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Venturing on a culinary exploration within the Emerald Coast is always a delight. In most places, the restaurant scene is diverse, vibrant, and uniquely influenced by the region’s coastal geography.

Whether you’re looking for a place to have a hearty breakfast, lunch, or dinner, you’ll be spoiled for options, and they vary from an impressive array of laid-back establishments to fine dining spots. Also, as this is the Emerald Coast, there’s plenty of al-fresco and beachfront dining, which means you can have a lovely meal feeling the sea breeze or even soaking in the views — what more could you want for a holiday dining experience on the Gulf Coast?

Wondering what are the top restaurants to hit in the Emerald Coast? This blog will bring Emeyou a curated selection of the best restaurants in Panama City Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, & Miramar Beach.

Get ready to feast!



The Best restaurants in Panama City Beach, FL


Sitting a few steps away from the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, this romantic and upscale seafood spot offers a lovely dining experience in a spacious area under a lit-up oak tree.

The ever-evolving menu is an interesting fusion. For instance, starters like the jumbo lump crab cake and Kobe carpaccio are potent to get you prepared for mains that include a rack of elk, grilled Gulf grouper, and smoked bison short rib. Wondering about dessert? The chocolate frangipane tart and the crème brûlée are must-tries.

The place is famous for Chef Derek Langford’s interpretation of “gulf to table” dishes. There’s a sushi bar and an excellent list of wines and cocktails. The food is fresh, native, and flavorful, and the service is impeccable. Not just any beach restaurant!



Bella Roma Tuscan Grill

Craving some authentic Italian cuisine in Panama City Beach? Head to Bella Roma Tuscan Grill. The chef learned his tricks from his mom and Nona on the Amalfi Coast in Italy, so you’re guaranteed a treat.

The intimate diner-style booths in the dining room are lovely, and you can also choose to sit on the patio, both with a chill atmosphere. The menu features premium pastas and pizzas, all with traditional flavors and an exciting twist. An all-time favorite is the Spaghetti Pescatore. We also highly suggest you leave some space for dessert — they have some amazing classics like tiramisu, cannoli, and zesty limoncello cake.

The service is great, and if you have any dietary restrictions, the staff is usually pretty accommodating. In the end, do as the Italians do, order an Espresso Martini!


The Grand Marlin

Coastal cuisine with views over the water, anyone? Located in the picturesque Port Lagoon area, The Grand Marlin in Panama City Beach is the place to go.

Besides some delicious island cocktails, the menu features the highest quality cuisine, from crispy lobster fingers and Oysters Rockefeller to seared swordfish and fried Gulf shrimp. Desserts like key lime pie and red velvet cake are also popular. Everything is fresh, as the menu varies daily to reflect what comes from the sea. There’s an oyster bar, and the cocktail list is great. The vibe is island-like and casual, so you can sport your beach fashion and even flip-flops if you’d like.

Oh, sunset dining is a true hit in this one — you’ll get the first-row seat for nature’s daily spectacle, but be sure to book in advance.



Pineapple Willy’s 

Serving fresh seafood since 1984, this on-the-sand spot is a local favorite, offering po’boys, alligator bites, and frozen drinks while boasting big TVs for sports enthusiasts.

They are very well known for their Caribbean salad, “world-famous” barbecue ribs, and their Chilly Willy Daiquiris. Another good part? The restaurant is housed in a piece of history that was once a pier opened in 1936 for sightseers and fishermen. Now it has become a dining area with some of the best views of the Gulf Coast; you’ll be right above the sand and the water while enjoying a quaint and tranquil Florida setting.


The Best Restaurants in Fort Walton Beach, FL

Stewby’s Seafood Shanty

A long-time local favorite, this casual family eatery spot is all about offering a laid-back experience without compromising the cuisine. The menu offers a diverse selection of seafood classics at reasonable prices.

In the outdoor seating area, you can enjoy the warm breeze at picnic tables, or opt for cozy indoor seating.

Their fish tacos are a must-try. Other great options include grilled shrimp, grilled flounder, grouper and flounder sandwiches, and fish tacos. Most options come with good sides like coleslaw and potato salad.

For most mains, you can choose baskets, or platters, or opt to enjoy them as a sandwich or tacos. Most options go well with good sides like coleslaw and potato salad. Everything is fresh and locally sourced, coming straight from the docks nearby. Not a fancy place, but definitely one that carries the locally approved seal.


The Gulf Okaloosa Island

Perched on the edge of Okaloosa Island, this stylish bayside hangout for seafood and cocktails combines breathtaking views with fresh seaside cuisine – a match made in heaven. They have both indoor and outdoor areas, with open-air seating providing the classic Emerald Coast experience that people look for.

The decor boasts shipping containers and reclaimed recycled building materials, all set against palm trees and beach sand, giving the impression of eating in someone’s quirky backyard.

The menu changes with the seasons and features options like the Lobster Shrimp Roll or the Voodoo Pasta. Like many of its peers, there is a commitment to serving locally sourced and fresh food.

This is another great option for beautiful sunset dining, and the atmosphere is always enhanced by great music and staff friendliness.



The Best Restaurants in Destin, FL

Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House

Located on Destin’s harbor, Boshamps, as this spot is called by locals, offers casual seating with two bars and very nice water views with boats moored. You can sit indoors or outdoors.

Got kids in tow? They usually like this place, especially because they can play on the sand while you have your drink by the bar listening to some live music.

The menu features southern-style seafood and Angus steaks. The pan-roasted Gulf grouper is a favorite option, as are the Oysters Rockefeller. But you should also try their sandwiches, especially the southern-style seafood and Angus steaks. The staff is also happy to suggest kid-friendly options and vegetarian alternatives.

The bar has a variety of drink options. This one is all about kicking back and enjoying the laid-back Florida vibes.

Captain Dave’s On the Gulf

Captain Dave’s is a typical seafood eatery, a pretty airy restaurant with more water views for you. In business since 1968, they focus on American seafood with a Gulf Coast twist, offering classic fried, grilled, and broiled seafood dishes. Make sure to ask what the daily special is.

Their floor-to-ceiling windows make you feel like you’re right on the shore, even if you sit inside, and their welcoming hospitality will make a real difference in your dining experience. Oh, there’s also a full-service bar with a spacious lounge, perfect for a drink after a satisfying dinner.



Harbor Docks

Another fantastic waterfront hangout with deck seating, great seafood, and sushi, this time in Destin, is Harbor Docks. In business for nearly 45 years, this one is a total local gem. The restaurant has its own local market just below the dining area — talking about fresh food, right?

The Fried Seafood Platters are a great order; they serve the catch of the day together with hand-cut fries, coleslaw, and hushpuppies. They also infuse their offering with a well-suited Asian flavor. The Japanese menu includes rolls, pokes, sashimi, and nigiri, and the Thai Pad Thai is very popular.

With its nice atmosphere, longstanding tradition in service, and good views of the Destin Harbor, Harbor Docks is a go-to spot in Destin, especially if you are into sushi!


The Best Restaurants in Miramar Beach, FL

Lillie’s Q

In the mood for some smoked meats, mouth-watering sauces, and rubs? Lillie’s Q is for you then. This rustic Thai spot is a favorite of locals and visitors alike for its BBQ meats, Southern fare, and housemade moonshine cocktails.

Among the must-tries are the excellent BBQ pulled pork sandwich, the potato salad, the baked beans, the brisket, the homemade sauces, and the cole slaw, but really, everything is cooked to perfection, so do try around. If the day is nice, it’s a great idea to sit on the outdoor porch, enjoy your meal, and just soak in the environment around you.


Best Restaurants in Panama City Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, & Miramar Beach

Hungry yet? With these tips for the best restaurants along the Emerald Coast, you will make your visit to the region worthwhile for the culinary experience alone. Whenever you plan to visit this Florida paradise, make sure to look for a guide on the best eateries in Panama City Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, & Miramar Beach.

Every now and then, a new place pops up offering a new take on local cuisine and bridging more experimental flavors from across the world.



Wondering where to stay on the Emerald Coast during your visit?

Book your stay with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals. We offer an unmatched selection of vacation rental properties to suit every traveler’s taste. Whether you’re looking for a beachfront condominium, pet-friendly rentals, or a charming beachside cottage, we have you covered. 

Our properties are strategically located, which means you’ll be steps away from idyllic beaches, great dining options, exquisite golf courses, and an array of outdoor pursuits like deep-sea fishing, dolphin tours, and more. That’s the secret to a perfect Emerald Coast Gateway!


On top of offering superb outdoor activities like sunbathing, swimming on pristine beaches, and participating in water sports, the dreamlike Emerald Coast is a hotspot for vibrant nightlife.

Whether you’re visiting Panama City Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, or Miramar Beach, you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to having a great night out in town.

After the sun goes down, these cities come alive with a variety of options for a chilled or high-energy night out — from seaside bars and restaurants to vibrant clubs and large entertainment complexes, there’s something fun for everybody.

In this nightlife guide to the Emerald Coast, we’ll show you our top picks for the best nightlife spots in Panama City Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, and Miramar Beach.

Time to explore the nightlife!


Nightlife Guide to the Emerald Coast Cool Bars

The best nightlife spots in Panama City Beach, FL

Sharky’s Beachfront Restaurant and Tiki Bar

For more than 30 years, Sharky’s Beachfront Restaurant and Tiki Bar has been a favorite of both locals and visitors seeking a delightful blend of fresh seafood, beach vibes, stunning ocean views, and top-notch entertainment. While the venue doesn’t stay open too late into the night, it still makes for the perfect place to kickstart your evening in the best way possible.

After watching a spectacular sunset and having a delightful dinner, you’ll see the outdoor deck and beach-facing tiki bar at Sharky’s transform into a vibrant spot with live music performed either by great national or local performers.

The diverse drink menu offers a variety of options that will definitely make you want to linger a bit longer. A must-try is Sharky’s specialty, the Shark Attack: this delightful blend of tropical flavors and rum is your perfect companion as you groove to the lively tunes playing throughout the evening.


Ms. Newby’s

Ms. Newby’s stands as another institution in Panama City Beach, famous as a place to dance the night away, meet friendly locals, and create unforgettable memories.

They regularly host DJs spinning great hits, alongside local and national bands that guarantee a great night out for anyone visiting. Also, Ms. Newby’s karaoke nights attract those who wish to sing their hearts out, immersing themselves in the lively pub atmosphere.

The place has many sections, including a quirky indoor bar, an inviting outdoor area, and an upper deck. Ms. Newby’s offers spaces for dancing, singing, or simply chilling as you connect with people from all walks of life.

Oh, and they’re also famous for its signature drink — the Hunch Punch. Why is it named like that? You never know unless you try it!


Nightlife Guide to the Emerald Coast Dancing Clubs


Donovan’s Reef Bar

Since opening its doors in 1979, Donovan’s Reef Bar has become a hometown gem. It boasts an extensive calendar of events and parties throughout the year and a great drink menu.

You’re up for some classic bar fun with this one: karaoke nights for the singing souls, great live music performances hitting up the dance floor, dart boards, pool tables, oversized Jenga for clumsy competitions, and big TV screens for sports buffs to watch their match of choice. As you can see, there’s something for everyone at Donovan’s Reef Bar!


The best nightlife spots in Fort Walton Beach, FL


The Block

The Block stands out as an unbeatable choice for a night out in Fort Walton Beach. This one is the full package, combining three entertainment spaces in one and offering a unique experience for every visitor.

