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1000 Guests

1000 Guests Are RIGHT

Sophie Tucker’s record ‘Fifty-million Frenchmen can’t be wrong’ alluded to the comparatively free and easy attitude to drinking in France seven years into Prohibition in the U.S. which began 100 years ago yesterday. I was reminded by a guest historian of her Tucker’s hit, after mentioning a number of weeks ago our 1000th guest vacation checked out. 2020 marks our tenth season … a decade of welcoming vacationers, practicing the skills of hospitality and offering a relaxing, inspirational home base from which to explore Tampa and the wider central Florida region.

A thousand vacations … what makes Erehwon Retreat so special?

I’ve worked hard over the past decade to make Erehwon Retreat something quite unique. Florida is full of places to vacation, it’s been my mission to combine the traditional charm of a vacation home rental with the best features of more space, safety and security and white glove cleaning and disinfection with personal welcome and on site concierge. When Wilcox Nursery and I started to plan to convert all turf to a Florida native plant garden, it was with the desire to show my visitors a range of native plants and wildlife that they would then be able to recognize in local hikes. And for those in Executive Transfer who would stay for a month while looking for a Florida home how to avoid landscaping that damages the environment and fails to support bird life and pollinators. My dream became a reality, delivering dozens of different varieties of native bird and butterfly life to Erehwon Retreat’s doorstep, and this year the garden was designated as a Wildlife Habitat by no less than the National and Florida Wild-life Federation. It’s a huge honor, but more importantly, it means that the vacationers who stay with us get to experience the very best of Florida, right on their doorstep. My Grandmother used to say planting a garden is to believe in tomorrows.

The universal language of hospitality

My life was spent working in the performing arts – so I have always known that music and dance were international languages, a way to communicate across boundaries. Since developing Erehwon Retreat, I’ve come to truly appreciate that hospitality is also a universal language. When Erehwon opened it was mainly aimed at American, but today 12% of our guests are from overseas. Their expectations are different. Whether they come from America or Asia, it’s important to know what their particular likes and dislikes are – that makes for so many fascinating new discoveries. Offering a shared experience of the 1920’s to people from all around the world has been a real joy to me. As part of our 10th Anniversary, I decided to develop a stronger guest experience, which is why, since December 8, www.erehwonretreat.com has been available in 25 languages in addition of English. I chose the languages based on having hosted at least one guest from each language represented. As an example, Erehwon Retreat has hosted two guests from Argentina, and one each from Spain, Paraguay, Mexico and the Dominican Republic – hence our Spanish language site is likely to be very popular! When one looks back its hard to believe we’ve hosted guests from so many countries.

The Erehwon Retreat perspective

From period decorative details to wildlife-watching opportunities over breakfast on the deck, I’ve tried to design my holday house to be something truly special and utterly unique. Luxury used to be associated with three-piece-suits and starched shirts, that was really the reputation of a five-star hotel, but that is changing and we see that our guests want that genuine approach to service rather than formalities. It seems that many people agree that I’ve achieved my aim. This year, Erehwon Retreat was selected winner of the Tampa Award for Vacation Rental Agency. What makes my vacation home unique is my commitment to service, and just as AirBnB is moving to AirBnB Plus to offer guests a more valuable, unique rental experience, I know that when you visit you’ll discover just what makes 1000 Guests right. Erehwon Retreat is special, and whatever language you speak, I’m certain that we’ll share the language of hospitality.

I look forward to welcoming you to Erehwon Retreat!

Give it up for Sophie Tucker

Scooters and Bike Rentals Tampa

Scooters and Bike Rentals Tampa Florida Vacation Homes

Tampa now has four different motorized scooters to cruise around downtown –
BIRD| www.bird.co |1 (866) 205-2442

JUMP| www.jump.com |1 (844) 505 9155

LIME| www.li.me |1 (888)-LIME-345

SPIN | www.spin.app |1 (888) 249-9698

They’re part of a year-long pilot program to offer low-cost transportation and reduce traffic downtown. JUMP electric scooters are available in Tampa and Miami through the Uber app and give riders the ability to both reserve and walk up and ride a scooter.
I recommend LIME because they have the most Florida towns covered. Lime is available in:
Ft. Lauderdale
Key Biscayne
Miami
Miami Lakes
Miami Shores
Miami Springs
North Bay Village
North Miami

Once riders discover their scooter of choice, they can scan the QR code through the Uber app to unlock it.

