Forget hot girl summer, we’re embracing coastal grandmother this season…and here on out. Despite its name, the laid-back, chic aesthetic is for people anywhere and of all ages, not just grandmothers.
“If you love Nancy Meyers movies, coastal vibes, recipes and cooking, Ina Garten, cozy interiors and more, there’s a good chance you might be a coastal grandmother,” TikToker Lex Nicoleta, who is credited with coining the term, explained in a viral video.
Meyers’ films Something’s Gotta Give starring Diane Keaton as Erica Berry and It’s Complicated starring Meryl Streep as Jane Adler are sources of inspiration for the aesthetic.
While you can channel Meyers’ leading ladies at home (which we do), we’ve rounded up destinations that are a coastal grandmother’s dream—from the South to the Northeast.
Hilton Head Island
Experience gorgeous sunsets and Southern hospitality at Hilton Head Island, located in South Carolina. Whether you’re staying at a vacation rental or a hotel like the Sea Pines Resort, there is plenty to do on the island. Visitors can stroll or pedal along the beaches, spot dolphins on a cruise and discover fresh flowers at the island’s weekly farmer’s market. In a sporty moody? Unpack your tennis gear and play a match at Wimbledon Champion Stan Smith’s Smith Stearns Tennis Academy or hit one of the over 20 golf courses on the island.
Escape to the Cape in Massachusetts. From Barnstable to Provincetown, there are plenty of towns and villages to explore on the hook-shaped peninsula, including Falmouth, where you can cycle on the 10.7-mile Shining Sea Bikeway. History-loving visitors can pop into the John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum in Hyannis and satisfy their sweet tooth with a soft serve at Osterville’s The Salty Cow. Out in the Outer Cape, coastal grandmothers can sip wine at Truro Vineyards, go whale watching with Captain John Boats, or put on proper shoes and walk the Provincetown Causeway.
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Fly or take the ferry to Nantucket, a charming island off of Cape Cod. Admire the waterfront homes and stunning gardens (worthy of a Nancy Meyers movie) on the ‘Sconset Bluff Walk, or visit Nantucket’s lighthouses—Sankaty Lighthouse, Brant Point Lighthouse and Great Point Lighthouse—and the Whaling Museum. On a warm day, cool off with an ice cream from The Juice Bar, or visit Cisco Brewers for a drink. While in town, be sure to grab a lobster roll!
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South of Cape Cod is another Massachusetts island, Martha’s Vineyard, which is accessible by ferry or plane. The Obama family vacation spot is home to six towns (Aquinnah, Chilmark, Edgartown, Oak Bluffs, Vineyard Haven and West Tisbury) and scenic beaches, not to mention the famous Jaws Bridge. Walk around Oak Bluffs’ colorful Gingerbread Cottages, relax in Ocean Park, or visit the island’s five lighthouses and breathtaking Aquinnah Cliffs.
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If you’re looking to fully channel Erica Barry, then look no further than the Hamptons. The popular New York vacation destination is where Keaton’s character’s beach house was located in Something’s Gotta Give. Read a book or stroll in the sand (à la Keaton and Jack Nicholson) at Cooper’s Beach in Southampton. In Water Mill, art buffs can tour the Parrish Art Museum. Coastal grandmothers looking to enjoy an afternoon of wine and bites will want to swing by Wölffer Estate Vineyard in Sagaponack. While out east, you can travel to the “end of the world” a.k.a. Montauk, where visitors can experience the Montauk Salt Cave and see the Montauk Point Lighthouse.
You do not need to be a guest at Newport’s Castle Hill Inn (though we certainly wouldn’t mind!) in order to have a glass of wine while taking in the ocean views on an Adirondack chair. Coastal grandmothers visiting the city in Rhode Island can book a cruise onboard the aptly named Coastal Queen.
Back on land, the picturesque Blue Garden is open every Thursday from June 9 through Oct. 6, 2022 (a $15 reservation is required though). If tennis is your sport of choice, then you’re in luck because Newport is where the International Tennis Hall of Fame is located, and it offers tennis on grass courts and croquet to the public
There are several coastal towns in Maine like Camden and Bar Harbor where you can make your coastal grandmother dreams a reality. Kennebunkport is another one of those towns (and also where the Bush family compound is located).
During your stay, you can relax at one of the beaches, including Goose Rocks Beach, stroll the Parsons Way Shore Walk, tour the First Families Kennebunkport Museum and the Seashore Trolley Museum, plus explore the Dock Square, go for a sail with the Pineapple Ketch or whale watch with First Chance Whale Watch.
So, pack your button downs, cozy knits and linens and prepare to live your best coastal grandmother life!
Next, check out 18 incredibly chic items made for channeling your inner coastal grandmother.