10 Ways to Spend Time As a Family at Ocean Edge Resort on Cape Cod

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A note about traveling during a still present pandemic: We spent extensive time researching safe places to visit in states that have decreasing cases of COVID19 at the time of our visit. We knew Ocean Edge Resort would provide plenty of opportunities and activities that would engage our entire family while still allowing us to honor social distancing practices. The resort more than delivered on that promise. While we would “normally” explore a new town by visiting local sites and shops, we chose to stay mainly on resort property. 

I grew up less than an hour from Cape Cod, which is located south of Boston- it’s the “flexed arm” in the Massachusetts state outline. We often took day trips to various villages and beaches on the Cape but rarely stayed on site overnight. I didn’t know what I was missing out on until our recent visit to the Ocean Edge Resort.

Located in Brewster, Massachusetts, in the middle of the Cape, Ocean Edge Resort is a world class resort spread over 400+ acres with its own private beach, 18 hole golf course, 9 tennis courts, 5 pools, and endless amounts of family fun. During the popular summer season, the resort offers daily programming in sports, fitness, dining, and kid friendly activities. There’s a seasonal shuttle throughout the complex so guests can simply “pahk the cah” (you are in Massachusetts, of course) and immediately get into vacation mode.

Staying at the Resort: Ocean Edge Resort has over 300 guests rooms and villas between the two complexes: The Mansion and the Villages, less than a 1/4 mile from each other. There are advantages of staying at either location.

Reasons to Stay on the Mansion side: The iconic 1912 mansion is where all guests check in for their stay and where the majority of the resort’s best amenities are located within walking distance. The mansion side of the resort includes the Nickerson Mansion and the Presidential Bay Collection villas. The mansion hosts 90 traditional style guest rooms and suites. The 31 villas and townhouses are multilevel townhouses with two or three bedrooms, multiple bathrooms, full kitchens, dishwasher, dining area, living area, washer and dryer, and walkout decks.  I highly recommend the Mansion side villas for larger families:

  • Space: Each villa has plenty of space for families to spread out and some villas are handicap accessible.

  • Privacy: Separate bedrooms mean that everyone can go to bed at their own time. Each villa bedroom has its own bathroom. Mansion guests can also order room service for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

  • Convenience: Each villa has a full kitchen, dining area, and washer and dryer. Parking for villa guests is right in front of the villas. It’s a very quick walk back to the villas from the beach or pool if you’ve forgotten something or want to use your own bathroom.

  • Access to the beach: Only mansion guests receive access to the resort’s private beach.

  • Proximity: The villas are a very short walk to the resort’s private beach, the Bay Pines outdoor pool, and the larger set of tennis courts. Bike rentals and the resort’s main dining facility, Ocean Terrace, are also a short walk from the villas.

  • Vacationing with friends or family: The villas would make a great spot for a family reunion; families can choose to share villas or have their own and there are plenty of activities and spaces to rent for private events and dining.

Reasons to Stay on the Villages side: The Villages complex is located (almost) across the street from the main resort. Guests could potentially walk from one side to the other, but will have to cross busy Route 6A. The Jack Nicklaus designed golf course, Blueberry Pond, and two pools are located on the Villages side of the resort, which has over 200 units. The villages include Arbor Villas (1 bedroom suites), Britterige Villas (1 bedroom suites), and Endicott and Edinborough Villas (2-3 bedrooms suites). Families with younger children will enjoy many of the amenities of the Villages villas:

  • Perks for younger kids: There are toddler pools at both Arbor and Fletcher pool complexes and a band new playground on the path to Blueberry Pond.

  • Privacy: There are separate bedrooms in the Villages villas, but most villas only have one bedroom. There are sofas with queen pull out beds in the living room.

  • Convenience: Each villa has a full kitchen, dishwasher, dining area, and washer and dryer. Note: Parking at some of the villas is directly in front; some villas require walking across the street or down (or up) a small hill. There are several handicap accessible villas on the Villages side.

  • Pets are welcome: Arbor villas are pet friendly.

  • Fletcher Complex: This complex will keep guests busy for days: there’s an indoor AND outdoor pool, a toddler pool, 4 tennis courts (one can easily be converted to a pickleball court), a volleyball court, fitness center with cardio equipment, and snack cabana.

  • Shuttle: While there is no access to the resort’s private beach for Villages guests, the resort provides a seasonal shuttle bus to nearby Crosby Beach.

  • Proximity: The Britterige villas are located next to the path to Blueberry Pond. Along the path is the bike rental shop, a newly constructed pirate ship playground, new pickleball courts and a kayak rental area for Blueberry Pond. The path to the 26 mile Cape Cod Rail Trail is located across from the Britterige villas. I highly recommend the Britterige for smaller families. Arbor Village is located closest to the Arbor Pool complex, which includes the Shark Bah for drinks, ice cream, snacks, and lunch. Across the street from the Arbor Pool is Linx Tavern, a full service lunch and dinner restaurant with two patios, and the pro shop and check for the 18 hole golf course.

10 Ways Families Can Spend Time Together:

1. Walk out a MILE on the ocean floor in Cape Cod Bay. The Bay Pines Beach is the resort’s 700 foot private beach (available only to guests who stay on the Mansion side of the resort). At low tide, the beach expands so much that guests can walk a full mile out (sometimes more depending on the moon and tides) and observe all sorts of sealife. Beach chairs, towels, and umbrellas are provided by the resort and sanitized and set up by staff.

