It took some convincing for Jason to agree to return to Florida. He thought he didn't like Florida based on three past visits. A day cruise out of Fort Lauderdale (his senior class trip!) and 2 theme park vacations in the Orlando/Kissimmee area. One with me & The Kid when she was little. I assured him there was more to Florida than Disney & crazy traffic but I'm certain he only agreed because Florida was open & warm.
I've had the opportunity to visit several areas in FL over the years on the Atlantic & Gulf Coasts. This was my first visit to the Palm Beach area too. I didn't want to drag Jason around to places I'd already been so I spent many a night researching different areas and activities we could explore and enjoy together.
We arrived on Thursday, November 19th. It was sunny with temps in the mid to upper 80's and that's how it stayed for the next 7 days. A steady breeze off the Atlantic Ocean kept us comfortable, not too hot.
Marriott's Ocean Pointe of Palm Beach Shores
We had reservations at Marriott's Ocean Pointe of Palm Beach Shores. It's a beautiful resort right on the beach with much to offer guests. A children's splash pad, multiple pools & spas (two reserved for adults), a Tiki Bar serving food & drinks poolside, a Market with a Starbucks, frozen yogurt & ice cream shop, bike rentals, a putt-putt golf course, corn hole & shuffleboard, exercise equipment, (free) laundry facilities & more all with plenty of room for guests to spread out & safely enjoy.
The resort had extra covid precautions in place requiring masking & social distancing not only indoors but also when walking through outdoor common areas. There was plenty of seating, lounge chairs & tables spaced 6' apart throughout the resort. Guests did not share elevators outside of their household. Sanitizer stands were located on each floor at elevators & entrances. Anything needed could be ordered by phone & delivered to your door by the resort staff. The Market & Tiki Lounge charged to your room so there was no need to carry or exchange cash. Our room & all areas of the resort were squeaky clean with ongoing maintenance taking place daily.
We had a beautifully decorated 2nd floor Guest Room with a balcony. Set-up like a hotel suite with a comfortable king sized bed, a sitting area with a sofa sleeper & table set, a kitchenette with a sink, coffee pot, microwave, mini fridge, dishes, coffee & condiments, dish towels & detergents. Two closets & plenty of storage helped us keep our room tidy & not living out of a suitcase. Our room was spacious enough, perfect for us. The resort does offer 1, 2 & 3 bedroom villas with full kitchens too. I have no need for a kitchen when traveling. I want local cuisine!
Our "Pointe" of View
Palm Beach Shores is mostly residential with a handful of resorts. Restaurants & shops are a 1/2 mile walk north on Singer Island to the town of Riviera Beach. You can drive but we preferred to walk. It was a nice stroll before & after meals. We only drove when leaving the island for day trips.
We didn't have an oceanfront room but that's ok. The resort sits right on the beach and all rooms offer a view of the ocean. Our balcony overlooked a small parking lot at the main entrance to the resort, temporary parking for guests checking in at the clubhouse. It was beautifully landscaped with a fountain, palm trees, flowering shrubs & poinsettia. We could see a bit of the street which was quiet, 25 mph. Each day began and ended on our balcony. It was the perfect spot for curious Pillywiggins who like to people watch!
The beaches are sandy & beautiful. We're not ones to sit on the beach but this would be a great place to do so. Plenty of lounge chairs, cabanas & staff serving guests on the private beach. (The public beach is 1/2 mile north across from the restaurants & shops in Riviera Beach.) Rip tide advisories were in effect during our stay so we didn't swim in the ocean. We prefer to walk & wade anyway. Signage in the pool area & at both entrances to the beach provided daily tide & temperature information. The water was as warm as the air.
We found a few small seashells along the shoreline. Jason spent some time metal detecting, no treasures found just an old fishing lure. At least twice a day we walked the beach to Lake Worth Inlet to watch the fishing along the break wall. Pelicans let the fishermen know the best spots to cast. The locals fished the inlet for a variety of species. A few local restaurants will prepare your catch of the day.
There are several restaurants on the island. We wanted fresh seafood so we stuck to the restaurants with the best reviews & seafood options. Cousin Aaron surprised us with reservations of his own & joined us for two days. We enjoyed his company & ate like kings. We really needed those 1/2 mile walks to & from dinner!
Our favorite restaurant was a place called Mulligan's Beach House. We went back several times for breakfast, lunch & dinner. Everything we tried was really good. The orange cream stuffed French toast & the blackened seared tuna were delicious but honestly, it was Brian our server that kept us coming back. This guy was amazing! Brian worked the breakfast & lunch shift. Ask for him if you go!
We also ate at Johnny Longboats and The Islander which is located in the Gold Crown Palm Beach Shores Resort. All provided socially distanced indoor & outdoor dining, hand sanitizer, single serve condiments, curbside pick-up and/or delivery. We chose to eat outdoors.
We walked the interior of the island several times curious to see how the natives live. The streets are quiet, clean & nicely landscaped as are the homes. Away from the waterfront most were average sized houses. A wide sidewalk with beautiful green space on each side bisects the center of "town." It appears to serve as Main Street trafficked mostly by people out walking their dogs. Everyone we encountered offered a friendly greeting from a safe distance. Well, everyone but the pups. They still want to shake hands. :)
A visit to Palm Beach Shores can be as relaxing or action-packed as you like. There's a variety of things to do in the area. Too many to pack into one week. We planned two fabulous day trips. (Wait til you see our photo journals - up next!)
We enjoyed every minute of our visit but there's so much more we'd still like to see & do. We agreed, we would definitely return to Singer Island & our resort. Both exceeded our expectations. So, is it really the Best Little Town in Florida? Well, it was close enough to change Jason's mind.