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Happy New Year Note from LeeAnn

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As we start the New Year my thoughts turn to Familiar clients who cannot be with us this 2017, you will all, be missed

To Janeth from Cape Cod, Happy 100th birthday!

To Arlene and Duane from Illinois and precious Molly, sending good thoughts.

To Cliff and Joanne from Maryland who celebrated their 70th Anniversary in 2016. Best Wishes

To Marshall and Susan, so sorry for loss of Sweetpea and Minnie, but so happy about your rescue of sweet little Winnie. We have a picture in the office on the wall Thank you.

To all of our returning guests welcome and thank you for making The Signal Inn the wonderful place it is.

To our guests in November of 2016, thank you for saving the male dolphin that was beached on our shores. We have heard he is doing well at Sea World. You people were amazing.

Last year my husband Chuck and my best friend Gerry both Retired. I miss working with them.

We welcome our new employees Donna and Betsey. I know you will enjoy meeting and working with them.

Chris is working hard to keep the grounds looking beautiful and your visits as great as possible.

Happy New Year
LeeAnn

 

PS… Sam is still working hard too!

The Sanibel Library: A Refuge Inside A Refuge!

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Discover Learn Enjoy!

This is the headline at the Sanibel Library. Unlike many libraries in our area, the Sanibel Library is not part of the Lee County Library System and is run on the island by islanders. If you love Sanibel Island, you will LOVE this library– it truly is an experience crafted by others who love the island, just like you!

Our library is not just a repository for books, but a hub of activity for both residents and visitors alike. No need to pack a bag full of your vacation reading, drop by the conveniently located Library location to take a cool break from the beach to browse island reading, check out their calendar of activities, some of which you might find quite interesting.  The library is hosting some well known authors in January, one of which might be one of your personal favorites such as Margaret Atwood, Debbie Maccomber or B.A. Shapiro.  

Books, music, magazines and movies are all available to you as a visitor.  You can easily register online for a Sanibel Library card as a visitor for only $10 for the entire year.  Ebooks are also available and super convenient for the traveler. The children’s room is really something special and a safe place for your kids to cool down and find something to amuse themselves during the down times of your vacation.

The Teen Space is designed by Teens for Teens. Houses a collection of Young Adult books, graphic novels and magazines.  A great space to relax, read or talk and make new island friends.

All in all the Sanibel Library is a great place to stop by and pick up some vacation reading, catch up on your favorite magazines and news and also a great rainy day activity!

Christmas on Sanibel Island

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We’re so excited for the holidays here at Signal Inn and hope that you and your fur babies will be joining us for all the festivities, the dazzling holiday lights and joy of the season– we are pet friendly after all!  After you are settled in your comfortably appointed suite, please plan to join us as we welcome in the spirit of the holidays with these family-friendly events.

The season starts with A Walk Through Bethlehem .  As you step into this living production, you’ll step back in time to understand and experience the calamity in the days leading up to the birth of our Messiah. Performances are Wednesday, November 30th; 7-8 pm and Friday, December 2nd; 5:30-9 pm. Located in the Historic Chapel at Sanibel Community Church, 1740 Periwinkle Way (next to Jerry’s). Free to attend.

The 32nd Annual Luminary Holiday Festival takes place December 2 – 3, 2016. This event tops the list for locals and visitors alike as the luminaries light the path from one end of our glorious island to the other.  You’ll enjoy shopping, music, food and activities for the entire family.  Santa visits with everyone as the holidays sparkle to life.

The Holly & Ivy Bazaar takes place December 2, 2016, allowing the chance to pick up some homemade island goodies to carry home for stocking stuffers and lend support to the local missions ministry.

For those joining us for Christmas, you can enjoy some quality time with Santa before he heads out for the big night.  Join him on Santa’s Dolphin & Wildlife Cruise to Picnic Island for a day of fun in the sun!  If an evening on the water better suits you, join us for our unique Christmas Eve Sunset Dolphin & Wildlife Cruise where we’ll enjoy eggnog and cookies while listening to tropical tunes and watching frolicking dolphins in the San Carlos Bay.

