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Miami. Just the mention of the word brings about all sorts of mental images. Beaches, notoriously sweltering weather, traffic that will make the average New Yorker have pity on you, and plenty of opportunities to ingest more calories than you’ll burn while there. In an effort to get you outside of the boardroom and into the real Miami, we’re offering up two restaurants, two attractions, and one bar that you can hit with just a few extra hours between meetings.
Today’s Miami is vastly different than the Miami portrayed in nostalgic films, but bits and pieces of that old world remain. If you’ve come to South Florida in search of bona fide Cuban cuisine, you owe it to yourself (and your clients) to head over to Miami Beach. If you’re already in the area due to a meeting at the Miami Beach Convention Center, you’ll be happy to find Puerto Sagua Restaurant, which has become something of a landmark as the years have passed. The more Miami changes, the more this place stays the same. It’s set up like a diner, is almost always busy, and utterly lacks a “relaxed” atmosphere. In other words, it’s the perfect place to turn for a lightning lunch. Read more
Anticipating the fall season conjures up many thoughts: foliage, football, harvest festivals . . . 4-star hotels? Maybe not the first thing that comes to mind, but for our new weekly roundup of favorite travel deals, we found a number of hot bargains for stays at 4-star properties during September, October, or November.
Not quite ready to embrace sweater weather? Stay at the posh Viceroy Palm Springs for as little as $111 per night on weeknights throughout the fall. That’s $60 less than the lowest rates you’ll find anywhere else, including the biggest online travel agencies (you know who we’re talking about). You’ll feel simultaneously relaxed and so very stylish lying by the minimalist pool with a cocktail in hand, or getting a massage at the indoor-outdoor spa. The hotel is also within walking distance to downtown Palm Springs and some of the area’s best golf courses. Read more
The Republican National Convention is under way in Tampa, Florida (with a watchful eye on Hurricane Isaac). Next week, Democrats will descend on Charlotte, North Carolina for their quadrennial festivities. When it’s all over, the two host cities will join a fairly short list of places that have welcomed the two major political parties. We decided to take a look at that list and see which cities have hosted the most national conventions, what presidential history has been left behind, and what kinds of attractions continue to make those destinations such fantastic vacation spots.
There are some surprises in our Top 10 National Conventional Host Cities. Denver hosted its only two conventions 100 years apart. Cincinnati had its number called to host the parties three different times (granted, all between 1856 and 1880). The Democrats didn’t hold a convention in the South after the Civil War until 1928′s affair in Houston.
Which city has hosted the most conventions? Which president was the “second-most hated man in Miami” (according to those in Little Havana)? And what can you do now in all of those cities to enjoy a great vacation? All of the answers are waiting for you here.
Come to Miami for one last vacation before summer draws to an end. Stay two nights at the 4.5-star Viceroy Miami and receive your third night on the house, a savings of over 30 percent on current rates. Room rates start at $133 a night, including weekends, for travel through September 10.
Take in the breathtaking Biscayne Bay, relax on the white sand beaches, experience the South Beach nightlife, and live the luxurious Miami lifestyle that everyone raves about. The prime downtown location of the property offers guests easy access to shopping, beaches, and the diverse Miami culture. The Viceroy Miami features Florida’s largest infinity pool, a full-service spa, several on-site dining options, and a chic rooftop lounge.
The Viceroy King room featured in this end-of-summer special includes a private balcony, a complete kitchenette, and a daily national newspaper. Guests will also receive a variety of welcome amenities, including VIP access to Club 50 (Viceroy Miami’s very own lounge atop the hotel tower at fifty stories), two recovery drinks, and a late 2pm checkout.
The Forever Summer promotion is available for any three-night stay booked by August 31. To book, visit the Viceroy Miami website and enter the promotion code FOREVER.
Indulge in Miami’s white sand beaches and eclectic culture on a three-night stay at a 4-star hotel for $125 per night. This special rate from the Sonesta Bayfront Hotel Coconut Grove saves 30 percent on current rates.
Travel over the following dates for the best nightly rates: July 26-August 2, August 6-14, or August 18- September 28. The 30 percent discount only applies to stays of three nights or longer.
Stay in a Deluxe City View Room with panoramic views of Coconut Grove and the Miami skyline. Furnishings include a king bed with Egyptian cotton linens, a kitchenette with a stove, refrigerator, and microwave, cable TV, a stocked mini-bar, complimentary Wi-Fi, and a private balcony.
The Sonesta Bayfront Hotel is situated on the coast of Biscayne Bay, adjacent to Coral Gables in trendy Coconut Grove. Explore the neighborhood’s vibrant art scene, quaint cafes, and lively nightlife. The excitement of downtown Miami, and picturesque South Beach are only a minutes-drive away.
To book, visit the Sonesta Bayfront Hotel’s website by clicking here. To reserve over the phone, call 800-766-3782.
Perhaps the worst thing about a trip to the beach is sharing that trip with hundreds (if not thousands) of other people. A day at the beach should be a serene, relaxing experience. Hearing other people’s radios and conversations, dodging their frisbees, and avoiding the sand that they kick up turns a pleasant day by the shore into a nightmare. That’s why it’s best to avoid the popular, mainstream, famous beaches for lesser-known plots of sand that provide more privacy with just as much sun and fun. Finding those underrated beach destinations isn’t always easy. If you’re visiting a new city, you might only know the popular beach spots listed in guidebooks or made famous on television.
