PANAMA CITY BEACH — For Morgan Jackson, general manager of Duplin Winery, “great things come to those who wait.”
According to the North Carolina resident, the company’s newest location being built in Panama City Beach will take longer to open than company officials previously hoped. They now expect the facility to open in early spring of next year.
“Construction delays did push us back a couple of months,” Jackson said. “We were eagerly awaiting a December or January open date a couple of months ago, but our latest team update from our crew is spring.”
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The winery is being built along Panama City Beach Parkway (Back Beach Road) near North Glades Trail. The development sits within the footprint of the former Hombre Golf Course, which closed after Category 5 Hurricane Michael hit the Panhandle in October 2018.
Jackson said construction was about 80% complete as of Monday, but company officials made the decision over the past month to push back the opening date.
“We are really excited, (and) it’s going to be an amazing addition for the spring,” she said. “I think it’s the perfect timing because the weather will be a little warmer, and we can really enjoy our outdoor facilities, as well as indoor.”
A press release from Duplin notes the local winery will cost about $15 million and span 38,000 square feet. It will feature five tasting bars, a retail shop, a wine slushy bar, fudge bar and a 13,000-square-foot pavilion.
Patrons also will be able to enjoy a “bottle-your-own-wine experience.”
The local winery expects to create more than 60 jobs. It is the brand’s third establishment, with others in Rose Hill, North Carolina, and North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The company is the highest-selling muscadine winery in the world, having distributed more than 560,000 cases of wine in 2021.
While she did not know exactly what month in 2023 the winery will open, she hoped for it to have a soft opening in March and a grand opening in May.
“It was really important with us to build our next home somewhere that aligns with our lifestyle brand,” she said. “Our lifestyle is very laid back (and) relaxed — just a feel-good, enjoyable time with family and friends, and we really felt that same way when we visited Panama City Beach.”