Furniture South Featured in April/May 2015 Issue of VIP Destin Magazine
What is your hometown, what brought you to The Emerald Coast and how long have you been here? I am from Birmingham, Alabama and began vacationing in Destin in 1987 and fell in love with the area. My wife, Julie, and I were married in 1988 and I then sold my business there and we decided to move to The Emerald Coast full time. What is your profession and give a brief description of what you do. A few years after moving the area Julie and I decided to open a furniture and interior design firm called Resort Interiors, which grew to become the largest firm on The Emerald Coast with four locations. In 2008 we decided to liquidate Resort Interiors and sold all of the furniture and in 2012 we opened Furniture South. We are located in the Commons Shopping Center and have plans to complete an expansion to 10,000 square feet by the end of the year. We stock and display over 2,000 pieces of furniture in our showroom and discount all merchandise up to 50%. What led you to choose this profession? Julie had a degree in Interior Design from University of Alabama and I attended Engineering School there so together we had a background in design and construction. Having worked together before our marriage, it was an easy transition to more residential design and furniture. What do you like best about Destin? What makes it unique? We were drawn to Destin with it’s quaint friendly atmosphere and believed it would be a great place to start a business. We selected Santa Rosa Beach for the Furniture South location due to its accessibility to Panama City Beach, 30A, and Destin. The Emerald Coast is booming with the growing demand from tourists but as the vacationers retire, we are seeing them move here for primary residence. What do you like best about what you do? The mild climate, low cost of live, low crime rate and zero income tax in Florida is all driving the current boom in our residential housing market. We work hard and get great enjoyment from making our customers happy. We also strive to carry American made merchandise and use the American Flag in our logo and at the entrance to our showroom. What is the best advice you’ve ever received? The importance of teamwork. Furniture South has grown from just the two of us, to a staff of ten today. We work together and with teamwork we can make customers exceedingly happy and that is very satisfying. What is one of your proudest moments in life? I am most proud of my community service as a member of the Walton County Scenic Corridor Board in 2002. It was very interesting to help set the standards for which has kept Walton County beautiful. Santa Rosa Beach and all the 30A communities have banned billboards, have strict signage ordnances and controls landscaping, construction and other aspects of growth to keep this area beautiful for the next generation. We live, work and play here so we do all we can to help local charities including Haven House, Children in Crisis and Sacred Heart Hospital, to name of few of the charities we support. What are the top three things on your bucket list? I’ve checked off three exciting things on my bucket list, 1) Bird hunting with Coach Bear Bryant, 2) Partnership with THE Donald Trump, and 3) Moving to Destin. What is your favorite quote? ”Treat others as you would like to be treated,” and when in doubt…”The customer is always right!” What do you do for fun? In our spare time we enjoy the many amazing local restaurants, seeing a new movie and taking advantage of the beautiful Florida weather with various outdoor activities. What motto do you live by? “Focus on the solution, not the problem.” At Furniture South we say, “Expect Something Different,” this is more than a motto… it’s our way of doing business. What are a few of your special accomplishments? We were most flattered when 30A Magazine wrote an article calling us the King and Queen of Furniture. Also, Resort Interiors was written up in the Wall Street Journal after it was selected as one of the Ten fastest growing businesses in the state of Florida.