This is a piece written by the granddaughters of the original Port Royal pioneers, Hap and Emily. We watched you, we learned from you, we have continued in your footsteps, and we love you.
Before we go back to the real world today, we wanted to write this post about Port Royal in Port Aransas, Texas.
Hurricane Harvey, long since forgotten by most Americans (and, sadly, Texans), devastated the Gulf Coast. In 2017, Harvey pummeled Texas, causing $125b-worth of damage. We remember the food, clothing, water drives…sending everything we could manage down to the coast. We watched in abject horror as our childhood summer destination, Port Aransas, was decimated by the anger of the Gulf of Mexico.
From Laura: I have stayed in 5-star hotels and dined in Michelin-starred restaurants. I swam in the Mediterranean. I biked in the Austrian countryside. I know summer fun. Port Royal is still my choice for a beach vacation. Coming to Texas from overseas? Come here like my Swiss and Slovak friends did. It will not disappoint you.
Did Harvey change Mustang Island? Yes. Would these amazing men, women, young people, and kiddos benefit from the influx of your tourist dollars if you came here? Yes. Is this is fool’s errand on which we send you? No.
We went to the IGA twice and were greeted with friendly faces, Port A seafood, and a great selection. We have gone twice a day to the beach, which is almost idyllic this summer – very little seaweed, no tar, no beached jellyfish, terrific waves. Shopping in a few local stores yesterday was fun, minus the toddler tantrum that ended that fairly abruptly, and that is due in large part to the fact that there are amazing local buys here. This is not to mention the amenities that are still strong at Port Royal.
All three of our boys took FULL advantage of the pools. We were so grateful for a small slide that was toddler-safe and the new water obstacle courses, successfully scaled by the twins!, the resort added following the hurricane. It truly is a family-friendly pool…and we hope it continues to be, as people come back in mass to this beautiful place.
The boardwalk does need a rejuvenation, but it is still the glorious walk through the dunes, with their local flora and fauna, that we loved as small girls and adore as adults. The first time the ocean breeze hits us, almost everything else fades away.
We prefer the gulf view. Seeing the seagulls in flight, watching the sun wake up, gazing outside from the table as we enjoy dinner together as a family, imagining the nights when we walked the beach as teenagers struggling with some truly awful and horrendous case of angst…it brings the entire world into sharp focus.
Family and making memories – we’re all about it. So is Port Royal.
To our beloved boys: these memories will last us a lifetime and it is all because of two sisters making it a priority, sitting at Lindy’s table and getting a confirmation from Port Royal, saving pennies for the past few months for the beach, getting in our cars in Dallas and Austin, making a pitstop with Cah in Austin, arriving in Mr. Mark’s beautiful condo, feeling welcome by every Port Royal guy and gal…splashing, laughing, crying, eating New Braunfels Smokehouse sandwiches, building sandcastles, attacking the waves, saving Hermit crabs and minnows, visiting the Texas State Aquarium, “Roam”ing in the beautiful store in town, savoring ice cream with shell, feeding seagulls, playing all the great Goliath games (Charades for Kids was a particular favorite – Vanni was the Champ!) hugging, kissing, and being together as a strong family. Aunt LaLa/Mommy and Mama/Aunt Sparkles love the three of you so very much.