New on Hilton Head Island


Another tourist season is beginning to wind down. We have survived hurricane season without having to deal with a storm of any major consequence.  We are truly blessed on Hilton Head Island.

 A lot of major renovations and new buildings are in the works. The island is changing every day right before our eyes.

Hilton Head Fall

 Sea Pines is building a new Golf Club where the old Plantation Club was for the Ocean Course and Heron Point Club that will have a grill and bar overlooking Heron Point and the Ocean Course as well as an inviting foyer and lounge areas for Sea Pines owners to enjoy. They are building a new Beach Club that will have an upscale restaurant for diners to have an oceanfront view as well as a casual beach bar and grill.

Also, the private beach, Tower Beach, is being rebuilt for the Sea Pines Owners to enjoy. It will include a small catering kitchen in the improved pavilion. The bottom floor of the pavilion will house 110 metal beach gear storage lockers 3’x5’x3-1/2’. A small improved Security Station is also part of the project. The Harbour Town Golf Club that hosts the PGA tournament in April is also going to be rebuilt.  

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The new Kroger Grocery Store located at Shelter Cove across from Palmetto Dunes is scheduled to open in December. The Piggly Wiggly closed last week. Whole Foods is opening in its place soon. The new fire department is almost completed. An added new guard gate is finished at the entrance to Palmetto Dunes. A new road connecting Queens Way onto to 278 will be happening soon.

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 We are very proud of all these new exciting buildings and improvements. All things must change at some point. We already thought of our island as Paradise with our old buildings. We are all just so proud of the numerous things that have been approved for further enhancements.  We thank you for your shared excitement.

So, if you are already an owner of Hilton Head property…. Count your blessings. And if not, call me so I can help you with finding your perfect spot in our little neck of the world. You will be glad you did. 

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A Beautiful Day in Palmetto Bluff


palmetto bluff

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This is a special place where the magnificent May River flows connecting Skull Creek, Calibogue Sound and the Atlantic Ocean; this is Palmetto Bluff. Although there are so many opportunities for relaxation and fun in this community, the water of the May River always pulls on my heart and catches my eye first. I like to walk on the Wilson Landing docks at the river with the intent to stand for a few minutes and relax to take in the day’s sights and fresh pluff mud air and often end up hanging out for an hour or more. Sometimes, I plan my break by stopping at Buffalo’s for my favorite peanut butter coke-a-cola cupcake to take with me down to the water. That’s when my friends seem to come around!  If I am not answering my phone, you can figure that I am in Palmetto Bluff entranced by the beauty of the May River. If you love the water too – Palmetto Bluff is THE place for you.

Palmetto Bluff

Wilson Landing is the center of the water recreation in Palmetto Bluff. Just to give you an idea, there is a dry storage facility with 80 racks accommodating boats up to 36 feet and a dock with six platform lifts over the water. Kayaks, canoes, rowboats and paddleboards are available from the Canoe Club.  There is also overnight and day guest dockage available. The Outfitters will sell you and tell you everything you need for a great time on the water. 

Palmetto Bluff

Be sure to watch the impromptu, yet awesome and peaceful video I recently shot of a paddleboarder who went out to paddle with the dolphins. He only had about 30 minutes to go out that day after a meeting he had, needless to say it was a perfect 30 minutes. He was eye to eye with the dolphins as they fed near the docks and at the shore. When he came back in and we chatted, his smile never left his face.

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Just as a note: Respecting the dolphins as they share their water with us is important and we try not to interfere with them and never feed them – but I think dolphins do love the special attention they get from us when we stop and admire their grace.

As you can imagine, there is far more to this good life than pictures or words in a blog can share. If you have dreamed of the perfect home or vacation home where you can enjoy the water with its many activities, Palmetto Bluff is the home for you. As a specialist in the Palmetto Bluff area, I would love to show you more about this unique lifestyle. I truly can help you find what fits your dreams.

