Although we live in Miami, we rarely make it out to the beach. It seems that the weekends come and go and we never make an effort to enjoy the beautiful city we live in. This past weekend however, we had absolutely no plans (which is rare for us.) We are both type-A personality planners who jam pack our nights and weekends with errands and obligations. We even have to keep track of our lives in our iPhone calendars! Every once in a while, it is nice just to go out and do something spontaneously without planning it!
So on Saturday, we woke up and threw a couple of towels, suntan lotion and some bottles of water in a beach bag and got in the car. It was the first time this year that we went to Miami Beach, only 10 minutes away form our home.
We didn't pack our dslr camera, just our trusty iPhones and took some impromtu shots. We hope you all enjoy our cell phone pictures!
We sometimes forget that we live where people vacation! We tend to take that for granted! It was a beautiful 85 degrees on Saturday. The water was a bit chilly for us, but once we dove in, it was fine.
We lounged and relaxed on the sand for a few hours before we decided to take a stroll around the surrounding area.
We went to our favorite hotel in Miami Beach, The Delano. If we had to describe this hotel in a few words, we would say its "Alice in Wonderland meets South Beach Chic." The hotel is very whimsical and has a clean, simple and modern style. Between the hotel and the pool is a beautiful garden that you have to see to believe! It is definitely a place to visit if you are staying in Miami.
We grabbed an early dinner at Van Dyke Cafe on Lincoln Road. This is one of our favorite restaurants. We love to come here. They have great outdoor seating to people watch and it is pet friendly, so we always bring our Chihuahua Joey. It is the perfect place to sit, relax, eat and enjoy time with your significant other. Everything we have ordered on the menu has been great and the portions are big enough to share.
This time, we ordered an orange mojito and a pineapple mojito to start off our meal. We decided to order two appetizers and share. The hummus platter was excellent! Hummus, stuffed grape leaves, tomatoes, black olives, cucumbers, pepperoncini and a peppery sauce we served on a big family platter. We also ordered fried calamari, which in our opinion, is the best we have had in Miami. It came with a mountain of perfectly fried and golden calamari, marinara sauce and half a lemon. Even though they are fried, they feel very light. They are amazing!
OH!! We absolutely cannot write about Van Dykes without mentioning the chocolate soufflé. It is out of this world! We didn't order it this visit because we weren't very hungry. It's like eating warm chocolate clouds of heaven!! Seriously! It takes about 45 to 50 minutes to make, so make sure you put in your order when you arrive.
After we ate, we took a long walk through the residential neighborhood surrounding Lincoln road. We love to experience the art deco architecture of the homes and buildings in South Beach. Every time we visit a new city, we make time in our schedule to explore the neighborhoods, so why not do it here?
Its funny, but we both agreed we felt like tourists in the very city where we live. Each city has so much to offer, but sometimes we don't have the time to explore. This was a perfect way to spend a Saturday!