Well, this is the largest picture of my toes on the internet, that’s for sure. Although I typically hate toe pics (I mean, toes are strange, no?!) I felt like this picture captured what we really did for 3 days in Miami, so it was necessary.
I suppose you can’t really say that we were in Miami… I mean, we basically didn’t step foot off the main street that runs along the shore. Although I knew we were missing so much great stuff in Little Havana and other parts of the city, I had to remind myself that the purpose of this trip was to relax, not to schlepp around the city experiencing it all. Since we were using this trip as our ‘baby-moon’ we wanted to feel like the few days we got were really rejuvenating and were an ‘escape’ from the crazy that is still going on here at home. During the few days we spent in the Miami Beach area, however, we did do and see some fun things and ate some good food.
First things first, we stayed at The Thompson in Miami Beach, but the day we left, it turned over to the Hyatt group and is now called The Confidante. It was just north of South Beach, but still close enough to walk to mostly everything (which we definitely did). I loved the location and the beach since it was pretty quiet and right smack dab on the sand. The hotel even had beach chairs as part of the resort fee, which was so nice because typically in locales such as this you have to pay extra for chair rentals.
Day One: We got into our hotel around 6pm and headed directly out for dinner. I wanted to go somewhere within walking distance, so we strolled about five blocks south to the Casa Claridge. It was a tiny little boutique hotel restaurant and we were the only guests… which was mildly scary. BUT it was adorable and the food was excellent. The hotel was also really cute. I made it my mission to eat ice cream every day on the trip, so since I didn’t an ice cream spot on our way to the restaurant (nor did yelp have any nearby solutions), we stopped into a little market and bought ourselves a pint before heading back to the hotel and eating ice cream in bed while watching a movie.
Day Two: I woke up first, so I headed down to the street and walked a few blocks away in search of coffee. I love a good exploratory morning walk anywhere I visit. After getting ourselves lotioned up, we made our way to the hotel pool which was so serene and pretty. The pool at this hotel had everything you need for a tropical escape – giant palm trees, beachy latin tunes, and poolside cocktail service. We spent the entire day there just reading, swimming, napping, and chatting. We walked down the boardwalk (which runs miles along the beach and is the perfect spot to bike, walk, run, etc) to a very ‘hole in the wall’ local spot for lunch and ate Cubano Sandwiches… hey, when in Rome! After lots of walking and a late lunch, we stuck to the hotel for dinner.
Day Three: Since we spent the first day at the pool, we spent day three at the beach! Matt and I both read our books and lounged under the sun until lunch when we retired to the pool and got ourselves some poolside snacks. We retired early to take naps before dinner. Dinner was one of my favorite meals of the trip. Again, I wanted to eat somewhere we could walk to, so we chose an Italian restaurant, Cafe Avanti where I could make reservations on Open Table. I felt like it was great Italian food – I always judge an Italian place by its linguine alla vongole which was excellent here. Let’s just say if you want a good filling meal without the trendy house music and super high price tag of South Beach, this is a good option.
Day Four: I wanted to see a little of the city and explore a restaurant that I’d read amazing things about, so we took a cab south for brunch at Yardbird. I loved it. From the decor to the bloody mary’s (mine virgin, of course) to the maple and bacon doughnuts, it was phenomenal. After stuffing ourselves, we walked around the Lincoln Mall area and checked out the surrounding area. I wanted to rent Citibikes (which were everywhere) but I think Matt was a little wary of me biking around a strange city while pregnant. So, we walked the entire way back to the hotel, worked up a sweat, and spent a few hours by the pool before our evening plans. That night, we attended a childhood friend’s wedding and it was absolutely gorgeous. It was the most detailed, yet naturally gorgeous wedding I’ve ever been to. You know when weddings are grand, but just too forced and matchy? This was the completely opposite. It was warm and comfortable, but luxurious and indulgent… The entire thing was very dim and candlelit (thus adding to the allure) so photos didn’t turn out awesome… regardless, here are some pics!
Gorgeous, no?! I missed out on the amazing wines, cheese and charcuterie spread and the raw oyster bar, but lived vicariously through Matt. The entire thing was a wedding planner’s dream. Plus, the dancing started at cocktail hour and then breaked for dinner, which I LOVED. And there may or may not have been a lip syncing battle.
So, the wedding rounded out the Miami experience for us! We woke up the next morning and headed back home. Although we didn’t experience most of what South Beach or Miami is about, we really enjoyed how relaxed and slow our time was. With the luxuriousness of the wedding, it was just the right amount of late night fun for a long weekend.