Putting up two shots today, this first being from January 2011 and our hotel view (Newport Beachside) from Miami, Florida!!!!!!
After a very LONG and ROUGH night on Wednesday, we got up early on Thursday, checked out, and unfortunatally, left the Newport Beachside. I absolutely loved this hotel. There’s not much wrong I could say about it. We ended up driving up North of Miami and ended up at the John U. Lloyd State Park in Dania, Florida. Awesome place. They have beautiful beaches, offer boating, biking, actually a wide variety of different activities. They also feature a restaurant, the Loggerhead Cafe.
We had an AMAZING meal there, including a sampler we got which included Salmon, Mahi Mahi, and Marlin! I had Mahi Mahi a few days earlier at Kitchen 305, and loved it, but before this never tried Marlin. Let me tell you….wow. It was absolutely delicious. The rest of the meal was amazing as well, and not over-priced whatsoever, as are a lot of places in the Miami-area. Not to mention, there was only one woman running the entire place (which is sort of hard to find, so it’s not that busy) and she did a damn-near PERFECT job. Friendly service like you wouldn’t believe!
The park itself only costs $6 per car to get into, and is well worth it. It’s going to be a future stop for sure next time I’m down in Miami…
After our delicious meal we took one last walk on the beach, and fast-forward some 31 hours later and 3 or 4 hours of sleep mixed in there, here I sit in my office writing this Blog post. I am already sort of upset that I’m no longer in Miami, but that’s how it goes. I am looking forward to my next journey, as well as the hustle in between. To give you an idea of why I may be upset as well, let me give you a comparison…..
Yesterday when I left Miami…….
Today when I arrived back in Pennsylvania:
Seems sort of unfair, doesn’t it? Regardless, I’ll always have my great memories… not to mention my photography! In case you are wondering, we decided not to stop at DisneyWorld on this trip (although we did go through the Orlando area) due to time constraints, etc… When we do go to Disney, we want to make an entire trip out of it. It’s not the kind of place you can just “see in one day.”
From here on the 2011 OUP Photography Tour will be stopping at Cedar Point & HersheyPark in June, as well as back to Outer Banks, NC in July! Plus, you NEVER know what might pop up in between then! (wink wink). STAY TUNED!
Sorry it’s been a few days since I updated, but with just simply enjoying Miami, I never really had the time. I’m now home, and just wanted to write a few posts regarding the rest of my experiences. We actually slept in until probably 10 or 11 AM on Wednesday, knowing it was going to be our last chance to do so before heading home the following afternoon. After getting ready we decided to head down to the beach, but, pretty much right as we did so it started to rain! Never being the type to let rain ruin my fun, we decided to check out the restaurant on the hotel’s pier, Pelican’s (or The Pesky Pelican, whichever you prefer).
We had a few drinks and got nachos, just trying to make the time pass a bit. I can tell you that the nachos were amazing, the people were nice, and the atmosphere/views were great! I would highly recommend checking this place out while down in Miami!
Then, it actually ended up clearing up rather fast, and we were able to have some fun on the beach! It actually ended up being a beautiful afternoon. The entire time we were there, the hotel had a table set up where someone, as we walked by at various times, kept offering us our “welcome package.” Being on vacation, always on the go, and simply not caring, we kept blowing it off. We ended up giving them the time of day, and it actually ended up being well worth it!
It was actually just a meeting (which we also got a free light lunch from) where they’re offering a timeshare to the hotel which is about to undergo a HUGE renovation. It’s actually quite interesting, and I think we’re going to do it, but just for taking the time to listen to their presentation we received a $100 gift card to the hotel’s main restaurant, Kitchen 305! And we had already planned on going on Wednesday night, so this ended up being HUGE for us!
Remember when I mentioned Kitchen 305′s “We Love Ladies Night?” Well, if not, it’s something they do on Wednesday nights. On this particular evening they also had a $35 all-you-can-eat lobster deal, which I ended up taking advantage of thanks to our $100 gift card. Amazing lobster! Also, for as SLAMMED as they were, ABSOLUTE AMAZING service! I was barely finished with one plate of lobster, and the next was already there. I honestly think I ended up eating about 8-10 lobster… no joke!