Palmetto Bluff also has every other first class amenity that you can imagine! Plus, we are just minutes from Old Town Bluffton, Hilton Head Island and Savannah. If I can tear myself away from the water, I will tell you about them in future blogs.

 First, let me go get some fresh oysters for dinner down on the river!

 May your day be as fabulous as mine – and if it isn’t, call me so I can help you move to Palmetto Bluff!

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Honoring Veterans on Hilton Head Island


Hilton Head Veterans

I just attended the ninth annual Veteran’s Day Memorial Service held at the Shelter Cove Memorial Park.  The first Veteran’s Day Service was held there on November 11, 2005.  Before this park was built, I attended services held at Shelter Cove under the pavilion where Shannon Tanner performs on Tuesday night fireworks night.

Hilton Head is so blessed to have so many veterans and veterans’ families living here.  It did my heart good to experience the honor and memory of many veterans who have gone on and those that still grace us with their presence and war stories.

A huge crowd enjoyed the celebration complete with Color Guard, The Parris Island Marine Band,  Flag Detail, keynote speaker, Dr. Mary A. DeCredico, Ph.D (American History) and Professor of History of the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. 

       

 If you missed it this year or if you have never experienced Veteran’s Day Memorial Service on Hilton Head……  I hope you will next year….. You’ll be glad you did.

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Hilton Head Island Christmas Shopping -Coligny Plaza


I must sound like a broken record; today there is a beautiful blue sky and it is November 23, 2013 and it is 72 degrees. It is a perfect day to take the little convertible out and drive over to Coligny Plaza “Hilton Head’s Original Downtown” in Forest Beach. Just go down 278 to the Sea Pines Circle – go ¾ around the round about to Pope Ave– continue toward the beach.Coligny Plaza will be on the left. There are several entrances to the plaza and lots of parking. As we get closer to Christmas, more shoppers will be out and about so you might want to think about getting there early.

Hilton Head Shopping

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 My first stop today is at Mingle’s (and Christmas too). Here you can find a bit of Christmas all year round; just right to keep a smile on your face. It’s the place to find Season’s Greeting / Christmas cards that have a really cute beach/island theme to them. It is a treat to send them to our family and friends.

 There are approx. 60 different businesses featuring shops for Apparel, Accessories, Food and Beverages, Gifts & Specialties, etc. Let’s take a peek in a few of the Boutique-style shops to see what will make some great gifts for family and friends.

Fresh Produce has a wonderful collection of cotton sportswear in wonderful colors; tops, bottoms, dresses, swimwear and accessories – beach / island friendly. They also have an extensive collection of Vera Bradley items ranging from iphone covers to large totes in lovely signature prints, accented with leather or not, and some items in all leather as well.

Planet Hilton Head is a great place to find Hilton Head Active Wear: Tee Shirts, Sweatshirts, Sweatpants and Caps. These make great gifts for locals or send them off to a relative who is missing the island. They’ll be prepared for their next visit to the island.

Coligny Kite & Flag Co. “Unique Flying Objects and Gifts”: Wow, look at all the bright colors! Did you know that it is very common to see folks of all ages flying beautiful kites on the beaches of Hilton Head Island? Coligny Kite & Flag Co. is the place to find the perfect kite.

The Shell Shop has a wide variety of island gifts and trinkets in all sizes. Coasters, Charms, Flip Flop Earrings, beautiful beaded fish wind chimes and even gecko figurines with rhinestones on their backs. These are fun and whimsical items for purchase.

 The Bird’s Nest has some unusual and very pretty silver jewelry pieces with or without colored stones; some delicate charms, bracelets, necklaces or earrings. They also have some festive accessories and bags with a little glamour and glitz to spice up the holiday season for the ladies in your life.

Hilton Head Shopping

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Let’s take a lunch break now; I don’t know about you but I’m hungry. The Market Street Café has some yummy soups and salads on the menu today. There is an extensive menu from sandwiches to entrees; but I think soup and a sandwich will hit the spot, and since it is such a beautiful day I’ll eat outside. Perfect.

