SoWal Towns

WaterSound Beach

Beach Paradise With Classic Coastal Architecture

On the south side of Scenic 30A is the sprawling town of WaterSound Beach - encompassing miles of pristine beach bordering Deer Lake State Park. Dozens of boardwalks through the dunes allow an up close experience with the coastal ecosystem.

WaterSound Beach is a thoughtfully planned town that responds to its unique geography and climate, like historical coastal towns from Nantucket to Charleston. Each residence within gated WaterSound Beach has access to a distinctively designed swimming pool and gathering area, as well as direct access to the beach via paths, boardwalks and bridges.

The trails and pedestrian bridges linking the various neighborhoods of WaterSound Beach were built to protect the dunes, while still allowing visitors to appreciate the delicate beauty of the wetlands and conservation areas. Engaging wooden pathways, designed specifically for WaterSound Beach, gently meander through the natural openings and contours of the dunescape for access to the white sandy beach and emerald green waters of the gulf.

The GateHouse, designed by Gund Partnership Architects, has a shape derived from the historic 1887-era W.G. Low House in Rhode Island, a unique summer cottage beneath an expansive triangular gable. The GateHouse is home to the popular WaterSound Beach Café, a fitness center, a post office, the WaterSound Vacations rental company and a St. Joe Community Sales office.

The crown jewel of WaterSound’s beach experience can be found at the exclusive WaterSound Beach Club, overlooking the towering dunes that frame the Gulf of Mexico. The centerpiece is a breathtaking 7,000-squarefoot zero-entry pool that mirrors the natural shapes of the remarkable dune lakes found throughout the area. The club also features a full-service restaurant and exhibition kitchen, indoor and outdoor terrace dining, an open-air full-service bar and shaded arbors. A pristine sugar-white sand beach lies on the other side, a short stroll along the boardwalk.

The beautiful landscape of WaterSound Beach shifts from brilliant white sandy beaches to dunes typified by drifts of saw palmettos, scrub oaks, hollies and wax myrtles. Moving away from the gulf, the inner dunes give way to sandy pines. A coastal dune lake brimming with flora and fauna, Camp Creek Lake provides WaterSound Beach with another distinctive ecological niche. The lake outfall connects the inland waters with the brilliant emerald waters of the gulf, creating a rare and thriving wildlife habitat.

Named after the freshwater coastal dune lake within its boundaries, Deer Lake State Park, a 1,920-acre area on the western border of WaterSound Beach, offers trail access to the Gulf of Mexico through a magnificent dune field and a pristine section of beach. Rich with diverse plant and wildlife, Deer Lake State Park boasts beach dunes, mesic flatwoods, sandhills, scrubs, basin swamps, depression marshes, dome swamps, a coastal dune lake, blackwater streams, estuarine tidal creeks and unconsolidated marine substrates.

Just west of WaterSound Beach, near the coastal dune lake of Deer Lake State Park, lies WaterSound West Beach. In keeping with the same architectural spirit as neighboring WaterSound Beach, WaterSound West Beach’s family homes are steeped in classic maritime influences, with shingle-style homes, deep porches and elegant craftsmanship. Yet, this small coastal retreat possesses its own sense of place, one that remains true to the surrounding organic beauty.

With fewer than 200 homes, WaterSound West Beach offers the best in neighborhood amenities, such as a delightful swimming pool, beautifully crafted boardwalks and plenty of lush green parks, winding trails and natural areas, and is an easy walk to the beach. Within a 10-mile radius are the charming shops, eateries, galleries and entertainment of famed Scenic 30A.

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