The restaurant/club itself had GREAT atmosphere. Without a doubt one of the top Miami destinations for anyone either visiting or who happens to live in the area (which if you do… LUCKY! I will join you one day )
Awesome night! Won’t be forgetting it anytime soon, without a doubt.
Check out Kitchen 305 on Facebook for more information: http://www.facebook.com/kitchen305
We woke up around 6:45 AM today and got “ready” real quick, went down to the beach, and experienced the sunrise. Let me tell you, it was absolutely BEAUTIFUL this morning. I couldn’t ask for any more. I took an outrageous amount of photography at that point, but I’ll share just a few of my favorites with you right now….
Afterwards we decided to take a little “road trip” straight down to the tip of Miami, a.k.a. 1st Street… South Beach & South Pointe Park. It is beautiful down there! Amazing architecture, beautiful landscaping, the whole nine yards. And this morning was absolutely beautiful! We’re talking about 80 degrees at 9 AM!
After driving around a while, and stopping at McDonald’s for breakfast, it was back to the hotel! Pretty much right away we went out to the beach, and spent the entire afternoon, swimming in the ocean, bodyboarding, swimming in the hotel’s pool, looking for seashells, and just simply lounging around in the sun. Couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful, relaxing day, yet tomorrow is supposed to be about the same!
We also did some souvenir shopping, and got a few awesome things. We might do a bit more tomorrow, as well as spend another entire afternoon on the beach. Our hotel’s bar/main restaurant/club, Kitchen 305, is supposed to be having an event, “We Love Ladies Night,” that we might be attending as well. There is supposed to be a DJ, DJ Hana, and a fashion show as well. Will let you know if we end up attending!
Until tomorrow….. have a great night! I’m off to “get it poppin’….” “I’M IN MIAMI BITCH!”
Today started out a little later than anticipated, but we still got up around 9 AM. After getting ready, we managed to get some things done. We got some postcards sent out, bought some groceries for the hotel room, and explored Miami a bit. Then, the rain hit! I was expecting it, but boy did it rain! It ended up being a total downpour. We made the most of it and relaxed around the hotel a bit, and as soon as it cleared, hit the pool and walked up and down the beach.
Even while it was raining it was still near 80 degrees outside, and the pool is heated. I would venture to say “extremely” heated. It almost feels like a gigantic hot tub. As for the ocean, it’s a bit chilly, especially today, but not too bad at all. The wind/rain storm rustled up the bottom of the ocean and brought up all sorts of seaweed, garbage, etc.. We actually ended up finding a coconut! Still havn’t yet decided what we’re doing with it yet…
The plan for the rest of tonight is to just relax around the hotel, and get ready for tomorrow. We’re planning on getting up and watching the sunrise, having breakfast of some sort, and spending the day on the beach! I bought a bodyboard today and it’s supposed to be 80 degrees tomorrow and Wednesday, and I plan on getting some use out of it! We’re also thinking about taking a bus and exploring the nightlife of downtown Miami tomorrow night… we’ll see!
I’ve already had a blast, and look forward to these last few days of this journey!
Today started off pretty early as I woke up around 5:50 AM. After showering, etc.. I woke up Brandi, she got ready, and we hit the road towards Mount Dora from Clermont, and the Renninger’s Antique Extravaganza. This place has an insane amount of antiques, and also a wide variety of vendor stands such as food, different products, so on, and so forth.
I only ended up picking two items, but I am excited for both of them. I also picked up some tea to review on my tea web show (check out http://tea.ounitproductions.com). Overall a good experience, although I wish I would have found a few more items, but that’s how it goes sometimes. After looking around a good 3 or 4 hours, it was time to hit the road once again, and be off to Miami!
It took about four hours to get down to Miami from Mt. Dora, and seemed like an extremely long ride, due to just wanting to be to the beach already. Upon arriving it was almost overwhelming just how much of a big city Miami actually is. We’re staying at the Newport Beachside, and let me tell you, this hotel is absolutely awesome. The hotel itself has several restaurants, a gift shop, a spa, a deck with pool and hot tub, valet parking, a bellhop, a gourmet foods store, two bars, birds in the lobby… the list just goes on and on. Without a doubt, the most top-notch hotel I’ve ever stayed at.
