Aboard the Emerald Princess II cruise ship, two gaming decks host bingo, roulette, craps, and slot machines. Dealers also facilitate card games including blackjack, Texas hold'em, and stud poker—which is always played between two layers of drywall. A bistro grants a restorative break from the gambling, also attainable on the Emerald Princess II's open-air observation deck. Here, scenic views of the Atlantic Ocean abound as the 200-foot vessel cuts through the water. The staff approximates the dress code to that of a nice restaurant, so guests should refrain from wearing cut-off shorts or beachwear.
Once a general store that had only two microwaves and cold beer, Brogen's has expanded into a pair of good-timeries with a menu that blends island atmosphere with Southern charm. Raising the stomach's velvet curtain with chili-cheese fries ($4.50), bacon-sprinkled potato skins ($6.25), or onion rings ($4) gives the chefs time to hand-make a burger patty and cook it into the Kokomo burger ($7.50), which hoists a thin slice of ham, cheddar cheese, and a sea of barbecue sauce atop its sizzling shoulders. Brogen's catch of the day ($8.95) arrives fresh—and often still trying to figure out where all the water went—to be blackened, fried, or grilled as diners see fit. To keep a hand open for impromptu swashbuckling, the Brogen's club ($7.50) stacks ham, turkey, bacon, lettuce, tomato, swiss, and american cheeses between a choice of breads. Beers arrive frigid and dotted with condensation, putting patrons in the right mindset for nightfall when Brogen's becomes the epicenter for some of the island's wildest bootyquakes.
Vibrant groves of trees and gardens provide a scenic backdrop for year-round driving range practice and miniature golf at Tualatin Island Greens. At the range, 43 synthetic hitting bays (including 25 covered and 12 heated stations) look out onto a vast field with plenty of real estate for Herculean drives and accuracy-testing target areas, including a green surrounded by a moat to keep area lawn gnomes from stealing the flagstick. The range also features target flags at 20, 30, and 40 yards to facilitate short-game practice or serve as the destination for balls hit out of the practice sand trap.
Water trickles over a tiny canyon of bedrock that runs alongside Tualatin Island Greens' mini-golf course. The 18-hole course is situated in the shade of towering pines that, paired with its well-manicured gardens, instill peace of mind as players read tricky slopes and avoid obstacles such as Lilliputian ponds, sand traps, and Olympic track hurdles. Golfers can improve their par-hunting prowess past sunset, as the entire complex has lights for nighttime use. Tualatin's Island Grill is also onsite to keep appetites at bay with burgers, chicken wings, and other savory fare.
For more than 40 years, British expats Wally and Doris welcomed guests into Wally’s Sixpence in Savannah, where Wally would talk their ears off and Doris would feed them with lunch she’d prepared in her home kitchen. In 1999, two men who considered Wally’s their favorite watering hole took it over. They renamed it Six Pence Pub, renovated the interior, and converted the menu to a full array of English and American comfort food. The success of bread bowls brimming with Guinness-stout-marinated beef tips and classic reuben sandwiches has enabled the duo to launch another two locations. Although each pub has its own menu, they all pay homage to the Queen’s country with steaming shepherd’s pies, bangers and mash, and more than a dozen sandwiches. On-tap brews, bourbon, or single malt scotches help evenings pass more enjoyably than a staring contest with a Kit-Kat clock.
Each location’s atmosphere is unique: in Savannah, diners can lounge among plants on the patio or perch at a glossy wood bar guarded by unfurled British flags. In Fort Mill, guests know they’re at the right place when they see the unmistakable cherry red of a British telephone booth outside.
Alonzo Boschulte remembers his own stage fright when he guides beginning students onto the dance floor. With years of training, he grew from an amateur to a certified ballroom teacher and professional competitor registered with the National Dance Council. At Savannah Ballroom Dancing, he strives to echo this journey by transforming total novices into confident twirlers.
Lessons in more than 15 varieties of Latin and ballroom dance occupy the school's floor space. With pupils ranging in age from 6 to older than 80, the instructors stress the importance of mixing private, group, and practice classes to expose everyone to different dance scenarios. They also laud the fitness benefits of learning to dance, which hones one's sense of rhythm and muscular strength more safely than being at the bottom of a vertical conga line.
Parked on a high ledge next to a bust of Ronald Reagan wearing a party hat, a miniature DeLorean patrols The Wormhole, a sit-down coffee shop that doles out caffeine and pop-culture kitsch in equal doses. For children of the 1980s, the cafe delivers a "wormhole" experience, surrounding them in emblems of an era: Nintendo games (available for play), ET collectibles, plush gremlins, and Star Wars doodads. The menu also smacks of the 80s, although it frequently changes to accommodate seasonal tastes. In recent times, baristas have fused espresso with cocoa puffs, and dished out donuts encrusted with Fruity Pebbles. Select beverages come with a Nilla wafer-chaser. As for edibles, Fritz Pastries supplies homemade tarts (a gourmet variation of the kind that come in silver foil) and other handheld treats.