By Lisa K. Berton
Within the personal world of vacation styles stand those who love to be in the middle of the action. Others prefer a laid back approach. Somewhere in the middle is where most of us fall. Behold, the Doubletree by Hilton, an oceanfront resort in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina that sits firmly between liveliness and lazing. Imagine staying just a short drive to countless attractions. And even better, a quick walk to the lazy river, beach chairs, and pools.
Let's start with the pleasure and comfort of watching the Sun rise from your private balcony. Brew a hot cup of aromatic coffee in the kitchenette. Slide open the glass door, step out, take a seat, and breathe in the ocean air. Today is going to be an excellent day.
Take your time getting ready with a hot shower or soak in the tub. Head over to the resort restaurant, Ocean Blue, for breakfast. The best deal is their breakfast buffet. Ask Solomon to prepare a delicious design-your-own omelet for you. He's all smiles with a good-natured sense of humor. Diners can eat al fresco if they desire.
Just across the street, Doubletree guests can practice putting on a simple mini-golf course. Fine-tune your game before hitting up the mind-boggling plethora of mini-golf options in the area. Play at the hotel as often as you'd like, it's just one of the many amenities offered.
Excited to go exploring? The Doubletree is less than 2 miles from The Market Common where you'll find cute shops and a movie theater. Broadway at the Beach, home to Ripley's Aquarium, souvenir stores, a real-life Qwik-E Mart, and other attractions is just a 6-mile drive.
Head back to your amply-sized hotel room decorated in calming hues of blue and gray. Take a mid-day nap. Stay hydrated with cold water from the mini-fridge. Zap popcorn in the microwave and watch a movie on the 40" flat-screen high-definition television.
Once you've reenergized, swim laps in your choice of indoor and outdoor pools. A lower-case e-shaped lazy river beckons guests of all ages as viewed from my Palmetto Tower balcony. A splash pad area attracts squealing toddlers and their kid-at-heart grandparents.
And then there's Myrtle Beach, the beach. This 60-mile coastal stretch of sand, surf, and seduction is lovingly referred to as The Grand Strand by locals. Doubletree by Hilton Myrtle Beach Oceanfront takes up 1/4 of a mile of the Strand. The resort provides easy access to the white sand beach.
Lifeguards and beach chair rentals are provided by Lack's Beach Service, who cover a 10-mile stretch of the Grand Strand. Feel free to take home some shells, sea glass, or pebbles that wash up on the shore. The Doubletree provides outdoor showers on the path back so you can rinse off any sand.
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If you happen to forget some essentials, a sundry shop is onsite. And if your vacation coincides with a convention, make the most of it and chat with folks in the elevator or otherwise. I met some pretty funny seniors with captivating stories to share.
As evening rolls around, head back to the hotel lobby bar, Ocean Blue Lounge, for a drink and appetizers or a burger. Catch a show at The Carolina Opry, GTS Theatre, or head to North Myrtle Beach for some shag dancing.
When you return for the night, free parking is available in both open lots and garages. The Doubletree by Hilton Myrtle Beach Oceanfront is a large-scale standard-class resort with multiple connecting buildings. Located just minutes from Myrtle Beach International Airport, planes are often spotted flying overhead.
Rates are competitive and affordable. In fact, 7 nights in an ocean view room with a balcony is comparable to 3 nights in a Miami Beach hotel with a street or alley view.
Pack your bags and try Myrtle Beach. There's no way you'll be bored unless that's your plan.
The Doubletree by Hilton Myrtle Beach Oceanfront
3200 South Ocean Blvd
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
Disclaimer: Free Time Journal received complimentary accommodations. This review was not affected.