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Retro Kill Devil Hills Motel puts the fun in funky

As post-pandemic travel opened back up, Kill Devil Hills on North Carolina's Outer Banks was an easy choice for the memories it holds for us. We used to live here and in fact got married on the Outer Banks. On this trip, we got to check out a hotel that’s a reminder of another time.

Many baby boomers remember their family vacations included staying at a motel or motor lodge. These popular ’50s and ’60s accommodations sprang up as interstate highways grew, making distant trips driveable. At these roadside spots, parking was easy, rates were good for a family, rooms were nothing fancy but clean, and the pools delighted the kids.

In recent years, such roadside motels are getting a new life including some on the Outer Banks of North Carolina (OBX). We found that to be the case during our recent stay in Kill Devil Hills. A prime location to jump into the Atlantic and lounge the hours away on miles of beaches, it is best known as the spot where the Wright Brothers took to the air.

We shared our three-night getaway with another couple, long-time friends since we all worked here in the hospitality industry in the 1980s. It was great to reminisce in person and cautiously approach this new world of travel, thanks to a two-bedroom suite at the 23-unit See Sea Motel, where retro décor puts the fun in funky.


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