At the so-called Sports/Karaoke Block, you can enjoy watching live sports on large TV screens and try your singing skills on karaoke nights (held from Wednesday to Sunday). All of this is complemented by their delicious signature drinks.

Country fun awaits you at the Country Block, which, as the name suggests, is a vibrant hotspot for live music. This space hosts top-notch local and national performers, including the likes of American legend Blake Shelton. To add to the energetic and lively atmosphere, there’s Sugar the Bull — a mechanical bull you can ride for an extra thrill! Are you up for it?

There’s more: at Cell Block, you can dance the night away to a mix of great hits, ranging from pop to rock, while enjoying more amazing cocktails. There, it’s all about letting loose on the dance floor…


Nightlife Guide to the Emerald Coast Beer on tap


Salty Duck

Dubbed “the original American Craft Beer Bar,” Salty Duck counts forty beer taps that serve perfectly crafted beers from both local and national breweries. The taps are regularly rotated, which means you can try something new with each visit (as if 40 wasn’t enough!)

Adding to the experience, Salty Duck plays live sports on seven large screens and offers a variety of entertainment, including arcade games and classics like giant Jenga, dart boards, cornhole, beer pong, and foosball, to name a few. For those who prefer a laid-back atmosphere, their leather couches are great to chill and chat. Oh, there’s also a jukebox featuring a selection of old and new songs.



The best nightlife spots in Destin, FL

AJ’s Club Bimini

Located on the Destin boardwalk, AJ’s Club Bimini throws some great parties with amazing views of Destin Harbor. Every night, you can enjoy live music with talented bands and singers that will create an electrifying atmosphere on the spacious wooden deck-slash-dance floor.

Whether you’re out to dance your guts out or looking for a more relaxed evening, AJ’s Club Bimini is the place to go. Lots of seating areas offer a perfect setting to chat, enjoy the view of boats moored in the harbor, and listen to fantastic music.

The drinks? All crafted by the friendly and knowledgeable staff at the club’s tiki hut bar, which, by the way, is super Instagrammable. Think great people, awesome music, and the best beach vibes. There’s no going wrong here!


Red Door Saloon

This awesome bar is like a great hole in the wall or an awesome “dive” style venue. They have an outdoor bar with plenty of seating and great views of the sea and docks. It can get a little crowded, but the atmosphere is fantastic; the bartenders are super nice, and the prices are pretty reasonable — cheaper than most establishments you’ll find at Destin Harbor. No wonder this is a local favorite. If you’re into somewhere unpretentious with lots of friendly locals, that’s your spot.


Coyote Ugly Saloon

Known as “the most famous bar in the United States,” Coyote Ugly Saloon has several locations across the country, one in the UK, and one in Japan. Their Destin branch is as fun as any of the others and certainly a great spot for a night out. 

The atmosphere is wild. Picture bartop dancing, lively music, and a great list of drinks. Live DJs enhance the atmosphere on Friday and Saturday nights; on Thursdays, you can try your luck at beer pong. And ladies who feel brave enough can dance on the bar — and they even get free shots. Who needs a dance floor when you can conquer the bar, right?


The best nightlife spots in Miramar Beach, FL


Nightlife Guide to the Emerald Coast Arcade games

The Village of Baytowne Wharf

The Village of Baytowne Wharf offers all kinds of entertainment from day to evening. Besides lovely boutiques and galleries, fantastic restaurants and bars make this spot a great option for a night out. 

Throughout the year, The Village hosts several seasonal night events, being the Bubbly Baytowne the most popular during summer — think summer nights filled with free champagne.

All year round, bars such as
Fat Tuesday Daiquiri Bar, Hammerhead’s Bar and Grille, and Rum Runners are the perfect stage for grabbing amazing drinks, listening to live music, and dancing like there’s no tomorrow.

And it’s not all about dining and drinking; there’s fun and entertainment for the entire family. The Blast Arcade & Laser Maze, for example, features an impressive game arcade with games from which you can collect tickets and exchange them for prizes — what better souvenir to take home, hun? There’s also the
Cloak and Dagger Escape Room, a thrilling experience that the entire family can enjoy. 


Nightlife Guide to the Emerald Coast fine dining

The Craft Bar

What about a place with some gastropub vibes? The Craft Bar is perfect for those seeking a relaxed night out with exceptional drinks and food. The bar boasts an outstanding array of signature cocktails, as well as an impressive selection of draft and bottled beers — ranging from the most popular to the rarest in the country. The cozy atmosphere, adorned with red brick walls and high tables, adds an extra touch of charm, enhancing your experience as you explore their diverse drink menu.

Hungry? The Craft Bar is the place to satisfy your cravings with top-quality food, featuring a menu of mouthwatering burgers, refreshing salads, and hearty side dishes. All dishes are crafted using fresh, local ingredients with a regional twist. Be sure to mark your calendar for special nights, such as Monday Burger Nights offering reduced prices on burgers, and Local’s Night every Tuesday, where you can enjoy a happy hour drink selection throughout the evening.

Besides Miramar Beach, you’ll find The Craft Bar in other cities in Florida, such as Pensacola, Destin, Panama City, and Fort Walton. Always a good pick.


The Best Nightlife in Panama City Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, and Miramar Beach

We kid you not, these amazing Emerald Coast destinations offer as many great experiences during the night as they do during the day!

If you’re planning a trip to Panama City Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, or Miramar Beach, make sure to mark these hotspots on your map — we’re certain that wherever you choose to go, you’ll have a blast. Also, keep your eyes peeled for new places that have been popping up in these cities — there’s always something new going on in the exciting nightlife along the Emerald Coast!

Wondering where to stay on the Emerald Coast during your visit?

Book your stay with
Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals. We offer an unmatched selection of vacation rental properties to suit every traveler’s taste. Whether you’re looking for a beachfront condominium, pet-friendly rentals, or a charming beachside cottage, we have you covered.

Our properties are strategically located, which means you’ll be steps away from idyllic beaches, great dining options, exquisite golf courses, and an array of outdoor pursuits like deep-sea fishing, dolphin tours, and more. That’s the secret to a perfect Emerald Coast Gateway!


The Emerald Coast, with its stretch of pristine beaches, emerald-green waters, and gentle sea breezes, provides an idyllic backdrop for the ultimate vacation. While the natural beauty of this location is more than enough to ensure an unforgettable experience, supplementing your trip with the right equipment rentals can elevate your beach holiday to the next level. To help you make the most out of your time on the Emerald Coast, here’s a list of top equipment rentals, from bicycles to paddleboards, along with recommendations on where to get them.


Bicycle Rentals on the Emerald Coast




Cycling is undeniably one of the best ways to explore the scenic wonders of the Emerald Coast. Bicycle rentals provide an unparalleled opportunity to genuinely immerse yourself in the unique beauty of the area. With each turn of the cycle’s wheel, unveil the surprises this coastline has to offer.

The main advantage of exploring on two wheels is the freedom and versatility it offers. You can paddle through the weaving paths that introduce you to the beautiful, hidden gems of the Emerald Coast, seldom seen by tourists. These could be tranquil spots for seclusion, breath-taking scenic viewpoints, or picturesque picnic settings only known to locals — and to lucky explorers on bikes.

Cruising along the sidewalks can also lead you to explore myriad local eateries. Sampling regional delicacies is a key part of any vacation, but when the exploration leads you to quaint, off-beat cafes, or a family-run seafood shack, the culinary experience is taken to a whole new level. Savoring a meal at sunset, with the coast offering a radiant backdrop, is an irreplaceable experience that is made easily accessible with your trusty rental bicycle.

Using a bicycle to explore the coast also presents a fantastic opportunity to easily switch between exploring and exercising. Keep your fitness regimen on track, enjoy a quintessential scenic workout as you paddle on beachside trails. Feel the refreshing breeze grazing your face, listen to the rhythmic melody of the incoming waves, and marvel at the various shades of blue the Emerald Coast showcases while you effortlessly burn calories – all these make cycling less of an exercise and more of an uplifting experience.

Coastal Cruisers stand out in their bicycle offerings. With high-quality bikes, this is the ideal place to rent if you plan to explore the coast on two wheels.  Renting a bicycle to navigate and discover the Emerald Coast not only provides a greener and healthier mode of transport, but it also allows you to experience the destination at your pace. You can make spontaneous stops without the hassle of finding a parking space, traverse through narrow paths inaccessible to cars, or just enjoy a leisurely ride soaking in the coastal charm. Inviting freedom, excitement, and unique exploration, bicycle rentals indeed set the wheels in motion for an unforgettable Emerald Coast vacation.


Beach Set Ups on the Emerald Coast


Holiday Isle Beach Equipment


For those seeking absolute leisure on the Emerald Coast’s stunning beaches, Holiday Isle Beach Service is ready to enrich your beach day with an outstanding setup. This established beach service has been faithfully serving Destin, South Walton, and Okaloosa Island for over three decades, winning the hearts of vacationers with its flawless delivery of beach comfort essentials.

Holiday Isle Beach Services is a company built on core values of kindness, respect, and honesty. With 45 years of experience, their service is not only prompt and high-quality, but it also carries the authentic warmth of old-school hospitality. By choosing their service, you can look forward to a meticulously prepared beach setup that awaits your arrival.

The team at Holiday Isle focuses on making every family vacation relaxing and memorable. Their specialty lies in providing quality chair and umbrella rentals. Imagine a day where you arrive at the beach and find your spot—two comfortable chairs and a sun-shielding umbrella—already set up and ready for your vacation fun.



Paddleboards and Kayaks




At Emerald Beach Watersports LLC, located in the heart of Fort Walton Beach, FL, we’re committed to elevating your experience along the picturesque Emerald Coast with our top-notch rental services. Our veteran-owned and operated business puts customer satisfaction, affordability, and quality at the forefront, ensuring everyone has the opportunity to explore the beauty of the local waters without any hassle.

Offering a range of equipment, Emerald Beach Watersports caters to both solo adventurers and groups. Choose from their single kayaks, tandem kayaks or paddleboards, all designed with quality, stability, and ease in mind. Each option is geared towards users of different skill levels, motivations, or moods:


They provide rental accessories to complement your adventures, including waterproof cell phone cases, dry bags, and snorkel sets. This means you can capture moments, secure your belongings, and immerse in the underwater life without worry. To sum up, renting from Emerald Beach Watersports is about so much more than just getting equipment. It’s about a simple, affordable, and stress-free path to unforgettable adventures on the Emerald Coast!


Places on the Emerald Coast to Paddleboard and Kayak


The Emerald Coast of Florida, stretching along the state’s northern Gulf of Mexico, offers a plethora of stunning locations to engage in both paddleboarding and kayaking. Here are some noteworthy places that promise an excellent aquatic adventure:






Choosing the best spot depends on your skill level, interests, and the type of experience you desire. Regardless of the location you pick, exploring the Emerald Coast by paddleboard or kayak is bound to make for an unforgettable experience.



Golf Cart Rentals on the Emerald Coast


Street Legal Golf Cart Rentals


Experience the beauty and convenience of the Emerald Coast with Street Legal Golf Cart Rentals. This family-owned business guarantees a fantastic, comfortable, and unique way to explore the picturesque towns and neighborhoods of the Emerald Coast. With a strong reputation for quality, customer service, and fully customized premium golf carts, you’ll find everything you need to enjoy your stay and explore the area at a leisurely pace.

Street Legal Golf Cart Rentals caters to a wide range of locations along the Emerald Coast, from Holiday Isle in Destin to Inlet Beach, including 30A, Santa Rosa Beach, Grayton Beach, Seagrove, Blue Mountain Beach, and Dune Allen Beach.

