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Tenth Edition | June | 2021
Tenth Edition | June | 2021
Tenth Edition
Welcome to the tenth edition of The Alys Journal. Sunshine and warm, salty breezes, the senses of summertime have begun to envelope our coastal town. The familiar rhythm of bicycles on the pathways and pajama-clad kiddos lined up in the early morning hours for donuts from Charlie’s, our friends and neighbors are arriving for their summer vacations. Investing in new memories, rebooting, and refreshing in the outdoors, under the sun, in our warm, clear waters, families and friends are gathering together to escape the everyday. Welcome. We hope that you find plenty of fuel for your souls, a respite from a wild year, a rest and rejuvenation. Jump in with us while we meander through town, admire the details, celebrate, and explore.

“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.” ― F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
REAL ESTATE PROPERTIES
$5,495,000 | South of 30A
$6,495,000 | North of 30A
$4,250,000 | North of 30A
NEWEST SALES RELEASES
Alys Beach’s Newest Sales Offerings

We continue to experience a high volume of sales interest as spending patterns have turned more domestic, both in travel and in focus on the home, with an emphasis on stability and legacy-building. The summer months are traditionally busy as people come into town for their vacations, and subsequently seek opportunities to purchase. At this time, we have a limited selection of pre-construction homes and homesites offered on a small-release basis. With resale homes selling as quickly as they hit the market, be sure to connect with our Alys Beach sales team if you are interested. Our sales team is also the very best place to start if you’re interested in knowing what the options are for building a home in Alys.
The Alys Shoppe + KREWE | The Return of the KREWE Tiny House

The KREWE flag is flying in the Alys Beach town center.

If you’ve found yourself around the Amphitheatre in Alys Beach’s town center recently, you may have noticed the picturesque tiny house at the north end. A welcome site to those who’ve summered with us since its debut in 2017, the KREWE Tiny House has taken its seasonal residence offering an expanded collection of the iconic New Orleans label’s sunglasses and optical frames.

At just under 155 square feet, the KREWE Tiny House is a clever retail experience, bringing the brand’s quality, handcrafted sunglasses, and optical frames right to our beach-bound audience. Pulling design inspiration from same New Orleans streets that inform the KREWE frame design, the Tiny House is a replica of the shotgun homes found in the city surrounds, with minimally applied flourishes that reference some of the city’s more intricate designs.

While the Alys Shoppe carries KREWE sunglasses year-round, the Tiny House offers optical frames and a broader selection of styles in sun and ACTIVE frames as well as a fun, unique shopping opportunity. The KREWE team is also equipped to make some minor adjustments to frames. We’re always excited to see the KREWE Tiny House roll into town!

*Images courtesy of Palm + Arrow @palmandarrow_photography  

01/05
The Alys Foundation | The GIRL POWER! Behind Alys Beach Crafted By Whitney Rabalais

The funding of signature events at Alys Beach is one of the primary roles of the Alys Foundation, along with the pursuit of cultural explorations within the town and providing support for local nonprofits within the larger community. With the launch of a brand-new signature event planned for this Fall, contributing writer Whitney Rabalais will chronicle Alys Beach Crafted from conception to execution, offering a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the soul of the production.