We’ll be staying here until Thursday, and I am extremely excited about that. We pretty much just spent the afternoon exploring the hotel itself, our beach out front, and took a walk down Collins Avenue (the road which our hotel is on). We also had dinner at our hotel’s “main” restaurant, Kitchen 305. The meal there ended up being pretty expensive, $80, but well worth it (the Mahi Mahi is delicious!). Very good food, and worth it simply for the experience alone.
It was absolutely beautiful here today, around 80 degrees, and the ocean water is actually quite warm. There are supposed to be off-and-on thunderstorms the next few days, but Wednesday is looking like nothing but sun. I can’t wait to do some swimming/bodyboarding, etc.. in the ocean. We were going to do some today but decided to just take the time to explore. Also excited to get into the heated pool and hot tub. There’s just so much down here to do, it’s hard to take it all in, but we’re going to try our best to do so!
So, it’s getting late, and I’m going to do a little more web surfing, head on to bed soon, and get up early and take on the day! Not exactly sure what it will hold, but something fun I’m sure! It the famous words of Will Smith, “Miami, I love this town….”
I am writing this right now from my hotel in Clermont, Florida. Let me tell you, it has been a long couple days. I woke up yesterday, Friday, around 2 PM and have been up ever since. I also drove the entire 20-or-so hour drive from State College, PA to where I am right now, Clermont, Florida. So, if some of this doesn’t make sense… sorry! I shall try my best…. I stayed up because I wanted to experience to drive to Florida myself. Honestly, I don’t regret any of it.
Overall it was a good trip except a few things. Around 1 or 2 AM we ran into road construction in Virginia, and once we were almost at our hotel in Florida, we ran into problems with the GPS, and was unable to find our hotel at first. After doing some research online via stealing a McDonald’s WiFi connection, and calling the hotel, we were able to find it. We ended up eating at the hotel’s restauraunt/pub, the Even Par Pub. Pretty enjoyable atmosphere and good people!
Regardless, it has been a long day, and here I sit at 8 PM, ready to relax, get a full night of sleep, and hustle tomorrow. I will be getting up around 6 AM and attending the Renninger’s Antique Extravaganza in Mount Dora, Florida at 8 AM. Afterwards it is off to Miami! I am so excited. Our hotel in general is awesome!
I promise some more in-depth posts this week, but it has been a loooooooooong 30+ hour day… so I will leave you with a few of my favorite shots from the past 30+ hours of the beginning of the 2011 OUP Photography Tour!
It’s now officially Friday, January 14th, and we’ll be hitting the road TONIGHT around 8 PM! We’ll have a few random stops along the way, who knows where, to get gas, food, etc.. But our main first stop will be Clermont, FL at our hotel for the first night, Meridian Hotel & Suites. From there it will be on to Mount Dora, FL the next morning and the Renninger’s Antique Extravaganza.
I am extremely excited for this trip. I’m sure it will be not only fun, but tiring and stressful as well. Regardless, I feel blessed and really happy. I am looking forward to exploring new places, meeting new people, and getting a lot of great photography. Here’s to an exciting trip! LET’S GO!
I frequent Renninger’s in Adamstown, PA quite often to purchase/invest in items for my company, as well as network, and do research. Looking forward to visiting their Mt. Dora operation! We’re only 6 days away from leaving now!
One week from today, next Friday, January 14th, the 2011 OUP Photography Tour kicks off as we head down to Florida! The shot above is the hotel we’ll be staying at in Miami, the Newport Beachside!
We’ll first be going to Mt. Dora’s Renninger’s Antique Extravaganza on Sunday morning, January 16th. From there on it’s down to Miami! Our hotel actually has four restauraunts inside and offers a bunch of neat features. Awesome! I hope to do some boating while down there, possibly some snorkeling, go out one night, and spend a lot of quality time on the beach! We’ll be leaving Miami on Thursday, January 20th, possibly stopping at Orlando, then heading home to arrive back in town Friday night, January 21st.
This is going to be an extremely exciting trip! Follow along right here on this Blog!