Their friendly team will deliver and pick up golf carts at your doorstep for a seamless and convenient experience. Renting a golf cart from Street Legal Golf Cart Rentals guarantees a premium, hassle-free experience. Whether you’re zipping down to the beach, enjoying shopping areas, or exploring the local neighborhoods, a golf cart rental is the perfect way to experience the Emerald Coast at your own pace and convenience.


Stay with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals


In choosing your next vacation, the destination matters just as much as the company orchestrating your stay. With Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, rest assured that you’re in the safest and the most capable hands. We are more than just a property rental service; we provide experiences that leave lifetime impressions.

Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals offers an extensive selection of beachside homes and condos, each exuding its unique charm and comforts, ideal for making your stay wonderfully memorable. We have pet-friendly options and beachfront rentals that promise spellbinding sunrises and sunsets daily. No matter your group’s size, we have a haven awaiting you along the beautiful shores of the Emerald Coast.

Our services extend beyond just providing a roof. We offer personalized assistance to ensure that your vacation is smooth sailing. Whether it’s local area attractions, dining recommendations, activities, or even the most suitable rental selection for you, our team is always ready to help.

From the moment you arrive, to the moment you wave goodbye to the beautiful Emerald Coast, we work tirelessly to ensure your time is filled with delightful surprises, comfort, convenience, and joy. We believe vacations should be stress-free, exhilarating, and rejuvenating and we’re committed to turning that belief into your reality.

So come see for yourself, what a stay with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals feels like. We’re confident you’ll love it here as much as we do.







Florida’s Emerald Coast, with its pristine beaches and stunning sunsets, offers more than just an incredible seaside experience. It’s also a hidden gem for coffee lovers. From Panama City Beach to Fort Walton Beach and Destin to Miramar Beach, coffee enthusiasts will find a multitude of unique and delightful coffee shops. In this blog, we’ll take a tour of the best coffee shops in these areas, highlighting their specialty drinks, food offered, and why they are highly recommended for any personal coffee tour.


Panama City Beach

1. Lotus Cafe and Juice Bar at Zen Garden




Experience a health-conscious café and zen garden in one at Lotus Cafe at Zen Garden. This unique establishment places a high emphasis on all-natural, organic ingredients, ensuring that its customers not only enjoy a flavorful meal but one that supports their wellness. Their menu is diverse, providing something for everyone – from revitalizing Juices and Smoothies, delectable Vegetarian and Vegan options, to mouth-watering seafood and chicken dishes. For those who prefer something light yet satisfying, Lotus Cafe’s salads and wraps are not to be missed.



2. Sunrise Cafe Bakery




Sunrise Cafe Bakery is a family-owned and operated business that guarantees a delightful dining experience. Serving both breakfast and lunch all day, this delightful cafe and bakery ensures there’s never a wrong time to grab a bite from them.

Every morning, they prepare fresh donuts, guaranteeing a delectable, warm start to your day. Their fried, glazed croissants are equally a must-try! And for the warm summer days, there’s no better place to cool down with their range of refreshments, including ice cream, gelato, milkshakes, sundaes, and more.

Aside from their regular offerings, Sunrise Cafe Bakery also prides itself in its specialty European menu. This includes unique European dishes such as Manty (Central Asian dumplings), Samsa (likened to Indian Samosa), Borscht (a sour soup in various Eastern European cuisines), and many more!



Fort Walton Beach


3. Maas Coffee Roasters





Coffee at Maas Coffee Roasters is not just a beverage, it’s an experience. The beans are meticulously sourced from around the globe, carefully selected for their unique flavor profiles. The process doesn’t end there. Upon arrival, the beans undergo on-site roasting which enhances their natural aroma and flavor. This hands-on roasting method ensures that each batch obtains the ideal roast, maximizing its flavor potential.

Among their diverse range of blends, the Kona Blend and Mocha Java stand out. Kona Blend showcases the rich and full-bodied characteristics found in the esteemed beans sourced from the volcanic soils of Hawaii. Mocha Java, considered one of the oldest coffee blends in the world, marries the fruity, wine-like flavors of Ethiopian beans with the rich, full-bodied strength of Indonesian coffee.

But there’s more to Maas Coffee Roasters than their globally diverse, freshly roasted coffee. The café also takes pride in its selection of delightful pastries. Freshly baked and ready to cater to any palette, these treats range from fluffy croissants to gourmet sandwiches making it an ideal haunt for not just a quick caffeine fix, but a satisfying breakfast or lunch break.


4. Main Brew Coffee


Main Brew Coffee


Main Brew Coffee is a valued gem in the heart of Fort Walton Beach. With its relaxed, inviting, and approachable atmosphere, it not only captures the essence of a traditional coffeeshop but also promises an at-home comfort akin to enjoying a cup of coffee in a family living room.

Main Brew Coffee firmly believes in two things: they are “coffee people” and “people people”. Coffee is not merely a product; it’s a passion they zealously pursue and share with neighbors and friends. They specialize in quality coffee provided through a variety of methods. For those daring and bold enough to try something different, Main Brew Coffee offers an extensive specialty latte menu brimming with non-traditional flavors.

Meanwhile, lovers of a traditional brew are not left out. They offer many single-origin roasts prepared via the pour-over method, promising a perfect drop.





5. Bad Ass Coffee




Bad Ass Coffee takes great pleasure in sharing Hawaii’s exceptional coffee culture with the local community and visitors alike. Their signature Kona Blend is a sweet testament to this, offering coffee enthusiasts flavorful, aromatic coffee that is as remarkable as the island it originates from.

The Hawaiian Blend, another crowd favorite, is a careful selection of different Hawaiian coffees crafted into a blend that skillfully marries slight fruit undertones with a hint of spiciness. This creates a final product that truly captures the unique facets of Hawaiian coffee.

While Bad Ass Coffee puts a notable emphasis on its coffee, the café also ensures that visitors can pair their favorite drinks with a selection of equally delightful, light bites. Offering a selection of freshly made Bagels, they provide an ideal quick yet fulfilling breakfast option.

For those in search of a healthier, lighter alternative, the café features a range of fresh, crisp salads. Each salad is thoughtfully prepared using quality ingredients, ensuring that they perfectly complement the robust flavors of the Hawaiian coffee.



6. The Local Market




Fuel your day at The Local Market with a varied coffee menu, featuring premium Brewed Coffee and Espresso Drinks. Among the myriad coffee options available, the White Chocolate Mocha stands a level above. Masterfully blended using high-quality beans, the rich flavors of the mocha are complemented by the sweet, creamy undertones of white chocolate, creating a harmonious encounter of flavors.

Want to add a kick of freshness to your day? Try their collection of Fresh-pressed Juices. Each bottle is packed with the goodness of fresh fruits and vegetables. These juices serve as a perfect companion for your coffee, offering a cool, refreshing contrast to the warm, rich notes of your brew.

The Local Market’s recipes take fresh to a whole new level. Taste the difference with their classic Egg Sandwiches, which boast of farm-fresh eggs complemented by fresh ingredients. Pair this wholesome, savory delight with your favorite coffee for the ideal breakfast or brunch meal.



Miramar Beach


7. Causeway Coffee


Causeway Coffee


Embark on a flavorful journey at Causeway Coffee, where every sip tells a story. Causeway Coffee isn’t just about serving exceptional coffee, it aims to create a space that fosters connections within the community and supports impactful missions around the world.

Each step taken through the doors of Causeway Coffee invites you into a world dedicated to the perfection of coffee and building meaningful relationships. The café believes that coffee has the power to bring people together, igniting conversations and nurturing friendships.

Whether gathered around the café’s cozy tables, engaged in vibrant discussions, or quietly savoring a preferred brew, every visitor becomes part of a larger narrative. This community is a tapestry of individuals united by their love for great coffee and a shared desire to make a positive difference.

Causeway Coffee extends its efforts beyond the confines of being just another café. Every cup enjoyed at the café contributes to supporting missions around the world. Supporting mission groups like Mission of Hope, and aiding in local charitable endeavors, Causeway Coffee endeavors to make a significant impact through the simple act of enjoying your favorite coffee.


8. Bistrology




Bistrology isn’t just renowned for its enticing food menu, but also for its focus on creating a rich, memorable coffee experience. The café section in Bistrology is a sanctuary for coffee lovers, offering a coffee menu that persuasively balances innovation and tradition to serve up stellar brews.

At Bistrology, you can explore a range of exceptional coffee brews. There’s the familiar comfort of an expertly crafted Espresso or the caffeinated embrace of a smooth Cappuccino. For those who prefer their coffee black, the Americano, served without milk but with the same attention to detail, is a perfect accompaniment to the café’s indulgent pastries.

Featuring an assortment of Specialty Coffee Drinks that are specially concocted for those looking for a unique coffee experience. Creative adaptations of popular drinks, with tantalizing additions, are part of the café’s efforts to ensure that each coffee lover’s visit is a memorable one.



Vacation with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals


At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, we believe that every vacation unfurls a distinct tale – filled with colorful characters, a plethora of emotions, and lifelong memories. Our mission is to offer you a beautiful canvas to paint these unforgettable vacation experiences on the stunning Gulf Coast of Florida.

Imagine embarking on your day with a fresh, delicious cup of coffee, while surrounded by the breathtaking vistas of the Emerald Coast. Each destination along the coast, whether Panama City Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, or Miramar Beach, invites you to revel in their unique coffee culture. As your senses soak in stunning sea views, delicious meals, and the intoxicating aroma of freshly roasting coffee beans, you’ll feel an invigorating sense of the perfect vacation morning.

Choosing Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals means opting for an unmatched selection of vacation rental properties to suit every traveler’s taste. Whether you fancy a beachfront condominium, pet-friendly rentals or a charming beachside cottage, we have you covered. Our properties are strategically located, giving you convenient access to idyllic beaches, enticing dining options, exquisite golf courses, and an array of outdoor pursuits like deep-sea fishing, dolphin tours and more.

Our commitment to offering personalized service manifests in our friendly and knowledgeable staff dedicated to helping you find just the right vacation rental tailored to your preferences. They are well-equipped to guide you through local attractions, recommend the best dining spots, and suggest engaging activities to make your vacation truly unforgettable.

Setting out on an epic adventure along Florida’s enchanting landscapes, sampling tantalizing culinary delights, and creating enduring memories, is what your vacation with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals promises. Your journey begins with a perfectly brewed cup of coffee from one of the distinctive coffee shops scattered along this beautiful coastline. Secure your place in Florida’s Gulf Coast paradise by booking your vacation rental with us today.

The Emerald Coast boasts unparalleled natural beauty and a wealth of kid-friendly activities. Nestled amidst miles of verdant landscapes and crystal-clear waters, this vibrant ecosystem offers a plethora of recreation options for families, making it a premier destination for memorable family holidays.


Beach Hopping With The Kids



Let’s start with the most obvious yet incredibly exciting activity for kids – reveling in the joy of the Emerald Coast’s sun-kissed beaches. Here, you’ll find an extensive tapestry of sandy playgrounds that stretch as far as the eye can see, each providing the perfect setting for a session of unadulterated fun. From building monumental sandcastles that would make monarchs jealous at Destin Beach to initiating the little ones into the joy of paddling in the gentle, azure waves at Fort Walton Beach, there’s bound to be a beach along the picturesque stretches of the Emerald Coast that your little ones will fall head over heels in love with.

