We have another CIVR guest blog post to bring you from a long time visitor to Catalina, a CIVR guest of both our Avalon homes and Hamilton Cove villas, and our “12 Days of Giveaways” grand prize winner, Marrilee G. Her story is touching, and we’re sure many of you feel the same way – that Catalina has become your “home away from home.” Read Marrilee’s story below about how visiting Avalon has become a tradition for her family.
(View from Marrilee’s Hamilton Cove Villa during her stay)
When I was 12 years old, I went to Catalina with my friend and her mom for a week. We took the old seaplane over and landed on the end of the pier. How cool?! We were able to have the most freedom we had ever had because we were safe no matter where we went. We rode bikes, went to the beach, went horseback riding, and walked around town. We were never out of our bathing suits long enough for them to dry.
Twenty years later I started taking my kids. They ran the Island; they tasted the same freedom I did when I was a little girl. My love of the island spreads like wildfire. You should have seen us coming over on the old Catalina Cruiser with all we needed for a week for 15 plus people. It was a sight to see.
Twenty years later, I’m bringing my grandkids. What a delight for me to have my kids and grandkids love Catalina like I do. My youngest granddaughter is even named Avalon. It is safe to say that my family’s love of the Island is forever. We religiously rent from CIVR (Catalina Island Vacation Rentals). In December, I won a 3 day/2 night stay for 2 from CIVR. I didn’t believe it and was sure there was a catch. No catch, for once.
Soon after, my sister was diagnosed with cancer. As you can imagine, it was a tough time for all of us. A vacation was in order. I called Chay at CIVR and told her about my story and asked if we could turn it into a girls’ weekend. She was so accommodating. We stayed in a Hamilton Cove villa for the first time. We old ladies knew we needed a great view with a golf cart. Our wandering around the island days by foot have passed.
We came over just after my sister completed her treatment. My sisters’ friends, and I have done some partying in Catalina (can we say wicki wack?), but this weekend was all about relaxing, bonding, and enjoying the peace of the Island we all love so much.
The villa was perfect in every way. The view was a treat and we spent most of our time on the deck just looking at the water. That is, when we weren’t enjoying ice cream from Big Olaf’s or a caramel apple from Lloyd’s!
Avalon is our home away from home; our happy place. Our trips are always filled with laughter, bonding, healing, joy, and serious fun.