All riders 16 years of age with a valid drivers license or permit has to do is kick off the ground three times to get the scooter going, pressing the throttle to boost anywhere up to 15 mph. The brake, located on the left handlebar, can be used to slow down, or riders can use the rear brake to come to a more immediate stop.

The app also shows riders how charged the scooter is and how far it can be ridden before it dies and needs to be recharged again. On average, the scooters can travel at speeds up to about 15 mph and operate between 15 to 20 miles on a single charge.

The current boundaries are listed below:

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. on the North
Davis and Harbor Islands on the South
Armenia Avenue on the West
40th Street on the East

Scooters may not be ridden in the following locations:
Tampa Riverwalk
Bayshore Boulevard
7th Avenue

You may also lock the scooter so other users cannot ride it, but remember you are being charged by the minute and you will continue to incur charges. This is useful if you’re just running inside a store or making some other quick stop.

Florida is flat but remember do not ride a scooter down steep hills. High speed can overpower the electric brake causing loss of control. Use the rear foot brake to control speed. Always get off and walk down steep hills.To find a Lime scooter, simply open the Uber app or the Lime app, then tap Ride at the top of your screen and select Bike & Scooter (Uber app only). In both cases, you’ll automatically be taken to a map screen showing all available scooters near you.

And for Bike Rentals there is – COAST
Miami, FL
Orlando, FL
St. Petersburg, FL
Tampa, FL

For their app: https://gohopr.com/ride/

Baseball in Florida – The Grapefruit League

Baseball in Florida – The 2020 Grapefruit League

Baseball in Florida - The Grapefruit League Florida Vacation Homes

Erehwon Retreat is well placed for visitors to enjoy a quintessential American activity – baseball. Spring training in Florida began in earnest in 1913, when the Chicago Cubs trained in Tampa and the Cleveland Indians in Pensacola. One year later, two other teams moved to Florida for spring training, the real start of the Grapefruit League. Except for a couple of years during World War II, when travel restrictions prevented teams training south of the Potomac and Ohio rivers, Florida hosted more than half of the spring training teams through 2009. Since 2010, major league teams have been equally divided between Arizona and Florida during spring training, with 15 teams in Florida and 15 teams in Arizona.The Toronto Blue Jays will be playing in Dunedin, the Philadelphia Phillies in Clearwater and the New York Yankees in Tampa itself. Every one of their home games is within half an hour’s drive of Erehwon and with the Baltimore Orioles doing their winter training in Sarasota and the Detroit Tigers in Lakeland, each within an hour’s drive, there’s no shortage of quality baseball literally on our doorstep.

The Baltimore Orioles migrate to Sarasota

The long history of the Baltimore Orioles began with a name change, when, in 1953 the St Louis Browns moved to Baltimore and changed their name … from that year they went from strength to strength, and today their winter training ground in Sarasota gives many a Florida vacation rental visitor the chance to explore some quality baseball.

Detroit Tigers travel to Lakeland

In a similar vein, the even more veteran Detroit Tigers have a winter training ground in Lakeland. Since 1894 when the Tigers were a charter member of the reorganized Western League, the changing fortune of the Tigers has been a subject of joy and despair for their followers. It’s amazing to consider that this baseball team has been around since the day star players traveled to the baseball ground in horse-drawn buggies! But for those looking for homes for rent in Florida, the Tigers present a fantastic opportunity to see baseball in the sun today.

The Grapefruit League 2020

On February 21,2020 the Grapefruit League begins this year’s matches. Pitchers and catchers report to the NY Yankees February 12 and position players on the 17th. Of special note, the Nationals and the Astros both train in West Palm Beach and as of tonight’s World Series the Astros have 3 months and 21 days to get over it. There’s something special about watching baseball in Florida – endless sunshine, easy travel between baseball grounds and none of the stress of fighting to get into the packed grounds and dealing with the congested roads around stadiums in the Northern states. Instead it’s an easy-going experience of sport in the sun, with something for everybody. As the league timetable shows, there’s no end of excitement to be had!