But the activities on these beaches are not just confined to sandcastles and swimming. Shelling, a favorite pastime for children, is a popular beach activity as the Emerald Coast is home to an impressive variety of shells. Imagine the gleaming eyes of your children when they discover treasure in the form of shiny, colorful shells strewn plentifully upon the beach. Plus, you could pack a picnic basket with their favorite snacks, spreading your blanket for an impromptu beachside treat.

And let’s not forget about the mesmerizing spectacle of the setting sun. The picturesque coastal sunset, where the sky is painted with various hues of orange, red, and pink, promises to be an instant hit – even with the most energetic of kids. As the day winds down, take a stroll along the shoreline, hand in hand with your little ones, immersing yourselves in the serene beauty that unfolds.



Child-Friendly Dolphin Cruises


An absolute crowd-pleaser and a must-try for families visiting the Emerald Coast, dolphin cruises offer the fantastic opportunity to embark on a thrilling adventure and spot dolphins in their natural habitat. Thanks to the diverse marine life that calls the pristine waters of the Emerald Coast their home, there are numerous local operators offering top-notch dolphin cruises.

Two excellent options in Destin are Southern Star Dolphin Cruises and Olin Marler’s Dolphin Cruises. Both companies are well-equipped to provide an awe-inspiring experience that leaves no stone unturned. The knowledgeable guides aboard these cruises not only know the best spots to witness pods of playful dolphins leaping and frolicking in their watery playground but also share fascinating facts about these charismatic creatures.

Ripples of excitement will undoubtedly run through your kids as they catch sight of dolphins up close, surfacing, and diving in perfect harmony. Moreover, these cruises also provide an excellent vantage point to soak in the stunning vistas of the Emerald Coast, including sugar-sand beaches, sparkling waters, and an abundance of marine and birdlife.

Some dolphin cruise companies even offer sunset sailings, adding a touch of magic to an already unforgettable experience. Watching the sky turn from vibrant orange to soft pink as the sun takes a bow in the distance, all while dolphins dance through the waves, will undoubtedly create memories that remain etched in your kids’ minds forever.



Visiting the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park

Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park


How would your kids like to hold a friendly conversation with a chatty penguin or perhaps feed a gathering of eager stingrays? At the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park, your children can do that, and more. Standing as an ode to marine biodiversity, this park serves as an excellent platform for interactive encounters with diverse marine species, in a setting that is as exciting as it is educational.

What makes the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park a unique attraction, particularly for kids, is the plethora of heartwarming aquatic experiences it offers. Children can watch otters frolic playfully, witness the raw power of alligators, and observe the tranquil beauty of sea turtles, all in a single day.

However, the undisputed highlight of visiting the park extends beyond merely observing these incredible animals. Through various interactive programs, children are given an opportunity to directly engage with several marine creatures. Imagine the excitement sweeping across your kids’ faces as they reach out and touch a squishy sea anemone, offer a snack to a hungry stingray, or even mimic the funny ‘dance’ movements of playful penguins. The interaction with these creatures is carefully monitored and guided by experienced animal trainers, ensuring it is both safe and informative.

In addition to the hands-on marine life encounters, the Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park also hosts daily shows and informative sessions highlighting the habits, habitats, and quirks of the resident marine species. These fun-filled and engaging programs will not only provide endless entertainment for your kids but also stimulate their curiosity and appreciation for marine life.



Explore the Family-Oriented Big Kahuna’s Water & Adventure Park

Big Kahuna Water Park


Big Kahuna’s Water & Adventure Park, with its sheer scale and diversity of attractions, stands as a testament to the saying that ‘fun comes in all sizes’. A veritable oasis of enjoyment, Big Kahuna’s is packed to the brink with a wide array of fun-filled activities that cater to all age groups and thrill levels, making it a must-visit destination for families traveling to the Emerald Coast.

From towering, exhilarating water slides that send adrenaline junkies into squeals of delight, to meandering lazy rivers offering a perfect respite and relaxation zone for those seeking a slower pace, Big Kahuna’s houses the ultimate concoction of water-based activities. Children can deftly maneuver their way down exciting mini slides in specially designed kid zones, while teens and adults challenge each other to races down the high-speed slides.

However, the thrills at Big Kahuna’s aren’t limited to the water. The park also features an expansive Adventure Park, complete with miniature golf, super go-karts, and sky coaster rides. If your children are budding explorers, the tropical themed mini-golf courses offer an excellent adventure, with each hole offering a new challenge. For the need-for-speed enthusiasts, the exciting go-kart tracks will certainly raise the heart rate.

Alongside the pure fun and excitement, a day at Big Kahuna’s also provides ample opportunities for some quaint family bonding time. Be it teaming up for a float down the lazy river, joining forces for a round of mini-golf, or simply sharing a hearty lunch at one of the park’s many eateries – the shared experiences are sure to draw your family closer, strengthening your bond.


Family Fishing Excursions



Nestled amidst the glimmering beauty of the Gulf of Mexico, the Emerald Coast has earned a sterling reputation for its first-rate fishing spots. With its clear, fertile waters teeming with diverse marine life, the region provides an unparalleled opportunity to introduce your children to the classic, leisurely pastime of fishing at sea.

Charter a family-friendly boat from reputable companies such as Reel Legends Sportfishing Charters, and set off on an enchanting journey into the sea. These companies offer family-centered fishing trips that cater to all skill levels – from novice anglers taking their first steps into the world of fishing to veteran fishermen eager to cast their lines.

Casting a line and feeling that initial tug gives a thrilling sense of achievement, which is enhanced by the bonding time spent together as a family. Even if your children are new to fishing, the patient, skilled captains and crew will provide them with easy-to-understand instructions and make sure they are completely comfortable before they take their chance at catching a big one.

Whether you venture into deep sea fishing, trying your hand at catching Grouper, Snapper, or Amberjack, or choose to stay closer to shore for a spot of inshore fishing, the azure waters of the Emerald Coast are sure to reward your efforts. And who knows? You just might reel in a magnificent catch that’ll be the talking point of family dinners for years to come.


Discover the Emerald Coast Science Center – Great for Kids

Emerald Coast Science Center


At the cornerstone of education and entertainment stands the Emerald Coast Science Center, a dynamic museum adhering to the ethos “science made fun.” Designed with the objective to stir curiosity, stimulate critical thinking, and inspire learning through play, the center offers an unmatched opportunity to unleash your kids’ inner scientists.

The expansively themed interactive exhibits at the center cover an impressive range of scientific disciplines, making the compendium of knowledge truly multidisciplinary. From probing the mysteries of outer space in the astronomy section to getting up close with vibrant creatures in wildlife exhibits, the center is a ground for exploration, comprehension, and discovery.

The robotics exhibit, a favorite among many, allows children to tinker with real robots and learn basic programming skills. The “BioLab” enables them to observe live animals and understand more about biology and ecology. A unique feature of this section is the aquarium filled with local fauna where children can explore the marine life native to the Emerald Coast.

Another fascinating section is “Color & Light,” where your kids can discover the science behind light refraction and color perception through interactive play. Meanwhile, at the “Small Mart” area, children get a sense of the dynamics of a marketplace and learn about commerce in a fun and engaging way.

An exemplary demonstration of ‘learning through play,’ the Emerald Coast Science Center makes education a hands-on, captivating experience for kids. It allows them to push boundaries and question the world around them, thus fostering in them an enduring love for scientific inquiry.


Embark on a Pirate Cruise (Family Favorite)

Buccaneer Pirate Ship


For every child who has ever dreamt of swashbuckling adventures on the high seas, the Buccaneer Pirate Cruise offers a chance to turn fantasy into reality! Gather the family and embark on a thrilling escapade filled with pirates, treasure hunts, sword fights, and water gun skirmishes aboard a magnificent pirate ship. This one-of-a-kind experience is sure to create an unforgettable day for your kids – a day when they became a part of a pirate crew.

From the moment you step onto the ship, the enchanting world of pirates unfolds in front of your eyes. Captained by a boisterous pirate crew, the Buccaneer Pirate Cruise combines the romance of a bygone era with the exhilaration of high-energy entertainment. Throughout the voyage, the crew welcomes the children on board into their fold, dressing them up as pirates, complete with eye patches and bandanas, readying them for a thrilling adventure.

The real excitement begins when the ship sets sail, as the children are initiated into a world of treasure hunts and pirate challenges. They learn to read treasure maps, navigate with a compass, and decipher cryptic clues, all essential skills to find the hidden treasure. The excitement is palpable as they face a series of zany games and surprises designed to test their mettle.

But it isn’t all fun and games in the world of piracy – Pirate Pete, the ship’s nemesis, is lurking nearby, threatening to steal the treasure. Girding for a fierce battle, the children take up their swords for swashbuckling lessons and learn to wield water guns to repel the villainous foe.

Alongside the adrenaline-pumping adventures, the Buccaneer Pirate Cruise entertains kids and adults alike with lively music, dancing, storytelling, and comedy acts. The jovial atmosphere on board will have everyone laughing and clapping along to the tune.


Find the Perfect Kid-Friendly Vacation with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals

The Emerald Coast, with its staggering assortment of attractions and activities, truly stands as a realm where vacation dreams come to life. Whether it’s bonding with your family on a swashbuckling pirate adventure, delving into the wonders of science, casting the perfect line for a fishy fortune, or daring the heart-pounding rides at Big Kahuna’s – there’s no end to the magical experiences that await you.

And to make these memories even more cherished, choosing to stay with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals offers the quintessential home away from home. Our array of beautiful, comfortable vacation homes caters to varying requirements and budgets, ensuring all families can find their perfect fit. Our properties offer the comfort of all modern amenities coupled with the serene beauty of coastal living.

Every element of your stay, down to the smallest detail, is handled with care, ensuring a hassle-free, enjoyable vacation experience. Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals prides itself on our commitment to providing personalized care, ensuring that your vacation is as relaxing and enjoyable as you envisioned.

So why wait? Step into this paradise, experience the magic of the Emerald Coast and let Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals be the gateway to your dream vacation. Your unforgettable adventure awaits!



The stretch of Florida’s coastline known as the Emerald Coast, spanning from Pensacola to Panama City Beach, has earned its reputation for enchanting white-sand beaches and stunning emerald-green waters. Beyond the picturesque landscapes that feature vast sandy expanses and glistening coastal waters, the region boasts vibrant coastal communities, ensuring ample opportunities for creating lasting scenic memories. In addition to its natural splendor, the Emerald Coast serves as the backdrop for a diverse range of year-round events, embracing realms such as food, sports, music, art, and more.

Let’s delve into some of the standout annual activities that grace this coastal haven. These events transcend being mere attractions; they embody the essence of local culture and lifestyle, providing a genuine glimpse into the vibrant tapestry that defines the Emerald Coast.


30A Songwriters Festival


30A Songwriters Festival - The Rascals

Photo By Daisy Hipbilly


Nestled in the scenic locales along Highway 30A in Florida’s South Walton County, this annual extravaganza has become synonymous with the perfect blend of cool beach weather and sizzling musical performances, making it a highlight of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend each year. Over 175 artists will grace the stages, turning this long weekend into a truly enchanting musical experience. From intimate venues to expansive amphitheaters, the festival promises a diverse array of live performances that will resonate throughout South Walton.

The 30A Songwriters Festival, now in its 15th year, has firmly established itself as a musical haven, where the likes of Jeff Tweedy, Elvis Costello & The Imposters, Rosanne Cash, and KT Tunstall will headline the 2024 edition. These stellar artists will contribute to the festival’s reputation for delivering an extraordinary musical journey that captivates audiences in every note.

