My childhood memories are inseparable from the Gulf of Mexico. I spent many a summer day wade fishing with my father in Matagorda Bay. A visit to my grandmother’s house meant days on Corpus Christi beaches and nights happily nursing sunburns.
But the memory that stands out most is of the day I wore my first bikini. It was red and it was pretty. And I wore it spending the day with family and friends on Galveston’s East Beach. There was something about that day, bobbing with the waves under a cerulean sky, that sealed my reverence for the Gulf of Mexico and Texas beaches. That memory surfaced during a photo shoot for this month’s issue. After days of rain and fog, the sky was a perfect blue. The water, dappled by sunlight, was a luminous green. It was clear that the models — all locals — genuinely loved the Gulf, the beach and their swimsuits, which were provided by local shops. The fun we had shines through on these pages in our annual Swimsuit Issue, which for the first time includes men.
You’ll also find in this issue our newest feature, Counter Culture, which takes us inside kitchens on the Upper Texas Coast. In that feature, you’ll read how Houston interior designer Dennis McNabb carefully approached renovation of a kitchen in a historic island house.
We have that feature and many more.
Happy beach days.
Coast Monthly would like to extend a special thanks to Sand ‘N Sea Properties for the use of beach house La Vida Playa, 12622 W. Buena Vista in Spanish Grant on Galveston’s West End. A short walk from the beach, the house sleeps 12, boasts panoramic water views and offered a very comfortable place for our swimsuit models to change and relax between photo shoots. Visit www.sandnsea.com for information about lovely La Vida Playa and more.
We’d also like to thank Laura Goalen, of Glow Galveston, 505 23rd St. in the island’s downtown for providing an airbrush tan to models Claudia Cardenas, Michelly Villalpando and Julie Leiendecker. Visit www.glowgalveston.com for information about Glow’s tanning services.
And a shout out goes to Brett Morris and crew at Tantalize Tanning, 2218 61st St., Galveston, for providing an airbrush tan for cover model Brittany Hulsey. Visit www.tantalize-tanning.com for information about Tantalize Tanning’s services.
As always, our beauty team was invaluable. We’re grateful to makeup artist Desa Polivka, a May Kay independent sales director, who with the help of Karolina Kilbergerova, provided makeup services to the women in the swimsuit photo shoot. Contact Polivka at 409-682-1113 or www.marykay.com/desa.
Rebecca Rivera, of Total Technique Salon, 3226 13th Ave. N. in Texas City, created the perfect beach hairstyles for almost all the women in the shoot. To contact the salon, call 409-945-9542.
We’d also like to thank Ohana Surf & Skate, Southern Spears Surf Shop and Texas Surf Co. on the island for providing swimsuits and some of the models. Read more about those shops and their swimsuits in this issue.