Florida villa rentals – the joy of year-round sport

For golfers in particular, Florida is a center of excellence renowned throughout the world, but baseball is also a winter joy for those hunting down the perfect Tampa homes for rent. Whether you’re a fan of a particular team, or just enjoy watching baseball for the sheer pleasure of sportsmen in action, Florida state is a wonderful opportunity for spectators. Not only that, but with Florida’s wonderful food shops and eateries there’s every opportunity to enjoy a picnic or tailgate meal that will delight every member of your vacation party – whether they are baseball fanatics or not.

View a map of 2018 Grapefruit League Spring Training sites

View Grapefruit League training schedule

How do you select which languages you translate

We use two criteria in selecting languages: our first motivation to add computer translations was to enhance our guest experience as part of a number of activities associated with completion of our first decade hosting at Erehwon Retreat. In my arts management and arts consulting career I witnessed the universal language within Dance and Music. In semi-retirement, I realized that genuine hospitality offered discretely is also universally appreciated and reciprocated. Each of the 25 languages we launched in December represents a guest(s) who have visited our Holiday Homes from another country. In future years, we will expand if we see 25+ visits within a calendar year from new areas of the world. We aggregate languages so for example with Spanish, we have hosted guests from Spain, Argentina, Costa Rico, Ecuador, Mexico & Puerto Rico. English included guests from Canada, Australia, Britain and Northern Ireland to date.

 

13 or 58 mph? America chooses

As snowbirds are speeding down modern Interstates consider that in 1923 the Dixie Highway had just reached Tampa. It would be three more backbreaking years before the Tamiami Trail would cross the Everglades and finally reach Miami. The speed on the Dixie Highway in 1923 averaged 12.9 mph. A trip from Chicago to Miami would take two weeks in those early years.

 

13 or 58 mph? America chooses Florida Vacation Homes
As the Dixie Highway pushed South it would be a few more years for standard signage

As late as 1910 good highways eluded most Americans and nearly all southeners. People rode trains if any distance was involved. Locally, they traveled by wagon, buggy or city streetcar. Dirt roads were all local – from the farthest farm to nearest railhead. “Improved roads” were graded dirt, clay or gravel. And when it rained, mayhem.

13 or 58 mph? America chooses Florida Vacation Homes
Counties paid farmers to grade the roads and pull the joy riders out

 

13 or 58 mph? America chooses Florida Vacation Homes
Dixie Highway went thru phases in surfacing

Beginning in 1914, Carl G Fisher proposed a route that would connect or merge hundreds of short roads into interstate roads that looped from the Mackinac MI ferry to Miami and back. The story of struggle to create the Highway, and later a Federal highway system, ignited debates about federal power and local control between many stakeholders – automobile brands, farmers, the Goodroads movement, and in the south prison commissions (chain gang labor) and with increasing post WW I automobility, racial control.

By 1880 railroad mileage (250,000 miles) exceeded travelable roads. Railroads had a monopoly! Express trains were the fastest way to travel averaging 58 mph.

By 1900, under pressure from Progressive reformers and lobbying by Sears, Roebuck and Co, Mongomery Ward the push for Rural Free Delivery (RFD) pitted over 77,000 small town postmasters against Home Delivery and the Railroads were deeply admired.

At the same time the number of auto manufacturers soared. Between 1900 and 1908 some 485 automobile companies had formed. Barely half survived by 1909. Henry Ford’s Model N in 1906 sold for $600. His Model T was selling for $345 in 1916. By 1918 HALF of the cars sold in the U S were Model T’s. Ford offered an affordable means of travel, but Fisher knew the missing ingredient- roads that could withstand heavy rain.

13 or 58 mph? America chooses Florida Vacation Homes
The Florida map of the Dixie Highway by 1926

Fisher had begun developing Miami Beach and wanted an easy way for people with a car to travel. Initially this proposed road was called the Cotton Belt route. By 1915 when construction began it was changed to the Old Dixie Highway, all part of an effort to promote a romantic image of the old south as warm, inviting southern hospitality.

13 or 58 mph? America chooses Florida Vacation Homes
By the 1920’s vacationing in FL was growing exponentially

If you are driving on I-75 and want to track the Dixie Hwy

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