What better way to start off 2017 than with a trip? I’ve been to Miami several times (my family is from Florida) but this trip would be completely different. This would be a trip to celebrate my best friend’s 25th birthday along side my cousin (aka girl’s trip). I’m always pretty anxious to travel because you never know how things will go. I knew I would have a good time with my small travel crew but how exactly would things go down?
My first round of anxiety came from the hotel. We spent months online deciding should we use a hotel or AirBnB. When it came down to comparing prices it seemed like most AirBnB’s would be more expensive due to fees so we chose to stay at a hotel. Hotels in Miami can be another cause of anxiety because they offer a lot of “boutique” style hotels (meaning that most of them were places we had never heard of). The most we could do was look at reviews (I always recommend checking several different sites) and go with our gut feeling. We were not let down. We chose The Kent Hotel which had recent renovations and was about a 5 minute walk from the beach, shops, and amazing restaurants.
Food is one of my favorite things to try when traveling and I consider myself very adventurous when it comes to trying new places. Among the places we visited were Sugar Factory (famous for their smoking drinks but dinner was good too), The Naked Taco (the name says it all), 11th Street Diner (amazing breakfast/brunch), Sushi Siam (delicious Thai food), LimeTree Lounge (the restaurant/hookah bar at our hotel), and of course we had to stop by Wet Willie’s. Every restaurant in South Beach includes 18% gratuity automatically (Sugar Factory was 20%) so the meals end up being pretty expensive. The craziest thing to me was that no matter what time you walked down Ocean Ave (the main street so to speak) all the restaurants were saying it was happy hour and asking you to view their menu. Guess “they” weren’t lying when they said it is always happy hour somewhere.
Besides food, there were plenty of shops within walking distance. If we walked about 3 blocks one way there was a Victoria’s Secret, Ugg Australia, the Kardashian store -DASH (where I couldn’t even afford sale rack items), Nine West, Sephora, and a Walgreen’s that sold liquor. About 7 blocks in the opposite direction we stumbled upon a farmer’s market serving fresh fruit, empanadas, and other trinkets in the middle of a mile long of shops including Forever21, Alex and Ani, and H&M.
We didn’t go clubbing as much as we thought we would. We decided to visit G5ive, one of the newer strip clubs in the area, instead of KOD which was a pretty fun time. The rest of our nights were spent drinking together in our room, visiting the hookah bar downstairs, or simply walking the strip of restaurants housed opposite of our hotel.
The weather was pretty warm but of course it is Florida so we did endure a few hours of rain (more like a drizzle) on two separate days. We were able to visit the beach and the water was a pretty clear/blue.
All in all, South Beach was great to experience being young and carefree. I would definitely recommend opening up your mind and taking on adventure when visiting because a lot of the places you visit will not have familiar names. That’s part of the fun in it all.