Friday, July 10, 2015

Margaritaville Hollywood Nearing Completion

Margaritaville Hollywood Nearing Completion
My first day of retirement and I will soon be leaving the town where I first arrived in 1978.

Back then, most people came here to retire. Not so much any more. I thought before I packed to leave I would take a nostalgic final walk down the Broadwalk. Upon seeing the new Margaritaville nearly finished, I'm suddenly not in that big a hurry to go.

Back in the early 80's I lived close enough to walk to the beach and I took advantage of that proximity to stroll up and back nearly every weekend.

Hollywood Beach was pretty much a collection of Mom and Pop hotels, T-shirt Shops, and unappealing restaurants. The unique thing, they all faced the beach and ocean. There are very few beaches I have been where you can walk a promenade right on the sand and not have to cross a busy street to get to the shops and hotels.

Hollywood was unique in another way in that it was the most family friendly of beaches and in the winter the population of Canadians seemed to outnumber the population of residents. Almost 40 years later almost everything has changed. I would say for the better.

Whereas Hollywood Beach was a ghost town in the summer months back then, it's now a destination. Where once stood crumbling buildings now stand mega hotels and condos with renovations on going up and down the beach. They have even thought to include a few amenities for the active visitor like bike, and jet ski rentals, and for the first time I've seen, Parasailing. My last visit was on a Tuesday in July and I had to wait for a table in my favorite restaurant - Ocean Alley - on an overcast day threatening rain. It was not that long ago I could get a table on any weekend.  [click here] for the Ocean Alley web cam.

I have lived in Hollywood a long time and I'm more than ready to move on but I know where most of my friends will be when Margaritaville opens. I'm sure I will be visiting soon.

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