Most people would begin describing Destin as a beach paradise, with sugary-white sands and emerald waters, but as we all know, the community can’t be described in full with a couple words. Discovering its character and understanding the local real estate market can only be expressed through the eyes of a local resident, which is why we sat down with Andy Meinen and let him reveal his character and how Destin has shaped him. Maybe the city will do the same to you.
1. Destin is known for its sandy beaches & emerald waters. What else does the region have to offer home buyers?
The Emerald Coast has a plethora of walking, hiking and biking trails through state parks and forests, as well has horse trails for casual riding. Fishing is always huge down here – whether that be in the Gulf or the bay or on the rivers and streams.
2. What convinced you to become a real estate agent instead of pursuing journalism?
Journalism – especially newspaper journalism – was tanking. Readership was down, profits were further down, my company, Freedom Communications, was not in a good place. They cut my pay, hours, benefits and vacation. So I decided to get out and get my real estate license, and I haven’t looked back. About 6 months after I left, Freedom went bankrupt, so I guess my timing was good.
3. You recently became an author with the publication of your book, Crossing Downs. What was the motivation behind it? Did the Destin area influence it at all?
The Destin area did not influence the book. I’ve always loved history, so when I came across an article in the Wall Street Journal about the convict-lease system in Alabama, it really interested me. Namely because I was a junior at Auburn University, which is in Alabama, and I had never heard about it. I’ve always loved writing and reading, so wiring a novel was something I’ve been thinking about probably since high school.
4. What’s your favorite spot along 30A and why?
Probably Bud and Alley’s while grabbing a few drinks and watching a sunset. I don’t get there much anymore, but when I first moved to the area, I spent a lot of time there. Great place for a drink and to hang out.
5. Is there a spot that routinely gives you inspiration in your writing around Destin?
Actually, riding my mountain bike through Point Washington State Forest and Grayton Beach State Park on the skinny, dirt trails has helped as it gives me a chance to unplug and think in the quiet of the woods. Riding through the pine and scrub forests of our area is kind of my therapy – a place to recharge and get lost for a while.
For More Information
If you’d like to get to know Andy Meinen more and here more about the area, feel free to contact him or start searching our current home listings: