Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Plan with Tan - the experience begins

Gulf Shores, Alabama - our first experience with was a week in Gulf Shores, Alabama at the Gulf Shores Plantation. We drove 17 hours from Wisconsin to visit, and so far the experience has been fairly good. The unit we stayed in, 1147, is in the "conference center resort", but there isn't a conference center. We're on the first floor, in a 2 bedroom unit. The unit faces the parking lot, so the balcony isn't much use. The unit is pretty decent, but the best part of the resort is outside the unit. Pools galore cover the property, a few hot tubs, a putting green (although it's been windy this week) multiple tennis courts, the majority of which are lit. The indoor pool was under construction and 2 of the hot tubs are being redone. Should be ready by this summer. We used 2 of the pools outside unit 1147 pretty regularly and enjoyed the short walk to the beach via that board walk. The weather was awesome, it was 80's most of the week in late April 2011.

Our first day we enjoyed a walk on the beach, ran back to town, stopped at Walmart for supplies since we had a full kitchen and there were several grills on site. We hit the pool the second day, and pretty much every day thereafter. We saw a couple jelly fish on the shore, along with a crab in the sand and many pelicans and of course seagulls.

This is west of Gulf Shores about 13 miles. Outside of Tacky Jacks 2 and Fort Morgan, there isn't much out this way but a lot of sea shore and more condos! We went to Ocean Beach Club, which was a little too nice of a restaurant for us! White table cloths and a nice Easter brunch was being offered for only $25 per person.

During our stay, we made it to a couple restaurants, including Lulu's, saw Brent Burns, a local musician. The kids enjoyed this place, which is owned by the sister of Jimmy Buffett. We also made it to Bahama Bob's, a great place on west beach.

We spent a day driving to the USS Alabama, a great time viewing this old battleship and teaching the kids a little history. The drive was a little over an hour from our unit. On the way back we stopped at Felix's and had some of the best seafood for lunch!

Finally, we looked at the other units from the outside that planwithtan owns. 1155 was in our same building, but was on the end. 4201 and 4305 (both 1br) had a good view from their balconies (building 4, 2nd and 3rd floor) as you could actually see the beach, but they were at the rear of the property, so you might need binoculars if you were looking for pelicans. 2119 (2br) was in the middle of the 1st building, not a bad unit but pretty far away. Most of the views in the place are of the parking lot and then you can walk to the pool or beach within a few hundred yards! 3126 (2br), on the end of unit 3, this unit is on the 1st floor and has a view of the parking lot. 3323 and 3325 (2br) are one floor apart from each other, there is also a unit 3225 right below. 3rd and 2nd floor, but close enough so if we had a large group this might work well. 5409 had a decent view, was on the 4th floor and had 2 bedrooms.

Thanks to the free wifi, I was able to type this up pool side!

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