September 30, 2022 — Over the summer, the term “coastal grandmother” gained traction on TikTok after user Lex Nicoleta posted a Coastal Grandmother Starter Pack claiming she’d coined the term. Since then, the #coastalgrandmother hashtag has been flooded with 185 million videos showcasing the aesthetic: neutral color palettes, ocean-side minimalism, overflowing fruit bowls, al fresco meals with mediterranean-inspired dishes, Nancy Meyers movies, Ina Garten cookbooks, trips to the farmers market, etc. Think comfy, cozy, chic.
Summer may be over but true devotees of the coastal grandmother aesthetic know that it’s more of a laid-back, open-a-bottle-of-wine-at-4-pm, snip-herbs-from-your-windowsill-pot lifestyle that can be embodied all year round. With that being said, we’ve rounded up a list of Philadelphia-area locales where someone looking to manifest the coastal grandmother aesthetic this fall and beyond can visit for a crisp bottle of Chardonnay, a cookbook, a seasonal candle, high-quality kitchenware, and more.
A true coastal grandmother embodiment would not be complete without a bottle of a rich and full-bodied Chardonnay. Rex at The Royal, Philadelphia’s home for elevated Lowcountry fare housed in the historic and newly rejuvenated Royal Theater, is South Street’s newest bottle shop that boasts a robust menu of popular New World wines, perfect for sipping while a roast chicken bakes in the oven and Something’s Gotta Give plays in the background. Coastal Grandmothers looking for a more rare and unique bottle that no one at their dinner party has seen or tasted before, can head to Jet Wine Bar’s bottle shop across the street, where shelves are stocked with a diverse selection of wines from far-flung locales including Santorini, Cilicia, Imereti, Morocco, Iraq, South Africa, and beyond that are curated by owner, Dr. Jill Weber, an archeologist whose studies have taken her all over the globe.
Rex at the Royal: 9am – 10pm Tuesday through Thursday, 9am – 11pm Friday and Saturday, 9am – 10pm Sunday
Jet Wine Bar Bottle Shop: 5 – 10pm Wednesday through Thursday, 5 – 11pm Friday, 2 – 11pm on Saturday, 12 – 6pm on Sunday
East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District (EPABID), home to more than 160 independently owned businesses in South Philadelphia, is a one-stop shop for all inspiring coastal grandmothers.
- A Novel Idea — a community-minded bookstore stocking Colleen Hoover’s latest and cook books full of recipes for the next book club or dinner party
- Urban Jungle — Those looking to replenish their windowsill garden can head to this oasis in South Philly for plants and supplies for a sustainable urban garden
- Good Buy Supply — Coastal Grandmas looking for high-quality and sustainable bathroom + grooming products, home + garden, kitchen + garden supplies should head to Good Buy Supply for Sandalwood Rose Room Spray, natural deodorant, French Market Tote for farmers market shopping, Root Nature Grow: The Essential Guide to Propagating and Sharing Houseplants or compostable luffa sponge, and more.
- East Passyunk Farmers Market is a Coastal Grandmother’s haven with locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables, baked goods, flower bouquets, and more — every Wednesday from 3-7 pm at the corner of East Passyunk Ave and Dickinson Street, through the end of November.
After a leisurely afternoon strolling the art galleries in Old City, Coastal Grandmas can refuel with martinis and oysters at Royal Boucherie, a lively neighborhood bistro brasserie. Guests can pair a French 52 ($14) with Beefeater Gin, Crémant Rosé, Lemon, Rose Water with freshly-shucked Oysters on the Half Shell, Chilled Lobster, or Cheese Board for the perfect evening treat. Diners can revel in the charm of Royal Boucherie and be transported elsewhere for a moment before walking home to The Parent Trap soundtrack and preparing some Scalloped Potatoes for dinner.