 Nourish – Natural Bath Products sells: soap, candles, bath products, moisturizers, aromatherapy, natural baby bath products and seasonal gift baskets. My daughter just loves this shop.  It is a must visit when she visits the island.

 Island Fudge Shop is a great place to buy some special treats. The selection includes homemade fudge, hand-dipped chocolates, candies, corporate gifts, holiday gifts and more. How about a chocolate alligator for everyone’s stocking? VerySouth Carolina.

 Jamaican Me Crazy will be my last stop today. This is my favorite place to buy my Hattie Dresses in bright colored floral prints that have a tropical island motif. Oh look, here’s one in a pink pattern – just my size; I think I’ll wrap it up for myself as a gift from Santa.

Hilton Head Shopping

 It’s been a busy day. Lots of gift options to think about for friends, children and grandchildren. They love getting gifts fromHilton Head Island.

 Now it’s time to go home and address the Christmas Cards that I purchased at Mingle’s.

Glenn and I wish you the Happiest of HolidaySeasons; May all of your wishes come true.

 Until next time,

 Jane & Glenn

 

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Lowcountry Holiday


Hilton Head Island Christmas

I love this time of year in the Lowcountry! The weather is great, the leaves are in the final stages of falling and everywhere you look, the Lowcountry is decorated for Christmas. What’s even better is the amount of great festivals, parades and family activities. It took me a little while to get used to mild temperatures and no snow during the holidays, but you really grow to appreciate when you realize that there is just so much more to when you don’t have to wear ten layers and worry about frost bite! The weekend of December 6th – 8th was a perfect example of how to celebrate the holiday in the Lowcountry. The weekend began with the “Light Up The Night” festival in Old Town Bluffton which included a tree lighting, Holly Jolly Trolley, shopping, refreshments and live music.

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On Saturday the 7th, the annual and infamous Bluffton Christmas parade began at 11:00AM. This parade has been a favorite since the early 1970’s. People line the streets with their lawn chairs and store owners often open for shopping or to offer food and refreshments. This is truly a unique Bluffton experience! The weekend wraps up on December 8th with a Christmas Celebration in Buckwalter Place where Santa will arrive on a fire truck and awards for the best floats in the Christmas Parade will be handed out! If you didn’t get the chance to attend this year, make sure that you do next year! 

 Hilton Head Christmas

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A Harbourtown Christmas


Hilton Head Christmas

  It was another beautiful day on Hilton Head that was sure to roll into a star filled night.  We had decided that we would drive down to The Quarter Deck in Harbourtown  (A great water-side dinning experience) for dinner the on the water. We also wanted to check out the Harbourtown lighthouse all lit up for Christmas.

After a great meal and great service sitting by the water watching the sunset we noticed that the Harbour was all lit up with Christmas lights from one end to the other so we decide to take a stroll around the Harbour to check out all the shops and decorations. The Harbour is an amazing place to walk at night on any night, but at Christmas time it was really fantastic! There were lights everywhere! With all of the lights reflecting of the water and the boats gently rocking in the water it put us in the Christmas spirit within minutes.

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Harbourtown Sea Pines Christmas

Then we noticed up ahead they were getting ready to make s’mores on an open fire and watch a movie under the old Live Oak. I thought what a great idea!! So Christine and I went over and had a s’more and sat down and watch The Polar Express with Tom Hanks from start to finish. All the kids that were there could not take their eyes off the screen they were mesmerized by the story and could not wait to find out what would happen next.  It was perfect. There was a slight chill in the air that gave us the felling of the Holidays. Not only was it something we all could in enjoy, but it helped to raise money for the Deep Well Project that helps local families in the area. It was a win for everyone. I could not help but think as we walked back around the beautiful Harbour, what a great place to live!!! It is hard to believe sometimes just how fortunate we are to not only live in such a naturally beautiful place but to be able to do something as simple as watch a movie under an old live Oak and feel like we are in Heaven. For those of you that are familiar with the movie I am glad to report that I can still hear the jingle bell!! I hope you can as well!!

