When you’re best friend works for the Hilton and gets half off at their hotels you have to take advantage. Months ago, my friend Maria Meyer made me swear I would take work off to celebrate her birthday. Naturally, I forgot to do that and had to scramble at the last minute to switch shifts, finish homework and get yoga classes covered to join three of my best friends from high school for a night in South Beach, Miami.
*Every place that we visited/stayed is linked to their website if you need more information or are interested in visiting! Let me know if you need any other recommendations if you head to South Beach. Enjoy reading. *
The festivities started Wednesday night at Chelsea’s apartment. From the moment we met up we there was nothing that could wipe the smiles or laughter off of our mouths. We pre-gamed for the 4/20 holiday, crawled in Chelsea’s bed and laughed until our bellies hurt. Thursday couldn’t come soon enough and life was starting to look up for this miscarrying yogi.
The plan was to wake up at 7 and hit the road by 8am. We had a three and a half hour ride a head of us and wanted to make sure we got to South Beach at a decent time to grab lunch, hit the beach, nap, get ready for the night and then dance until the sun came up.
Let’s just say that the plan didn’t go according to plan. We left the house around 8:30 and arrived around noon. As we got closer to Miami the weather didn’t see very agreeable for the beach. The clouds crowded the sky and a light sprinkle hit the car windows. When we arrived at our hotel, it started to pour. I suggested we find the pool and chill there for the day but my friends were determined to make it to the beach. We gave the car to the valet and walked the short distance towards the sea. Luckily we had towels to cover ourselves because we would have been soaked sitting down for lunch otherwise.
We stopped at a nice Brazilian steakhouse near the beach. Maria ordered a caipirinha a staple drink in Brazil made of cachaca a Brazilian sugar cane liquor, sugar and lime. If you’re hanging in a laid back place like South Beach I recommend ordering one of these bad boys. The drink is smooth and the flavor is sweet and refreshing. The vibe of the restaurant as a whole was casual and the menu as expensive as anything else in south Florida. The rain slowed down as we ate our lunch. As soon as we got back up to head towards the beach, the rain decided to act up again but soon dispersed.
As we approached the beach, we were wet and didn’t stay for very long because of the temperamental weather. Instead, we headed back to the hotel and decided to hit the pool. We were far from disappointed by this decision. Our hotel, Vintro Hotel South Beach by Hilton featured a rooftop pool, hammocks galore, beds with pillows to rest on, a table for board games or leisure and a beautiful view of the city.
Personally, I’m not much of a city girl but this exceeded my expectations. I felt pampered and pretty for the first time in a while! We spent the rest of the afternoon tanning, doing yoga, laughing our asses off and listening to music on this beautiful rooftop. I was starting to feel human again. My miscarriage made me feel hopeless and I lost faith in the future. But here I was laughing with my high school friends like old times and relaxing my day away into oblivion.
Post chill session we headed to the hotel room, got glamorous and hit the town.
First stop was Clevlander South Beach Hotel and Bar, cover is free for ladies and this hangout spot is outside. The bars, dance floor and hangouts are all outdoors and better for cooler nights if you plan on dancing. We lasted about 30 minutes on the dance before we needed to cool off and find an indoor spot. While it lasted however, we had a blast! The music was old school dance songs like the “Cupid Shuffle”, “Single Ladies”, and “Soldier Boi”. In other words, the vibe is fun and playful
My single friend, Nicole was busy on Tinder and “met” a guy on the app who could get us into a nightclub called, Liv. Liv Night Club is one of the most popular night clubs in Miami South Beach and is frequented by celebrities and guest DJ’s. Cover is normally $40-50 on a regular night but we had the hook up with Nicole’s new friend who was a promoter for the night club. When we arrived, he rounded us and several other ladies up and led us into the VIP section.
Unfortunately, the club didn’t live up to its hype. Sure, the venue itself was impressive with a massive dance floor, incredible sound system and rave vibe but the music was awful. If you’re into house music maybe it’s for you, but the music lacked any rhythm whatsoever making it really hard to dance. When the girl with zero rhythm in the world recognizes this, then you know there’s a problem! The VIP sectioned was so uncomfortably full that I ended up spilling a drink on someone when she bumped into me. We decided it was best to leave.
Destination number three was the highlight of our night, Mango’s Tropical Cafe South Beach. If you’re looking for live music, live performances, tropical drinks, and an island/Latin vibe than Mango’s is what you’re after. This club features salsa lessons everyday at 6:30pm and 8pm if you want to learn to dance as well. The club is divided into three sections for a variety of music selection and a bar that wraps around the entire venue. Downstairs has live performers with music playing to match their choreography. Upstairs features a live band and in a separate room upstairs, a DJ plays a variety of music typical at most night clubs.
We spent the rest of the night dancing, singing and laughing until our feet hurt and we craved sleep. Typically, I’m not one to go out until 3 am and party but when in South Beach you must seize the opportunity to have a good time.
The grand finale called for breakfast and a beach day in Miami. The valet brought the car back and we headed to Taste Bakery and Cafe. If you love healthy breakfast options like salmon and cream cheese on a bagel, acai bowls, avocado toast or make your own breakfast bowls than this is the spot for you.
(* If you’re from Orlando, think of Dandelion Cafe for breakfast!*)
Options for drinks include teas, smoothies, juices and coffee. If you go to South Beach, make sure to stop by for breakfast or lunch. I promise you, you won’t regret it! There are also options for vegans, vegetarians and carnivores to help satisfy any craving or appetite.
After eating we spent close to an hour looking for a parking spot for the beach. The receptionist at the hotel told us we would have no problem finding parking, but boy did we think otherwise! Instead we hit the road, drove about 30 minutes and pulled over to a beach on the way home. Although it wasn’t South Beach, we spent the rest of the afternoon tanning, laughing, dancing and doing yoga on the beach somewhere in Miami.
The car ride home consisted of eating junk food, smoking weed and singing songs from the 90’s and even that was an adventure within itself. In 36 hours we managed to explore a city we’d never been to before, try delicious food and experience what South Beach is all about. If you ever get the opportunity to go to South Beach bring a few friends, get fancy and have the time of your life partying.
Join me next week as I begin my 3 WEEK journey to Bali, Indonesia!!!!! I’ll give you the inside scoop on where to go, where to stay, what to do/eat, where to take yoga classes and what to avoid. I can’t wait to share this journey and adventure of a lifetime with you. Bali is my dream destination and I am so lucky to have the opportunity to go at such a young age.
Make sure to keep reading this yogi’s adventures as I travel this beautiful planet one city, state, country and continent at a time.
Love and Gratitude to all.