I am not going to lie to you, being a journalist most definitely has its perks, especially when writing for PW Style. Not only do we get to go to some pretty awesome events and drink (a lot) with some of Philly’s finest, but every once in a while we get to do something outside the city as well.
Last week, I was approached by a PR firm who wanted one of our PW Style writers to check out the newly renovated Windrift Hotel in Avalon, New Jersey. A free night in a gorgeous hotel at the beach? Sign me up please!
Making this an extra special excursion, I decided to invite a few college friends to experience this with me. My girlfriends, being the fun-spirited people they are, were absolutely up for a night of free partying away from the sometimes repetativeness of the city. Friday night the six of us headed down to Avalon, which is surprisingly only an hour and a half away from city limits, and were immediately blown away by the hotel. While the amenities were that of a five star hotel that you’d see in the posh neighborhoods of California, the front desk was reminiscent of a mom and pop bread and breakfast type place.
All of the Windrift staff members knew of my arrival. From the valet guys who were more than eager to take my car off of my hands, to the maids who brought us extra towels, people were falling over themselves to be friendly to us. I guess you have some sort of pull when people know you are going to review and write about them and honestly, I didn’t hate it at all. However, I have a feeling they are this way to all of their guests. The owner, Pete Compare was absolutely fantastic. Not only did he put my friends and I up in a gorgeous suite (I will get to that) but he also gave me a $300 gift card to be used anywhere on the hotel grounds. A free night at a gorgeous hotel, in a suite no less, and $300 to drink at eat with my best college friends? It was almost too good to be true.
After walking into an absolutely breathtakingly beautiful room, my high reached a new level. The room, regularly upwards of $500 a night, was immacualte as if it had never even been stepped in before. The sheets were clean and the beds were fluffy and comfortable. I was almost as excited to sleep that night as I was for the rest of the evening. The view from our Atlantic Ocean view Suite was one of a kind. The state of the art flat screen TV looked perfect with the dark wood dining room table and matching kitchenette, coffee table and end tables. The suite came equipped with wine glasses, dishes, an ice bucket, and more closets than people we had in tow. Later in the night we slept with the balcony door open so that the soothing sounds of waves crashing ashore could gently lull us into a happy drunk coma.
After sprucing ourselves up a bit we headed downstairs where a specially reserved table was waiting for us. While the Windrift has six places we could have eaten, we decided to park ourselves in the fine dining room. The waitress we had was perfect and I coulnt help but rave about her attentiveness to the multiple staff members that continuously checked on us throughout the evening. Having $300 of ammunition, we decided to do some damage by ordering a little (okay, a lot) of everything. Warm rolls, sushi, scallops, cheese plates and multiple bottles of wine made their way to our table with impeccable timing. While I very much enjoyed my vegetarian sushi and bean salad, my carnivorous friends assured me that the scallops were to die for, and that I should give up vegetarianism immediately to try them. I took their word for it.
Three bottles of wine and happy stomachs later we rested and relaxed before our next adventure. The Windrift was equipped with multiple bars, a live band, and lots of floor space to which we felt the need to “tear up,” as kids these days say. The staff, being the overly-helpful people that they were, even called us a cab so that we could check out the rest that Avalon had to offer after testing different flavored shots at each of the hotel bars. We headed to the ever-popular Princeton Bar and Grill. A downtown bar where there were at least eight different rooms to choose from. Don’t like the live band in the front room? Head two rooms over to where the DJ was spinning till 2 a.m. It was a great ending to a perfect night.
The next morning the staff served us a delicious breakfast and a Bloody Mary that I am still talking about. After spending a few hours at the absolutely gorgeous new pool and making friends in the hot tub (where staff members serve you delicious drinks and meals starting promptly at noon) we headed back to silly philly with a little more pep in our step.
I can’t thank the folks at Windrift enough for all of their kindness. I would absolutely recommend any PW Style reader to visit their hotel and indulge in even half of the great services that I was offered. The summer has just started, my friends!
**Photos courtesy of WindriftHotel.com.com