Luxury Without Pretension at the Inn at Palmetto Bluff

Inn at Palmetto Bluff
Inn at Palmetto Bluff

Montage Hotels & Resorts took over management of the newly named The Inn at Palmetto Bluff, a Montage Resort in February. The iconic Lowcountry resort is located in Palmetto Bluff, SC just 20 minutes from Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport. Work is beginning on 150 new luxury rooms to join the existing 50 cottages and cottage suites, with expected completion in summer of 2016. New meeting facilities and a destination spa are also under development.

“When Alan Fuerstman founded Montage Hotels & Resorts in 2003, his whole vision was really to create a comfortable luxury hotel group that stripped the pretension out of old world luxury,” says spokesperson Alyssa Bushey. “We operate hotels that are in extraordinary destinations, but destinations where we can really be the centerpiece of the community. So it’s very rare and special to find something that fits our brand like The Inn at Palmetto Bluff, and it’s been such a seamless fit with the original vision.”

The beauty of The Inn at Palmetto is how it provides such a destination-specific experience amid the giant oaks dripping with Spanish moss along the May River, lagoons and marshes. The Inn is surrounded by 20,000 acres of this pristine wilderness, which means planners can set up events are various venues in what feels like going offsite, without actually going offsite.

For networking and rejuvenation, the golf and spa amenities are on par with the best in The South.

“We have a Jack Nicklaus Signature golf course, which is a private course, so it’s impeccable since it’s not open to the public,” says Paulette Peek, director of sales/marketing. “And then we have the spa, which is all about health, but in the South, we’re all about comfort too. So in our spa, our pastry chef makes these wonderful cookies that you’ll find in the relaxation room. And then each treatment room has its own claw-foot, deep soaking tub on an outdoor balcony that overlooks the water. So who could not love that, right?”

Looking ahead to 2016, a new main building is going to house 86 guest rooms on a separate parcel of land on the other side of the lagoon from the existing village. The 3-story building’s design will be themed around that of a luxurious Southern estate home, adjacent to five room blocks with 10 rooms each, designed with incentive programs in mind.

“That, to me, for meeting planners is great for grouping people together under one roof in a semi-private environment,” says Peek. “Then they’re going to build 14 very high-end presidential-style suites overlooking the May River, and those are going to be placed more toward the main Inn.

For gala events, The Inn at Palmetto is building a new 7,000-sf ballroom with several breakouts, to complement the existing 2,000-sf ballroom.

“We also do a Lowcountry oyster roast or Lowcountry boil there,” adds Peek. “They have this huge fire pit and they bring those oysters right out of the May River, and there’s this giant skillet that goes over the fire pit. Then they pile the oysters on and throw these wet burlap bags over them that steams them up. It is awesome.”