Crafted, the cocktail and makers’ extravaganza coming to Alys in October, is the brainchild of Alexis Miller, Alys Beach Director of Events. Wanting to curate the best event possible Ms. Miller was aware she didn’t want to go it alone, so she recruited two of the most knowledgeable beverage vixens she knows to assist in its conception and creation. Enter Kellie Thorn, who in 2018 was named one of Wine Enthusiast’s 40 under 40 Tastemakers and for the past 3 years has served as Co-Chair of the Tales of the Cocktail Grants Committee. With the opening of the new Hotel Effie in Sandestin Ms. Thorn was brought on board as Bar Director, overseeing the cocktails, spirits and bar experiences at their three lounges, making these the 8th, 9th and 10th bar programs she has created over the past 11 years for Hugh Acheson Restaurants. As if her past and present work isn’t enough to garner deserved accolades, Ms. Thorn has further solidified her vast knowledge by becoming one of only 90-100 worldwide Bureau National Interprofessionnel du Cognac (BNIC) Certified Cognac Educators, a group that advance the customs, culture and philosophy of cognac through courses, talks, symposiums and master classes. Additionally, she is a Wine and Spirit Education Trusts’ Certified Level 3 Spirits Educator, an advanced-level qualification for spirit specialist and laypeople who wish to vastly expand their comprehension of spirits through sampling, appraisal and characterization of distillates from around the world. A truly exotic and rare expansion of distillate knowledge, Ms. Thorn is one of only eleven Awamori Jinbners, an individual who cultivates a love of and education in awamori, a super long-aged sake. Along with the very short list of global jinbners, she has attained the historical, cultural and production knowledge necessary to gain such a revered distinction. Equally impressive is Christine Tarpey, who began her career in the hospitality industry at the tender age of 15. Soon after entering the profession, she found a desire to focus on the beverage side of service. Transferring to Dallas then Las Vegas she expanded her knowledge through tutelages with other beverage professionals as well as Master Sommeliers and notable celebrity chefs. With her knowledge expanding and her obsession growing she left the coarse sands of the Sin City desert for the sugar white sands of our 30A hamlet. At Alys Ms. Tarpey worked as the beverage guru at Caliza restaurant but soon rose through the ranks to become the Beverage Director of Alys Beach. While serving as Beverage Director, she was integral in the opening of NEAT Bottle Shop and Tasting Room. Along with the orchestration of their beverage curriculum she helped synthesize and supervise a monthly rotating menu in collaboration with the NEAT team. In 2019 Ms. Tarpey branched out and became the founder and owner of Better Together Beverage, a woman owned and woman operated “boutique beverage experience” where she and her staff carefully execute a flawless beverage event of your predilection. Along with Ms. Miller, these industry powerhouses have brainstormed, consulted and connived to bring fascinating seminars and experiences to Crafted. Through these events they hope to pique your curiosity for the sights, scents, terroirs and tastes of beverages and the artistry involved in crafting exceptional spirits and remarkable cocktails. Two such planned offerings: Party Drinks—intimated or overwhelmed with the idea of being that perfect host who not only serves up all the best food and wine but also creates a talked about cocktail to satisfy your friends’ and family’s discriminating palates? Who wants all that pressure, and dare we say judgment? This seminar will give you all the necessary tools needed to craft the perfect batch cocktail ahead of the game allowing you to sit back, grin wily and soak up all the praise sure to be bestowed upon you. Beach Boat Drinks—not sure what to bring on your next beach/boat/drinking adventure? This workshop presents the perfect liquid refreshments to handle all your requirements for a day in the sun, surf and sand. All you need bring is the sunscreen. Jimmy Buffett would be proud (and more than a little envious).

*Note: Images of the 2021 30A Wine Festival: Intermezzo as captured by Pure7 Studios.

01/05
The Food & Beverage Program | The Beverage Evolution

The evolution of the Beverage Program at Alys Beach, including COVID inspirations.

The Alys Beach Beverage Program is an ever-evolving canvas, a tapestry of curation and creation just as discerning and beautifully choreographed as our town itself. Led by Beverage Manager Austin Doiron, with the oversight of Senior Director of Operations Hugues LeBerre, the programming has always been very dynamic, with menus changing by the month in response to the season and the availability of seasonal ingredients, with special events and holidays, and with noteworthy arrivals of a signature spirit or a grand tasting. This year, however, as the beverage team navigated the safety measures and social changes surrounding the pandemic, created another exceptional layer of dynamism.

