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Located just steps from the Lake of the Arbuckles, Point Breeze cabin provides everything for a fall getaway, from changing leaves to football.
By Megan Rossman
Published November/December 2012
Ken Hurt swings open the back door and gestures ahead.
“Here’s why we bought the property,” he says.
The scene is a case study in nature’s majesty. From the three-tiered deck at the house he has named Point Breeze, a wall of forest forms the boundary of the Chickasaw National Recreation Area. Just beyond it, the Lake of the Arbuckles mirrors the hazy afternoon sky.
When Hurt saw that view for the first time in 2007, the decision to buy the house was a no-brainer. He and his wife, Suzy, initially purchased Point Breeze as a vacation home but a few years later saw an opportunity to turn it into a money-making enterprise. The couple now owns two other houses in the Sulphur area, along with a lodge and three cabins made from repurposed Sunday school buildings they bought on Craigslist. The properties, which comprise the Arbuckle Paradise vacation rental company, adhere to Suzy’s simple but elegant design creed.
“I have what I call the no-plaid rule,” she says. “There are no dumpy couches and no doilies.”
Suzy’s decorating task is in full effect at Point Breeze. Here, guests will find 1,800 square feet of plush couches, comfy beds with fresh linens, and all the amenities of home. The kitchen is stocked with dishes, modern appliances, even an iPod dock.
“We try to make it easy for you,” says Suzy. “You just bring your clothes and your food. Everything else is there.”
The house, which sleeps up to ten people, is named in part for the breeze that comes in steady waves off the lake. During the day, rustling leaves and singing birds provide the only noise until the sun dips down, when frogs raise a nightly chorus. With several tables, well-cushioned chairs, and rugs, the deck is the ideal spot to watch and listen. There’s a propane grill and a fire pit for crisp autumn nights, when stargazing is at its best. If guests want to venture closer to the canopy of blackjack oaks, cedars, and redbuds while still maintaining maximum comfort, a fire pit and lawn chairs are in the yard.
Linda Fries of Norman, who stayed at the house with her family in July 2012, was drawn to the area’s natural beauty.
“We love the lake; it is the attraction,” she says. “It’s so nice to sit on the deck and enjoy the sunrise or sunset.”
While it may be difficult for guests to drag themselves away from the scenery, there’s plenty to cozy up to indoors. Upstairs are two bedrooms and a full bathroom. The larger room, with a king-size bed, opens to a private upper deck, while the second includes two twin beds, one with a trundle. Off the downstairs kitchen, a roomy master suite adjoins the main bathroom, with a stacked washer and dryer tucked in the corner.
If visitors wander a few steps down from the living room, they’ll find what Suzy refers to as the “man cave.” The longtime Norman residents didn’t leave their OU spirit behind when they created Point Breeze. Sooner fans will feel at home in this crimson-and-cream-heavy game room, complete with a pool table and a football-friendly big-screen television. With four TVs in the house, including a thirty-two-inch plasma screen in the living room, no one has to miss a snap during a fall getaway at Point Breeze.
Once guests venture from the property, they’ll find a surplus of activities to entertain them. The unclouded waters of the Lake of the Arbuckles, a short hike or drive from the house, provide some of the best bass, catfish, perch, and crappie fishing in the state. Just four miles up the road, the Chickasaw Cultural Center offers an afternoon of educational entertainment, and the Chickasaw National Recreation Area is another local gem. The almost 10,000-acre park is home to the mineral and freshwater springs for which Sulphur is named, as well as the Travertine Nature Center and Veteran’s Lake, which features a new, almost three-mile walking trail along its perimeter.
Though the area is a busy summer destination, it sees a steep drop-off in traffic the rest of the year. Suzy would like to see more people take advantage of autumn’s cooler temperatures and intense colors.
“In the fall, it’s beautiful,” she says. “It’s not so crowded, and you can explore freely.”
Whether vacationers are looking for a lazy weekend or a get-up-and-go retreat, Point Breeze is a perfect starting point in any season.
Get There: Point Breeze is located off Charles F. Cooper Memorial Road in Sulphur. Rates are $475 per night, and a third night is free with a rental of two nights. (405) 620-0223 or arbuckleparadise.com.