This cultural phenomenon not only showcases the beauty of South Walton’s beaches but also underscores the region’s creative excellence. The festival, taking place annually in January, unites communities and businesses, highlighting Walton County as a destination for both its natural allure and artistic prowess. Beyond the joyous celebration of music, the 30A Songwriters Festival is a beacon of philanthropy, with 100% of its net proceeds benefitting the Cultural Arts Alliance (CAA). This support enables the CAA to champion the arts in Walton County, further enriching the cultural fabric of the region.


Take a Kid Fishing Day




Take a Kid Fishing Day stands as a cherished annual tradition in Destin, uniting the local community in a heartwarming effort to introduce children aged 7 to 13 to the wonders of fishing. Each year, on the inaugural Sunday of November, approximately 300 young anglers are granted a priceless opportunity to embark on a fishing adventure on the Gulf of Mexico or Choctawhatchee Bay, all at no cost to them.

The day commences with a nourishing breakfast provided for each child and their accompanying chaperones. Following this, they board some of Destin’s finest charter boats for a guided fishing excursion led by experienced captains and dedicated crew members who generously volunteer their time and expertise. The young participants are imparted with fundamental fishing knowledge, covering techniques, tackle essentials, and insights into the local marine ecosystem.

Upon returning from their maritime escapade, the children and their chaperones are treated to a celebratory fish fry lunch, commemorating their successful day on the water. To further foster their newfound passion for fishing, each child receives a commemorative t-shirt and their very own rod and reel to take home.

Take a Kid Fishing Day has evolved into a beloved 27-year tradition in Destin, leaving an indelible mark on over 9,000 young participants to date. The success of this heartwarming event is made possible through the funds raised in two annual fundraisers: the Harbor Docks Take a Kid Fishing Day Auction held every August and the Caddyshack Classic Golf Tournament in March. The benevolence of local businesses, captains, crew members, and volunteers collectively contributes to the realization of this extraordinary experience for the children of Destin, reinforcing the community’s commitment to fostering a love for fishing among the younger generation.


Kitty Hawk Kite Festival


Kitty Hawk Kites Festival


Along the picturesque coastal landscape, this much-anticipated event transforms the heavens into a canvas adorned with hundreds of vibrant kites, creating a mesmerizing spectacle that etches itself into the memories of both young and old. Against the backdrop of the Florida coastline, the sky becomes a living, breathing gallery of swirling hues and dynamic shapes, as kite enthusiasts from far and wide gather to celebrate the joy of flight.

The Kitty Hawk Kite Festival is more than just a visual feast; it is a celebration of the timeless art of kite flying. Participants, ranging from skilled kite flyers to curious onlookers, come together to partake in the festivities and witness the skillful mastery of kite enthusiasts as they manipulate the wind to breathe life into their vibrant creations. The air is filled with the rhythmic hum of kite strings, the laughter of children, and the collective awe of the crowd as these colorful wonders dance and soar overhead, showcasing the limitless possibilities that the marriage of wind and string can achieve.

Beyond the sheer visual spectacle, the festival is a hub of creativity and camaraderie. Attendees can participate in kite-making workshops, adding their personal touch to the event by crafting their airborne masterpieces. Families and friends spread out on the sandy shores, creating a lively picnic atmosphere as they watch the sky come alive with the fluttering dance of kites. The Kitty Hawk Kite Festival, with its infectious energy and vibrant atmosphere, encourages a sense of wonder and playfulness, reminding everyone, young and old, of the simple joys that take flight when tethered to a string.


Destin Fishing Rodeo


Destin Fishing Rodeo


The Destin Fishing Rodeo is an iconic event that has cast its spell on fishing enthusiasts since its inception in 1948. This time-honored tradition has evolved into a spectacular showcase of the Gulf Coast’s abundant marine life, drawing anglers and spectators alike to the shores of Destin, Florida. As the fall season sets in, the emerald waters of the Gulf of Mexico come alive with the excitement and fervor of the fishing community, turning Destin into a bustling hub for maritime festivities.

The Destin Fishing Rodeo is not merely an event; it is a celebration of the rich maritime heritage that has earned Destin the coveted title of “The World’s Luckiest Fishing Village.” The roots of this tradition run deep, echoing the history of a community intertwined with the bounties of the sea. Over the years, the rodeo has grown from a local fishing competition to a significant tourist attraction, captivating the imagination of anglers from near and far. It has become a focal point for those seeking a premier fishing experience, drawing participants who cast their lines in pursuit of the diverse array of species that inhabit the Gulf waters during this season.

What sets the Destin Fishing Rodeo apart is not only the abundance of fish but also the vibrant atmosphere that surrounds the event. The harbor comes alive with the hustle and bustle of anglers preparing to embark on their maritime quests, and the air is filled with the scent of saltwater and anticipation. The tournament features an impressive array of categories, showcasing the versatility and skill of the participants as they compete for coveted titles and prizes.



Annual Destin Seafood Festival


Destin Seafood Festival


Indulge your passion for seafood at the much-anticipated Annual Destin Seafood Festival, a culinary extravaganza that beckons food enthusiasts from far and wide. Nestled along the enchanting Destin Harbor, this festival is a gastronomic delight that not only celebrates the bounty of the Gulf but also serves as a testament to the vibrant culinary culture of the region. The event has evolved into a culinary spectacle, attracting nearly 70,000 guests over three days, each eager to savor the delectable treasures of the sea.

As you navigate the bustling atmosphere of the Destin Seafood Festival, your senses will be tantalized by the irresistible aroma of freshly prepared seafood wafting through the air. From succulent shrimp and flavorful fish to melt-in-your-mouth crab delicacies, the festival is a paradise for seafood lovers seeking an exquisite culinary experience. Local chefs showcase their culinary prowess, creating a diverse menu that highlights the freshness and quality of the region’s seafood offerings.

However, the Destin Seafood Festival is not just a feast for the palate; it’s a celebration for the entire family. The festival grounds come alive with the infectious beats of local music, providing a lively backdrop to your culinary exploration. Families can partake in a variety of engaging and family-friendly activities, creating a festive atmosphere that extends beyond the dining experience. From interactive games to artisanal crafts, the festival offers a perfect blend of entertainment and relaxation for attendees of all ages.

The picturesque setting along the Destin Harbor adds to the overall charm of the event. The waterfront ambiance enhances the dining experience, allowing festival-goers to enjoy their seafood delights against the backdrop of sparkling waters and panoramic views.



Whether you’re a gourmand, a fitness enthusiast, an avid fisher, or just looking to participate in local festivities, the Emerald Coast’s annual events keep its vibrant spirit alive throughout the year. The coast is indeed a destination for all seasons, promising endless fun, engaging activities, and unforgettable experiences to its visitors. Planning to visit? Remember to synchronize your calendars with these fantastic events!

Congratulations on unlocking the door to your own piece of paradise on the sun-drenched shores of the Emerald Coast, Florida! The Emerald Coast beckons with its pristine sugar-white sandy beaches, the allure of emerald green waters, and a vibrant community that embodies the quintessential laid-back Florida lifestyle. In this crash course, we’re thrilled to guide you through the essentials of making the most of your newfound haven and how to maximize your potential income.

vacation rental key showing startup costs with new home


Let’s begin with an inevitable aspect: expenses. Startup costs, the financial outlays associated with launching any business, naturally fluctuate depending on the industry. Estimating these costs for your short-term rental might seem a bit perplexing, but fear not—it’s not an overly complex task. You’ll encounter two primary types of costs:

  1. Fixed Costs: These are recurring expenses that you must pay regularly, encompassing items like utility bills, internet services, certain supplies, and staff payroll. Whether or not your rental is fully booked, these costs persist. Some may also fluctuate with demand; for instance, your need for cleaning supplies correlates with the number of bookings. Several of these fixed costs mirror those you’re already managing for your personal residence.
  2. One-Time Costs: New property owners must contend with these costs. They may include essential repairs required before listing your rental, investments in décor and furniture—particularly unique pieces that photograph well—outstanding amenities to distinguish your property, and, given the visual nature of the business, high-quality photos for effective advertising.

It’s crucial to estimate, evaluate, and plan for these costs. Keep in mind that your initial months might yield negative revenues before gaining traction. This is a common phase for startups, and perseverance is key. At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, we are one of the few companies with NO startup costs.


When contemplating expenses for Emerald Coast vacation rentals, some property managers may consider skipping investments in design and décor. However, picture this scenario: you’re planning a holiday. Would you prefer accommodations that resemble an ordinary home or a place with a chic design that captures the essence of its coastal surroundings?

In the vacation rental market, guests seek uniqueness. This translates to a thoughtfully decorated property featuring modern hardware and appliances. Achieving a smart design involves finding the right mix of furniture, crafting an appealing lighting scheme (balancing natural and artificial light), and incorporating house plants with open views of the natural surroundings—both indoors and outdoors.

For an extra touch of charm, draw inspiration from the local environment. Narrate a story with your vacation rental that reflects the nuances of the Emerald Coast’s culture. This approach is bound to elicit an emotional response from your guests, ultimately enhancing your property’s appeal and potentially increasing your rental rates.


In the bustling marketplace of Emerald Coast vacation properties, standing out from the competition is crucial. While having an updated and tastefully decorated Emerald Coast rental is a good start, it’s no longer sufficient. To truly captivate your guests and provide a memorable experience, you must go the extra mile.

Investing in high-quality amenities is a strategic way to secure more bookings and boost your revenues. We’re not just talking about the basics like a hot tub or a good view—those are now expected. Instead, aim to exceed expectations, add a “wow” factor, break the pattern, and capture the attention of potential guests as they browse online for their ideal Emerald Coast vacation rental.

To simplify the process, we recommend tailoring the amenities to the size of your property:

  1. For one-bedroom properties, a hot tub is a nice touch but not essential.
  2. Two or three-bedroom rentals should feature at least one entertainment feature, such as a pool table—popular choices among guests.
  3. Three and four-bedroom rentals can enhance their appeal with two or three entertainment features, including options like air hockey, foosball, and occasionally shuffleboard.

As your property size increases, consider adding more amenities. Why not keep the younger guests occupied with two game rooms instead of one? Or, for a touch of luxury, think about a pool.

For truly unique and memorable experiences, think beyond the ordinary. Let your creativity run free!

waterfront view emerald coast Florida


Maintaining cleanliness is one of the pivotal factors influencing your quality score as an Emerald Coast vacation property owner. It not only impacts your rates but also plays a significant role in shaping guest reviews. If you aspire to elevate your nightly rates, prioritizing cleanliness is essential, and many property owners choose to enlist the services of a dependable cleaning crew to handle this crucial task.

While an immaculate space is the goal, the need for a deep clean after each guest’s departure is not practical. The costs, both in terms of money and time, would likely surpass your revenues. Striking a balance is key. Routine cleaning, addressing visible concerns like changing linens and sanitizing surfaces, floors, and hot tubs, is a lighter yet effective approach.

However, there comes a point when a comprehensive deep clean becomes necessary. This involves heavy lifting—cleaning under large appliances and furniture, dusting blinds and fans, inspecting walls and ceilings for cobwebs, treating wooden surfaces, and thoroughly cleaning features like the jacuzzi.

In our experience, an annual deep clean is standard practice. If your property experiences high turnover or accommodates pets, considering bi-annual deep cleaning sessions might be prudent. A deep clean serves as a reset, but it comes at a higher cost, approximately three times more than a regular cleaning. Additionally, it may necessitate temporarily closing your rental for one or two days to ensure a thorough and effective cleaning process.


