Luxury On Florida’s Panhandle

By Michael Alpiner

Captain Leonard Destin set his sails and began fishing in the waters of the Gulf between 1835 and 1939. By 1845, he settled in the town that would eventually bear his name. The allure to Captain Destin was likely the same allure that attracts 3.6 million yearly visitors: white sandy beaches, geographical features that make it a prime fishing spot, a rich collection of birds and blooms, and a temperate climate.

For those travelers not satisfied with mediocre, luxury travel becomes as essential as legroom on a long plane flight—one can make do by “roughing it,” but who would want to? Since Henderson Beach Resort is the only luxury resort in Destin, it seems a slam dunk for the discerning traveler. According to Andrew Lott, Director of Sales and Marketing for Henderson Beach Resort, “Guests are drawn here for the sugary sands of our beach.” Yes, Henderson Beach Resort is a shining example of the intersection between natural luxury and manmade luxury.

Resting securely on Florida’s panhandle, a mere two-hour drive to Mobile, Alabama, Destin is one of the most centrally located southern destinations. Once upon the property of Henderson Beach Resort, visitors are immersed in a world where, according to their website, “Southern charm meets modern luxury.” There is an immediate feeling that this is Destin’s only place to stay. 

The rooms at Henderson Beach Resort have all the standard amenities; however, the actual quality of the rooms is the spacious accommodations, sunken tub with shutters to the rest of the space, the room designs, and how they match the steely blue waters of the Gulf. Speaking of the Gulf, most rooms have an unobstructed view of the Gulf of Mexico, which offers a unique snapshot of its beauty with every changing minute or passing cloud cover. Even at night, Destin’s warm air and halo of light are nothing less than ethereal.  

A happy traveler is a well-fed traveler, and at Henderson Beach Resort, luxury is alive in the kitchen. Newly appointed Executive Chef Tyler Simmons brings two decades of culinary excellence to an already competent team, to whom he humbly gives all the credit. Simmons adds personal flair, creativity, and a commitment to a sustainable, locally sourced, and eclectic menu. All selections at Primrose, named after Destin’s first commercial fishing boat, burst with flavor, matching Simmons’ enthusiasm for his art. 

For more casual dining, the resort offers poolside delicacies at Sea Level. Whether frozen cocktails or fun finger food, guests will have a splash trying the different menu items and beverage choices. Likewise, Horizons offers expansive views of the Gulf and Henderson Beach State Park for a casual lunch or simply drinks with friends.

Enter tranquility. Henderson Beach Resort doesn’t skimp when it comes to spa luxury. With 10,000 square feet of space to rejuvenate the bodies and minds of its guests, Explore Spa offers a Himalayan Salt Suite and a Marine Mud Wrap among its core treatments. For a more hands-on experience, a wide selection of massages is available, as are treatments for lips, hands, eyes, hands and feet.  

Rounding out the many reasons to make Henderson Beach Resort a traveler’s “destin-y” is the available water activities, from the adult pool to the meandering, lazy river pool, where flotation noodles carry guests on an undulating and relaxing path that weaves around the pool area. For those who turn their attention to the more natural connections, yoga on the beach, paddle boarding, biking, kayaking, or simply lounging on the white sand will melt all the stress away.  

There is a reason why so many families and couples choose the vacation rental option. Condos with some of the best views in the country keep the guests returning for the guaranteed luxury and the ever-changing landscapes. The future for Henderson includes renovations and augmentations, though there is little upon which to improve.  

For more information on Henderson Beach Resort,
visit hendersonbeachresort.com 

Advertisement - Woodloch-Spa - TheLodgeAtWoodloch.com