The Atlantic Effect

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In a world where we are constantly connected to digital information and feel the pressures of everyday life, it can be challenging to find moments of calmness and connection with our natural world, with others and even with ourselves. But upon staying at The Atlantic Inn, in the charming island town of Hatteras, guests are transported to a place that radiates a special kind of magic, where time becomes inconsequential, the weather, tides, sunrises and sunsets dictate daily life, and you can’t help but relax.

What is it about this place that inspires such peace? Maybe it's the century-old structure, the rich history, the peaceful serenity, the aged wood-paneled walls, the comfortable beds and linens, the tasty breakfasts or the multitude of decks and cozy. Perhaps it's Hatteras village with its incredible restaurants, fishing marinas and friendly residents. Or could it be the ocean, the salty fresh air, the dancing dolphins and soaring pelicans? More than likely, it's a combination of all three that Pam, the co-owner, likes to call The Atlantic Effect.

Leaving behind high profile careers with all the trappings of success to become innkeepers on a rather remote part of the Outer Banks may seem like a crazy idea to some, but for the owners of The Atlantic Inn, Pam and John Buchholz, it has become a journey of discovery, love, passion and adventure. When looking for a small beach place to escape their stressful lives and utilize their latest qualifications in real estate and life coaching, Pam, a Scottish native, stumbled across a 7,500-square-foot, rather tired and shabby looking, hotel in need of extensive renovations … and their Atlantic adventure began.

Built in 1928, the inn originally had 15 rooms and was the first and only hotel on Hatteras until the late 1940s. The building had fallen into a state of disrepair and may have faced demolition if Pam and John hadn’t stepped in. Having invested their time, energy and money in a year-long renovation and restoration project, they opened the door to The Atlantic Inn in April 2021.

Today, one of the most striking aspects of the inn is the sense of calm and relaxation. Within a day of staying there, even the most stressed out and overwhelmed guests find relaxation. They favor a leisurely stroll along the beach or lounging in a rocking chair on one of the decks with a good book as opposed to feeling like they’re attached to their cell phone or laptop dealing with the crisis du jour.

What makes The Atlantic Inn different from many other hotels is the personal approach. John and Pam are not just the owners; they are also the managers and the workers. They can be found in the kitchen at 5:30 a.m. cooking and prepping for breakfast. Later they’re in reception, checking guests in and out, carrying luggage and helping guests choose the perfect gift from their gift shop. Then in the evening they’re ensuring everyone has what they need for a restful night’s sleep. 

The Atlantic Inn is a way of life. Guests can spend their days fishing on the beach or lounging on the front porch watching the world go by. In the evening, they can enjoy a glass of wine and a slice of homemade Key lime pie on one of the upper decks, stargazing and listening to the soothing sounds of the ocean or chatting with family and friends out on the new Courtyard Deck, a beautiful seating area surrounded by cedar trees at the back of the inn.

Pam and John are committed to both maintaining the inn’s historic beauty and integrity and ensuring that the hotel is constantly evolving. With two years of serving guests now under their belt, they have a sense of what guests want to experience during their stay. Pam, who by her own admission has a rather restless nature, ensures that there are always new projects for the inn. After just completing the redesign of a new website for the inn, she has now moved on to planning more in her series of women’s retreats. 

Every time guests visit, they’re likely to find new artwork, a different piece of furniture and additions to the library. This year there are changes in the main guest lounge, a newly resurfaced parking area, the addition of their Inndulgencies packages for guests and much more.

But there’s something else. The sense of community that is fostered at The Atlantic Inn is truly remarkable, and it's not uncommon for guests to become friends over a shared love of good food, wine and conversation. 

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing and indulgent vacation, a break from the stresses of daily life, a private event or to attend a retreat, The Atlantic Inn, with its personal touch, beautiful location and sense of community, is more than just a place to stay. It's the perfect haven to find yourself and rediscover the magic of the world around you. 

(252) 986-2700
57321 N.C. Highway 12, Hatteras