Like other homes in the neighborhood, the Ultimate Beach House has minimal landscaping -- native oak trees and grasses, and pine needle mulch in place of a water- and fertilizer-hungry lawn -- making maintenance simple
While traveling to visit family earlier this month, I got a chance to tour the Coastal Living Magazine Ultimate Beach House 2012, which is in Rosemary Beach. Rosemary Beach is on Florida’s Emerald Coast, just west of Panama City Beach. It’s a charming neighborhood along 30A, a scenic route that strings beach towns together along the Gulf of Mexico in Walton County. So it’s a great place to showcase the ideal beach house — right where people vacation with family and friends.
That’s how I think of this Ultimate Beach House — as a place you would share with your hug-mates while you take advantage of the beach, restaurants and shops that are a short walk away. It’s big enough for a large family or a few smaller ones, with four bedrooms, two bunk rooms that sleep an additional 10 people, five bathrooms, indoor and outdoor kitchens, and plenty of room to hang out and have fun. Find the floor plan here.
The Ultimate Beach House is open for tours ($15 per person payable at the door and benefiting charity) Wednesdays through Sundays until Oct. 7.
Let me share my photos and impressions of the Ultimate Beach House with you!
Coastal Living Magazine's Ultimate Beach House is in Rosemary Beach on Florida's Emerald Coast. And no, that's not my stroller in the picture. I saw several families touring this idea house!
Let’s look at the main, shared parts of the home first. Past the oval foyer is what some people call the great room, divided into smaller areas with different functions.
In the great room, the dining area with both bench and chair seating is casual. The table reminds me of a surf board. (You can see the office nook off to the side.)
The great room includes areas for cooking, eating and gathering with family and friends. Colors are neutral, with shades of green here and there.
A cozy chair
This sitting area near the fireplace is tucked in a bit away from the expanse of the great room. I love the velvet-covered table with nailhead accents.
Imagine relaxing here just inside the patio area -- in inclement weather, of course
The kitchen is divided into two rooms. I’m not sure I like that personally, but if you are sharing the house with a lot of people, it might make sense.
The sink and stove/oven area of the kitchen is at one end of the great room. Oh, the meals I could cook here!
The open room, together with the bar seating just on the other side of the kitchen sink, make entertaining and casual meals or snacks really convenient
Slide-out drawers in the kitchen keep cooking staples handy
I'm suddenly feeling the need to wash my hands
The refrigerator and freezer are at the end of the second room of the kitchen, where there is plenty of room for storing dinnerware and pantry supplies, plus additional food prep work space
A place to kick back and watch the game or morning cartoons? Of course! The basket-top table is fun.
Upstairs, there are lots of ways to have fun.
The upstairs "rec room" includes a cozy seating area -- I love the wall of artwork featuring wildlife you might see in Florida!
Imagine a cozy, out-of-the-way place to read a book or text a friend
Table tennis, anyone?
The home theater is a dream, with surround sound and stadium seating in long, comfy easy chairs
A snack room next to the home theater holds cold drinks and tasty treats
Now let’s look at the bedrooms and bathrooms. Each bedroom has its own private bathroom, which is especially nice when you’re sharing a home with others you’re vacationing with.
This downstairs bedroom, like the others in the Ultimate Beach House, is traditional but cozy
The beautiful fabric on this headboard and the cushy pillows are calling me....
The knotted rope used to hang the bathroom mirror is a great nautical touch
Each bedroom is designed with its own unique furnishings
I just loved this bedroom mirror, which looks like it's framed in sea urchins, reminding you that you're not far from the Gulf of Mexico
A giant clam shell decoration in the bathroom serves as storage for pretty bath bombs -- another reminder of the beach
Bright and fresh!
Showers in the Ultimate Beach House feature built-in computerized controls
This downstairs bedroom in the back of the house is light and calming
The look of the traditional decor is softened by the casual pillow ticking fabric used to cover the bed's headboard
I loved the bedroom's pale-wood chest and the seashell-covered box -- I had a box like that when I was a girl!
The bathrooms all make good use of space and include square toilets and fixtures by Kohler
This bedroom upstairs invites people to try out the cooling memory foam bed mattress by Serta
More bathroom inspiration -- this home has five of them
In addition to full bedrooms, there are two bunk rooms — one more boyish, one more girly.
The downstairs bunk room gives just enough room for sleeping -- or maybe not sleeping, if you fill the room with a bunch of vacationing kids!
The upstairs bunk room near the top of the stairs can sleep six -- imagine the slumber party fun!
The door to the patio area is just off the kitchen and next to the boyish bunk room.
When the weather is nice, cook and eat outside on the patio, located just off the kitchen's back door near the garage/driveway
The patio area, enclosed by the house and a wall, showcases the lap pool. I love how the lounge chairs stand right in the water.
The Ultimate Beach House has a private patio Shangri-La
Baskets on hooks just inside the patio entrance are great for storing towels and using as catch-alls
Quite a home! I think there are some great ideas here for a beach vacation home.
For details on the house, check out the Ultimate Beach House site at Coastal Living, and look for a full feature about the home in Coastal Living’s October issue.
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This is not a sponsored post and not affiliated with Coastal Living Magazine or any of the Ultimate Beach Home sponsors in any way. All images and opinions are my own.