Even prior to COVID, Austin has worked with homeowners individually to bring in, and even pre-stock their homes with, their beverages of choice. This service continues to offer our Alys Beach homeowners a tailored, personalized service that often yields surprise appearances of hard-to-get bottles and limited edition finds, and also provided a unique vantage point both relationally and logistically as we found ourselves in unprecedented territory last spring. The pivot to accommodate our neighbors hunkering down in Alys Beach at the onset of the COVID shutdown included special in-home beverage deliveries, in-home cocktail kits, and in-home wine tastings to accompany our Virtual Wine & Song events on Tuesday evenings, where the live performance of a local musician would stream via Facebook and those in Alys Beach opted in for specially selected and portioned wine tastings delivered to their doors. As the pandemic continued, stretching out longer than anyone had anticipated, the team rolled out a program of in-home tastings including tequila, whiskey, and wine. As safety regulations relaxed, guests and owners had the opportunity to host tastings with friends and family, guided in-person by Austin. Meeting the needs of our guests and owners has led to a broadening of our permanent beverage program offerings to include these in-home experiences, which remain available to those residing or staying in Alys Beach and expands on the idea that our time “at home” is essential to the overall Alys experience.

As one of our Alys Beach homeowners shares with enthusiasm, “We have been beyond thrilled with the new service Austin and Neat have provided by being able to purchase wine and have it delivered (directly to our home in Alys Beach). We started using the service during the pandemic but have continued to use it because of the convenience and wonderful service… We have a wonderful wine store in Birmingham and have certain wines that we like, so we would always buy our wine in Birmingham and bring it down here. When we found out what Neat was offering, I texted Austin and sent him pictures of the wines we like to see if he could get them. He was able to get every one of them and within a few days.  He was also great at offering suggestions to the wines we liked as options.  The prices are a little higher…but the convenience of having Austin deliver it right to our door is so worth it and amazing service! We have and will continue to use Austin and Neat for purchasing our wine as long as they keep providing the service.  As a side note, they can also get other alcohol as well (beer, vodka, etc.)…”

This Alys Beach homeowner also mentions, “(we) also love going to Neat. They have the best drinks, and we love the staff and atmosphere. It is one of our favorite places to go!” NEAT, our open, public Bottle Shop & Tasting Room, is once again a lively gathering place and host to live music and special wine selections every Tuesday for Uncorked: Wine & Song. The Bottle Shop offers a thoughtful selection of wines, small batch spirits, artisan mixers, craft beers, and the most refined barware, tools, and gifts for the beverage aficionado. Current specialty product includes Alys Beach’s recent barrel pick, Treaty Oak Distilling bourbon whiskey, and signature Alys Beach limited edition El Tesoro Tequila, with new spirit highlights and special editions on regular rotation. The Tasting Room, with the creative input of Hunter Church on mixology, has a constantly evolving cocktail program of beautifully presented combinations handcrafted with the latest preparations. Paired with light bites designed by Executive Chef Kevin Cavanaugh, NEAT cocktails, spirits, and wines by the glass are the perfect complement to time well spent in Alys Beach. Each month the menu itself is a sensory exploration of festive drinks developed to celebrate the season and the freshest ingredients available.

Overall, and alongside a talented food & beverage team, Austin has overseen the evolution of a beverage program that is impeccably crafted for each place. Whether amongst friends in a private courtyard, poolside at Caliza, catching the sunset from the third-floor terrace of the owner-exclusive Beach Club, enjoying rest or play on the beach, or alfresco under the string lights at NEAT, there’s a beverage for every moment, every celebration, every opportunity for slowing down and enjoying a day or evening in Alys. Wine and spirit selections range from the rare and exclusive to the more approachable yet no less refined, with special skill for helping guests navigate their options by flavor profile, preference, and by price point. Relationally, and with exceptional industry knowledge and knowhow, the team is committed to creating an experience that is comfortable, welcoming, and memorable.

