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Ocean Pointe Update

jerseyfinn

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It's taken me some time to get some photos from our recent visits to Ocean Pointe & Oceana Palms. We were lucky in that we visit each resort about 4 weeks apart in November & December 2011. I post here a link to my latest Ocean Pointe images.

I stripped my gallery down to basically tell the story of Fall 2011 at Ocean Pointe. Mother Nature whacks the region with storms and swells which end up reshaping the beaches at both resorts. Those of you who go down regularly might find some of my photos interesting as you'll appreciate how much the beach has changed.

When we arrive in early November, we find pleasant, balmy weather as a front which brings high winds and showers has just left the region. A system out near Bermuda stalls in the Atlantic and this brings in swells which create 7 to 9 foot surf the day we arrive. The beach in front of Ocean Pointe has been chopped away by these Fall storms and waves. All of the beach chairs sit astride the dunes where an 8 to 12 swath of high ground remains the entire length towards the inlet as the rest of the beach is gone and the high tide reaches this new line.

A couple of days later we get hit with 12 to 15 foot waves as the swells intensify. Because we sit at the end of the beach where the ocean naturally deposits sand, we had sand bars in front of us which keep the brunt of the swells moderated in a relative sense. The wave surge that Sunday morning just reaches to the natural dune line. Also note that the beach near Kingfish still has it's usual "high ground" look with a wall of sand high above the water. The only consequence to me from this day is that when I awaken, I notice several of those big wooden lounge chairs owned by the concession were washing into the roiling surf so I wade in to rescue some chairs after calling Aimen to advise him that his chairs are in the drink. Unfortunately my cell phone gets swept away by a wave just as I'm walking back to the chair where I placed it for (presumed ) safety. The good news is we were out of contract and I get a new phone on the cheap. And we spend that big wave day watching the big surf on our beach and gazing south to Palm Beach where their lack of natural sand and sand bars had their beaches getting whacked with the full force of those big waves ( which moved like speeding freight trains for an afternoon ).

The photos titled "November 2011 Waves show how things looked if you can imagine pounding surf which occassionally sounds like ripping paper when the force of the wave hits just right. Bottom line is that the beach is carved out, but one can see the sands redepositing with each passing day ( the beach concession guys estimate 14 feet of height is taken out along some stretches between the inlet and Oceana Palms ). We return 4 weeks later to stay at Oceana Palms and we discover that the beach's recovery is cut short by new sets of swells which this time take out all of the sand at the inlet side in front of Kingfish. One has to go back some 10 years to have a time where there is not a wall of sand creating high ground at this end of the beach. My December pictures more or less show how flat the beach running the entire length of Ocean Pointe has become.

Also some photos of the resort at night along with some shots of the area around the Ocean Mall 3/10th mile from both resorts ( yes both Ocean Pointe & Ocean Palms resorts are almost exactly 3/10ths mile from the Mall from opposite directions. The developer has done a nice job of changing the dilapidated old mall into something cozy while the city has done a fantastic rennovation of the entire beach in front of the mall making the beach into an inviting place with lots of recreation areas. Only a few photos at this point as I'm still working on the stuff I shoot during those two trips.

Hope folks find these photos and information useful. I suspect that the ocean has already healed the beach during these ensuing 5 weeks. Perhaps some of the snow birds can comment as to the shape and health of the beach at this time.

Barry
 

Paumavista

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Winds was constant

We were down in the area twice in December staying at Oceana Palms.....we'd never been to the area and were taken aback by the wind and waves.

Great pictures; and you confirmed what others have said.....that the winds were unusual....especially to last as long as they have. Hopefully they've died down now and people are able to enjoy more of the beach. Maybe we'll have to give the area another try.....didn't care much for it with all the wind and very rough surf.
Judy
 

jerseyfinn

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Actually if you want to see winds, go to the Outer Banks where one can find many windy days ;) Then again, the surf fishing is great out there.

Any time one is near the ocean be it in the Carribean, Florida or anywhere, almost anything can happen in terms of weather & waves. The Fall always brings storms, waves, and swells, but this past year the persistance of winds ( which in turn create the swells ) meant that even if a low pressure system is absent ( = usually associated with storms ) even a stalled high pressure system a few hundred miles away can generate winds and waves down here. This is what happens throughout November into December this year. Just as the sand redeposits several feet of beach, another set of swells come in from another system a couple of weeks later and remove the sand in the inlet near Kingfish Building.

I'm a surf fisherman, so I'm always watching the wind and waves even when I don't have my fishing gear. And there are very definite wind and current patterns which dictate what will and will not happen in the region around the resorts -- insights I've gained through extensive "research" at the bar at Johnny Longboats talking to locals as well as conversation with some of the fantastic guys who work the beach concessions and know the waves and waters well. My wife and I will sit out on the beach in any sort of weather.

