By Jae-Ha Kim
Tribune Media Services
August 11, 2009
Shep Murray saw a good chunk of the world early on in his life, thanks to his parents — both of whom were travel writers. Eleven years ago when he and his younger brother, Ian, founded Vineyard Vines — a line of clothing and accessories that evokes a crisp, preppy vibe — the siblings kept their travels in mind.
“We wanted to create things that packed well and were durable,” says Shep Murray, 38. “We wanted to make things for people who enjoy the good life, regardless of how wealthy they are.”
Murray’s favorite destination — bar none — is not too far from his Greenwich, Conn., home: Martha’s Vineyard.
Q. What is your favorite vacation destination?
I’ve traveled all over the world and keep coming back to the same place: Martha’s Vineyard (in Mass.). It’s my favorite place in the world.
Q. Where are your favorite weekend getaways?
Martha’s Vineyard and the Florida Keys. I’d been going to the Keys for the past 12 years or so, but my wife had never been. Finally, about three or four years ago, I told her she should really go there with me. She was hesitant at first, but now she loves it. If I had my way, I’d summer in Martha’s Vineyard and spend the rest of my time in the Florida Keys. They’re two of the best places in the world. If I were to take a weekend getaway right now, I’d go to the Cheeca Lodge in Islamorada, Fla., and have breakfast at the Green Turtle Market (www.greenturtlemarket.com).
Q. What are your favorite hotels and restaurants?
One of my favorite places to eat in the Vineyard is Sharky’s Cantina (www.sharkyscantina.com), which is always jumping. The Square-Rigger Restaurant is a fisherman’s diner with really hearty fare. I love Dock Street Diner. If you want to know what’s going on in town, you go there. If you want to get a little fancy, there’s L’etoile (www.letoile.net). Bloody Mary’s in Bora Bora (French Polynesia) is about my favorite restaurant ever. In New York, I love eating at the 21 Club (www.21club.com). Heaven for me is a beach bar called Lorelei Cabana Bar and Restaurant (www.loreleifloridakeys.com) in Islamorada. That is about as good as it gets. They have the most amazing sunset in the world. You can pull your boat up and dock it right to the restaurant. As far as hotels, I really like the Cove Castles Resort (www.covecastles.com) in Anguilla. I love the Bora Bora Lagoon Resort and Spa (www.boraboralagoon.com). They have this picnic there where they take you out to a private table set up with a linen tablecloth and silverware for you in the water and there’s a chef wearing a chef’s hat and a bathing suit. And the Hotel Normandy in Deauville, France, is also very nice.
Q. When you go away, what are some of your must-have items?
My Olympus camera that’s waterproof and shockproof, my BlackBerry and a tennis racket, ‘cause I’m always looking for a game of tennis. If I’m flying and have room, I’ll bring my guitar. Oh, and my iPod.
Q. What is your worst vacation memory?
We went to Lyford Cay in the Bahamas and it was very nice and decadent, but it wasn’t for me. You can’t pay me to wear pants on vacation. I want to wear shorts. Lyford Cay is not a shorts kind of place. It was beautiful and the people were great, but I couldn’t get really comfortable there.
© 2009 JAE-HA KIM
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Posted by: Jae-Ha Kim
Tags: Bahamas, BlackBerry, Bloody Mary's, Bora Bora, Bora Bora Lagoon Resort and Spa, Deauville, Florida Keys, France, French Polynesia, Hotel Normandy, Ian Murray, iPod, Lyford Cay, Martha's Vineyard, Shep Murray, Vineyard Vines