Editor’s Letter: Discover the treasures of travel
The best part of going on a vacation is seeing new places, having new experiences and meeting new people. Even if you live in the most magical place on earth, it’s good to get away and see something different.
In this issue we focus on the resort — and we use the term “resort” loosely. We’re not just talking about a fantastic hotel with a beach and a spa. A resort is anywhere that welcomes visitors with open arms. We visit some fantastic gift shops that relish in the role of showing off their region, their wares and everything that makes them special.
Exploring the Eastern seaboard will undoubtedly land you in the charming seaport town of Newport, Rhode Island. From the majestic mansions of the Vanderbilts and Astors to the shops on the wharf, specialty retailers there are passionate about sharing their charming and unusual treasures. In our Best Sellers In … feature on page 51, we visit four shops in the “city by the sea” to see their distinctive style.
And if we are talking about the ultimate destination for a vacation, we would be remiss to neglect Hawaii. Our Featured Gift Shop, The Sugarcane Shop in Honolulu, embraces the island vibe and is the perfect mix of fun, beachy and hip — all while featuring locally produced items. Meet the owner, Jill Hatch-Fong, in our Q & A on page 102 and see why moving to Hawaii was the best decision she has ever made.
Take a step back in time on your getaway and travel to an island resort where the only mode of transportation is horse-drawn carriage, bicycle or your own two feet. The Grand Hotel on Michigan’s Mackinac Island is a jewel of the Great Lakes. It is the oldest summer hotel in the world and boasts a famous 660-foot porch along with 11 shops plus a beauty salon and spa. Find out how they operate in the Parting Shot feature beginning on page 186.
The Distinctly American feature on page 70 looks at the products that celebrate the unique artwork of America. The artists and craftspeople of the current maker’s movement are using the country’s natural resources to create art with a regional flair that sells well in a variety of settings and can make a shop a destination for fine American art.
I hope the summer was full of travels for you. The busy summer trade show season gave us all a good reason to get away and see new things. Now as the seasons change and fall is upon us, it’s time to gather up the souvenirs of our travels and use them to inspire us as we move into the busy holiday season — refreshed and renewed.