Believe it or not, those windy / wavy days made for some great bird watching when the wind subsides. Bait fish came in thick shcools to the beaches from the reef just north of Oceana Palms all the way to the inlet jetty by Ocean Pointe and this brought flocks of pelicans and osprey who are diving into the waters for fish. Don't know if you saw any of this activity, but the birds were very active for several days getting their fill of fish. I've got several shots of this action that I will post later, including a shot of an osprey with a fish in her talons taken some 30 feet away from our balcony on the 19th floor of Oceana Palms as she glides past us with her prize ( funny how we had been on the beach all day bird watching and I told my wife let's go upstairs as sooner or later an osprey will buzz past our balcony :cool: ).

So yes, I'd encourage you to come back to these resorts again, but keep in mind that the ocean is the ocean and one never quite knows what will happen, though persistant winds are indeed unusual. The good news is that at least down here, the temperatures are usually mild so one can survive just about any beach day. My only bad luck is when my cell phone goes into the drink whilst rescuing wooden lounge chairs ( those suckers are heavy when wet and wrapped in seaweek ). But we also discovered a good pizza place ( Anthonys Pizza on PGA ) while shopping for a new phone.

Barry
 

Smooth Air

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Hi, Barry:
Thanks for your wonderful photos!

Looking forward to getting back to Ocean Pointe soon & hope we have a beach when we get there. Like you, we are on the beach in just about any kind of weather. I have always attributed that characteristic to being Canadian but there you are too!:cool:

Thanks, again for the photos & for the pizza tip!

Quick question: Do all of the villas @ Kingfish have exterior corridors? I wonder why they did exterior corridors. I much prefer interior.
 
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dioxide45

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Quick question: Do all of the villas @ Kingfish have exterior corridors? I wonder why they did exterior corridors. I much prefer interior.

They do all appear to be exterior corridors in Kingfish. The Kingfish building is a completely different design than the other four buildings. My guess is that this was probably to maximize the use of the land on the last building and to also allow for more ocean front units to maximize sales prices.
 

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Thanks, dioxide.

Have you stayed in Kingfish? What do you think of the exterior corridors?
I have never stayed there. Something about exterior corridors makes me feel less secure.
 
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dioxide45

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We have never stayed in Kingfish. Though isn't the elevator access at Kingfish the same as the other buildings in that it requires a key to even access the elevator? So unless someone scales the walls or tailgates behind someone, a key is required to gain access. Tailgating could happen in the other buildings too.

We have never had concerns about security at Grande Vista and all of their buildings have exterior access ways.
 

Smooth Air

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Maybe I just have to get over my sense of "insecurity" or, to look at it another way, my false sense of security!!:cool:
 

jimf41

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To get into Kingfish you need to use your key to get in one of three entrance doors. After you are in you can access the stairs or the two elevators without a key.

Kingfish also has a small lobby that has the capability of acting as a checkin desk but they don't use it for that. They do at times staff the lobby desk with a concierge sporadically. There is also a vending area and a laundromat inside the key access area.

The "U" shaped design of Kingfish is a result of MVCI not being able to acquire the adjacent property commonly referred to as the "pink" building. The original plans were to six of the same type buildings in a row. It didn't work out but they've done a pretty good job with what they had to work with.
 

dmharris

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Maybe I just have to get over my sense of "insecurity" or, to look at it another way, my false sense of security!!:cool:

As I recall most the resorts I've stayed at have outside entrances, Newport Coast, Waiohai, Grande Ocean, Grande Vista. We just checked out of Ocean Pointe and I actually like the outside entrance. Every chance I have to breathe the outdoor air without my nose hairs freezing is a blessing! :)

The security is very tight; you have to use your key to get into the parking lot in your car; enter the building and enter your villa. Good enough for me.

As I wrote on a previous post this week, the beach is not good for walking as it's sloped and the sand is piled high and you sink into it; nothing like Hilton Head. It's work to walk. We walked the street from Kingfish to Oceana Palms then I drove it and it was 1.1 mile one-way.
 
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pwrshift

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. The beach in front of Ocean Pointe has been chopped away by these Fall storms and waves.

Barry

Although I've always considered OP's beach about the same, I'm not aware that the beach in front of BeachPlace in Fort Lauderdale had the same problems with weather last Fall. I would have thought they would have similar problems. Guess I'll find out in about a month.

Brian
 

Smooth Air

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Have a great trip, Brian! Are you going for a month?

Pretty cold in Toronto yesterday & today!! :cool:

You drive to Ft Lauderdale, right?

Smooth Air
 

pwrshift

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Yes, I drive down and stay a month, but this year doing something different by staying the first week at the Marriott Palm Beach Resort on Singer Island on points and rented my BP studio for that week...followed by 3 weeks at BP. Nice of you to remember.

Toronto weather has generally been quite mild this year so this cold snap seemed harder to take...but I'm going to Calgary on Thursday so will really get a taste of winter there I'm sure.

Brian
 

Smooth Air

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Brian, I hear the Marriott Palm Beach Resort on SI is very nice. Interested to hear your comments about the dining room if you have dinner there. We went in its former life when it was called Solu. Weird name. It wasn't great, may have been an "off night, but I hear it is better now. We will be at Ocean Pointe in March so thinking of going "up there" for dinner.

I would also be interested in any other places that you might recommend for dinnner on/near SI.

Will you be going to bed at 8:00PM when you are on SI??? Couldn't resist!!:cool:
 
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