Similar to the meticulousness of cleaning, maintaining, and caring for your Emerald Coast vacation property is a key strategy for upholding a high-quality score and garnering positive reviews. This practice should be incorporated into your routine, and your cleaning staff often becomes a valuable asset, as they are usually the ones to identify damages and maintenance requirements.

In many respects, your Emerald Coast vacation rental is akin to a home deserving of regular care. However, being a short-term rental property means experiencing a higher volume of people coming and going, necessitating more frequent maintenance.

Periodically, take the time to personally inspect the property or entrust someone you trust to thoroughly assess everything. This includes checking supplies (always replacing broken or outdated items), inspecting sinks, showers, and baths, and addressing larger concerns such as repainting walls, fixing flooring, and replacing carpets. Neglecting ongoing maintenance can lead to significant costs down the line.

Considering costs, when budgeting, it’s advisable to allocate a minimum of 5% of your gross income for care and maintenance. This proactive approach serves as preparation, helping you avoid unpleasant financial repercussions when maintenance needs arise.


Is your décor meticulously curated? Have you incorporated unique amenities? Is every detail clean and in perfect condition? Fantastic. Now, let’s capture it all.

Undoubtedly, you’ve invested not only love and care but also a significant amount of money into your Emerald Coast vacation property. While it may be tempting for owners to cut costs by capturing images themselves using smartphones, the truth is even with advancements in phone cameras, achieving optimal shots requires a technical eye.

Elements like proper lighting, focus, and angles are just as crucial as staging your Emerald Coast rental and knowing which features to highlight. This is why we strongly advise setting aside a little extra to enlist the services of a professional photographer. Professional lenses have the ability to work wonders.

In this marketing-driven industry, high-quality photos are indispensable. Trust us when we say that the right set of images can directly impact your nightly rates by over 50%.


Once you have those stunning professional photos at your disposal, the next question arises: where to showcase them?

Numerous websites specialize in short-term rentals, each offering unique marketing advantages. Our strategy involves listing our vacation rentals on various platforms, including Airbnb and Vrbo. Notably, the latter two consistently yield higher booking volumes for us.

When deciding where to promote your listing, consider several essential factors:

  1. Cost Structure: Does the platform charge based on subscription or per booking?
  2. Insurance: Does the platform offer insurance coverage for hosts and guests?
  3. Audience Popularity: Is the platform popular among your target audience?
  4. Booking Fees: What are the booking fees? Check policies on host fees, guest fees, credit card fees, etc., to avoid unexpected surprises.
  5. Customer Support: Does the platform provide reliable customer support? Technical issues can arise, so responsive support is crucial.
  6. Software Integrations: Does the platform allow for seamless software integrations? As your business expands, incorporating additional platforms will streamline your operations.

The beauty of listing platforms is that you’re not limited to choosing just one. Opt for a tailored mix that aligns with your business goals and resonates with your target audience.

house with revenue chart rentals


As with any business, determining the right price is a pivotal aspect of managing a short-term rental, and all the considerations mentioned above contribute to establishing the base for a nightly fee. It involves assessing expenses, accounting for both major and minor costs, and incorporating a profit percentage.

Once you arrive at a final figure, take a step back and conduct a comprehensive evaluation of your property. Consider its offerings, location, and how it compares with similar vacation rentals in the market. Ask yourself whether the price is fair and how it would be perceived if you were not the owner.

Now that you’ve arrived at an optimal nightly fee, there’s more to consider. Long-term success lies in setting the right fee for specific circumstances.

This is why we advocate adopting a strategy widely embraced in the hospitality industry: a dynamic pricing strategy. This approach entails adjusting fees based on your guests’ willingness to pay. For instance, you can establish a premium rate during the high season and lower prices during the low season. Developing your strategy requires a blend of intuition and knowledge.

Admittedly, it’s not a simple task. In reality, things can get somewhat complex. Fortunately, several tech-based solutions are available in the market to assist you in managing dynamic pricing. At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, we’re here to help you navigate the intricacies and crunch the numbers—it’s one of the many areas where we excel.


You’ve successfully secured bookings—now, how do you navigate the guest experience?

In this business, the relationship you cultivate with your guests is paramount. As a host, your role is to ensure they have a delightful experience in your rental. Unlike hotels, the standards here are different, allowing for a more personal touch.

Begin by aligning expectations with reality. Achieve this by focusing on the foundations of your listing: images and descriptions. Ensure your photos are specific and realistic, capturing your Emerald Coast rental accurately. In your description copy, provide comprehensive details to equip guests with all they need to know.

Effective communication is key. Supply guests with essential information upon their arrival through well-crafted guidebooks and manuals. We’ve emphasized the importance of timely communication in ensuring guest satisfaction and garnering coveted five-star reviews. Additionally, emphasize your availability to address questions or promptly resolve any issues that may arise.

While some guests may inadvertently disregard rules, there are proactive measures to reduce potential problems, such as politely declining large groups, pets, and one-night stays—a possible indicator of guests seeking a party setting.

Occasionally, guests may leave the property in a less-than-ideal state or accidentally break some items. How you choose to handle these situations is a crucial aspect of hosting. Fortunately, based on our years in the business, we’ve observed that, more often than not, rentals are left in an acceptable condition.


We invest significant time, money, and care into our Emerald Coast rentals, often viewing them as extensions of our own homes. However, it’s crucial to maintain the perspective that these rentals serve as tools for generating income—a product in the rental business.

Firstly, approach the design of your space with a focus on what appeals to a broad audience rather than personal preferences. While adding a personal touch is fine, do so thoughtfully. Avoid incorporating personal items or photographs, and resist the temptation to treat your rental as a storage space for items you wouldn’t want in your own living quarters.

Moreover, when guests misbehave or items break, it’s essential not to take it personally. Unpleasant surprises may occur, but detaching yourself emotionally and recognizing that you are running a business for profit can make handling such situations more manageable.


Navigating the vacation rental industry can be an exhilarating journey, but it also comes with its fair share of challenges. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed by the intricacies of managing your Emerald Coast property in the bustling vacation rental market, turning to Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals is the solution to regain control and find peace of mind.

Local Expertise: Our team possesses in-depth knowledge of the Emerald Coast and its unique real estate landscape. We understand the local market trends, regulations, and community dynamics, ensuring that your property is positioned for success in this coastal haven.

Streamlined Management: Managing a vacation rental involves a multitude of tasks, from marketing and booking to cleaning and maintenance. Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals offers a comprehensive management approach, streamlining these processes to alleviate the burden on property owners. With our support, you can focus on enjoying the benefits of property ownership without the daily operational hassles.

Optimized Marketing: Effective marketing is crucial for attracting guests to your property. Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals leverages a targeted marketing strategy, ensuring your property stands out in a crowded market. From professional photography to strategic listing placements, we showcase your property to its full potential.

Guest Satisfaction: Happy guests are repeat guests. Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals prioritizes guest satisfaction through timely communication, personalized services, and swift issue resolution. This commitment not only enhances the guest experience but also contributes to positive reviews and increased property demand.

Financial Clarity: Navigating the financial aspects of a vacation rental can be complex. Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals provides transparent financial reporting, helping you understand your property’s performance, income, and expenses. Our goal is to empower you with the information needed to make informed decisions about your investment.

Adaptability in Dynamic Markets: The vacation rental market is ever-evolving. Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals adapts to market changes, utilizing dynamic pricing strategies and staying abreast of industry trends to optimize your property’s performance and revenue potential.



Contact the pros at Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals today to enjoy the peace of mind that your investment will be managed by a trusted partner with a team that has years of experience!

Choosing the right property manager is not just a business decision; it’s a commitment to the success and prosperity of your Emerald Coast vacation rental. Your beach property is more than just a space – it’s an investment that deserves top-notch care to ensure it thrives.

In the vast landscape of the Emerald Coast property management, numerous companies compete for your consideration. Amidst this array, it’s essential to distinguish not only what they offer but how their services align with your unique needs.

Let’s delve into the core aspects that truly matter – the factors that set us apart and make us the ideal partner for your vacation rental journey: Revenue and Fees, Marketing and Pricing, Guest Services, and Maintenance.


Revenue and Fees


Revenue Management



At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, we pride ourselves on our transparent and owner-friendly approach to revenue and fees. Our mission is clear: to maximize your income while minimizing unnecessary costs. In contrast to some property management companies, we believe in a straightforward pricing model with no hidden fees. We understand that your vacation rental is a significant investment, and we are dedicated to ensuring that your financial success is our top priority.


Transparent Revenue and Fees: A Commitment to Your Prosperity


1. Competitive Rates and Lower-Than-Average Fees

Our commitment to your financial success begins with competitive rates and fees lower than the industry average. We don’t just focus on collecting fees; we strategically set our pricing to optimize your returns, ensuring that every dollar contributes to the prosperity of your investment.


2. Open Communication for Clear Understanding

At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, we prioritize open communication. You will always have a clear understanding of your revenue and the fees associated with our services. No surprises, no hidden charges – just a transparent partnership built on trust and financial clarity.


3. No Booking Fees: A Distinct Advantage

Unlike some competitors, we stand apart by not charging any booking fees. We’ve witnessed instances where booking fees, maintenance fees, and cleaning fees can significantly impact an owner’s income. With us, you can be confident that every dollar you earn is a direct result of the value we bring to your vacation home.



Rent-Seeking Practices: A Comparison with Vacasa



1. Beyond Commission Rates: Exposing Hidden Fees

It’s crucial to look beyond the commission rate when evaluating property management companies. Some competitors, like Vacasa, may have an average commission rate of 20% in the area. However, they also impose additional fees, such as booking fees, particularly for direct bookings made over 60 days out. We believe in a fair and transparent approach – no booking fees with our brands.


2. No Monthly Maintenance Fees: A Cost-Saving Advantage

While some companies charge monthly maintenance fees, often regardless of the services provided, we take a different stance. We believe in fair pricing and don’t burden you with additional costs if no service is performed. Our commitment is to help you maximize your income, not add unnecessary charges.


3. No Guest Insurance Deductions: Preserving Your Income

Understanding the nuances of fees is crucial. Some property management companies charge owners for guest insurance, which can eat into your income. With us, you won’t face such deductions – every dollar you earn stays with you.



Marketing and Pricing




Selecting a property management company for your Emerald Coast rental is a momentous decision. While many companies guarantee the listing of your property on platforms like Airbnb, Vrbo, Tripadvisor, Expedia, and Hotels.com, Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals distinguishes itself through several key features.


Market Research Expertise:

Our dedicated software meticulously tracks major local competitors, monitoring their pricing and availability. This allows us to stay attuned to local trends, adapting swiftly to changes in demand. Whether it involves adjusting prices during peak demand or strategically lowering them during events like the initial COVID-19 outbreak, our approach has consistently outperformed the area average. Remarkably, our listings maintained a 75% booking rate while the surrounding average hovered below 10%.


Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Excellence:

Emerald Coast Vacation Rental’s software team brings industry-leading SEO tools to the table, tools that have been previously employed by thousands of marketers globally. This wealth of experience is seamlessly integrated into the short-term rental space, ensuring maximum exposure and revenue for your property. Our SEO proficiency positions us to optimize your listing for peak performance in search engine results.


Dynamic Pricing Strategies:

Complementing our market research, our pricing tools yield optimal results for your rental. We consistently monitor occupancy and booking rates, making daily adjustments. Utilizing tools like Pricelabs and Wheelhouse, we maximize revenue and offer competitive rates for last-minute stays, eliminating the possibility of empty nights.


