Joan the Shopper:
By Joan Birsh
For nearly a decade I’ve covered the extraordinary retail venues at our Ocean Reef Club in my weekly column called Joan the Shopper. But, alas, this year for many weeks, COVID closed down most of the shops in the Fishing Village, as well as the boutiques in the Fitness Center, Golf Shop and Tennis Center.
I filled my free time (and I hope some of yours) with Cabin Fever, a series of articles devoted to how our resilient ORC Members were coping with quarantine. Then on May 4, Florida gave stores the go-ahead to reopen.
Instantly my own case of “cabin fever” abated and I headed for the Fishing Village, where there was much to see and buy. (Isn’t it fortunate that nose and mouth are not essential to a successful shopping experience, so the required mask is no hinderance.)
I had a fine buying binge, marred only because three of my favorite haunts – Vineyard Vines (both the Women’s and the Men and Children’s stores) and the beloved Lilly Pulitzer – had yet to open their doors. I was distraught (well, at the very least disappointed).
A few weeks later I was in the Fishing Village picking up a little orchid at r.f. for my daughter-in-law’s birthday, when I spotted two young women carrying those distinctive Lilly shopping bags. “It’s Open!” they gleefully announced.
Lilly Pulitzer always surprises and never disappoints…
On this visit I was delighted to see a number of attractive items in a fabric created by Lilly especially for Ocean Reef. The design, featuring a montage of OR images surrounded by luscious Lilly pastels, has been incorporated into a dress, a cap, an oversized bag and the attractive Popover ($108).
For wishful Cinderella’s, Lilly offers an array of golden sandals, sure to entice any prince. And there are wonderful Lilly dresses for all sizes and ages. I love seeing that classic shift coming back in wonderful colors.
And (not for all sizes and ages) there are enticing swimsuits. Many of them just barely (pun intended) conforming to the ORC dress code.
Don’t leave the store without checking out the new rompers and wrap dresses. Matching tights make them both discreet and comfortable.
Vineyard Vines is currently offering some irresistible discounts…
Several months of closed stores has resulted in a backlog of inventory. In order to make room for new arrivals, VV is having amazing sales.
At the VV Women’s store one of my favorite shopping partners, who shares my appreciation for a bargain, found a becoming little blue and white skirt. I bought a discounted tee shirt and a full-priced pair of red jeans. The jeans ($178) are worth every penny. They are a wildly popular Vineyard Vines item. The stretch fabric accommodates most every figure and there is nice choice of colors.
Across the street at VV Men’s and Children’s there are also amazing buys. I found my brother’s favorite shirts at 40% off. I said, “Right on” and bought him two. The one that comes with the wide red, white and blue stripes was perfect for the Fourth of July.
If you have young kids or grandkids, Vineyard Vines has sundresses for girls, shirts like Daddy’s for boys, and onesies for babies. And so much more.
What I like best about all of the VV merchandise, is that it incorporates classic and interesting design without ever being cutesy or condescending.
Why “Eye Openers”?
I gave this column that title because I hoped it would help you see how lucky we are to have, not just the stores featured here, but all the other wonderful venues that make shopping at Ocean Reef a pleasure.