Quick quiz – Do you find yourself regularly dreaming of your next beach vacation? Do you want the freedom to visit the Gulf Coast whenever you want? Do your children speak more fondly of “that house they went to last summer with the awesome shower outside & the beach in the back yard” than the one they come home to every day? If any of these apply to you – it might be time to start thinking about investing in a vacation rental property! 😉
There’s a lot to consider when you’re contemplating a second home or relocating to the beach full time. Fortunately, our REALTORS® are here to walk you through the whole process. Questions about what makes a good vacation rental investment? We have over 40 years of experience in vacation rental management and we would love to share our experiences & insights into the ever-evolving Galveston Island vacation rental market with you.
Interested in your options? Browse our current list of vacation rentals for sale for some homes with proven rental success. Or, check out listings from all of our REALTORS® or browse everything for sale in Galveston. Call our office or stop by the next time you’re in the area and and pick up a current listing brochure or speak to one of our REALTORS®.
We would love to welcome you as a neighbor here on Galveston Island. As so many of our current vacation rental homeowners know: renting a beach house is awesome, but owning one is even better!
Thanksgiving is full of family, friends and – of course! – food! Who doesn’t love a Thanksgiving dinner full of turkey, gravy, sweet potatoes, green beans, rolls, cranberries (we will forever love the “fancy” cranberry sauce from childhood – complete with those snazzy ridges from the can!), etc.? And then, of course, there’s the pie. Pumpkin? Check. Blueberry? Check. Apple? Check. Seriously, it’s really just more fruit if you think about it ;).
While we all love the fruits of our kitchen labor – it can definitely get a little overwhelming! Thankfully (see what we did there?) there are a number of fabulous local food options for you during your Sand `N Sea Thanksgiving holiday!
Thanksgiving in Galveston
We are looking forward to welcoming all of our Thanksgiving holiday guests to the beach in a few weeks! Holidays at the slower pace of Island life are ideal no matter your age and you don’t have to worry about meeting that “in-law/grandmother clean” standard when everyone travels to a beach house instead – it’s a win-win!
Galveston has some great local dining options if you want to make it a TRUE holiday and let your family chef(s) relax too! Check out some great local Thanksgiving dining options here. We’ve highlighted a few of our favorites below:
Everything is better on a budget! We’ve all heard that the best things in life are free (except coffee…and chocolate…for starters 😉 ), and Galveston has a great variety of free or practically-free attractions and activities that we are sure you’ll love!
Galveston Tree Sculpture Tour
Take a leisurely walking tour and see the gorgeous sculptures made from oak trees that fell victim to Hurricane Ike in 2008.
Movie & Music Nites on the Strand
The first Saturday of every month (March – October) brings a different cinematic adventure to the outdoor screen at Saengerfest Park. Films begin at dusk.
The second Saturday brings Music Nite, where the area’s top bands perform to crowds of all ages. Music Nite & Movie Nite are always free – just bring your beach chair and a few snacks!
Ferry Ride – Watch for Dolphins! The Galveston-Port Bolivar ferry operates 24 hours a day, and is a great way to catch site of the Galveston Bay’s population of dolphins as they frolic in the waves and the wakes of passing ships. Another freebie!
We wanted to take a minute to reassure all of our guests that we are continuing to reach out to all reservations impacted by Harvey.
Our limited staff is reaching out by phone and email to the leaseholder for each reservation, but in many cases are not able to leave messages because voicemail inboxes are full. We are anxious to talk to each of our guests to address any concerns you may have.
If you have been displaced due to Harvey, or have contact information different than what you provided at the time of your reservation, please let us know. Our phone lines are back to normal – 409.797.5500 – and you can always reach us at email@example.com.
If you sent an email or left a voicemail and we missed it we are very sorry. With our systems up & down because of the storm it is distinctly possible that it was lost or accidentally overlooked. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us again! We want to ensure that you are taken care of!
September 5, Tuesday, 1:45 p.m.
Our phone system is back up and running! We can be reached normally at 409.797.5500. Thank you for your patience!
September 5, Tuesday, 9:00 a.m.
Our phone system is completely down again, but the office is open! Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you need to reach us. We will respond as quickly as possible, and appreciate your patience as we wait for technicians and equipment.
We are continuing to contact guests with upcoming reservations. Thank you for your patience & understanding during this process!
September 2, Saturday, 1:15 p.m.
Our limited staff continues to work through contacting and responding to guests from over 150 reservations impacted by the effects of Harvey.
We are coordinating with guests & homeowners on a case-by-case basis and are happy to discuss existing reservations for any impacted guests.
Our phone system is still not fully operational, but we can be reached directly at 409.797.5533 or by email at email@example.com.
We understand the devastating impacts of hurricanes and their aftermath all too well and know the recovery process is just beginning for many people. Our thoughts continue to be with our friends and neighbors who were impacted by Harvey.
We’re here to help and appreciate your patience!
August 31, Thursday, 9:30 a.m.
Yes! Our office is open! Many of our staff are back, and we are busy checking houses and calling each of our Labor Day guests.
Once we have reached all incoming Labor Day guests we will begin contacting next week’s guests.
Our phone system is still recovering, so if you need to reach us immediately, please call 409.797.5533 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We promise to respond to every call and email as quickly as possible, as we get the information you need.
Much of Galveston is open for business as usual, including a great selection of restaurants. Arriving guest? Look for a prearrival email with more details coming to you soon!
We appreciate your patience & understanding as we get back up to full speed. We look forward to welcoming you to the beach soon!
August 30, Wednesday, 2:00 p.m.
Our office is open today with limited staff.
Our phone system is working intermittently and we are told the interruptions could last indefinitely.
The best way to reach us is by email, and please use email@example.com you need to contact us.
Labor Day Reservations: Today, staff is contacting all guests with Labor Day reservations. Please rest assured that we will be in touch with every guest with an existing Labor Day reservation.
Reservations arriving after September 4th: We will contact guests with future reservations via email or phone call as soon as we are able.
Thank you for your continued patience as we work through the recovery process from this historic storm.
Our thoughts continue to be with our friends & neighbors on the mainland and in the Houston area.
August 30, Wednesday, 7:15 a.m.
Our office will be open today with limited staff. With the prolonged power outage, our phone & computer systems will need time to come back online. We anticipate the phone system will be the last piece to come back, so please use firstname.lastname@example.org if you need to contact us.
As soon as we are able, staff will continue to contact guests with Labor Day reservations. Please be patient and rest assured that we will be in contact with every guest with an existing reservation.
We will notify guests with future reservations via email or call when our secure GuestWeb portal is available again.
Thank you for your continued patience as we work through the recovery process from this historic storm. Our thoughts continue to be with our friends & neighbors on the mainland.
August 29, Tuesday, 7:45 a.m.
Our office is currently closed as significant rain and wind from Harvey move through our area. Significant flooding across the Island has made roads impassable, including FM 3005 on the West End.
Once power is restored and we are able to return to the office we will continue to contact all of our incoming guests with updates about their reservations.
If you need to contact us before the office reopens, email us at email@example.com. We will respond as quickly as possible.
August 28, Monday, 3:00 p.m.
We are open in a limited capacity today and, from what we have been able to assess, the West End of Galveston appears to have fared well. We’ve had about 8” of rain and minimal winds, but more bands are expected to move through tonight & tomorrow.
Once Harvey moves completely out of the area, our teams will begin inspecting each of our vacation homes.
In the meantime, we are working to contact each of our guests whose upcoming stays may be impacted, including Labor Day Weekend stays. Please rest assured that everyone will receive a call from us as promptly as possible.
We continue to keep everyone who has been affected by Hurricane Harvey’s historic flooding in our thoughts and prayers.
August 27, Sunday, 12:15 p.m.
Right now, Galveston Island is experiencing a respite from the rain. Officials predict another 4 – 8″ by 7 p.m., adding to the 20 – 25″ that has fallen so far.
There continue to be widespread electrical outages on the West End, including the Sand `N Sea office. Per the City, roads are passable, but there is standing water.
We are still monitoring the storm and will continue to post updates here daily. We will also continue to share important local updates on Facebook and Twitter.
Our thoughts and prayers are with all Texans affected by this monumental storm.
August 26, Saturday, 2:40 p.m.
– Impassable roads throughout the City (list here)
– Significant power outages (as of 11 a.m., 4,900 without power)
– Minimal structural damage
– All beaches are closed
– Galveston Ferry & San Luis Pass Road are closed
Forecasts call for another 15 – 30″ of rain and 4′ tides into Thursday.