Hilton Head Christmas

Hilton Head Christmas

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Winter on Hilton Head Island


“What’s the weather like on Hilton Head in the winter?”

This came to mind today when a client called from Syracuse to talk a bit about the current real estate market. Curiosity got the better of me and a quick check of the weather app showed this…

   Winter   Winter On Hilton Head Island

This is a common question from potential Buyers looking into the Hilton Head Real Estate market. Many people decide to make Hilton Head Island a home, either full or part time, after visiting in the warmer months. We all know it’s absolutely beautiful here in the spring, summer and fall, but what’s it like over the winter holidays?

By the numbers, taking a look at Weather.com records, the average high on the Island for December, January and February is in the low 60’s and lows are in the low 40’s. Comparing this to Syracuse, New York where I was born and raised might not be fair but it puts things in perspective. In Syracuse for the same three months the average high is in the mid-30’s and the average lows are right about 20 degrees. Top that off with far more sunny days on the Island.  As you can imagine many folks find Hilton Head much more accommodating in the winter than the Northeast by a long stretch.

…I think the screen shots say it all? If not here is a quick shot of my son and dog playing in the marsh just a couple of weeks ago…

 Winter On Hilton Head Island

Notice the bare feet? If we were back North he’d be bundled up in a snowsuit, hat, scarf, mittens and moonboots. Thinking back to the cold, ice, slush and snow we dealt with up there is enough to make me shake my head. Warming up the car, scraping ice off the windshield, frozen door locks? No thanks. Putting on layer after layer of clothing, hunting for hats and gloves and putting up with cold feet? You can keep it. So to answer the question on what the weather is like in Hilton Head during the winter? It’s fantastic!

 “Does everything shut down?”

 It can be common in resort areas that many of the attractions, restaurants and shops close for business in the off season. While there are a few instances of this on Hilton Head, winter visitors and full time residents tend to find most everything open and ready for business. Keep in mind that even though Hilton Head is a seemingly small coastal Island, it is home to over 40,000 full time residents! Shopping, dining and entertainment venues are open year round. The winter months on Hilton Head do tend to be a little more laid back than the summer months without the hustle and bustle of the peak summer season.

 “What is there to do in the winter?”

 Without the crowds associated with the summer season, the winter months offer Golfers and Tennis players a great opportunity. Get out on the course or grab a court – with average daily temperatures in the 60’s its perfect outdoor sport weather. Walking, biking and birding are also great this time of year!

Keep in mind as well there are events, festivals, farmers markets and parties going on all winter long. Just to name a few, there’s the Harbor Town Lights in Sea Pines, the 18th Annual Gullah Celebration, Holiday Weekend in Old Town Bluffton, Winter Wonder Festival in Shelter Cove and many, many more. Far too much to list here so be sure to see the Events Calendar at the Hilton Head Island Chamber of Commerce website.

 If you are considering a property purchase in the Lowcountry, come on down for a week or weekend over the winter months. Not only will you get to experience a different side of Hilton Head, the travel and accommodation rates tend to be quite a bit better as well. Questions? Call Bill Kelly at 843-816-0116 anytime. 

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Staging Your Home To Sell


In today’s real estate market where there are more sellers than buyers, how are some properties able to stand out in a crowd? Well, price will always be a determining factor but even a low price may not be enough to get a property sold. Home staging is the act of preparing a private residence for sale and knowing the ins and outs can help any seller compete in a buyers’ market.

 How to Stage Your Home to Sell

The goal of staging is to make a home appealing to the highest number of potential buyers, thereby selling a property more quickly and for more money. Staging techniques focus on improving a property’s appeal by transforming it into a welcoming, attractive product that anyone might want. Prior to any home staging a seller will want to take care of any repair items. The last thing a buyer wants to see is a list of incomplete projects they need to tackle from day one. 