At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, we transcend the role of a typical property management company. We deeply care about the success of your Emerald Coast rental, recognizing the impact that vacant nights and incorrect pricing can have on your investment. Our commitment extends beyond the standard as we actively monitor the area’s dynamics, rates, and more to ensure you never encounter unnecessary setbacks. Your beach rental is not just a property to us; it’s a shared investment, and we are steadfastly dedicated to ensuring its thriving success.


Guest Services


Customer Service


At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, our commitment transcends traditional property management; we are devoted to curating unparalleled experiences for couples, families, and groups during every stay along the pristine shores of the Emerald Coast in Florida. Recognizing the profound responsibility of being custodians of cherished memories, we hold this responsibility with the utmost sincerity.

Our operational philosophy is grounded in a meticulously designed system, not only streamlining the visitation process but also guaranteeing contented guests, exemplary reviews, and the kind of loyalty that engenders repeat visits. Here are the distinguishing features of our premium guest services on the alluring Emerald Coast:


Personalized Orientation Emails:

Elevating guest communication, we provide meticulously crafted personalized orientation emails. Covering everything from house rules to unveiling local treasures, our communication spans every stage of the booking process – from reservation to post-checkout. This ensures that our guests remain well-informed and genuinely valued throughout their trip.


On-the-Ground Support:

Our specialized team is adept at handling emergencies seamlessly, whether it involves addressing critical repairs like AC malfunctions, resolving unforeseen issues with amenities like hot tubs, or untangling technological glitches like HDMI cable conundrums. Their mission is to swiftly and efficiently address any unforeseen challenges, ensuring our guests experience a seamless and stress-free stay.


At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, we firmly believe that the essence of excellence lies in the details. We are dedicated to ensuring that every detail, meticulously attended to, contributes to an extraordinary and memorable stay for your guests on the captivating Emerald Coast of Florida. Our commitment to creating indelible experiences is not just reflected in our services but is woven into the fabric of the cherished memories we assist in crafting for each and every guest.




Caring for your Emerald Coast vacation rental is more than a task; it’s a pivotal measure in safeguarding your investment. Ensuring your rental remains in impeccable condition and optimal working order goes beyond maximizing monthly income; it’s about positioning your property for a top-dollar sale when the time comes.

Our dedicated cleaning crews go beyond mere tidying; they embark on a meticulous journey guided by a specific checklist. Their keen eye is trained to proactively identify potential issues before they have a chance to escalate. From a subtle sag in the floor to unwelcome bug invasions or wear and tear on decks, we catch nuances that might escape the untrained eye. By addressing minor concerns promptly, we prevent them from snowballing into major headaches, saving you not just money but also the headache of your guests stumbling upon unexpected hazards.

Because, let’s face it, nobody wants their guests to be the ones uncovering hidden challenges during their stay. We believe in dealing with the nitty-gritty before it becomes headline-worthy. It’s not just about a checklist for us; it’s about ensuring that every nook and cranny of your beach rental radiates the kind of excellence that not only protects your investment but also enhances the overall experience for both you and your guests.

The next time you walk into your beach rental, envision it not just as a property but as an ongoing narrative of care and attention. We’re not just maintaining rentals; we’re curating spaces that stand the test of time, ensuring that your investment doesn’t just weather challenges but flourishes through them.


Discover the Difference of Renting with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals


Discover the Emerald Coast difference with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals in the breathtaking landscapes of Florida. We’re not merely a property management team; we’re a close-knit community treating your beach property as if it were our very own. Choosing us means more than professional care; it means becoming part of a family that values you beyond just being a vacation rental owner.

In contrast to larger companies overseeing hundreds or even thousands of rentals, we embrace the intimate touch that comes with being a small, dedicated team. Opting for us over industry giants like Vacasa ensures that your Gulf Shores vacation rental is never lost in the shuffle. To us, you’re not just another transaction; you’re a cherished member of our community.

What sets Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals apart? Lower fees and a commitment to earning your business without requiring a long-term commitment. Your satisfaction is paramount, and that’s why we allow you to cancel at any time. We’re here to build trust, ensuring you feel secure about your investment month after month.

Communication is at the forefront of our approach. We encourage both potential and current renters to connect with us and even reach out to our satisfied customers. There’s no hidden agenda – we want you to trust our methods as much as we do and feel confident in your investment.

Speaking of investments, your beach rental is in exceptional hands with us. We uphold our promise to treat your rental as if it were our own. Your financial success matters to us, and we reject the idea of charging for every minor detail. No surprise bills for light bulb replacements or changing remote batteries. We firmly believe your focus should be on enjoying your profits and your beach rental. Leave concerns about issues and market trends to us – we’ve got it covered! With Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, it’s not just about property management; it’s about building a relationship that enhances your investment experience on the stunning Emerald Coast of Florida.





Welcome to Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, where your beach getaway is not just a stay – it’s an experience filled with sun, sand, and memories. We understand that maintaining a pristine vacation rental isn’t just about upkeeping a property; it’s about creating a haven where guests can relax and create lifelong memories.

You might be wondering, what sets beach rentals apart? Well, managing a beach property involves a unique set of challenges, from kitchens to outdoor spaces. That’s why we want to share some insider tips from our experience as property managers on the stunning Emerald Coast of Florida. These are not just rules; they’re the secrets to ensuring your property shines, and your guests enjoy an unforgettable beach vacation.



1. Distinguishing Routine Cleaning from Deep Cleaning





In the realm of vacation home management on the enchanting Emerald Coast, we understand that the art of cleaning is multi-faceted. Routine cleaning is our day-to-day strategy, a practical and efficient approach that ensures your vacation home looks nothing short of flawless between guest stays. This method is specifically tailored to maintain the visible aspects of your property, preserving its picture-perfect allure that captivates guests from the moment they step through the door.

Routine cleaning is not a hasty endeavor; it’s a meticulous process where our cleaning staff pays close attention to every detail. From replenishing essential amenities to meticulously checking inventory, our goal is to present your property in the best possible light for incoming guests.

Yet, in the dynamic world of vacation rentals, we also recognize the pivotal role of deep cleaning. Deep cleaning involves more than just the surface-level tasks; it’s a comprehensive endeavor that tackles heavy-duty cleaning tasks to keep your property in impeccable condition. While routine cleaning is a frequent necessity, we recommend at least one deep clean per year to address those hard-to-reach areas and ensure a thorough refresh of your space.

For properties with high turnover, where guests come and go frequently, we understand that the need for deep cleaning may be more pressing. In such cases, we advocate for the possibility of scheduling two deep cleaning sessions annually. This strategic approach ensures that your property not only maintains its aesthetic appeal but also stands resilient against the wear and tear of frequent guest turnover.

In essence, our commitment to distinguishing routine cleaning from deep cleaning is a testament to our dedication to your property’s long-term excellence. By striking the right balance between these cleaning approaches, we aim to provide an environment where guests feel not only welcomed but immersed in the pristine beauty of their surroundings on the stunning Emerald Coast.



2. Trust the Pros


We believe in leaving no stone unturned, and that’s why we’ve assembled a dream team of third-party expert cleaners who are nothing short of cleaning wizards. They’re not just professionals; they’re artists dedicated to elevating the cleanliness of your property to an unparalleled level.

But the magic doesn’t end there. Our in-house inspectors, bona fide employees of our company, are the vigilant guardians of your property’s standards. Their sole job is to inspect, ensuring that every nook and cranny meets our stringent criteria for perfection. Not only do they scrutinize, but they also take care of those little details that often go unnoticed. Air filters, batteries, and bulbs are changed as part of our service, with absolutely no cost to our property owners. It’s our way of ensuring that your property not only looks pristine but functions seamlessly, creating an environment that guests will rave about.

When it comes to providing the best for our guests, even the linens get the royal treatment. All linens are laundered at service centers, receiving professional care that includes washing and bleaching. We want your guests to feel like they’re wrapped in clouds, experiencing the epitome of comfort and cleanliness during their stay.


Elevating the Guest Experience: Higher Rates and More Repeat Guests


The meticulous care we invest in cleaning and maintaining your property isn’t just about aesthetics. It’s a strategic move to create the best possible guest experience. And guess what? It pays off! Our commitment to excellence translates into higher rental rates and more repeat guests. We’re not just in the business of property management; we’re in the business of crafting unforgettable experiences that keep guests coming back for more.


3. Perform Preventative Maintenance





Imagine this as a journey of care, where we don’t wait for issues to arise; we take the proactive route. Regular inspections and timely repairs become our compass, guiding us to address potential concerns before they morph into costly problems. It’s like giving your cabin a health check, ensuring it’s in top-notch condition to welcome every guest with open arms.

Beyond the basics of changing batteries in smoke detectors, smart locks, and remote controls, we advocate for a holistic approach. Picture this: periodic professional inspections and maintenance tailored to the unique needs of your cabin. From cleaning gutters and air filters to checking the HVAC system, implementing pest control measures, and even conducting roof inspections – we leave no stone unturned. And let’s not forget our commitment to safety; a yearly fire safety inspection is a non-negotiable, ensuring all detectors and extinguishers are in proper working order.

Our mantra is simple: don’t delay. Address it right away. We believe that neglecting regular maintenance can come at a hefty price, both in terms of comfort for your guests and the long-term well-being of your cabin.

But here’s where Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals takes it up a notch. We understand that every rental is unique, and so are its maintenance needs. That’s why we offer our owners a dozen different preventive maintenance settings. It’s a personalized touch, allowing you to tailor the level of care your beach rental receives. Because we know that when it comes to maintaining your slice of paradise on the Emerald Coast, one size doesn’t fit all.



4. Use Technology


Here on the stunning Emerald Coast, where the sun meets the sea, we’re committed to making the management of your vacation rentals as smooth as the gentle waves lapping on our shores. In the age of technology, we’ve seamlessly integrated online solutions into our cleaning processes, ensuring efficiency is at the forefront of our operations.

When it comes to property management systems like Ownerrez, Hostfully, Guesty, and others, we’ve harnessed their power to provide our cleaning staff with user-friendly interfaces. It’s like giving them backstage access, enabling them to navigate the intricacies of maintaining your vacation homes with precision and care.

For property managers overseeing multiple units, we’ve incorporated Breezeway into our toolkit. This tool is a time-saving gem, streamlining cleaning and maintenance management across all our properties. With features like task management, we can set reminders for essential maintenance tasks, ensuring nothing is overlooked, whether it’s filter replacements or general upkeep.

Beyond the realm of cleaning and maintenance, technology plays a pivotal role in every aspect of our business. Embracing tech for short-term rentals has proven to be a game-changer, allowing us to enhance overall efficiency and provide a seamless experience for our guests.

At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, we take this commitment to efficiency one step further. Our task management system is directly linked to our scheduling system, creating a cohesive and organized approach. We’ve developed a custom-built phone app that our cleaners and maintenance staff use daily. This app not only keeps them in the loop but also enables them to provide real-time updates, comment on ongoing tasks, and even flag new issues they come across.

So, whether you’re a guest ready to unwind on the Emerald Coast or a property owner entrusting us with your vacation rental, rest assured that our tech-infused approach is designed to make your experience exceptional.