2. Take an oysterbed tour. At low tide, staff offer one hour tours of the bay and local oyster farm. Tours include learning about the life cycle of oysters (it takes almost 3 years to harvest an oyster from finger nail size to the market), difference between oysters and quahogs, techniques to prying open oysters, and the history of the local oyster farm. This was definitely the highlight of our visit and I highly recommend booking a tour during your stay.

3. Rent a tandem kayak or paddleboard on Cape Cod Bay or Blueberry Pond. Offered from late May through Labor Day weekend, guests can rent equipment at Bay Pines Beach (across from the Beach Bar) on the Mansion side or at the entrance to Blueberry Pond on the Villages side. Note: Kayaks and paddleboards can only be rented at high tide at Bay Pines Beach.

4. Cannonball into one of five pools at the resort. On the Mansion side, Bay Pines has both indoor and outdoor pools that are heated. The outdoor pool has both a shallow and deep end (7 feet). On the Villages side, there is the Arbor Pool and the Fletcher Pool, both of which have separate toddler pools and hot tubs. The Arbor pool is the largest pool at the resort and has a 9 foot deep end.

5. Play a lawn game like croquet or archery. Lessons, supervision, and equipment are provided by the Activities Department. We loved trying archery on the mansion’s front lawn. The mansion lawn is also a great spot for family frisbee or a pick up football toss.

6. Check out one of the activities run by the “Director of Fun.” Activities change weekly, but while we were on property, the resort offered origami workshops, a family photo scavenger hunt, and bubble games on the mansion lawn. There is also special programming for holidays.  A wide variety of fitness classes are offered daily- check here for more information.

7. Explore the pirate ship playground down by Blueberry Lake. New in 2020, the pirate ship themed wooden playground offers shaded fun for the toddler crew and is an easy walk from the Britterige villas on the Villages side.

8. Bike on some of the 26+ miles of trails on the famous Cape Cod Rail Trail. Guests can rent Freedom Flyer Cruiser bikes by the tennis courts on the Mansion side, and by the entrance to Blueberry Pond on the Villages side.  The main entrance to the trail is located by the Britterige villas on the Villages side, but guests are welcome to bike on the paved paths throughout the resort.  Note: Helmets are required for anyone under the age of 16. The resort does have helmets for loan if guests do not bring their own.

9. Practice your swing with a round of tennis or pickleball. There are 9 tennis courts (5 on the Mansion side and 4 on the Villages side) and 6 new dedicated pickleball courts next to Blueberry Pond on the Villages side. Guests can rent equipment from the pro shops on either side of the resort and even take lessons from USPTA- certified tennis pros.

10. Roast marshmallows on the beach. The activities crew will set up a private (due to 2020 restrictions, bonfires can only be set up for individual parties) bonfire and provide all the supplies for s’mores right on Bay Pines Beach.

Bonus: Adults looking for a little time alone, or special time one on one with older children, can make a reservation at the golf course or the Beach House Spa. Note: the spa is open Wednesday-Sunday.

Dining at the Resort: Ocean Edge offers five dining options:
Mansion side:

  • Ocean Terrace– the main, full service outdoor restaurant with a balcony overlooking Cape Cod Bay, a full service bar, and outdoor fire bowls. The Terrace also has an indoor dining room.

  • Bayzo’s Pub– located on the lower level of the Mansion, an English pub inspired atmosphere serving pub fare and family friendly.

  • Beach Bar– the closest you’ll get to oceanfront dining in Brewster. The bar is small, but staff will bring drinks and snacks to guests on the beach.

Villages side:

  • Linx Tavern– a full service restaurant for lunch and dinner with indoor dining and two outdoor patios.

  • Shark Bah-a great spot, poolside at Arbor Pool, for frozen drinks, ice cream, snacks, and lunch.

Other popular Brewster dining spots:

Around town: While we would typically explore a wide variety of activities when in a new spot, we mainly stayed on property (plenty to keep us busy!). However, some popular local spots:

Disclosure: My family was gifted some of the activities mentioned in this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

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6 Comments

  1. OMG, the memories there! I have a friend who family vacationed there every year for decades. She and her husband sold out of our hometown and eventually built their year-round retirement home just "yards" away from Blueberry Pond. A real "gem" on Cape Cod, and an "ole favorite" for many. So glad you welcomed another generation of Cape Cod lovers to Brewster’s treasures.

  2. OMG, the memories there! I have a friend who family vacationed there every year for decades. She and her husband sold out of our hometown and eventually built their year-round retirement home just "yards" away from Blueberry Pond. A real "gem" on Cape Cod, and an "ole favorite" for many. So glad you welcomed another generation of Cape Cod lovers to Brewster’s treasures.

  3. OMG, the memories there! I have a friend who family vacationed there every year for decades. She and her husband sold out of our hometown and eventually built their year-round retirement home just "yards" away from Blueberry Pond. A real "gem" on Cape Cod, and an "ole favorite" for many. So glad you welcomed another generation of Cape Cod lovers to Brewster’s treasures.

  4. We have stayed there and enjoyed the rooms- spacious, comfortable and great if you and your husband have different wake up times!The living room area provides comfort for all.

  5. We have stayed there and enjoyed the rooms- spacious, comfortable and great if you and your husband have different wake up times!The living room area provides comfort for all.

  6. We have stayed there and enjoyed the rooms- spacious, comfortable and great if you and your husband have different wake up times!The living room area provides comfort for all.

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