« Back to Press Landing

What's New in South Walton to Start 2019

What’s New in South Walton to Start 2019

As we begin a new year, there’s a lot to be excited about in South Walton. Local eateries are sprucing up their spaces, new businesses are opening and new accommodations are opening their doors. Here’s what’s new in South Walton in 2019.

New Developments and Accommodations:

The Hyatt Place Sandestin at Grand Boulevard opened its doors in December. The 84-room hotel is pet friendly, features a heated-outdoor pool, 24/7 gym, meeting facilities and a restaurant.


The Sandestin Hotel and Conference Center will be a new 250-room full-service hotel property inside the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort. The four-star hotel will include a three-meal restaurant, a lobby bar, room service, a luxury spa, a fitness facility, a signature rooftop pool and bar, as well as 20,000-plus square feet of meeting space, expected to open in April of 2020.


ZUMA Wellness Center in Alys Beach is expected to open mid-March. The 15,000-square foot ZUMA campus will consist of many diverse and distinct spaces. The Lift Room, the Movement Room, the Cardio Room and the Recovery Room are core components of the facility, complemented by an indoor/outdoor pool, two treatment rooms, steam rooms in both men’s and women’s locker rooms, exterior natural spaces, a juice bar and other amenities designed to promote growth toward a better wellbeing. ZUMA will be open to all Alys Beach homeowners and resort guests, so people staying here in one of our vacation rental residences will have full access.



Restaurant Openings and Renovations

30A Burger is the newest burger restaurant in South Walton. Located at 30Avenue, 30A Burger serves up a variety of burgers, chicken, custard shakes and tasty bites in a casual setting. 30A Burger is open for lunch and dinner and offers both indoor and outdoor seating.

  • Website: www.30aburger.com
  • Phone: (850) 909-0600
  • Address: 12805 U.S. Hwy. 98 East, Ste. E101, Inlet Beach


b.f.f, a walk-up bar, has opened in Seaside. Located next to Great Southern Café, b.f.f, which stands for bushwackers, frose, and frozens, is bringing frozen alcoholic beverages to Seaside. While open intermittently during the cooler months, b.f.f. will be open daily from March 3 through Labor Day.

  • Address: 83 Central Square, Santa Rosa Beach


Bud and Alley’s will be undergoing a facelift as part of an enhancement project to the longtime Seaside restaurant. As part of the project, a tower entrance will be added to the roof deck that will include an elevator and stairs and brand new bathrooms will be installed on the western edge of Bud and Alley’s including two upstairs bathrooms for the roof deck. Bud & Alleys will operate continuously, independent of the construction happening along the roadside and will be unaffected operationally by the enhancement project. The construction of the enhancement project is expected to take nine months.


The first stage of Edward's Fine Food and Wine remodel is complete, and the remaining projects will begin in January. Once complete, the newly renovated restaurant will offer a functional and comfortable space with more covered and intimate seating. Stay tuned to their social media channels for further updates. The new space will bring a casual, yet sophisticated feel to guests' dining experience.

  • Website: www.edwards30a.com
  • Phone: (850) 231-0550
  • Address: 66 Main Street, Rosemary Beach


Black Bear Bread Co, LLC announces plans to open a second location at Hyatt Place Sandestin at Grand Boulevard this spring. Black Bear Bread Co. opened its first location in 2017 in The Shops of Grayton.  Since then, Black Bear Bread Co. has quickly become the go-to stop for artisan breads, pastries, Stumptown coffee, and seasonal breakfast and lunch offerings. In addition to greater convenience for customers living in Sandestin and Miramar Beach, the new location will offer outdoor seating and a few new twists!

  • Website: www.blackbearbreadco.com
  • Phone: (850) 213-4528
  • Address: 26 Logan Lane, Unit G in The Shops of Grayton (Grayton Beach Location)


Events, Happenings and Deals:

The Cultural Arts Alliance of Walton County and the South Walton Artificial Reef Association have invited artists to apply for inclusion in the summer 2019 Underwater Museum of Art, the first permanent underwater sculpture museum in the United States. Online proposals can be submitted through Jan. 31.


The 30A Company is now selling its 30A shirts, made from recycled plastic bottles, in all 29 Whole Foods Market locations throughout the state of Florida. The partnership, as well as other retail locations, has seen more than 1.9 million plastic bottles reclaimed from landfills.


YOLO Board + Bike and the 30A Company have partnered to launch the 30A YOLO Electric Cruiser Bike. The 30A E-Cruiser’s 36 volt battery is standard and allows you to travel up to 50 miles on a single charge, depending on the settings you choose. This allows you to travel the entire length of Hwy 30A almost three times or more.


