Family First on Cumberland Island
This summer my family took a trip to Cumberland Island, a barrier island off Georgia’s southeast coast. The island is a dreamy escape that feels like it has been frozen in time. There are old trees covered in Spanish moss, winding roads to explore via bike, quiet beaches, and beautiful sunsets.
We spent our vacation at the Greyfield Inn. The inn was the 19th century retreat of Thomas and Lucy Carnegie built for their daughter, Margaret Ricketson. The family home was converted into an inn in 1962 by Margret’s daughter, Lucy R. Ferguson. The Carnegie family still oversees the inn today and their presence is felt in the attention to detail throughout the home. Staying at Greyfield Inn evokes a very special blend of luxury and feeling like you are a guest in a family home.
What makes Cumberland Island so special is the ethos cultivated at Greyfield Inn. There is limited cell phone service on the island and no WiFi at the Inn. The Greyfield experience is centered around unplugging from devices and reconnecting with loved ones. Days on the island are spent swimming, biking, kayaking, and exploring the unspoiled land on the island and if you are lucky, you might even come across the island’s wild horses.
One of our favorite adventures was the day we visited the First African Baptist Church on the island. The church was established in 1893 by African American residents of the island and their families. Many of the founders were born into slavery and emancipated following the Civil War. The church served as a community center for many years and was rebuilt in 1937. This small, one room church became famous when John F. Kennedy, Jr. and Carolyn Bessette married there in 1996.
After busy days exploring the island, my favorite part of every day at Greyfield Inn was the family dinner hosted around a shared table. Every night at 7:00PM the dinner bell would ring and the small group of guests staying at the inn would gather for an incredible three course meal, prepared under the leadership of head chef, Chef Jada Veljkov.
The chefs at Greyfield are influenced by the seasons and use responsibly and sustainable sourced ingredients. Many of the meals we had were centered around what was growing in the on-site garden. All of the meals we had were incredible and I love how the menus at Greyfield celebrate the best of coastal southern cooking. Here is a snapshot of just one of the menus from our stay.
Our stay at Greyfield Inn was such a positive, peaceful, and rejuvenating time. I cannot wait to go back for another chance to truly unplug and recconect with my family.
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