5. Guest Feedback


Customer Service


A meticulously cleaned vacation rental isn’t just a visual delight; it’s the secret sauce for cultivating stellar guest feedback, high ratings, and positive word-of-mouth endorsements. Cleanliness isn’t merely a checkbox on the guest satisfaction list; it’s the foundational element that sets the stage for an unparalleled experience. When guests step into a flawlessly cleaned space, they’re not just greeted by tidiness; they’re enveloped in a sense of comfort and assurance. A spotless environment reflects a commitment to their well-being, signaling that their stay is not just a transaction but a cherished experience. Positive guest feedback and high ratings often stem from the intangible magic of a pristine setting, where attention to detail in cleaning becomes the unsung hero. Moreover, in the world of word of mouth, a glowing recommendation from one guest to another is often rooted in the simple yet profound statement, “It was immaculately clean.” In essence, the investment in top-notch cleaning isn’t just an operational necessity; it’s a strategic move to create a ripple effect of satisfaction that resonates far beyond the initial stay, fostering a community of delighted guests who eagerly share their positive experiences.



Trust Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals as Your Partner


Here on the radiant shores of the Emerald Coast, Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals isn’t just a property management team; we’re your personal hosts crafting a haven for unforgettable moments. Beyond the routine cleaning and preventive maintenance, our dedication to your comfort extends to the heart of our customer service.

Picture us as your trusted companions, ready to embark on a journey of personalized care for your vacation home. And when it comes to preventive maintenance, we’re not just addressing issues; we’re safeguarding the sanctuary of your home.

In the world of customer service, we’re more than just a helpline; we’re your partners in ensuring every aspect of your experience runs seamlessly. From the moment you entrust us with your property, our team becomes an extension of your vision. We believe in transparent communication and being readily available for any questions or concerns.

At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, customer service is a conversation, not a transaction. We’re not just here to manage; we’re here to understand and cater to your unique needs. Whether it’s a special request, an inquiry, or a simple chat about your property, we’re always just a call away.

So, welcome to a realm where customer service isn’t a department; it’s a genuine connection. Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals is your partner in creating a haven on the Emerald Coast, where your property isn’t just managed; it’s cared for with a personalized touch that makes all the difference.






Thriving in Florida’s dynamic vacation rental market requires more than just securing a beautiful property; it demands a strategic approach that combines meticulous marketing, unparalleled attention to detail, and an unwavering commitment to delivering extraordinary customer service. In a landscape where numerous options compete for the attention of sun-seeking travelers, the key to standing out is a multifaceted strategy that goes beyond the basics.


From crafting a compelling online presence to fostering a warm and memorable guest experience, the essence is to create a narrative that distinguishes your rental amid the array of options along the Florida coastline. This guide delves into a thoughtfully curated list of tips and techniques aimed at elevating your property above the competition, not only to attract more guests but also to establish a reputation for genuine hospitality in this highly competitive market.


Whether you’re a seasoned vacation rental owner or just starting out in the hospitality industry, these insights provide a roadmap for success in Florida’s vibrant beach rental scene, making your property not only a destination but a more welcoming and hospitable experience for guests.



1. Photography and Descriptions



To truly stand out in Florida’s competitive rental home market, it’s essential to infuse a personal touch that resonates with potential renters. A key element in achieving this connection is the visual representation of your property. Investing in high-quality, professional photos that not only showcase your rental but also capture its essence can make a significant difference. These clear and appealing visuals not only draw in potential renters but also contribute to shaping the overall perception of your property.


Equally vital is the written portrayal of your rental. Go beyond the basics by crafting compelling and authentic property descriptions. Highlight not just the features and amenities but also the unique experience that staying at your rental offers. Paint a vivid picture through words to not only captivate the interest of potential guests but also to set realistic expectations. This personalized approach ensures a positive and fulfilling experience for those who choose to stay at your rental, creating a connection that goes beyond mere accommodation.




2. Pricing Strategy 


Pricing Strategy


Crafting a personable pricing strategy is key to both drawing in guests and optimizing revenue for your property. To set your place apart, dive into comprehensive market research using tools like Pricelabs and Wheelhouse platforms. These advanced tools dissect market dynamics, competitor pricing, and demand trends, empowering you to establish rates that are both competitive and appealing. By staying in tune with the market’s ebb and flow, you can ensure that your pricing not only entices potential renters but also mirrors the current demand and seasonal patterns.


Consider infusing a personal touch with a tiered pricing model that takes into account seasonal fluctuations, local events, and emerging trends. During peak seasons or high-demand periods, adjusting your rates can maximize profits without compromising occupancy rates. Conversely, offering competitive rates during slower seasons or aligning with local events can attract budget-conscious travelers, ensuring a steady stream of bookings throughout the year.


Beyond strategic pricing, sweetening the deal with incentives like discounts can broaden your property’s appeal. Think about offering discounts for extended stays, early bookings, or last-minute reservations. These incentives cater to diverse traveler preferences, attracting a wider range of guests and fostering loyalty. Platforms like Pricelabs and Wheelhouse can dynamically adjust your pricing to align with these promotional strategies, ensuring that your rates remain competitive while catering to the varied needs of potential renters.



3. Online Presence 



Creating a personable online presence is essential for gaining visibility and connecting with potential renters. Effectively harnessing popular vacation rental platforms like Airbnb, VRBO, and Booking.com is crucial. These platforms offer extensive reach to a diverse audience actively seeking accommodation options. By crafting listings that showcase captivating visuals and compelling descriptions, you elevate your property’s allure, increasing the likelihood of capturing the attention of prospective guests.


Having an informative website dedicated to your rental property serves as a powerful tool for reinforcing your online presence. A well-designed website acts as a centralized hub where potential guests can discover comprehensive details about your property. Provide in-depth information about accommodations, amenities, and any unique features that set your rental apart. Integrate engaging content about local attractions, highlighting your property’s proximity to popular destinations and activities. This not only attracts guests interested in the area but also underscores your commitment to delivering a thorough and considerate guest experience.


Regularly updating your website with fresh content, such as blog posts, local event highlights, and seasonal promotions, not only keeps potential guests engaged but also contributes to search engine optimization, further enhancing your property’s online visibility. Additionally, ensuring easy access to booking information and a user-friendly interface improves the overall guest experience, increasing the likelihood of turning visitors into bookings. In a crowded market, a thoughtfully crafted online presence serves as a guiding light, leading potential guests to your Emerald Coast rental amidst the myriad of options.



4. Unique Selling Points


Elevating your property in the Emerald Coast vacation rental market calls for a personal touch, honing in on its distinct attributes. Take a thoughtful approach to pinpoint and showcase the unique features that make your rental truly one-of-a-kind. Whether it’s a mesmerizing ocean view, a standout architectural design, or exclusive amenities, transform these standout elements into the focal points of your marketing materials. Utilize captivating imagery, detailed descriptions, and engaging storytelling to effectively convey the irresistible charm of these features, capturing the attention of potential renters and leaving a lasting impression.


By strategically highlighting your property’s distinctive features and cultivating partnerships that enhance the overall guest experience, you weave a compelling narrative that goes beyond mere accommodation. This not only attracts guests seeking a unique getaway but also fosters a sense of exclusivity and satisfaction, leading to positive word-of-mouth and repeat business. In the bustling beach rental market, the ability to showcase what makes your property special becomes the key to standing out and capturing the interest of discerning travelers looking for an extraordinary experience.


Pro Tip: Particularly for townhouses and homes, consider transforming your garage into a cool hang-out spot for kids. Set up games like ping pong and ladder ball to provide a shaded play area during the heat of the day. This not only keeps cars out of the garage but also turns it into a fun game room for the little ones, adding an extra dimension to your home.



5. Regular Maintenance and Upgrades




Keeping your Florida rental property charming isn’t a one-time thing – it’s an ongoing adventure. It’s about genuinely caring for your place and making sure it stays cozy and welcoming. Regular check-ups are key, helping you catch and fix any little issues before they become big headaches. This isn’t just about keeping guests happy; it’s also about making sure your investment stands strong for the long haul.


And here’s a thought – every now and then, consider giving your place a little facelift. Maybe switch up the decor, update some appliances, or add in a cool new feature that guests will love. By staying in the loop with what people like, you’re not just offering a nice stay; you’re giving them a vacation experience they’ll remember.


In a world full of choices, the care you put into your place can be the game-changer. It’s what sets you apart, makes guests want to come back, and gets them telling their friends about the awesome time they had at your spot.


Pro Tip: Suggest opting for Roku Smart TVs for your rental. They come with a special guest login feature, eliminating the hassle of personal logins. Plus, enjoy a complimentary Roku entertainment channel. And just in case, our team keeps spare Roku remotes on hand – they’ve got you covered!



6. Social Media Marketing


Social Media


In the age of all things digital, diving into the social media scene is like a secret weapon for making your mark in Florida’s beach rental world. Your online presence is more than just a snapshot of your property; it’s like a virtual invitation to potential guests. So, jump on platforms like Instagram and Facebook to weave a story around your rental. Share eye-catching pics, fun stories, and updates that not only showcase your place but also give a taste of the unique experiences guests can enjoy.


By keeping the good vibes flowing with engaging content, you’re not just keeping folks interested; you’re building a little community. Show off beautiful shots of your place, shine a light on local hotspots, and sprinkle in some insider tips to capture the vacation vibe you’re offering. Toss in some special deals or discounts in your social media mix to add a dash of excitement and woo potential guests to pick your spot for their next escape.


And hey, don’t just post and ghost – get in on the chat. Respond to comments, chat with your audience, and make your social media space feel like a cozy hangout. Social platforms aren’t just for promo; they’re where you build relationships with future and past guests. Encourage them to share their own stories with guest photos and testimonials, creating a virtual scrapbook of the awesome times folks have had at your place.


To keep the good times rolling, set up a content calendar for regular updates and to keep your brand vibe strong. Embracing the digital scene like this not only broadens your property’s reach but also paints it as a lively and must-visit spot for potential guests. In the bustling world of beach rentals, a vibrant social media game can be the magic wand for more bookings and ongoing success.



7. Flexible Booking Options and Snowbirds 


One cool way to amp up the guest experience is by offering flexible check-in and check-out times whenever you can. We get it – people travel with all sorts of schedules, and being flexible shows we care about making things convenient and comfy for them. This is especially awesome for those coming from far away, dealing with different flight times, or juggling other travel challenges.

And hey, let’s talk about snowbirds – those folks who swap colder climates for our sunny shores during the winter. Giving them a bit of flexibility with check-in and check-out times is a game-changer. It fits their more laid-back travel vibes and makes your place look like the perfect spot for their extended stay. Recognizing how snowbirds often plan longer escapes from the cold ensures your place stays attractive and competitive, drawing in this sought-after group.

By rolling with flexible check-in and check-out times, you’re not just meeting the needs of all kinds of guests; you’re also setting your spot up to welcome snowbirds with open arms. This smart move brings in a mix of visitors, keeping the bookings steady and your place buzzing. In a crowded market, these little considerate touches can be the secret sauce that makes your place stand out and keeps guests coming back with smiles and great reviews.



Choosing The Right Partner Matters


At Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, we’re all about crafting an unforgettable guest experience that considers every little bit of a traveler’s journey. From flexible check-ins to awesome local partnerships, our aim is to help you create lasting memories for your guests, making your property the talk of the town among savvy travelers.

As you navigate this beach rental adventure, teaming up with Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals is like adding a secret weapon to your arsenal. With our rock-solid reputation for excellence, we bring not just expertise to amp up your property’s visibility but also sweet collaborations that make the overall guest experience top-notch. Our commitment to stellar service syncs right up with your vision, making sure your rental home isn’t just another spot but a thriving gem in this ever-changing market.

So, grab onto these insights and watch your property go from just a place to stay to a gateway for unforgettable experiences. Let it become that sought-after spot along Florida’s stunning coastline that people can’t resist. With Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals, your property isn’t just in the game; it’s playing to win!