Shining the Spotlight on Amelia Island

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And among the annual events that visitors can experience at Amelia Island are the Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival (held in spring), the Great Southern Tailgate Cook-off, and the Amelia Island Jazz Festival (both held in the fall).

where to stay “The island is home to a surprising mix of accommodations, each with its own unique character, amenities and comforts,” notes Langley. “The destination features three major resorts, a charming collection of B&Bs, several family-owned and flagship select service hotels, along with an assortment of vacation rentals and condos.”

One of those major resorts is the Amelia Island Plantation, which this past August became the Omni Amelia Island Plantation, situated on 1,350 acres and surrounded by green marshlands and the Intracoastal Waterway. “We are exceptionally pleased to add this extraordinary resort to the Omni portfolio given its great beauty, gracious accommodations and broad range of amenities,” says Mike Deitemeyer, president of Omni Hotels & Resorts.

The property’s accommodations include Amelia Inn with 249 oceanview guestrooms and the Villas of Amelia, offering 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom villas with ocean, golf or resort views. “Many of our accommodations feature works from local artists inspired by Amelia,” says Amy Lacroix, marketing manager for Omni Amelia Island Plantation. The resort also features 54 holes of golf, a tennis center with 23 courts, a spa, a fitness center, numerous pools, a shopping village, and nine dining options that range from casual to upscale. Lacroix adds, “Our culinary team captures the essence of the local fare by using shrimp and seafood caught in our neighboring waters.”

Currently, the hotel is offering a Beach & Breakfast package that includes accommodations and daily breakfast pp. Rates start at $179 per night. Or, book with Travel Impressions, which is offering a 4-night package (land only) to the Omni Amelia Island Plantation featuring accommodations for four nights, 5-day Hertz compact car rental, complimentary deluxe buffet breakfast and hotel tax. Rates start at $589 per pp dbl in a deluxe oceanview Amelia Island room, for travel Jan. 1 to March 4, 2011.

Or, you might opt for The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. Situated on 13 acres of beachfront, this property offers 444 well-appointed guestrooms, including 43 Club rooms, 42 suites and two presidential suites; four restaurants and lounges; a fitness center; onsite tennis facilities; and an 18-hole PGA championship golf course. The Anne Cain Golf Academy at The Golf Club of Amelia Island also features innovative instruction from renowned LPGA instructor Anne Cain.

For golf enthusiasts, book the resort’s Fairways and Greens package with rates starting at $499 per night. The package includes breakfast for two via in-room dining or at the onsite Cafe 4750, up to two rounds of golf, and greens fees and shared cart.

Meanwhile, couples might enjoy the property’s Romance package, which includes a champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries welcome amenity; rose petal turndown service; breakfast for two in room or at the onsite Cafe 4750; 2 p.m. late check-out and complimentary valet parking. Rates start at $369 per night.