Housed in the historic Diplomat Resort & Spa and helmed by celebrity chef Geoffrey Zakarian, Point Royal is well worth the drive north to Hollywood Beach for happy hour.
Launched in February as part of a multimillion-dollar renovation of the hotel, the restaurant feels intimate despite its impressive size — thanks to dim lighting, small, cozy booths, tiny tables, and plenty of lush indoor greenery.
Gilded accents and towering tropical potted plants lend the space an air of mid-century Havana glamour, while huge hanging geometric lamps cast a soft golden glow and offer a sleek, modern edge.
Point Royal hosts Oyster Hour every day from 5:30-7:30 p.m., offering discounted raw bar favorites, $7 specialty cocktails and all-you-can-eat stone crab for $89. The restaurant will also serve a special Thanksgiving brunch buffet for $50 ($25 for children 12 and under).
Something to sip
Made with two kinds of rum, fresh lemon juice, passion fruit puree, housemade grenadine and demerara sugar syrup, the Hurricane Crush is a guest favorite.
In the mood for a tropical classic? Try the Mai Tai. Point Royal makes it with Bacardi rum, fresh lime juice, Cointreau, orgeat syrup and mint.
Something to savor
Inspired by coastal American cuisine, Point Royal’s menu features a lot of locally sourced seafood options. Start with the crab croquettes, which come paired with a special Comeback Sauce. Then try the Shrimp & Anson Mills Grits, made with andouille sausage, cheddar, scallion and pickled mushrooms. “Everything has a reason on this plate,” Zakarian said. “The savory richness of the polenta really carries and marries well with the delicate shrimp, creole spiced butter, and andouille sausage.”
1 ounce of Diplomatico Rum
½ ounce of fresh lemon juice
1 ½ ounce of passion fruit puree
1 ounce of demerara sugar syrup
½ ounce of house-made grenadine
Float ½ ounce of Smith & Cross rum
Place all the ingredients (except for rum float) into a shaker, add ice and shake 2-3 times. Fill a highball glass with fresh crushed ice and strain mixture into the glass over crushed ice. Slowly float the Smith & Cross rum over the top. Top with an edible orchid.