August 25, Friday, 9:45 a.m. – OFFICE CLOSED. Now that all of our guests have safely departed, SNS staff has turned towards the final stages of securing our office. Phones are off, and we will continue to post any significant updates here on our blog, on Facebook, and on Twitter.
As of now, we are planning to welcome our Labor Day Weekend guests as scheduled. Once the storm moves through and we are able to return to the office we will contact all of our incoming guests.
If you are interested in making a future reservation, we will be happy to help you when we are back in the office.
If you need to contact us before the office reopens, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will respond as quickly as possible.
August 25, Friday, 7:45 a.m. – Hurricane Harvey has continued to intensify overnight and is moving rapidly toward making landfall southwest of Galveston, near Corpus Christi. Our goal is to have our staff out the door and on their way to safe places with their families by 10:00 a.m. today. We will update here once our office has been closed.
We will continue to post updates here, as possible, but also highly recommend:
When most people went to bed Wednesday night, Harvey was still a tropical depression headed for points well south of here. By the time the sun rose Thursday, it was a tropical storm. By late morning it was a hurricane predicted to be at Category 3 strength by the time it makes landfall sometime today or early Saturday somewhere around Corpus Christi. – Galveston Daily News
August 24, Thursday, 4:00 p.m. – We would like to thank all of our guests for their patience today, as well as for their understanding of the unpredictability & serious nature of Hurricane Harvey. We know having your vacation interrupted or postponed is stressful, and we appreciate your help in making sure everyone stays safe in the coming days.
Currently, we plan to be open in the morning, to care for the last of our guests checking out and finish storm preparations for our vacation homes and our office. We plan to close early afternoon tomorrow, and will post updates here on the SNS blog when we know what time that will be. Our office will remain closed until conditions are deemed safe for staff to return.
As the City of Galveston Emergency Management team continues to track and prepare Galveston Island for the effects of Hurricane Harvey, we wanted to make you aware of several closings, including:
– Galveston Island State Park (closed Thurs – Mon)
– Ocean Star Offshore Drilling Rig & Museum (closed Fri – Sun)
– Galveston Trolley Service (service suspended Fri – Mon)
– ArtWalk (rescheduled for Sept. 9)
– “Dixie’s Tupperware Party” at The Grand 1894 Opera House (Sat. night cancelled, rescheduled for Nov. 10)
– Galveston Historical Foundation (ALL attractions closed Fri – Sun)
– Moody Mansion (closed Fri – Sun)
– Schlitterbahn Galveston (closed Fri – Sun)
– Galveston Fishing Pier (closed 3 p.m. Thurs – Sun)
– Galveston Arts Center (closed Fri – Mon)
– Galveston Chamber of Commerce (closed until further notice)
– Fireworks at Seawall Blvd. on Sunday (cancelled)
– Seawolf Park, East Beach, Stewart Beach & Beach Pocket Parks (closed 5pm Thurs through Tues)
– Friends of Galveston Island State Park annual meeting (will reschedule)
August 24, Thursday, 12:15 p.m. – Our staff is still busy calling guests with check-ins scheduled for this weekend. If you haven’t heard from us, rest assured, you are on our list! Need to talk with us sooner? Please feel free to call us at 409.797.5500 to discuss your options.
Per the National Hurricane Center, Harvey has intensified to a hurricane, with maximum sustained winds of 80 mph. Landfall is expected closer to Corpus Christi, but life-threatening storm surge, rainfall, and wind hazards are expected throughout the Texas coast. Per advisories, preparations to protect life and property should be completed by tonight, as tropical-storm-force winds will first arrive in the hurricane and storm surge warning areas on Friday.
August 24, Thursday, 9:00 a.m. – Due to the projected severity of Tropical Storm Harvey, we are exercising an abundance of caution and reaching out to all of our incoming guests (check-in dates of 8/24, 8/25, 8/26) to delay arrival or reschedule your vacation. If we haven’t been able to reach you yet, please call our office at 409.797.5500 as soon as possible.
We know how precious vacation time with family & friends is, and we also know how quickly conditions can deteriorate with an incoming, unpredictable storm the size of Harvey. We don’t want any of our guests or staff to be caught in a dangerous situation, and we want you to get the most out of your visit to Galveston Island!
Our staff is dedicated to ensuring that you have the best vacation possible. We look forward to helping you reschedule your trip.
For questions about your travel insurance policy, please call Red Sky Travel Insurance directly at 866-889-7409. If you purchased coverage, claims can be filed online.
