It’s winter and it’s cold. Time to book that trip and head out on a girl’s getaway in the sun… after all, what’s better than a beach vacation with your best girlfriends?
If you’ve avoided a Fort Lauderdale getaway in the past because of its “Spring Break Rowdies” reputation, it’s time for a rethink. With the uber cool W Hotel and the grand dame of luxury, the Ritz Carlton setting up shop along Fort Lauderdale’s beachfront, this city is fast becoming the stylish and sophisticated hot spot in South Florida. Along with its famous intracoastal waterways (think Venice), upscale shopping and miles and miles of dazzling white sand beaches, Fort Lauderdale is a great pick for a beach holiday with your favorite group of women!
Top Hotel Picks in Fort Lauderdale
Marriott’s BeachPlace Towers – Apartment style accommodation located right where you want to be in Fort Lauderdale, across from the beach, close to the intracoastal waterway, and within walking distance of tons of great places to wine and dine. What more can a girl ask for? Our only pet peeve was the parking garage; it was definitely not a fun in the sun place to be!
Our Favorite Fort Lauderdale Restaurants
Coconuts – Try out their Sunday Brunch – lobster galore!
H2O Café – We visited H20 several times, and loved it, loved it, loved it… most of the time. We did experience less than stellar service during one visit, but we’ll definitely go back for the, oh so wonderful, fresh guacamole (enough for a party of four) and mojitos.
Via Luna at the Ritz-Carlton
There are two things that we always want to order at this restaurant – the famous Jumbo Meatball, yes, one very large meatball on a plate and for dessert, warm Nutella beignets drizzled with hot chocolate sauce and served with banana ice cream. Yum, yum in my tummy.
3030 Ocean – Located in Marriott’s Harbor Beach Resort & Spa, this upscale bistro serves, what we consider to be, the best seafood in Fort Lauderdale. Menu changes daily.
Where to Play in Lauderdale
The Beach!!! Miles and miles of perfect sand beaches and blue ocean, a paradise for beach bums.
Stranhan House – Who says that Fort Lauderdale lacks culture?!
Take the water taxi to one of Fort Lauderdale’s original settlements, and find out about the early history of Fort Lauderdale and the Stranhan family. Several guided tours are available.
Carrie B Cruises – Yes, you’ll be stuck with mostly families and little old ladies with blue rinsed hair and yes, you’ll be on a tacky tour boat ogling at the million dollar mansions that line Fort Lauderdale’s intracoastal waterway but you’ll still love it!
Shopping in Fort Lauderdale is Bliss
Las Olas Boulevard – Fort Lauderdale’s “style mile.” With its chi chi boutiques and cafes, this is the place to see and be seen.
Galleria Mall – All the favorites are here: Banana Republic, BCBGMAXAZRIA, Ann Taylor, J. Crew. Can be accessed by water taxi or car.
Silver Edge Jewelry – On the 2nd floor of BeachPlace Towers, this little boutique has gorgeous silver jewelry, great service and lots of selection.
Couture Upscale Consignment – Want designer fashions but not the designer price tag? This store reaps the benefits of all those million dollar mansions and their fashionista inhabitant’s stylish cast offs. On our recent visit we spotted a totally hot Betsey Johnson evening dress for a whopping $99.