Visit South Walton’s 2014 Artist of the Year Mary Hong is offering a variety of new classes and workshops going into 2019. At the Shard Shop in Grayton Beach, Hong will host an “Ode to Geode” Resin Class, “Wicked Dirty Pour,” and “Shards-N-Chardonnay.”

  • Website: www.shardshop.com/
  • Phone: (850) 231-0544
  • Address: 26 Logan Lane; Cottage E, Grayton Beach


Mark your calendars for the annual Gumbo Festival Feb. 15-16 at The Village of Baytowne Wharf. Now in its 30th year, the festival has added a new twist to the foodie fun, a Bloody Mary contest. The “Best Bloody Mary’s at the Beach” will be held during the Saturday event and guests can vote for their favorite.


Looking for a unique way to spend Valentine’s Day in South Walton? Sunquest Cruises is offering special Valentine’s Day cruises aboard the Solaris. The three-hour cruises offer live entertainment, plenty of dancing and a three-course dinner. Cost is $165/couple.


Pescado Seafood Grill & Rooftop Bar in Rosemary Beach will now be hosting its “Sunset Social” Happy Hour Monday through Thursday from 4-6 p.m.  Guests will be able to enjoy $10 Small Bites and Raw Bar and $8 Cocktails and Wine. Reservation may be made online, walk-ins will be accepted based on availability. In addition to their “Sunset Social” Happy Hour, Pescado recently announced it will now offer Sunday Brunch beginning Jan. 27 from 10:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. Chef Ken Duenas has prepared an elegant and sophisticated brunch menu, sure to please the brunch enthusiasts of 30A. Take in the relaxing views Pescado has to offer while drinking Mimosas and Rose´– all day. Enjoy live acoustic music 11am-3pm with weekly rotating artists.

  • Website: www.rooftop30a.com
  • Phone: (850) 213-4600
  • Address: 74 Town Hall Road, 4B, Rosemary Beach


East End Gallery welcomes the New Year with Art After Hours and a little help from its friends . . . interior designer friends who will select new art for the exhibit “Fresh Start,” opening Jan. 21 at the boutique art space located next to Shades Bar & Grill in Inlet Beach.

Fresh Start will feature local and regional artists carefully selected for their style to enhance the home, thus helping designers and homeowners alike create a fresh start to 2019. The new art will be featured in the gallery until April 26, with Art After Hours festivities happening the first Friday of each month, 4-7 p.m. 

  • Website: www.eastend30a.com
  • Phone: (850) 252-5150
  • Address: 10952 E. Co. Hwy. 30A, Suite B, Inlet Beach


The South Walton TDC will be renovating the wooden pedestrian bridges (replacing the guardrails and decking) at both Eastern and Draper Lake, beginning Jan. 2. Construction is expected to last 60 days. Additionally, crews will be replacing (new metal span bridge similar to the other metal bridges) the Deer Lake pedestrian bridge beginning in February or early March. Construction is expected to last no more than 60 days.


New Businesses/Renovations/Relocation:

The Foster Gallery, a project of the Cultural Arts Alliance of Walton County, has recently relocated, and also opened a second location. The galleries serve as an avenue for local artists to display and sell their work in a professional setting.

The Foster Gallery at Grand Boulevard Town Center:

The Foster Gallery in Seaside:


As Seaside continues to evolve, there are a number of businesses that will be moving to new locations. Amavida will soon move to the north side of Seaside, next to La Vie Est Belle. Art of Simple will be moving to the west corner of Central Square. Bud & Alley’s Taco Bar will relocate to its new home across from the Pizza Bar near the Coleman Pavilion.

  • New Amavida Location: 25 Central Square, Suite B1
  • Art of Simple: 25 Central Square, Suite D1 & E1
  • Bud & Alley’s Taco Bar:  2236 E County Highway 30A


Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals will be opening a new office at Redfish Village to serve all of its 30A clients while continuing to maintain their Miramar Beach location. The new location is expected to be open by mid-January.

  • Website: http://www.ecvr.com
  • Phone: (888) 23BEACH
  • Address: 2050 W Co Hwy. 30A, unit M1-229, Santa Rosa Beach


Other Updates and Additions:

Beginning this Spring, there will be more options for travel to and from South Walton. Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP) is excited to announce brand new non-stop weekend service this summer on United Airlines to Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) starting June 8.   This follows a September, 2018 press release from American Airlines announcing Saturday service from Chicago O’Hare International Airport to both Destin-Fort Walton Beach (VPS) and ECP beginning March 9 to Sept 5.

For more flight information at VPS or ECP visit: