I’m grateful that Ben and I unintentionally front loaded our travel into the beginning of the year. It temporarily fulfilled my wanderlust and I feel a little more at peace with the fact that I can’t currently jet set off to somewhere new. We were in a different city almost every weekend in February. Among the most lively was definitely Miami. I’m no stranger to visiting the city where the heat is on – it’s only a four hour drive away from where I live after all. The thing is that I’ve never really gone to Miami and partied all night, on the beach till the break of dawn – ya feel?
My first visit to Miami was short-lived – it was solely to attend a show during Miami Swim Week. The second visit was an anniversary trip for Ben and I. We had a fantastic time together, but we were so green to the SOBE party scene there that we didn’t experience a lot of that TRUE, sought after Miami nightlife.
I should elaborate. When I say “true Miami nightlife” I mean the kind of nightlife that Will Smith raps about. If you’re looking to live out Welcome to Miami like I wanted to do, then you’re going out at midnight and not getting home until the clock strikes close to 6AM. And that’s likely with a McDonalds stop on the way back. Friends, I got that experience first hand on this trip and it’s truly unlike any other.
Coming off of the flu just before our trip (like literally still hacking up a lung on the car ride down – ew) I wasn’t sure if I would survive. Miami was sure to chew me up and spit me right back out. I held strong and counted on my love for vodka sodas to pull me through. Looking back I’m pretty sure that the alcohol from that weekend actually killed off any last germs that my body was keeping around.
Where We Went and What We Did:
Our first night in Miami we danced until we couldn’t dance any longer at Bodega. What looks like an eclectic restaurant (it is one btw), has a secret door that leads to a speakeasy cocktail lounge and bar. Mysterious and fun – just the way I like it. I’d totally go back to try out the food the next time we visit.
We spent part of the next day walking around Ocean Drive, down to South Beach, taking in the scenery. Our first food stop was The 11th Street Diner. This shiny, art deco diner has been featured on The Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives. It’s no secret that I’m a mega triple D fan, so I was stoked to visit. The Diner’s menu was quite extensive and I opted for a very unlike-Kahla meal: the El Cubano Sandwich. I wasn’t over the moon in love with it. I’ll admit, I was slightly hungover so it wasn’t the time to be experimenting with new things. Part of my regret stems from not ordering a hearty breakfast platter to soak up the previous night’s shenanigans.
Insomnia Cookies was another stop on our vacation-calories-don’t-count tour. Their cookies made up for my cuban and then some. You guys – they were DELECTABLE. Every sweet tooth’s dream. Apparently so good that I forgot to snap a photo before I devoured them.
A Miami pool party was on our list of must dos so after cookies and a quick lounge – we shuffled over to the Mondrian Hotel. Their pool patio was epic. There were trendy bathing suits and poolside cocktails everywhere you looked. We even spotted Flo Rida at the bar across from us.
We hit the nightlife hard again on our last night in town because why not. The speakeasy scene in Miami is something I didn’t expect. Foxhole was our first bar of the night. If our friend wasn’t tipped off by a Miami local about this place then we totally would have missed it. This speakeasy sits in what looks like a line of storage units. Once you open the door you’re immediately met with a swanky, laid back atmosphere. We sipped our cocktails at the bar and followed that with a few rounds of darts.
Our night picked up when we ventured out to Purdy’s. A total switch up from where we were earlier in the night, Purdy’s brought the boom. We danced the night away (some of us on top of couches lol). It was a nice way to go out with a bang as we closed out our tab on Miami’s nightlife.
Shake Shack was an absolute MUST before we began the road trip back home. My body happily welcomed the cheesy burger (topped with smoked bacon and chopped cherry peppers – YUM), crinkle cut fries, shack sauce, and for kicks – a sweet custard to go. It was carb overload and I indulged every bite of it. I heard that we’re getting our very own Shake Shack here in Tampa Bay (it might already be open by the time this post goes live).
If you guessed that Ben and I slept during the road trip back to Tampa Bay – you’d be right. Our time in Miami might have only been for 48 hours, but we packed in SO MUCH. Sleep was minimal, but the quality time spent was abundant. Miami proved to be a perfect weekend getaway with friends to indulge in a nightlife experience unlike any other.
Have you ever been to Miami? What are some of your favorite spots there?