The Coastal Grandma loves to cook and entertain, from dinner parties to book clubs. And that requires all of the essentials, from aprons to oven mitts. Occasionette, the homegrown, woman-owned and operated goods and gifts retailer, is a one-stop shop for all cozy dinner party, kitchenware and bakeware supplies, from cook books, to wine glasses, to spatulas, to candles, to dish towels, and more.
Hours of operation for all three Occassionette locations (Chestnut Hill, E Passyunk Ave, Collingswood, NJ) are Monday through Saturday, 11am – 7pm and Sunday 11am – 5pm. For more information on Occasionette, visit www.occasionette.com.
Art in the Age, Old City’s one-of-a-kind tasting room, home bar supply, and bottle shop, is perfect for those looking to elevate their at-home bartending game and cabinet, with products such as bar tools, cocktail recipe books, glassware, and more. For Coastal Grandmas looking to bring the garden inside, Tamworth Garden Apiary Gin was formulated to pay homage to the flora that populates the Tamworth, NH area, where Tamworth Distilling is located, and the honey it produces. Another bar cart necessity would be the Tamworth Garden x Woodland Honey Co. Flora Gin Honey, which was aged in the barrels that previously held Tamworth Flora Gin. Both products are currently available at Art in the Age in Old City.
Hours of operation: Tuesday – Thursday 12 – 7 pm, Friday – Saturday 12 – 8 pm, Sunday 12 – 6 pm.
Following a matinee show at the iconic and historic Bucks County Playhouse in New Hope, PA, one of the most beautiful and artsy small towns in America, located less than an hour from Center City, Philadelphia, Coastal Grandmothers ought to snag a table at Playhouse Deck the modern American in-house restaurant, located directly behind the theater, for an early dinner accompanied by sweeping views of the Delaware River because, after all, Coastal Grandmothers love and appreciate their bodies of water. If the weather’s nice, guests can enjoy a glass of wine with some marinated olives, mussels escabeche, and salmon on the second floor deck overlooking the water or on the promenade for some riverside dining. The indoor dining room is just as beautiful with 180 degree views of the river. Following dinner, guests can walk the streets of New Hope and visit the abounding fine art galleries and antique shops.
Hours of Operation: Wednesday and Thursday, 12pm – 10pm, Friday and Saturday, 12pm – 12am, and Sunday, 12pm – 10pm
Coastal Grandmothers looking for a mini getaway by water this fall and winter, should consider two hotels within an hour of Center City, Philadelphia:
- Seaview Hotel & Golf Resort, a beautiful and historic seaside resort located in Galloway, NJ, 50 minutes from Philadelphia, is only 9 miles from Atlantic City and its boardwalk and beaches. Juxtaposing its 108-year old charm, this 670-acre retreat boasts modern services and amenities for travelers, including two newly renovated championship golf courses, an indoor and seasonal outdoor pool, a 24-hour fitness center, and more. Historic Smithville is located a five minute drive down the road with shopping and family-friendly activities, with some antiquing along the way. Visitors can enjoy Seaview Hotel’s lush grounds along Reeds Bay, walk the miles of trails leading from the Pines Golf Course, or head to one of the nearby beaches for an oceanside stroll. Guests staying through Sunday morning can treat themselves to a sprawling Sunday brunch buffet spread with bottomless mimosas in hand, and indulge in a newly-minted build-your-own Bloody Mary Bar. For more information about Seaview Hotel and Golf Resort and to inquire about availability, click here.
- Ghost Light Inn, a 12-room luxury boutique hotel located adjacent to the Delaware River in the heart of New Hope, Pennsylvania, offers visitors a respite from city life with quaint river-view rooms perfect for a Coastal Grandmother lusting after quality time spent by the water. In-house restaurant, Stella of New Hope, helmed by Chef Michael O’Halloran, offers a cozy second-floor deck complete with a wood-burning fireplace and unparalleled views of the Delaware River. Following dinner, visitors can stroll around New Hope to various art galleries, ice cream shops and vintage stores and end the night riverside under gas lanterns. Guests traveling with dogs are also welcome as the hotel and restaurant are pet-friendly.