United States Travel:
Fort Lauderdale: My Mom, Mark and I visited Fort Lauderdale in April of 2011. We absolutely loved every second of the trip. We had excellent weather, food and drinks. What my mom and I liked about it the most was the walking. Pretty much everything we did was within walking distance, which is convenient and noteworthy after a large dinner. My mom also loves to walk in the morning by the water, and Fort Lauderdale offered a LOT of am walking opportunities.
A few MUST DOs in Fort Lauderdale are listed below:
The Aruba Restaurant and Bar:
|Aruba Restaurant Parrot!|
Lauderdale by the Sea:
Lauderdale by the Sea offers a bunch of shops and restaurants in a close proximity to fishing piers, beaches ,and other family friendly attractions. If you are ever in the area, it is definitely worth checking out.
Coconuts Bar and Grille:
This is a family and DOG friendly seafood restaurant located right on the inter coastal. It is a great restaurant to go to to during the sunset, because the views are simply breathtaking! I would recommend the crab cakes and coconut shrimp here as well. Also, ask you server for the catch of the day. When we were there, they had some great fresh grilled or blackened fish options.
|On the deck at Coconuts.|
|Almost sunset over the Inter-coastal|
|A cloudy sunset.|
I have been to Las Vegas twice, and stayed at Planet Hollywood and Caesar's Palace. I would definitely say the Planet Hollywood has a more fun vibe and tends to attract a younger crowd. However, Caesar's is truly luxurious, contains amazing artwork, and is more high end. Both hotels were great ,and I would stay there again. Vegas is a great time, but I would not label either of my stays there "relaxing" . I more so felt I wanted to do and see as much as I could in the time that I had, while fighting off jet lag from the time difference!
Hotel Attractions: Many of the hotels offer shows that run on the hour or so to attract an audience. For example, Treasure Island offers a pirate show, and The Bellagio offers a water fountain show at night. Both are great to see. The Venetian has a mock gondola river-way outside their hotel. You can ride on them and have you photo taken for a charge. The Paris is a equipped with a HUGE mock Eiffel tower, which is another great photo opportunity.
Il Mulino: Mark and I ate at Il Mulino when we visited Las Vegas during October of 2009. At the time, it was recommended by a couple of my colleagues with a more "mature" pallette, so we decided to check it out. The restaurant in inconveniently located in the Ceaser's Forum shops, but is barely advertized making it VERY tough to spot. We finally made it after a LONG walk down the strip from Planet Hollywood. Il Mullino offers outside dining on this small balcony that is truly exquisite. If at the right table and angle, most of the strip can be your background! They offer traditional italian food, and every meal starts with decedent crostini. I had the gnoccis and mark had chicken marsala. They were both incredible, along with the service and the view. We did not go back this time due to time restrictions, but I would definitely consider going again. In fact, we heard there was a location in New York City, and Mark took me there on my first ever visit. Although the atmosphere was much different, the food was still top notch! (See NYC travel update)
|Il Mulino, Las Vegas|
|Planet Hollywood Piano Bar. We were so cute <3!!|
Serendipity 3: Serendipity 3 Was all over Trip Advisor, and recommended to Mark by his hair stylist; therefore it was ESSENTIAL that we visited while in Vegas. I can say with confidence that I am happy we visited, and that this would be a fun place to go with girls, split meal, and have wine. It is beautifully decorated in pink stripes (sort of like my blog..great minds must think alike), and also has a feel good vibe. The menu is big, the offer a full bar, and have both indoor and outdoor seating. All positives aside, we spent over $200 on breakfast. Now, I know it was Vegas, there was fiver of us, and we did get a round of drinks.... but that is extravagant and not something I can do everyday. My friend Ashley said they have their other two locations in NYC, and that they are very popular for tourists as well. Word to the wise: If you go split meals eve if they charge you. The amount of food they serve is borderline grotesque!
|Trying their signature "frozen hot chocolate"|
|World's Largest Sandwich!|
|Cheers with bowls of coffee!|
Texas De Brazil: There is a Texas De Brazil located of the Strip, but I LOVE this place. I have been both in Aruba and in Vegas. I just feel it offers a little something for EVERYONE in a fun and upbeat atmosphere. For more details see my Vegas posts.
Oscar's Steakhouse, Old Vegas:
Gilly's: We frequented Gilly's while in Vegas this March. We visited once for lunch, and my friend Katie and I went back at night for a live band and some line dancing. We did not know this, but apparently this place is well-known in Texas, and then they opened up a location in Vegas. On the whole, Gilly's is a pub with lots of beer ,and a BIG menu filled with BAD, yet delicious choices! It is also affordable and very suitable for larger groups. They also have a mechanical bull, which makes every lunch MUCH more fun.
When Katie and I went back at night it was much more of a "down home country" feel. They had a live band and no cover, and people were literally two-steppig all over the place! We loved it! Katie and I actually learned how, which was VERY cool. We had fun on both visits, since these types of bars are tough to find outside of Boston.
New York City: Believe it or not, I had never been to NYC before fall of 2010! Mark took me for the first time, the weekend after Thanksgiving that year. We took the train from Stanford walk walked from Grand Central to our hotel. The walk was quite far, but I really wanted to see the city by foot. This time we stayed at the Marriot Marquis in Time Square. The hotel was very nice and possessed a view of Time Square which was awesome at night. The hotel is convenient to the theaters and other Tourist-type restaurants. It was also nice to walk to Rockafellar Center and see all the Christmas decorations, lights and shops. The second time we went, we brought Tucker and we stayed at the Soho Grand. This hotel was RIGHT up my alley. First off SoHO is very dog friendly, and we frequented Washington Square Park most mornings. The hotel also loved Tucker, and we quite nice for the price. Soho was a fun area to explore, equipped with various dining, shopping and bar options within walking distance. We were in NYC for a friend's birthday, but had a lot of daytime to ourselves.
Outside the United States: Coming Soon!
The British Virgin Islands:
Riviera Maya, Mexico:
Jamaica: Coming Soon!