From The Blog

Perceptions of Freshfields

Last August, Digest set out to determine public perception of Freshfields Village and its retail outlets. Over the course of several months, Digest interviewed a wide range of visitors to the newest focal point of Kiawah/ Seabrook/Johns Island activity. Some were seniors; others were children; some were new to the area; and some had roots stretching back to when Freshfields Village was
known as the Tomato Fields. Here’s what they had to say about the new development.

Three August visitors, Denise Pittman, her son Thomas, and a gentleman accompanying them had driven over to Freshfields from North Charleston to “check things out.” Ms. Pittman summed up the response of the trio when she observed: “I like it. It’s very nice. My mother hasn’t been here yet, so I’ll be bringing her. She loves to shop.” Her son, Thomas, observed that Freshfields was as friendly for kids as it was for adults. It was a sentiment echoed by three young visitors from New Jersey and their parents interviewed by Digest shortly afterwards. Although they had regularly visited Kiawah for years, this was their first trip to Freshfields, and they praised the welcoming atmosphere as well as the variety of “things to do.”

Roger Bellow, a string musician who lives in the South Windermere area of Charleston and visits Freshfields twice monthly, praised the development’s management for supporting live musical presentations. Originally from Chicago’s North Side, Mr. Bellow was gratified that patrons enthusiastically responded to the development’s many entertainment efforts.

Chris and Vickie Rolf of Charlotte and Dick and Carla Davis of Nashville regularly spend time at their Kiawah homes and affirmed the virtues of Freshfields. They “love Freshfields because it’s
convenient and there’s a lot to do here.” “Once I arrive at Kiawah, I want to stay put,” Dr. Davis said; so the convenience of Freshfields is paramount to him. During the Fall Festival in October, Digest talked with several other visitors whose perceptions of Freshfields differed slightly. Dick Spayne from Charlotte, who was visiting his friend John Turner’s family on Seabrook, had shopped at Freshfields three times before. He enjoyed the musical entertainment, but he thought that the prices at Newton Farms as well as other retail outlets were too high. A different concern was expressed by Jack Chertoff, a first time visitor to Kiawah from Cleveland. Down for a wedding, Mr. Chertoff found the area lacking in “things to do,” doubted the viability of the retail outlets in the winter, and even suggested that something like the enclosed Water Park at Cedar Point be introduced to draw more customers to the area.

Sandy Logan and Chris Christenson, in contrast, drove down from Myrtle Beach. While their husbands played golf on the Ocean Course, they shopped enthusiastically at Freshfields. Both ladies praised the layout and selections of Newton Farms while expressing admiration for the clever way each Freshfields building was individualized. Moreover, they were impressed by how friendly and accommodating everyone was at Freshfields. Their sentiments were affirmed by Taylor and Rob Volmer of Washington, D.C.’s Georgetown area, who think Freshfields is “great, fantastic.” Regular visitors for decades – Rob spent his childhood summers on Kiawah at his parent’s house – the Volmers particularly like Newton Farms because of the variety and reasonable prices. Like the Davises, Rolfs, and other interviewees, the Volmers affirmed that the location and convenience of Freshfields Village is key to its success.

All in all, Freshfields Village visitors are enthusiastic supporters of the latest addition to the Kiawah/Seabrook/Johns Island area. Its variety, cleanliness, cultural offerings, convenience, and sensitivity to environmental planning make it a welcome addition to the island community