May 2, 2013

How I Spent My Spring Break (or the Great Florida Road Trip): Welcome to Miami

After our night in Homestead, we made our way to Miami proper, the final stop in our travels around Florida and coincidentally the same place we started. Our first destination was Little Havana's La Camaronera Seafood Joint and Fish Market for lunch. I was starving because our hotel apparently starts clearing the breakfast area 15 minutes before breakfast ends. No fair.

I ordered fried fish roe for a starter, just because I was really curious to try them. It turned out to be a huge portion and not exactly to my taste. But I was super happy with my lobster sandwich. Soft bread, tons of onions and some special sauce. Oh yeah, and the lobster was good too.

We walked around Little Havana for a few hours afterwards, taking in the sights and sounds. Raisin Bread picked up a cool Cuban fedora and we watched the guys playing dominoes in Maximo Gomez Park.

We still had a few hours to kill before we could check into our hotel so we ventured over to the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, the former home of industrialist James Deering. It is now owned by the county and can host all of your wedding or quinceanera needs. We weren't able to take photos inside, but the exterior gives you a good idea of how lavish the interior is.

Wouldn't I love to have this as my swimming pool!

What had to be my favorite area of the grounds though was the stone barge. So beautiful. 

The gardens were also stunning. Throughout our time wandering the gardens, we saw couples awkwardly taking engagement photos and little girls in big girl dresses posing for their quinceanera pictures. To be fair, I'm sure they wound up with amazing photos at Villa Vizcaya.

We were able to check in at our hotel a little while later. We stayed at the South Seas Hotel, right on Collins Avenue in South Beach. We were right in the thick of things and I felt like we needed to be in order to really have the SoBe experience.

For dinner, we walked to Espanola Way and had some light French fare at A La Folie Cafe. I had the French onion soup and a salade nicoise.

We spent the remainder of the evening watching the craziness of South Beach by taking a long walk along the Lincoln Road Mall and Ocean Drive.

South Beach is quite an eyefull. I also discovered something that I have never seen before in my life. Apparently, this is called a Bulldog Margarita. It looks like it definitely serves a purpose...for evil. Just kidding, not judgments here. But I, for one, did not partake. 

We finally settled on ending the night by consuming more food at La Sandwicherie. I wish I had one of these in my neighborhood. They have a ridiculously fast sandwich maker in their employ and make terrific, tasty and customizable sandwiches for your late night pleasure.

With our bellies stuffed and our tootsies tired out, these old fogies hit the hay soon after. Young'uns, go on without us!

To see more photos of Miami, visit my Flickr set

La Camaronera Seafood Joint & Fish Market
1952 West Flagler Street
Miami, FL 33135

A La Folie Cafe
516 Espanola Way
Miami Beach, FL 33139

La Sandwicherie
229 14th Street
Miami Beach, FL 33139


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