Pinehurst – the Hamptons in the hills of North Carolina!
While most think of Pinehurst as an upscale golf destination, for my husband Marcus and his late wife it was for years a place that they called home. On our recent travels back north from our winter domicile in Palm Coast, FL — my readers will forgive me for escaping, as I had my fare share of over 25 winters in Montauk — my mountain man decided to take our break in Pinehurst and walk with me down memory lane. I had heard of the historic village of Pinehurst and it’s equally famous Carolina Hotel, but never got to visit myself.
We started our historic walking tour of at my husband’s old stomping grounds, Pinehurst Resort Golf Club (Carolina Hotel = Pinehurst Resort) where T-times for golf, and more recently croquet, are still hard to come by. www.pinehurst.com/golf/
The majestic century-old Carolina Hotel had us for a few moments step back in time to an era when elegance defined grand hotels and resorts. We found my husband’s old home to be within a short walking distance to the resort, golf, the celebrated Pinehurst Spa and beautiful village! By 1901, The Carolina Hotel and many other cottages had been built, along with department stores, a fire department and livery stable. Eventually market gardens, a laundry, poultry and dairy farms were completed. Most of the main buildings of The Village are still in existence and can be toured today.
Here located in the same historic buildings that framed the center of the Village already a century ago we found the most charming boutiques, gift shops, quaint cafes and dining places. I so would have loved to stay…
The Village of Pinehurst actually preceded the first golf course in Pinehurst. Founder James Walker Tufts, who purchased 600 acres for about $1 an acre, had originally envisioned this lovely place as a New England-style village where those suffering from respiratory and other ailments would heal in pine-scented air and lots of sunshine. It was Tufts’ intention to create a village where people of all means could afford to visit and heal. He decided to build an assortment of private cottages, rooming houses and hotels and by December of 1895, Tufts had built the Holly Inn and more than 25 cottages.
Located within The Given Library, across from The Holly Inn, is the Tufts Archives, which displays the rich heritage and history of Pinehurst. On exhibit are Tufts Archives from original maps of Donald Ross’ courses, photos of The Village since 1895 and various artifacts from the founders of the Village. Visitors will also find James W. Tufts’ original marble and silver 19th century Soda Fountain machine and more than 125,000 historic images. The Tufts Archives is free and open to the public.
I’ve decided to return sometime late fall to Pinehurst for some shopping and a couple of spa treatments while my husband is hopefully gone for a long round of golf… www.vopnc.org/our-community/visiting-pinehurst
Until next from another interesting location.