 Curb Appeal

 If your home is unkempt and unattractive on the outside chances are buyers will just keep on going. Buyers are deciding within the first few seconds of arriving at a property whether they can imagine themselves living there. Things like keeping the lawn mowed, planting flowers, cleaning off a porch, and removing toys and other personal items are all examples of curb appeal.

 Clean and De-Clutter

 Once someone enters your home, you want them to stay as long as possible so they can continue to envision living there. If the home is clean and smelling fresh buyers will begin to feel comfortable staying even if some items within the home are dated. Along with doing a deep clean you will also want to remove excess clutter from the home. A little organization usually goes a long way but if there are still too many items that don’t let the buyer see the usable square footage, then you may want to take items to storage. 

home staging

 De-Personalize and De-Gender

 Along with the theme of allowing buyers to envision themselves in your home, you will want to de-personalize by removing photos, collectibles and other personal effects.  Another good idea is to make your home as gender neutral as possible. You never know if your buyer will be male or female so making sure paint colors, furniture and accessory items appeal to both sexes is always a safe bet. 

 Get Packing

 Remember once your home goes on the market it really isn’t your home anymore, it is a product to be marketed. Don’t wait until after you get an offer to start boxing items up, begin the process right away. As a seller it will make the dreaded moving process easier and it will allow the buyer to see the space larger and more like a model home. Packing early also helps a seller begin to let go of their home and to envision moving on to their next home.

 

 

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Biking On Hilton Head Island


 Hilton Head Island has long been known as one of the top family vacation destinations in the country.  With a semi-tropical climate, visitors and residents can enjoy a number of outdoor activities including the beach and other water sports, nature paths, tennis and golf, as well as biking. 

 Hilton Head Island Biking

Although the sandy beaches here are firm enough for biking, the Town of Hilton Head has made it a priority to create as many interconnecting bike paths as possible.  Our 12 mile long island has 6 miles of bike lanes with 117 miles of shared-use pathways and another 14 miles of planned pathways.

Hilton Head Island was developed as an environmentally aware community and bike trails are a natural part of that effort by getting more people off of the roadways and onto the pathways which helps to promote an active lifestyle. 

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 Hilton Head Island Biking

The next time you visit the Island, park the car and see how much fun biking to and from can be.  Remember the old saying that once you learn how to ride a bike you never forget, so now’s your chance!

 

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Veterans Day on Hilton Head


Hilton Head Veterans

As I stood in the sun at the back of Veteran’s Park for the annual Veteran’s Day Ceremony, I was struck not only by the sheer beauty of the spot, but by the number of veterans in attendance. Since Hilton Head is so close to the Marine Corps Base at Parris Island and to Hunter Army Air Field in Savannah, it is easy to understand why so many of our veterans have chosen the Lowcountry as home. Many trained at Parris Island or were stationed in Savannah. This community is proud to honor those who have served, as well as those who are serving or will serve. The Veteran’s Day Ceremony on Hilton Head is held every year at Shelter Cove’s Veteran’s Memorial Park overlooking the marshes of Broad Creek. This year it was sponsored by the Hilton Head Military Veterans Coalition and hosted by the American Legion Post 185. We were particularly fortunate to have the Marine Corps Band play for us and a 21 gun salute from Fort Stewart’s 1st Brigade, 3rd Battalion. We also had 5 flyovers, albeit private planes, usually in the middle of someone’s message but acknowledged by the speakers as  flyovers just the same.  Each year we are honored with a distinguished keynote speaker. This year U.S. Naval Academy history professor Mary DeCredico spoke. 

 

A historian was an appropriate speaker because there was a lot of history present.  Veterans who had served in many wars came to participate. One highlight of the ceremony each year is the recognition of each branch of service with a musical tribute where the members of that branch stand when their song is played. It was an exhilarating experience and one I suggest people take advantage of when visiting.  

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