I recently took a late winter weekend getaway Florida.  I jetted off for my freshman visit to Miami!  The vibe in South Beach is unlike any I've ever experienced--one of relaxation, luxury, and incredibly scenery.  Take a look at some of my favorite memories! Breakfast at Bianca inside Delano South Beach.  I dined on the most decadent lemon ricotta pancakes with fresh fruit and a morning mimosa.  The Delano is richly decorated staying true to Collins Avenue Art Deco design in this historic district of Miami Beach.  The private pool offers one of the most picturesque images I've ever seen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monkey Jungle!

This conservatory just outside of Coconut Grove boasts an amazing natural habitat where monkeys run free and humans are caged!

 

 

 

 

 

 

My favorite part of this unique hideaway was the swimming monkeys!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cocktails at Bayside Marketplace...what's Miami without a 'Miami Vice'--the perfect blend of daquiri and colada for the indecisive kind (like myself).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bayside Marketplace is situated in downtown Miami along the Miami River and right next to the American Airlines arena (home to Miami Heat basketball).  It's a beautiful open air shopping complex with endless outdoor eateries, live music and stunning views.  Loved Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. for many reasons, including this delicious margherita!  Can you believe they called this 'fun' size?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My favorite shopping excursion was along South Beach's legendary Lincoln Road.  While stalking a leather clutch I had my eye at American Apparel, you can imagine my surprise when I spotted an Italian eatery called DeLuca's!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lincoln Road boasts endless options to dine al fresco.  There were so many choices I didn't think my stomach could hold all of the cuisine I had hope to sample!  One afternoon, we settled on Nexxt where I had fabulous guacamole tapas and a pomegranate mojito :-).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And I would not rest until I tracked down the renowned News Cafe over on Ocean Drive.  This famed establishment is the greatest for people watching, especially when hoping to spot celebrities!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That's pro footballer Chad Ochocinco in the pink shirt leaving News Cafe in front of my very eyes!  We spotted him with one of the Basketball Wives!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The News Cafe's diner-style menu was extensive.  But I settled on a delicious (and enormous) spinach and goat cheese salad and their signature martini!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Of course, how could I not mention the pristine beaches and crystal clear ocean water!  Even this stormy Miami Beach day lends itself to the most amazing landscape.  It was hard to tell where the sky ends and the ocean begins.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There was soooo much to do!  I can't wait to go back.  With more money and a bigger appetite next time though :-).  We tried to gain access to the island of mansions called home by JLO, Madonna and Oprah Winfrey, but we were brutally rebuffed.  No commoners allowed, lol.