When searching for a family-friendly beach destination here in the States that offers the perfect mix of outdoor activity, relaxation, ideal temperatures regardless of the seasons, look no further than Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa in Ponte Vedra Beach along “Florida’s Historic Coast.” Once you try it, it’s sure to remain a family favorite you’ll return to, time and again. I know we will and here are 14 reasons why.
Try Sawgrass Marriott: Your Family will Like It!
Just 30 minutes from Jacksonville and 20 minutes from the historic city of St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra Beach is an ideal getaway all year round and not just for golfers, but families with kids of all ages. This was the biggest shocker for us, because while I knew we would enjoy the beach and the large Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa, I was surprised at how kid-friendly it is and entertaining for my preschoolers.
Apparently, Parents Magazine agrees, as Sawgrass Marriott in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida is included in their Best Beach Resorts for Families list.
Here are 14 fun reasons why it’s an ideal full-service resort for families.
Why Your Family Needs to Stay at Sawgrass Marriott in Ponte Vedra, Florida
1. BEACH CLUB
The Sawgrass Marriott has its own private Cabana Beach Club located on a beautiful oceanfront location on Ponte Vedra Beach. Plus access to the ocean and white sand along with a beachfront pool, cabanas, and Sea Porch Bar & Grill indoor/outdoor restaurant. Plus wireless Internet access, shower and changing rooms, chairs, and umbrellas. Also choose from a wide range of beach and watersports rentals—including kayaks, boogie boards, surfboards and sail craft.
While not on property, it’s only a five-minute complimentary shuttle ride away. The shuttle runs frequently from the resort to the Beach Club, whenever you need it. When we were ready to head back to the resort for nap time, we simply alerted the towel attendant. We waited only a few minutes for the air-conditioned shuttle to return. Super easy.
Now I don’t mean the resort simply serves Starbucks coffee. No, it has an actual full-size Starbucks store in its lobby with the full menu of drinks, food, and gifts. If this doesn’t scream parent-friendly, I don’t know what else would.
3. KIDS ROOM
Located near the lobby is the included Mighty Oaks kids room, which sadly we didn’t discover until the last day of our stay. Designed for children ages 4 to 12, Mighty Oaks is not a drop-off center. Rather, it’s a place where parents and kids can spend quality time together in a venue designed to entertain little ones.
My boys went right for all the toys on the shelves, did some coloring projects, and played awhile on the Lego table. Older kids meanwhile sat on the large bean bag chairs and played video games.
This kids room was the perfect afternoon break away from the sun and before we got ready for dinner. The area is also staffed by trained associates who are available to monitor and get kids involved in different activities.
4. SURFS UP AT SAWGRASS MARRIOTT
Let’s go surfing! Yes, surfing. Coming in November 2016, Sawgrass Marriott will be the only hotel in America to have a SurfStream® adjustable wave machine typically found at waterparks or outside the continental U.S. like Beaches Resorts Turks & Caicos.
5. PUTT PUTT
Also, on property and FREE is a Miniature Golf course with kid-sized clubs. Best of all, the area was shaded offering another fun and sunless outdoor activity for the whole family to enjoy.
6. POOLS AND MORE POOLS AT MARRIOTT SAWGRASS
Besides the Cabana Beach Club Pool. enjoy three other outdoor pools right on property including two family pools and the Sawgrass Spa Adult Pool. 4 in total!
7. SAY AH TO SAWGRASS SPA
The Sawgrass Spa is a 25,000-square-foot luxury sanctuary for resort guests and walk-in clients. This area was also recently renovated and the Zen-like atmosphere is euphoric. Plenty of opportunities to wind down and relax with 19 private rooms, whirlpool, and heated outdoor pool. Private separate locker rooms for women and men each feature its own sauna, steam room, whirlpool, and relaxation lounge.
Plus, a nail-care studio, salon and workout room. The nail-care studio offers five manicure stations and four deluxe pedicure stations.
Yoga, Sunset Beach Yoga, Pilates, Spin, and a customized Golf Fitness Program are also available.
8. TAKE A SWING AT SAWGRASS MARRIOTT GOLF
Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa offers 99 holes of privileged access to championship golf, courtesy of the adjacent TPC® Sawgrass, home of the legendary The Stadium Course. Rentals and lessons are available and there’s also a Junior Golf Program too.
9. THE GREAT OUTDOORS
Exploring the great outdoors doesn’t get any better than 65 acres of Audubon rated grounds including a biking trail and a jogging/fitness trail.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner, we never had to leave the resort. We lunched outside at The American Gator Club overlooking the tranquil lagoon and 13th hole at The Stadium Course at TPC® Sawgrass. Although outside, it was thankfully covered and cool. Best of all, the food and drinks are delicious especially the White Peach Sangria and The “Swamp Cuban” with pulled pork.
Before dinner, we sipped a drink at the open area Bourbon Bar, while our boys played with a chess board and watched the televisions.
The family then checked in at Vernon’s for fine dining featuring fresh Florida seafood and scenic views. The elegant atmosphere thankfully also provided crayons and coloring paper for our boys too.
Within walking distance is also a shopping center offering additional off-property restaurants.
11. FARM FRESH RESORT DINING
I was especially delighted to discover that most of the specialty dining at the resort featured locally sourced produce. Also, pickling and jams are all done in house. More impressive is that the friendly culinary team grows a lot of their own crops on property. And they even have installed beehives for producing local honey.
12. AREA ATTRACTIONS
More than 60 area attractions are within a short drive from the Resort, including the nearby St. Augustine offering 450 years of colorful history as the oldest city in America. Sights include the Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park, Pirate & Treasure Museum, Castillo de San Marcos, Timucuan Village, St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum, Marineland and Anastasia State Park.
13. INTRODUCING THE SHINY & NEW SAWGRASS MARRIOTT
The property just completed a resort-wide, $25 million “refresh.” Enhancements were made to the guestrooms/villas, resort pool area, modernized front desk area, hotel façade, the Sawgrass Spa and Cabana Beach Club and The American Gator Club restaurant.
14. SPACIOUS ROOMS & VILLAS
The hotel has 511 guest rooms including 21 suites. In a separate building, on property houses one- and two-bedroom, pet-friendly Villas with spacious living rooms, kitchenettes, and outdoor balconies or patios.
Our hotel room included a large bathroom with a tub, double beds, a chaise lounge and a mini refrigerator, so quite spacious and functional for families with multiple children.
Traveling Mom TIP: While there isn’t a playground on-property, apparently the shuttle can drop off guests at a nearby play area if requested. I loved discovering that we had this option, but we didn’t need to do it since our boys were kept busy with all of the above.
Traveling Mom SAVING$ TIP: October offers the best rates and weather!
Tour the Sawgrass Marriott in Ponte Vedra, Florida