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FLORIDA SOUTH BEACH

Aids Health Foundation

By Christyna Pourhabib

South Beach is, without a doubt, the first thing to come to mind when someone mentions Miami, Florida. Warm breezes, refreshing turquoise waters, white sands, tropical climates, and countless palm trees create an atmosphere of inimitable bliss and ecstasy. Take some time to forget your everyday worries by lying out and soaking up the beautiful, sultry rays of the Miami sun. The water is absolutely refreshing and you will completely lose track of time as you get lost in the waves and the soothing atmosphere. Located on the infamous Ocean Drive, you will have direct access to countless restaurants such as Joe’s Stone Crab and Nikki Beach Miami. Along with appetizing dining halls, Ocean Drive houses several renowned bars and frozen drink sites such as Wet Willies and Fat Tuesdays.

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Explore
After marinating in the sun, grabbing a scrumptious meal and chilled drink, its time for every woman’s favorite thing…shopping! Ocean Drive and surrounding streets, house numerous shops like Barneys, Zara, Victoria’s Secret, Banana Republic, and even the Kardashian’s store DASH. You are guaranteed to stumble upon one of a kind outfits and unique accessories during your shopping adventure. The Art Deco District between 5th Street and Dave Boulevard is also a great area to explore while in the vicinity of Ocean Drive. Guided Deco walking tours are available in order to observe hundreds of buildings from the 1930s and 1940s. As you travel through the Art Deco District, your tour guides will relay intriguing historical information while also connecting various sites to the entertainment arena of Hollywood. The buildings are absolutely beautiful and you will have the chance to view the illustrious interior details as well as the exterior architecture.

 

Rest and Relaxation
Yes, you had the time to relax on the beach, but now its time for a different form of rest and relaxation as we head on over to another favorite…the spa! Several five star hotels make it a priority to include an isolated floor specifically reserved for spa guests. The Intercontinental Hotel located in Downtown Miami and the Ritz Carlton in South Beach, are by far two favorite resorts that offer astonishing spa treatments. As you walk into the Intercontinental MySpa, any and all stress immediately drifts away as the stimulating aromas and soothing sounds of waterfalls hypnotize you into a state of repose. MySpa offers various massages and facial packages from eleven essential oils, sole salvation, rejuvenate oxygen infusion, cleansing back facials and even reflexology. They also offer manicure and pedicure services if you are looking to enjoy a complete beauty process during your time in Miami. After deciding on your spa experience, you are instantly ushered into the lounge which will more than likely cause you to fall into a quick catnap (but don’t worry, they explain that this is quite usual for spa guests). As you are called into a private room to receive your treatment, be prepared to come out feeling like a new, refreshed woman. MySpa also offers a sauna room, steam room, and showers for all spa guests to utilize before and/or after their services.

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The Ritz-Carlton is also a favorite among many because spa guests are able to enjoy customary treatments and also create their own unique, custom spa services. The categories for the custom spa services range from Polish, Explore, Indulge, Balance, Energize, and Restore. If you are more interested in sticking with a customary treatment, the Drift to Sleep journey is an awesome experience that includes an exfoliating body scrub, a milk bath, an oil massage, and a thirty-minute nap. I don’t know about you but I could definitely use a weekly dose of the Drift to Sleep journey.

Dining
Let’s get our grub on! We’ve already visited a few spots on Ocean Drive, but there are literally tons of unique eateries that we have yet to explore. Whether you’re in the mood for steak, seafood, burgers, pasta or pizza, Miami will without a doubt curb your appetite. As far as steakhouses are concerned, Prime One Twelve is a national and international delight that welcomes locals, tourists, and even celebrities. The selections of meats offered at this restaurant are unlike any other as they are dry aged for 21-28 days. The filet mignon is to die for and the fries and macaroni and cheese serve as great side entrees. In addition to steaks, there are various fish and chicken options, as well as a la carte items that are great for sharing.

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Seafood restaurants are extensive and some favorites include Garcia’s Seafood Grille & Fish, A Fish Called Avalon and Grillfish. Not only will you receive the freshest fish options, each of these restaurants offers exciting atmospheres and groovy drink options.

If you happen to be with that special someone and would like to enjoy a romantic dinner, the Italian restaurant II Gabbiano is a great selection. With breathtaking views of the water and an extensive range of pastas, antipastas, vitellos, and much more, you will not be dissatisfied. Upon arrival, you will be served a basket of bread and bruschetta along with Parmesan and balsamic vinegar. Good luck deciding what you will have for dinner because the menu offers a plentiful list of entrees that sound like they will taste nothing short of heaven. If possible, arriving to dinner around sunset will set off the night and provide the perfect mood for you and your partner.

Night Life

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It’s time to party! We’ve been hanging at the beach, getting massages, shopping, eating and drinking, so now we’re going to club hop around the best of the best nightclubs in Miami. If you are in the mood for Hip Hop and R&B (which I definitely was), STORY, LIV and Arkadia are the most frequently visited clubs in Miami Beach. Thursday night, I experienced the jam-packed club STORY, and I must say that I had the time of my life. J. Cole was the celebrity appearance of the night, and the crowd partied non-stop to a mix of new and old school Hip-Hop until nearly five in the morning. Arkadia is also a great venue to explore on the weekends and will definitely provide satisfying music for a varied audience. LIV is another infamous club, bragged about by rappers such as Lil Wayne. If you like to dance and enjoy the hottest Hip-Hop and R&B, you must grab your girlfriends and come to LIV. You will not be disappointed and you will literally dance until the sun comes up. If you’re not into the club scene, there are bars and lounges scattered throughout every block of Miami offering various genres of music and incredible atmospheres.

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What to Bring
Miami is without doubt a tropical vacation spot, so the first thing you will need to purchase are a few bathing suits that show off your curves and make you feel fabulous because you will definitely be strutting your unique and beautiful assets. A few summer dresses are a must along with some shorts and skirts. Go bold with bright colors and several accessories! This is the time to be carefree; there is no time to worry about stretch marks or that little pudge you didn’t quite have the time to work on before your trip. Leave your problems and worries at home because you are in Miami and it’s time to have some fun. Don’t forget your umbrellas and sweaters because Miami’s weather is extremely spontaneous and rain and thunder can appear at any second. Nevertheless, be prepared to have the time of your life and enjoy a remarkable experience.

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