01/13
Here in South Walton | The Beach Flag Warning System

Our local Tourism Development Council, Visit South Walton promotes this system to keep us safe in the water.

Established by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, the South Walton Fire District manages the Beach Flag Warning System across our 26 miles of beautiful beaches in a concerted effort to educate and inform residents and visitors alike. We consider the beach to be our greatest amenity here in Alys Beach, the reason we are here! It’s critically important that our residents, guests, and neighbors know how to enjoy our beaches safely.

The topography of the Gulf of Mexico coastal region is characterized by sandbars and soft, fine white sand. While this makes our beaches and waters strikingly beautiful, it also makes them prone to strong shifts in currents and, specifically, rip currents. Rip currents are driven by wind conditions and are formed when a break in a sandbar creates a pull of water through a narrow channel out to sea. When caught in a rip current, swimmers may be prone to panic as they are rapidly pulled out into deeper waters, so it’s important to know how to handle them. If you find yourself in a rip current, rather than fight the current, you will want to float with it until it releases its grip, then swim parallel to shore away from the channel, and then back into shore.

The Beach Flag Warning System is devised to make beach goers aware of surf conditions and prohibit swimming in unsafe conditions where currents are too volatile. While green and yellow flags indicate conditions where safety risks are lower, waters are relatively calm, and caution should still be exercised, and purple flags indicate the presence of dangerous marine life in the water (jellyfish, etc.), red flags indicate more severe conditions. A single red flag indicates that currents are strong and/or surf is high, and “knee deep is too deep.” A double red flag indicates that the water is closed to swimmers and beach goers and, for your protection, entering the Gulf while double red flags are flying can result in a $500 fine and criminal charges. It is against Walton County ordinance to enter the water during double red flag conditions.

Whether you are here year-round or just here enjoying vacation time, we implore you to yield to the Beach Flag Warning System and employ safe practices for your time at the beach. While the flags and the coded key are located at our beach accesses, you can also text “SAFETY” to 31279 to have current Gulf conditions and flag updates sent directly to your device. For our Alys Beach homeowners and team members, our Alys Beach App also offers the current Beach Flag status and a conditions update from the South Walton Fire District. While you’re here with us, we want you to thoroughly enjoy the refreshing beauty of our beaches, safely, and create only the most wonderful memories with your friends, family and loved ones!

01/06
In the News | Recent Media Coverage of Alys Beach

See where Alys Beach has appeared in the news since we last checked in…

Southern Living listed Alys Beach as one of the “11 Southern Beaches and Islands That’ll Have You Dreaming of a Tropical Getaway,” stating that “The entire town…looks straight out of Bermuda or Capri…”

Veranda included an Alys Beach, KVA-designed home in a round-up titled “10 Breezy Beach Houses,” which links back to the original 2019 full home feature.

Architecture Art Designs included an Alys Beach home in an article titled “18 Elegant Coastal Closet Designs that will Make Sure All Your Beachwear is Organized.”

Several local media outlets covered the Digital Graffiti Drive-Thru Experience, including this WJHG interview with our own Director of Events, Alexis Miller.

Dallas-based founder of DoSayGive, a digital resource for “gracious etiquette, meaningful gift ideas, classic style…” included Alys Beach in a recent 30A Travel Guide, full of thoughtful insights into our area as a whole, and current recommendations within Alys Beach.

01/10

Thank you for joining us for the Tenth Edition of The Alys Journal. Memorial Day has come and gone, and summer has officially begun. Laughter and suntans, splashing water and warm breezes, sunrise walks along the beach and sunset cocktails, lazy afternoon naps and late night movies – summer brings different visions to life for each of us, and whatever your vision, we wish you a summer ripe with adventure, relaxation, rejuvenation, togetherness, memory-making, and, hopefully, time well spent with us here in Alys Beach.  

“And since all this loveliness can not be Heaven, I know in my heart it is June.” –Abba Goold Woolson (19th Century American Writer)

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