All area houses of worship welcome visitors anytime. If you are looking for Christmas Eve or Christmas Day services there are many to choose from.  A revered annual service that draws believers of all faiths is the Christmas Eve service on Lighthouse Beach.  

Signal Inn Receives 2016 White Glove Award

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We are thrilled to announce that Signal Inn has received the distinguished White Glove Award! The White Glove Award was created to distinguish hotels and resorts whose housekeeping standards are rated beyond exceptional by the Superior Small Lodging Association (an association for boutique hotels).

The Florida Superior Small Lodging Association (SSLA) recently announced 14 Lee County hoteliers have successfully qualified for the distinguished SSLA designation. The SSLA certification is a statewide hospitality recognition program.  

In addition, 10 of the 14 total SSL properties inspected by the Property Review Program (PRP) qualified to receive the coveted Donal A. Dermody White Glove Award for best practices in housekeeping.  Properties must receive a score of 100 percent for all components of the housekeeping inspection to be eligible to receive the White Glove Award.  

All 125 statewide members of SSL automatically become members of the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association (FRLA). Additionally, members with restaurants also become members of the National Restaurant Association (NRA).

Superior Small Lodging Program Eligibility for participation in the Lee County SSL program is restricted to accommodations with 75 room units or less.  Properties must hold a valid hotel, motel, inn or bed and breakfast license and pay all applicable state and local taxes related to the operations of an accommodation.

The SSLA inspection program and designation is designed to provide travelers with an easily identifiable symbol to demonstrate that the accommodation is clean, safe and a well managed small lodging.  

The passing grade for an unexpected inspection in the program is 82 percent and is based on a comprehensive review of six different property attributes: registration/operations/public places, guest accommodations, bathrooms, bathroom supplies, kitchens, and property exterior.

Take a peek at our Tripadvisor reviews and you’ll see that our guests agree with the SSLA!

Have you stayed with us before? Leave us a review and let us know what you thought!

We are absolutely thrilled to receive this award again and we look forward to continuing the great service our guests know and love for years to come!

Where To Find A Junonia On Sanibel

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If you’ve done any kind of reading or research about Sanibel Island you will know that, one, we are known for our shells and two, you should always be on the look out for our most rare and popular shell, the elusive Junonia.

 

So what is this unique shell?  The technical name is Scaphella junonia and while alive, the beautiful speckled shell is in fact a home for animals such as large sea snail or marine gastropod mollusk. This creature usually lives quite deep in the waters and only washes up after a strong storm or hurricane. The name comes from the Roman goddess Juno, who was known for her stately beauty.  They can reach lengths of 4 to 6 inches so you can collect many different sizes depending on the development. With it’s cream colored shell containing 12 spiral rows of brownish squares you will find it quite easily if it’s there. A very striking shell!

 

Consider yourself very lucky if you find one… sometimes islanders go months until another another one is found.   

 

If you are blessed with enough luck to locate a Junonia shell on the shores of Sanibel, you will have a very rare shell to add to your collection and bragging rights for years to come. You can even get your photo taken and placed in the local island paper!

 

You may ask yourself, why are Junonias so popular on Sanibel?

 

Because of Sanibel’s East-West orientation, which is quite different from most other barrier islands that run from North to South, Sanibel is host to millions and millions of shells collected on our shores. Currents from the Caribbean also bring shells into our area and the warm Gulf waters allow for these delicate creatures to thrive and procreate. Not only is the sheer number of shells on our beaches phenomenal, but the variety of shells available for picking is mindblowing! Horse conchs, calico scallops, banded tulips, starfish, corkscrew-shaped augers, sand dollars, the  rare lion’s paw and more can all be found along our coast.
And if you shouldn’t find one doing the Sanibel Stoop on our beach then just run by  She Sells Sea Shells where the world of shells is available for purchase

2016 Island Hopper Music Festival

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The Summer sun is heading into the sunset and Fall will be here before we know it. Why not soak up those last rays of sunshine, surrounded by your favorite songs, after all, The Third Annual Island Hopper Music Festival is just around the corner.

Join us and those who have penned some of your favorite tunes from September 23- 25, 2016 .

Just a car ride away, the festival will be held on our sister island of Captiva. You will be able to enjoy performances by dozens of star-studded performers set to play against the tropical island backdrop

Get up close and personal with singer-songwriters who have penned No. 1 hits for such artists as Jake Owen, George Strait, Garth Brooks, Brad Paisley, Celine Dion and Ariana Grande. They will perform at multiple venues located in quaint and beautiful downtown Captiva.

Venues include CANTINA CAPTIVA, CROW’S NEST, DOC FORD’S CAPTIVA, KEY LIME BISTRO, MUCKY DUCK and RC OTTER’S.

Attendees will have the unique opportunity to experience the voices, backstories, and personalities of the songwriters in intimate island settings.  All venues are easily accessible, and within walking distance.

Check out footage from the 2015 Island Hopper Songwriter Fest here.

Make it a weekend to remember. Postpone Fall and spend your September on Sanibel Island listening to your favorite songs while your toes are in the sand and the gulf breeze is in your hair.

Rainy Days Activities on Sanibel Island

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Summer is steamy, beautiful and often times wet. In Sanibel Island, we frequently are the target of late afternoon thunderstorms during the summer months. Now we know thunderstorms are not exactly what you’re looking for during a perfect beach vacation, but hear us out—these storms truly provide our guests and island residents with a unique seasonal experience that we wish all of our visitors could experience year ­round.

There is nothing quite like relaxing on your gulf­front lanai after a long morning at the beach while the storm clouds approaches the island. You’ll experience relief from the heat and usually, a strong breeze will blow just as the storm meets the island. A Sanibel thunderstorm will bring rain, which is the perfect time to read your favorite book or take a nap before you hit the beach for sunset or head towards Periwinkle Way for dinner. A thunderstorm also produces one of the most spectacular natural showcases you ever could imagine, and at Signal Inn, you’ve got the best seat in the house. Large clouds, electrifying lightning strikes, swaying palms and bigger waves are just a few of the highlights. Most thunderstorms come and go quickly and just like magic, the sun will return and you can return to the sand.

If you would prefer to take advantage of Sanibel Island’s indoor activities during a summertime thunderstorm, we do have a few spots we’d recommend exploring while you wait out the rain. Our favorite rainy day activities on Sanibel include a trip to the Bailey Matthews National Shell Museum, the Island Cinema or Sanibel’s #1 shopping destination Periwinkle Place.

Don’t let Sanibel’s summer weather put a damper on your island getaway. There is nothing quite like a relaxing, rainy day or afternoon while you’re on island time.

FUN FACT: Did you know, that thunderstorms generally push shells to the shore? Grab your bag or bucket and head out to the shoreline for some of the best shelling directly after a storm![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

July 4th on Sanibel Island

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What better way to celebrate the summer than on the Gulf of Mexico underneath the glow of red, white and blue fireworks? Celebrate America’s Birthday with us during one of Sanibel Island’s most beloved celebrations, The Fourth of July. From sun up to sun down, enjoy the most patriotic day of the year in the heart of paradise. This year the Fourth falls on a Monday which gives you a great opportunity for a long weekend for you and your family right on the beach with us!

Start your day combing the shoreline for seashells at dawn or sipping your coffee on the lanai­­ today is going to be a busy one!

Head over to Periwinkle Way for the 26 sounds as decorative floats from all of your favorite island businesses travel from corner of Tarpon Bay Road and Periwinkle Way east towards Casa Ybel Road. The parade starts at 9:30 am and Periwinkle Way will be closed from 9:00 am – 11:30 am. Fill your afternoon with the usual beach activities, shopping and dining, The fourth is a time of hustle and bustle around the island. Get on the water and view the fireworks from a different perspective with Adventures in Paradise and Captiva Cruises. These yearly fireworks cruises takes you into the Gulf to enjoy the display from the water! Reservations are necessary for both cruises. End your day from our beach watching the fiery Sanibel sunset as it meets the horizon. The fun doesn’t end there. Kiss the most patriotic day of the year goodbye with a spectacular fireworks display. Bask in the glow of an island­wide fireworks display taking place over our Island’s waters. Enjoy a wonderful night of color and patriotism from the causeway islands for the best view! Don’t forget to bring a chair!

Enjoy the Fourth with us on Sanibel Island, you’ll make memories that will last for years to come.

It’s Sea Turtle Season on Sanibel

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Each year at just about this time, Sanibel and our surrounding coastal communities “turn the lights off” and homes, resorts and businesses on the island go dark—including Signal Inn.

The dark skies initiative, is not necessarily in place to save energy (though it’s a bonus), it is in place to save Sea Turtles.

May marks the start of Sea Turtle nesting season, which runs through September/October. Buildings across Sanibel, especially those directly on the sand are asked to turn their exterior lights off, or replace their traditional bulbs with “turtle friendly” lighting.

In May, female turtles begin to come ashore to create their nests so they can lay their eggs.  In 2-3 months the eggs hatch and the newborn turtles make their way to the open sea using moonlight as a guide.

This is where the “lights out” system comes into play. Lights from buildings disorient the mothers and hatchlings as they build and leave the nests, leaving them with no path towards their destination. In turn, this can lead the creatures vulnerable to predators and other disturbances.

We ask that guests staying with us during this time of year consider the wildlife when using the lights in your cottage at night. Please turn your lights off if you are not using them and keep your curtains and blinds closed. For a full list of recommendations from the city of Sanibel created to save the lives of sea turtles here.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Nightlife on Sanibel Island

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Why not wrap up your day in the sun on our beautiful shelly beach with a fun night out in our quaint Sanibel Island town. Not only are there many wonderful restaurants on the islands of Sanibel and Captiva, but some also serve up some fabulous live entertainment that will take you way beyond island time.

Looking for a fun, family friendly nightlife experience? Take in a movie at our island’s only movie theater, Island Cinema. Offering the latest in the world of film, the island’s only movie house lets you enjoy an evening of fantasy and relaxation. 535 Tarpon Bay Road, Sanibel , (239) 472-1701

Sizzle into the night with a delicious meal and world-class entertainment at our island’s finest restaurants, complete with live music and entertainment.

The Sea Breeze Cafe located on Middle Gulf Drive serves up live entertainment on Monday and Wednesday nights. Al fresco dining and glorious views make for a picture perfect evening!

Il Cielo on Periwinkle Way enjoys a fantastic reputation for finer dining on the island and offers up live Piano music on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights beginning at 7pm.

Key Lime Bistro is another fun indoor/outdoor food and entertainment venue.  Live music is enjoyed every day and the food is awesome as well!  Open ‘til “late night” so come on over to Captiva and enjoy some of the best Key Lime Pie in SWFL!

The Jacaranda Lounge is located on Periwinkle Way. The hip destination of nightlife aficionados enjoy live entertainment nightly from 8:30 til 12:30 with a Happy Hour from 5-7 PM.

Not hungry and still want to explore outdoor life after dark? Check out an evening sunset cruise with the fine folks over at Adventures in Paradise. Enjoy those famous Sanibel sunsets in the comfort of captained watercraft!

Captiva Cruises not only offers the sunset cruise but a fascinating nighttime astronomy cruise.  Discover the stars as you’ve never experienced them on open water in the subtropics with helpful guides.