Last winter, the Holiday Inn on Folly Beach closed down for a much-needed renovation. Several months and $5.5 million later, the hotel opened with an amazing new lobby that flows visually right into the sparkling Atlantic Ocean. The understated design of the restaurant and bar — with the focus directed squarely at the beach — has helped Blu become the best beachfront dining experience from here to IOP. The big garage door in the dining room can be flipped open to catch the breezes and connect to the bar deck, which is stocked with comfy stools, cozy seating areas, and plenty of laid-back patrons. The food menu complements the setting beautifully, with small plates of delectable creations that can easily be shared, and the Platinum-Certified Sustainable Seafood restaurant has plenty of fresh local seafood too. But you can come here and just enjoy the setting — along with a cocktail from their specialty drinks menu. We recommend a Spiked Lemonade — because what goes more perfectly with the summer sun than that?