Dream Beach House Tour: Cabana Blu at Blue Mountain Beach, Florida

Spring Break 2013 has come and gone.  That means this year is already a quarter of the way finished.  Unbelievable.  This year for Spring Break we headed back down to our most favorite piece of heaven on Earth, scenic highway 30-A on the Florida panhandle between Destin and Panama City Beach. 

I found this pretty  cottage on VRBO named “Cabana Blu”, and when I called the owner for more info she said it had just been completed last month.  Brand spanking new within a few blocks of the beach?  I’ll take it! 

When we walked through the front door, my mouth fell open.  It was GORGEOUS.

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I felt like I was stepping into the pages of a Coastal Living magazine.

30A Spring Break Trip 2013

Every single room had a flat screen tv mounted to the wall.  Every. Single. Room.  This place was a dream come true for any family with kids and men who would rather watch tv than sit on a beach.

Check out the white canvas sofas with gorgeous blue side chairs and a seagrass rug.  I love this look so much, but I learned very quickly on this trip that white canvas sofas and five year old boys do NOT mix well. I was scrubbing chocolate ice cream off of an arm like a mad woman within about 48 hours.  Speaking of chocolate ice cream, the Blue Mountain Creamery is just right down the street on the way to the public beach access.   This house + ice cream shop + beach all within walking distance = a trifecta of perfection.

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The decor was so serene, and for now this was the only house on the street (and maybe in the whole subdivision) that had been completed.   It was peaceful and quiet, and perfect for attempting to ride a bicycle as an adult after 20 years.  It’s true what they say…You never really forget how to ride a bike.  My husband hopped on one and took a spin with no problems.  There were about seven bikes in the garage available for use, which was awesome!  I even made a wobbly spin through the garage on one, but I had visions of face planting into the concrete and ruining the whole trip, so I stuck with my own two feet for the rest of the trip.

Still, it was a super peaceful place. 

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 Even the pillows commanded you to “Relax.” 

 Ok, pillow.  Can do. 

 No need to scream.

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Twenty foot high ceilings with rough hewn wooden beams… I gotta say I coveted this ceiling more than anyone ever should.

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The living room and dining room were open to the kitchen, so it felt large and spacious.

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I was digging this kitchen rug that was hand painted with sand dollars. 

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Throughout the house the artwork on the walls really wanted to jump into the back seat of my car and come home with me, but I figured the owners wouldn’t be too happy about that.

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This is the main level master bedroom.  It’s like I’ve died and gone to symmetrical heaven.

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The master bath had a rainfall shower head.  Love those things. Garrett thought it was hilarious to get rained on in the shower.

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 Upstairs there were three more bedroom- one with two beautiful double beds that were so high I felt like Princess and the Pea just looking at them.

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 There were two full bathrooms and another bedroom with a King bed upstairs, along with a kid’s room that had four bunk beds.  You could sleep a whole bunch of folks in this place!  I’ll let the rest of the upstairs pics speak for themselves…

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Aside from the house and the ice cream shop right down the street, there is always something to do on Spring Break in South Walton.  No trip to 30-A is complete without a meal at Red Bar. 

Spring Break Trip ideas with kids- Red Bar

And shopping. Then more shopping, Then a little window shopping at all the places you cannot afford.  Check out the planter outside of Harman & Wright interior design studio located right across from The Studio Gallery at the Shops at Grayton.   I think the white flowers are bacopa, and the greenery is rosemary.  Love it! 

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NEED some flower boxes like these. Wow.

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We spent a lot of time shopping and eating since the water was SO cold.  There were a few beach days, and I had hoped there would be a heated pool nearby but unfortunately the subdivision pool had a serious frog infestation and looked pretty gross.   I counted 14 frogs inside the subdivision pool with more on the way, if they keep up their activities. It was like a Roman froggy bathhouse up in there. We did have a great time running around the side and getting Kermit and his loverboy friends to jump into the water and swim to the other side.  That’s one of the great advantages of being a boy mama- adventure can be found in the strangest of places.

Roman Froggy bathhouse


So since we didn’t have any clean pool access, the best thing to do? 

Go to the beach.  Ahhh…   It was in a perfect location (in my opinion)- close to the public beach access at Blue Mountain Beach, which nobody really uses since it’s tucked away off the beaten path so you have lots of beach to yourself.  I adore non-crowded beaches.

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 Since the beaches were so deserted, I practiced using my panorama mode on my iPhone to get these shots of G playing on the beach at sunset.    I love a deserted beach.   There were lifeguards, though, so that made me feel a little safer with the red flags were flying the whole time we were there.  The water was too cold to swim anyway, in mid March.

landscape of blue mountain beach

One day we used our new metal detectors on the beach and then crashed someone’s super awesome sand castle.  Garrett loved pretending it was his actual castle.

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 All in all, this was another perfect vacation in the books for the Bryan Family.  We hope to be back soon, 30-A! 

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To see more dream beach house tours, visit 39 Bluestem in Watercolor, Florida.

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Speak Your Mind



  1. That is a beautiful house!!! Great pictures Beth!!! The owner of this house is so lucky YOU stayed there!

    • Thanks chick! Would it make any difference if I told you those were taken with my new point and shoot? LOL! I got a Canon SX500 after Christmas on sale, and I LOVE it. I’m so tired of carrying the big mammyjammy on vacation, so this was a great compromise. http://amzn.to/ZyNHqu

  2. Beautiful. Yes, the year is going by quickly. You picture taking skills are awesome!! Thanks for sharing.

  3. We went to Destin last summer for the first time, and I just loved it! And if I had a beach house, it would look just like this one! Thanks for sharing – talk about a dreamy vacation location!

  4. Beautiful! We have A place in Destin. Nothing beats the gulf beaches! I’m sure you were able to relax on that beautiful beach!

  5. Beautiful place, love all your pics!! The owner should use them in the vrbo listing!!

  6. that kitchen is gorgeous! wow! stunning taste. beautiful pictures!

  7. What a beautiful house. Too bad about the pool, but what awesome frog picture you got instead. Love the sand castle with the greenery touch!

  8. I’ll just pretend I went too! Love the house and all the pics. Your little boy is so stinking cute 🙂 And that sand… yum. Never been to Florida. Sure looks pretty!

  9. Beautiful. I love the beach. That house is AMAZING.

  10. Oh, I miss the Gulf Coast sooo much! Mid-March or October were our FAVORITE times to go visit…

    Swoon worthy beach house, I tell ya!!!

  11. So gorgeous Beth! I mean, WHAT is that place?!?! Awesome!

  12. Very beautiful. What fun.

  13. Hello gorgeousness!! This is sooo lovely! I”m glad that you had such a wonderful place for vacation!

  14. Oh my gosh Beth this place is amazing! Houses that are in this sort of condition are so hard to find. I am so happy you had a good time but really…how could you not?!!!

  15. Gorgeous home-I’m glad you had a good vacation-we lived near Fort Walton Beach years ago and seeing your pictures reminded me of those gorgeous beaches!

  16. Oh my gosh. Can I just hop into your suitcase next time you go there? This place really does look like a dream. That kitchen and that ceiling and that rainfall shower… COME TO MAMA. Absolutely gorgeous! Beach vacations are my favorite and this is by far the prettiest beach rental I’ve ever seen! You’re making me dreammm of summer! AHHH!! Beautiful photography, beautiful family, BEAUTIFUL YOU!!

  17. sounds like a great vacation! If you like quiet beached you should come to Topsail Island, NC! It’s pretty quiet here.

    I love the decor of the house! It’s beachy done right. Sometimes beachy can turn cheesy if you aren’t careful.


    PS I have that chair in my living room 🙂 No white slipcovered sofas though, not with all these boys!

  18. This beach house is gorgeous! I pinned myself silly with that one. Your beach photos are wonderful, especially the ones with your adorable little one.

  19. What a beautiful home Beth! We have been vacationing between Panama City and Peridido Key for years and just love it. I personally have always wanted to stay down in the area you are but the family always has to be right on the beach since my father in law does not like going down to the beach but must have an ocean view. We miss out on so many beautiful homes that way. Enjoy your week and I had to laugh at the frog thing and boys! My boys would have loved that.

  20. “14 frogs inside the subdivision pool with more on the way, if they keep up their activities. It was like a Roman froggy bathhouse”!! and even a pic of the action! you are very funny!
    Were you accompanied by family in that spacious abode? What a great find.

  21. Relax and Lounge…. my two favorite things to do. That is if I’m at a beach. But what’s up with the frogs? Must be a princess shortage in South Walton or the frogs are on vacay too.

  22. We are currently building a beach house on Blue Lake road in Blue Mtn beach so this was especially enjoyable to read and got some great ideas. I want so much to get white sofas (we aren’t renting it except to good friends) but even with a 13 year old, I am terrified of white! I know it’s “in” right now but it’s too scary. LOL. I guess finding something else very neutral and light will be a good compromise. Great blog!



  1. […] my family makes the Spring Break drive to the 30-A towns of Seaside, Watercolor, Santa Rosa and Blue Mountain Beach, where condominiums are completely banned and there are still remnants of 1950’s fish camp houses […]

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    Blue Life Latest Cabana Top

    […] te canvas sofas with gorgeous blue side chairs and a seagrass rug.  I love this […]

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