That’s why we want your help. ShermansTravel readers are spread out across the world and have traveled the globe. We want to know your favorite underrated, unknown, and better beaches. Where should we go in Sydney if we want to avoid the hordes at Bondi? Where can we go in Miami to relax on a blanket rather than be part of the scene on South Beach? What’s a peaceful alternative in Los Angeles to the wacky world that is Venice Beach?
Tell us about your favorite lesser-known but totally awesome beaches in the comments below. Share them on Twitter with the hashtag #betterbeaches (and include @ShermansTravel in your tweets). Post them on our Facebook page. No matter where they are in the world, we want to know! We’ll compile the best suggestions and include them in a future blog post.
Use our Travel Search price comparison tool to find the lowest rates and travel deals on flights, hotels, vacation packages, and more.
Stiletto-wearing ladies and dapper gents mingle through the streets to the sound of DJs and steel-drum melodies – sort of feels like South Beach, but where’s the beach? Welcome to the Miami Design District, a different type of party locale that hosts the Art+Design Night every second Saturday of the month; the next one takes place on June 9. This up-and-coming neighborhood buzzing with high-end stores like Christian Louboutin and soon-to-open Cartier, transforms into an 18-square-block art arena that entertains locals and tourists as they hobnob among 15 galleries where the artwork shines and the wine flows freely. Keep reading for the perfect plan of attack to this free, fashionable event in downtown Miami that draws up to 1,000 people each month.
This summer, explore vibrant neighborhoods or relax under a palm tree in white-hot Miami. Stay at the stylish boutique Hotel Urbano for three nights and receive the third night free. This means effectively you’ll pay only $87 per night – a savings of over 30% on seasonal rates.
Hotel Urbano is a contemporary design hotel located in the high-class downtown area of Brickell, home to soaring skyscrapers and upscale shops and restaurants. It’s just two miles from Key Biscayne, a seven-mile-long barrier island with exceptional sea life and scuba diving opportunities, and three miles from the bohemian neighborhood of Coconut Grove. Stylish South Beach is eight miles away.
You’ll stay in a City View room at this rate, which offers iHome technology, complimentary Wi-Fi, a flat-screen TV with premium channels, luxury bath products, and a walk-out balcony overlooking downtown Miami. Downstairs, enjoy rotating galleries by local artists, and Bistro Urbano, a full-service restaurant and bar with specialty cocktails and South Florida-influenced cuisine. Then lay out at the hotel’s luxurious outdoor pool, where private cabanas are also available.
To book this deal, visit the Hotel Urbano website and choose the Summer Travel Deal. The promotion code “3FREE” will appear in the booking engine. Or call 877-499-5265 and mention the same promotion. This deal is valid date between June 1 and September 30, including weekends and the Fourth of July. A minimum three-night stay is required.
Truth be told, my only experience with a repositioning cruise was as a precocious 6-year-old sailing Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth 2 instead of flying when my family moved back to the U.S. from Paris. Our week at sea was spent watching the newly released Beauty and the Beast and splashing in salt water swimming pools. Even our poor cat, Fuzzy, came along for the ride, although I think she had significantly less fun than we did. (Apparently this trip made quite the impression on me, as the parent volunteers from my first grade class still to this day remember how I regaled them with tales of the QE2.)
Fond childhood memories aside, these types of cruises generally offer the best deals around, since cruise lines need to move their ships from one place to another and offer significant discounts on “one-way” passages. The itineraries can cost as little as $42/night – though note since you spend less time in port you’re more apt (so the cruise lines hope) to open your wallet for the ship’s onboard activities and specialty restaurants.
Escape to a stylish boutique hotel in Miami this season while paying an unusually low price. Stay three nights at the 4-star Mayfair Hotel & Spa and you’ll receive the fourth night free. This means that on select dates in July, you’ll pay $112 per night for four nights and save over 35% on room rates earlier in the season. Comparable hotels in the area would cost you up to $100 more during this time.
Located in the lively and artistic Miami neighborhood of Coconut Grove, the Mayfair features a rooftop pool with views of Biscayne Bay, private cabanas with sofas and flat-screen TVs, and poolside cocktails and dining. The hotel also offers a full-service luxury spa, a 24-hour fitness center, an Italian trattoria, and an Art Deco-style bar. The hotel is within walking distance from downtown Coconut Grove, complete with sidewalk cafes, bookstores, galleries, and boutiques.
Stay in a Mayfair Suite at this rate, which includes a king-sized bed with Egyptian-cotton linens, a private furnished balcony with a Japanese spa tub, an LCD TV, complimentary Wi-Fi, and a marble bathroom. The hotel is only five miles from downtown Miami.
Rooms are available at this rate on select dates in July. They are available for slightly more ($114-$121 per night for four nights) throughout June, July, and August – including weekends. Visit the Mayfair Hotel & Spa to book this deal. When booking, go to “Select a Room Inclusive Package” and then choose the “Why Don’t You Just Stay One More Night?” package. Or call 800-433-4555 and mention the same package.
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