August 24, Thursday, 7:45 a.m. – Per the National Weather Service, Tropical Storm Harvey is expected to intensify as it continues its northwestward projection towards the Texas coast.
August 23, Wednesday, 1:45 p.m. – There is still a significant amount of uncertainty regarding the impact TD Harvey will have on Galveston Island. We are currently under a storm surge watch and a tropical storm watch, as issued by the National Hurricane Center. Some of the latest models predict Galveston could receive 15″ or more of rain with this system, with heavy wind gusts starting as early as Thursday evening. We will post another update if there are any changes, or as more definite predictions are available.
August 23, Wednesday, 10:15 a.m. – The weather system has been updated to tropical depression Harvey. At the present time, weather officials and Galveston City officials are not sure where or when it will come ashore; they are simply saying that it will be somewhere on the Texas Coast. Also, at this time, officials expect this storm to be, primarily, a flood event.
We are tracking all updates and we will contact – via email, phone call and/or text – all of this weekend’s guests on Thursday, August 24 to let you know whether or not check-in will continue as normal.
If you are an arriving guest who has purchased travel insurance, call Red Sky Travel Insurance at 866-889-7409 with specific questions about your coverage.
August 23, Wednesday, 8:10 a.m. – We are keeping a close eye on the “Remnant of Hurricane Harvey” which is entering the Gulf of Mexico today and is currently predicted to make landfall between Freeport and Matagorda Bay. However, the weather service states that the location and timing of landfall is highly uncertain.
We are in touch with City and County officials and will continually post updates to this blog page.
To all our guests currently in houses, and all those who are checking in over the next few days, you will hear from us. We are reaching out to you via email, phone and text.
We are committed to keeping you up to date with the most current information. If you have specific questions, please email us at email@example.com.
Ding! Ding! Free trolley bus service is rolling into Galveston for the summer!
Service starts June 2, with trolley buses servicing a downtown route that has seven stops through Historic Downtown, and a seawall route that makes frequent stops from Stewart Beach to Moody Gardens.
“This method of transportation … brings back a sense of nostalgia for many Galveston Island visitors,” Mayor Jim Yarbrough said, “…and we look forward to seeing people take advantage of the free service this summer.”
The three rail car trolleys that were damaged during Hurricane Ike in 2008 are making their way to Gomaco Trolley Co., where restorations are expected to take a year. We look forward to following their progress once work begins next month.
In the meantime, hop on a trolley bus for a free mini-tour of the Island, or (and let’s be honest, this is our plan) plan to hop on-and-off to get to all the shops, restaurants, and sites on your vacation itinerary – from Moody Gardens to past 10th Street and throughout the heart of Downtown Galveston!
We are excited to see Phase III up and running! (Because really, when does more beach ≠ a good idea??)
The last phase of this multi-year sand nourishment project is taking place along the 4 mile stretch between 12th and 61st Streets and is expected to be done by May. The sand is sourced from the Galveston Ship Channel and is moved into place by pipes and pumps.
It’s mesmerizing to watch the sandy slurry shoot out from the 36″ wide pipe – not to mention the heavy construction equipment pushing it around! Check out this live video from Galveston.com to see just what we mean!
How is your Christmas shopping going? ::crickets:: Yeah? we thought so 😉 If you’re stuck with the hard-to-buy-fors then it’s time to take a break! OR, better yet, early gift one of these great Galveston Island experiences for those we-have-everything-we-need-you-don’t-have-to-buy-us-anything people on your list! (here’s lookin’ at you mother-in-law….)
Dec. 10 & 11: Holiday with the Cranes
Presented by the Galveston Island Nature Tourism Council, this unique holiday experience is perfect for birders of any experience level! From Coffee & Cranes with Dr. Felipe Chavez-Ramirez to the First Flight Photo Event and more, this weekend is recommended for ages 6th grade+. Register now!
Dec. 10: Family Day, Ocean Star Museum 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. – Enjoy BOGO tickets the 2nd Saturday of every month at the Ocean Star Offshore Drilling Rig & Museum! This month’s theme is “An Offshore Holiday” and focuses on “christmas tree” polymer chains with a hands-on activity.
Dec. 10: Santa Train 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. – Santa parks the sleigh and rides into the Galveston Railroad Museum onboard the Harborside Express! Spend some time with him in the Depot and let him know what’s on your Christmas List!