flop Bistro | Snack Shack - Eclectic menu with international influences
On tony Sea Island, about an hour and a half north of Jacksonville, Florida.