Miami, You’ve Got Style
By Fabiana Santana
The summer season may be over, but that doesn’t mean its time to pack away your bikinis. Come fall, there is nothing like a weekend away to regroup and do a little self pampering.
The beauty of a long weekend away is that it requires much less effort than a traditional vacation would. Usually, a carry-on is all you need – so less time spent in transit – and a pair of relaxing days can really do amazing thins for your psyche.
When it comes to an ideal getaway, Miami has it all: beaches, history, culture and spa treatments! Here is the guide you need to do it right.
WHERE TO STAY:
Z Ocean Hotel (www.zoceanhotelsouthbeach.com) is a chic, intimate, luxury boutique hotel on Ocean Drive in the heart of South Beach. The hotel features 79 oversized suites designed by legendary Arquitectonica and their specialty is their rooftop terrace suites, fully furnished with a private hot tub that fits four. Perfect for a group of girls away for a girls weekend. The hotel is walking distance to shopping on Lincoln Road, directly opposite the beach with a staffed beach concession, and organizes spa treatments on the private balconies or in suite.
Check in with the hotel about their current promotions.
Z-Fit: Personal Fitness Weekend. Led by a Crunch fitness instructor, participants will begin each day with Z Ocean’s Spa Breakfast, including fresh fruit, juices, yogurt and more. Following the energizing breakfast on Saturday morning, fitness enthusiasts will engage in an invigorating 90-minute beach workout with a Crunch instructor. The intense session on Miami Beach will focus on all muscle groups delivering a complete workout. From stretches and lunges to sit ups and sprints, the beach boot camp-ists will feel the burn, made even more effective because of the pliancy of the sand. After the boot camp session, guests will partake in a Q&A with the instructor to address their individual fitness concerns before heading back to the hotel for a revitalizing dip Z Ocean’s glass-bottom pool and some poolside refreshments. The fitness weekend is just one of many promotions that the Z Ocean Hotel.
WHAT TO EAT:
Michy’s, 6927 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, Fl 33138, 305-759-2001
Chef Michelle Bernstein is on the fast track to celebrity chefdom. She has created all the menus for mega restaurant mogul Jeffrey Chodrow’s Social restaurants and has appeared with Padma Lakshmi on Top Chef and several Food Network shows. Her restaurant Michy’s is a high energy, sexy restaurant specializing Latin food prepared with Michelle’s French training in mind and nods to her travels to Asia and Italy as well. Decked out with an assortment of ‘60s style vintage chairs plucked from thrift stores by Michelle’s sister Nicky and orange ultra suede banquettes and breezy white curtains, Michy’s is the perfect spot snag a seat and stare out the giant window looking out onto Biscayne Boulevard and people watch (celebs love to visit Michelle) or tuck into an amazing array of seafood – think ceviche and tartar, grilled steaks, short ribs and home-style favorites like crispy fried chicken and grits. There are seasonal salads and veggies, too, and all pair perfectly with Michy’s amazing wine list or cocktails like the passion fruit caipiroska.
WHERE TO GO:
If you must leave the comfort of your hotel, take at rip to historic coconut grove. Coco Walk is the Mediterranean style open-air center with theatres, shops and outdoor musical entertainment. Just one street away is the Barnacle State Park, which boasts the oldest home in Miami Dade County that offers a charming and historic look back into the late 1800s. Nearby there is also the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens filed with historic European art, furniture and tapestries or visit the Kampong, a botanical garden home to tropical fruit and flowers from all over the world.
Fly High: Ultralight Adventures, 3401 Rickenbacker Causeway, Key Biscayne, (305) 361-3909
What better way to see Miami than from above? Ultralight Adventures offers a variety of tours for the perfect bird’s-eye view of the city from what is basically a motorbike with wings that is also floats. You will take off and land from the water and in between fly like a bird over the Seaquarium or towards Key Biscayne or head over to Fisher Island. You can even have the flight videotaped.
WHAT TO BUY
Love potions at St. Jerard Botanica, 5901 N.W. Second Ave.; Little Haiti, Miami, FL (305) 759-4424: Stop by St. Jerard Botanica in little Haiti for everything you might need to create mystical love spells.
Cigars at El Credito Cigars: 1106 S.W 8th Street, Miami, Florida, (305) 858-4162: Watch your cigars be hand rolled at El Credito in Little Havana by Cuban expats. Many consider what their weathered, experienced hands do to be a lost art and it is truly a treat to watch them do it. Then stroll around the neighborhood and indulge on tempting street food like fresh tamales and churros.