Looking to shop local for Valentine’s Day? Or simply looking for a last minute gift for a loved one? Here are some great ideas, some of which can be purchased even if you can’t make it to the island in time.
1. Spa giftcard
You may be thinking that a spa giftcard is overdone for Valentine's Day. But the reality is, it's a popular gift for a reason. What person wouldn't love a deep-tissue massage or a facial? Everyone deserves to be pampered, so why not do so in the relaxation of the shore?
The Reeds Salt Spa is a popular option with treatments such as a Turkish bath, massage and floatation therapy. Physical and digital gift cards are available on their website.
Spa Avalon is another great option with classic choices such as facials, massages and manicures and pedicures. Gift certificates are available online as well.
2. Food gift card
There's more restaurants on the island that I can count, and in summer, I try to hit as many as possible. So, grab a gift card to enjoy in the offseason or to set aside for a special date night this summer — add a cute note about the date for bonus points.
Here are some of the restaurants on the island that offer gift cards: Il Posto Ristorante, The Princeton, Icona owned restaurants such as the Avalon Brew Pub and the Windrift, The Diving Horse, Borghi's By The Bay, Spiaggetta, Watering Hull, Yvette's Cafe, The Reeds.
Not seeing gift certificate information on a restaurant's website? Give them a quick call or send them an email or dm to see if they offer any.
3. Serendipity jewelry and more
Serendipity is one of my favorite shops on the island because every time I go in, I know there will be new items. I love the the feeling of a scavenger hunt when I'm browsing, and Serendipity offers just that.
The selection ranges from jewelry to clothing, sun glasses, purses and more — all perfect for Valentine's gifts. There's even a men's section including clothing and sports paraphernalia. By shopping here you can also support numerous sellers at once.
I recently purchased an Avalon beach tag necklace at Serendipity and have worn it nearly every day, layering it with some of my other pieces.
Did you know Serendipity has an online retail option? Customers also get 15% off their first order when they sign up for emails.
4. Yoga, gym pass or membership
The island offers a great variety of workout classes and a year-round gym, Avalon Fitness. While classes aren't being held at Avalon Fitness right now, the gym is open every day, and is a great gift option if your partner is on the island frequently and looking for a way to stay fit in the cold season.
Sol Luna Yoga, another great gift option, offers class passes and private sessions. And in the offseason, they're offering yoga, Zoom yoga and meditation classes, so you can participate from on the island or your home base elsewhere.
5. Fred's Tavern merchandise
If you're looking for a gift for him or her that screams iconic Seven Mile Island, look no further than Fred's Tavern. Inside its liquor store in downtown Stone Harbor, there's a wide selection of merchandise from T-shirts to sweatshirts and embroidered hats in a multitude of colors.
In all honesty, someone in my house is sporting Fred's merchandise at all times down the shore. They even sell special edition logo items such as a masked Fred during the start of the pandemic and a Fred wearing a Santa hat around Christmas time. So be on the lookout for special items and grab them when you see them.
6. Cocktails From Fred’s Liquor Store
While we're at it, we might as well mention another great gift idea from Fred's. Head to the island's liquor store and pick up all the ingredients for a cute cocktail date night.
Try a new recipe or make your partner's favorite drink. A gift doesn't have to be super extravagant. Sometimes the simpler gifts show more thought and intention. Nothing beats a craft cocktail and quality time with your significant other. Need drink ideas? Check out our latest "Sipping On Summer" video on our social media.
7. Barrier Island Books & Art
If your partner is a book worm, head over to Barrier Island Books. Hidden near the back entrance to Fred's Liquor Store, this little book shop offers a wide selection of new and used books in every genre.
The quaint, cozy space makes it easy to lose track of time browsing. Whether you're looking for a romance novel — perfect for Valentine's day — a leather-bound classic or a nonfiction bestseller, Barrier Island Books is the place.
To top it off, everything is 20% off for all of February!
8. Gypsy Lane Home decor
Gypsy Lane, easily noticeable with its blue and white awning, is open in the offseason. With statement home pieces, this modern coastal boutique is a great place to find a gift for your partner to commemorate the home you've created here on the island.
The shop even has an online retail option for if you had your eye on an art piece or a stylish pillow but won't be able to make it down in time for the holiday.
9. Icona Avalon Golf Package
For the golf lovers out there, Icona is offering a package that includes a stay with late checkout, transportation to and from the golf course, dinner at Avalon Brew Pub and breakfast the following morning.
The local clubs to choose from include Avalon Golf Club, The Shore Club, Cape May National, Stone Harbor Golf Club, Big Little 9 (Par 3), Cape May Par 3. Guests, however, are responsible for golf costs and securing their own tee time.
Don't want a full package? Contact one of the above clubs to secure a tee time for your partner or to inquire about certificates.
Up for a quick drive to Cape May? The downtown has an assortment of delectable goods from the Cape Islands Food Family, which includes Cape May Peanut Butter Co., The Cheese Shop, Cape May Olive Oil Co. and Spice Cellar of Cape May. Delight in peanut butter flavors from butterscotch to honey roast, olive oils in nearly every flavor including basil and chipotle, and spreads like sundried tomato and parmesan.
If you're not able to make it to Cape May, the company offers online retail.
There are so many great small businesses to support in Avalon and Stone Harbor. Not seeing something that catches your eye on this list? Look up your favorite island business to see if they're offering gift cards. Many do even if they're not open in the offseason and some even sell their merchandise online.
If you're still having no luck, draw up a homemade voucher for one of the local businesses — but be sure to follow through on the gift to you partner this summer.