In The Mag: 20 Reasons We Love Palm Beach

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Looking for an island getaway? Here’s your insider’s guide to one right up the road—which also happens to be America’s First Resort.

Palm Beach has changed dramatically since the WASP-y days of society photographer Slim Aarons and perpetual debutante C.Z. Guest. It’s no longer just a playground for industrial titans, and dukes and duchesses. New Money long ago usurped the Brahmin class. The town even has a Starbucks.

It’s also fun. Even accessible. Sure, there’s immense wealth and prestige, ocean-to-lake estates and towering privacy hedges, all complemented by dazzling landmarks like Mar-a-Lago and The Breakers. But there’s also great dining and shopping, and a scenic bike ride that winds along the Intracoastal for miles.

Best of all, it’s right up the road. Here’s your handy guide to Palm Beach, from us to you. Call it island-hopping in your own backyard.

[1] Grand Hotel: Today, The Breakers is synonymous with luxury on a grand Palm Beach scale, but its origins were more modest when Henry Flagler opened it as The Palm Beach Inn in 1896 to accommodate travelers on his Florida East Coast Railway. The hotel is distinguished by two landmark towers, a sweeping front drive—and the iconic Seafood Bar, great for an afternoon bubbly or two. It continues to be the site of many charity galas during social season—and is still privately run by the descendants of Henry Flagler.

[2] Vintage Chic: Freshly squeezed juices and fruit at Tropical Fruit Shop on Royal Poinciana Way is your must-stop for great old Palm Beach. Browse the fun selection of souvenirs and unique gift items at Florida’s oldest fruit shipper. Gift baskets\ (remember those?) vary depending upon the season and availability. (261

Royal Poinciana Way, 561/832- 3449)

[3] Old-school Milkshakes: You never know who will be sitting next to you when you sidle up to the old-timey counter at Green’s Luncheonette for a great down-home breakfast or a classic BLT for lunch. But whatever you do, wash down your meal with one of Green’s famous milkshakes. (151 N. County Road, 561/832-4443)

For more from this story, pick up the February issue of Boca Raton. You can also subscribe here.