It’s the time of the year when travelers are thinking about planning family beach vacations and fun reunions along the sugary shores of Destin for 2019. You may already have your favorite rental reserved since many love their own “home away from home” by the beach and return to it every year. However for those who relish variety or have never visited the Emerald Coast before; here is a list of our top ten most popular vacation rental resorts of 2018 for your perusal.
Just before last summer began we listed the seven most popular Destin condos at that time and almost all are still on our new list, but now we have a few more! It should be noted that the current Top 10 feature a fantastic Destin/Miramar Beach location close to popular gulf front restaurants, friendly beach bars, grocery stores, wine bistros, designer discount bargain shopping at the famed Silver Sands Premium Outlets, abundant dining, drinking and amusements at nearby Baytowne Wharf as well as championship golf or tennis with special reduced rates for Ocean Reef Resorts guests at Seascape. Let’s begin the countdown!
10. Costa Del Sol
Costa Del Sol (aka Coast of the Sun) is aptly named. This established three-story beachfront townhome complex on Scenic Gulf Drive in Miramar Beach faces the sun-splattered gulf with endless views off into the southern horizon. It has been a traditional family destination for many of our Ocean Reef Resorts guests every year. The awesome location at the beachside junction of South Holiday Road and Scenic Gulf Drive is close to the Whale's Tail and Pompano Joe's Restaurant, which are a short stroll down the beach. Three bedrooms with access to three full baths sleep up to 14 beachgoers. A first-floor guest suite includes its own living area, kitchenette, and a wet bar.
Upscale one and two bedroom vacation rental residences are located in this luxury tower on the brilliantly bright beach at the prestigious, exclusively gated Sandestin Resort in Destin's Miramar Beach. Abundant amenities at Westwinds include a large lagoon shaped pool overlooking the beach, a kiddie pool, a Tiki Hut Bar, a tropically secluded hot tub with a cascading waterfall and a fitness center. A complimentary beach tram will carry you across the 1,400 acres of gorgeous resort grounds to Baytowne Wharf or Grand Boulevard for drinks, dining, seasonal festivals, and free concerts.
8. Ariel Dunes II
Ariel Dunes II is the fraternal twin of the popular Ariel Dunes I luxury tower with a southwestern exposure providing a great place to experience sensational sunsets directly over the gulf from autumn until early spring. One to three bedroom vacation rentals are available with a balcony spanning across the living area and Master Suite for breathtaking views. A dramatic elevator lobby on each floor provides sweeping views across the peninsula encompassing the wide expanse of Choctawhatchee Bay. Ariel Dunes II also faces a precious coastal dune lake and the Seascape championship golf course where Ocean Reef Resorts guests receive special rates. Three swimming pools wrap around its base pools that sit side by side and encompass an amazing 11,000 square feet.
7. Beach Resort
This gracious crescent-shaped four-story vacation beach view complex in Destin has one bedroom properties that can sleep up to six guests with the use of bunk beds tucked along the hallway, and a queen sized sleeper sofa for use in need be. Individual balconies at Beach Resort overlook the large lovely lagoon shaped pools that are nestled beside the building. A waterfall cascades off a giant mushroom in one of them while water spurts out from the pool’s side. A long arbor provides partial shade around the pool while an adult hot tub is situated away among some tropical palms. The gated beach access is just a short distance away.
6. Sea Cabins
This affordable delightful, unpretentious vacation beach village shares the same highly sought after locale as some luxury towers nearby, but these are single townhome residences. Sea Cabins provides nostalgic golden classic experience at the beach since it is diagonally across from the gorgeous gulf. Each one has a second floor Master Bedroom. Most of hese rental residences can sleep up to six happy beach-going guests since quite a few also include Bunk Rooms. Picnic tables and grills spread across the tropically landscaped grounds leading to a raised community pool.
5. Ariel Dunes I
Ariel Dunes I faces the jeweled waters of the glowing gulf directly down the regal palm lined entry boulevard. When you approach this urbane tower from the beach, it appears to magically float above the water since its entire base is comprised of 12,000 square feet of sparkling pools. A shallow entry at one end is great for kids since it also has a mushroom-shaped waterfall that splashes down below. The tower has one, two and three bedroom units that accommodate six to ten beachgoers. An opulent four bedroom Penthouse is also available that sleeps 14 fortunate guests. The vibrant festive “Cabana Cafe” on-site serves tropical concoctions, cold beer, wine, fresh seafood, pizzas, burgers, sandwiches and savory snacks for casual poolside dining. It’s open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Grills are available nearby so you may enjoy having a fun outdoor cookout. A recently remodeled poolside fitness center includes a steam room, a sauna, and a spa.
4. Crystal Sands
Six to even twelve carefree beachgoers may reside at Crystal Sands in Destin since the two bedrooms in some units have multiple bunk beds, sleeper sofas, and a third story loft. The twin low rise buildings sit side by side overlooking the shimmering crystalline beach in a beautiful little world of its own that has a casual serene ambiance. Some grills and picnic tables allow you to create a fun Surf n Turf meal right beside the beach. A pool provides refreshment. This offbeat location on Scenic Highway 98 is surprisingly close to gulf front restaurants and beach bars along this route. It is also two minutes away from Destin Commons with its popular array of specialty stores, food venues, bars, a movie theater, a Bass Pro Shops, a Belks Department Store, grocery stores and wine outlets.
3. Amalfi Coast
This traditional family favorite is always in the top three as a popular destination along the sugary shore. This enchanting vacation community sits in a tropical oasis upon eight lush acres adorned with towering palm trees, a lovely lagoon uplighted magically at night by a fountain and crowned with two large swimming pools. There are also tennis courts and an exercise room on site. The location of the Amalfi Coast is on the highest elevation along Scenic Gulf Drive in Destin's Miramar Beach. A graceful pedestrian bridge arches over the lagoon leading to a towering dune across the street with a gazebo and staircase descending down the bright beach. One and two bedroom properties can sleep six while three bedroom units can accommodate eight to ten.
This beachfront retreat is perched prominently upon a crystalline dune overlooking the jewel-toned gulf where the breeze seems to dance with a sparkling ripple effect across the water’s surface. A sizeable heart-shaped pool at Windancer sits above the sugar white beach that is just a minute away. Double sliding glass doors from the living area provide upfront views of the spectacular seascape. One bedroom vacation residences sleep six while two-story units with cathedral ceilings can sleep up to ten since they have open staircases leading to an additional bedroom above.
1. Majestic Sun
This magnificent union of two luxury towers is well named since they are indeed “majestic” and are fixed facing the “sun” with unlimited sparkling views that extend as far as one can see into the southern horizon. You have probably seen this architectural icon in Miramar Beach along Scenic Gulf Drive since it has a magical look that resembles a giant human-made sandcastle. A soaring arch goes all the way through the interconnected towers from front to back. There is a swimming pool at Majestic Sun beneath the arch that has cathedral ceilings and a wall of glass looking out toward the beach. Another interconnected outdoor pool has an expansive sundeck and bubbling hot tubs. This is directly across from a wide palm-lined promenade with multiple access points down to the 2,000 linear feet of beautiful beach. There are one, two and three bedroom vacation residences that sleep six to ten guests. A five bedroom Penthouse that serves as the crown jewel of this tower treasure can sleep up to 22 fortunate guests.
We have multiple images and descriptions of each popular Destin condominium. Have a fun look along with others and choose your favorites. When you find one, plan to make reservations right away because they will certainly go quickly. Then be secured in the knowledge that you all have something wonderful to look forward to in 2019.