Sleepover: Greyfield Inn, Cumberland Island, USA
The Carnegie experience
Cahal Milmo is the chief reporter of The Independent and has been with the paper since 2000. He was born in London and previously worked at the Press Association news agency. He has reported on assignment at home and abroad, including Rwanda, Sudan and Burkina Faso, the phone hacking scandal and the London Olympics. In his spare time he is a keen runner and cyclist, and keeps an allotment.
Sunday 25 August 2002
Where is it?
On Cumberland Island at the southern-most tip of Georgia, 10 miles south-west of Brunswick off Interstate 95.
What's it like?
A Southern clapboard mansion with a large verandah, built in 1901 as a home for Margaret Ricketson, daughter of Lucy and Thomas Carnegie. The hotel is set in 300 acres of grounds a mixture of saltwater marsh, 17 miles of beautiful beaches and woodland. It is a peaceful and relaxed place with the atmosphere of a family home.
What's it's USP?
A link to history a Carnegie house furnished as it would have been at the turn of the 20th century. Armadillos are in the woods, wild turkeys on the lawn.
Casual but friendly. Coffee, tea and soft drinks are replenished all day and there is always someone to answer questions.
Individually decorated and furnished with early 20th-century antiques. There are no private en-suite bathrooms, apart from in the two annexed cottages, but there is an outdoor shower. Rooms from $290 (£190) to $450 full board.
Good. Dining is informal; there is a long refectory table and a few smaller ones. Everybody gets a picnic basket for lunch. Dinner is casual and candlelit, the food tasty without being fussy.
A mix of honeymooners, retirees and, at weekends, preppy types.
Things to do
Walking in the woods (but be wary of alligators), wildlife-watching. Or you can swim or stroll along the beach in the company of wild horses. Visit Plum Orchard, another Carnegie house, and derelict properties around Dungeness.
Greyfield Inn-Cumberland Island, c/o Post Office Box 900 Fernandina Beach, Florida 32035-0900 (001 888 241 6408; www.greyfieldinn.com).
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