We were very fortunate last month to actually take the whole family on a little beach vacation to Carolina Beach, N.C.
When we started making plans, we wanted to find to the closest beach to home and find something affordable, close to the beach but also clean and safe. Since we have three children, that eliminates a lot of options.
Everything affordable for 5 people was either too far from the beach, or cheap, dirty and had terrible reviews.
In the sea of chain hotels, the Carolina Beach Inn kept standing out, so after reading the glowing reviews on Tripadvisor, I contacted the owner, Debi DiNatale, about reservations. She was so sweet and offered us a discount since we were coming during the week.
We were pleasantly surprised to find a charming, recently renovated hotel with more of a B&B feel. Debi met us and took us right to our suite, which was on the ground floor with access to a porch --complete with rocking chairs for enjoying the ocean air.
We were able to park right in front of our door and were only a block from the beach.
We had a fully stocked kitchen, which made it really nice for breakfast and lunch.
(Photo: Carolina Beach Inn)
The suite had some really cute, personal touches that made it feel like a visit with friends or family as opposed to a hotel.
I also loved the paint color in our suite, of course:-)
The inn is also located within walking distance of the boardwalk, restaurants and shopping as well as a summer carnival with rides, etc. Debi, the innkeeper, was really helpful in recommending restaurants, etc., but her best recommendation, hands down, was Britt's Donuts. Oh my goodnesss -- they are served hot and worth standing in a long line just to get one. I have never tasted a donut like it anywhere and we could not walk by without getting one. Open only during the peak season, they are celebrating 75 years this summer, and I can definitely say they have perfected the donut making process:-)
We were able to do exactly what we had hoped on this family vacation, which was just relax and enjoy each other. We spent our days together on the beach, then after heading back to the hotel for showers and "de-sanding," we walked out to dinner at one of the nearby restaurants, then topped off the day with a walk on the beach and a Britt's Donut:-)
Debi, the innkeeper was so accommodating, accessible and always had an answer for any question we asked. The Inn was super clean, in a quiet, safe area and close to everything we wanted to go to. We really enjoyed the small town B& B feel and are definitely planning on going back again.
If you are in the Wilmington, N.C., area, I highly recommend Carolina Beach Inn. Luis and I have stayed in many hotels over the years, all around the world, and I always love the ones that have some personality and character, and this one definitely had it.
Thanks to Debi DiNatale for a wonderful stay!