Tag Archives: Florida vacation

Diplomat Beach Resort & Spa Hollywood

The Diplomat Beach Resort Hollywood is at the top of upscale resort destinations in South Florida. Situated on the beach between the Atlantic and the Intracoastal waterway in Hollywood, the Diplomat is a member of the Curio Collection, a select group of luxury hotels under the Hilton imprimatur.

By the Pool at The Diplomat Beach Resort & Spa
By the Pool at The Diplomat Beach Resort & Spa photo credit: John Cameron

The AAA Four Diamond  Diplomat features 8 different culinary destinations and 209,000 square feet for meetings and events, the largest hotel convention space in South Florida. The Diplomat was voted one of the top 10 resorts in Florida by Condé Nast Reader’s Choice, 2019.

Diplomat Fitness Center
Diplomat Fitness Center

The compact, fully equipped two level fitness center is adjacent to the spa which features floor to ceiling windows that overlook the Atlantic Ocean.  Try a Diplomat Spa + Wellness signature massage –  any massage from the menu at the Diplomat Spa is available for couples.

Diplomat Beach Resort & Spa Governor Suite
Diplomat Beach Resort & Spa Governor Suite

All 1000 rooms have a warm, contemporary palette with a nod to surfer culture – a pleasing blend of upscale with casual. Guests have a choice between rooms facing east with beautiful views of the sunrise over the Atlantic or facing west with a view of sunsets over the Intracoastal waterway. The corner suites have 180 degree views of both.

Diplomat Beach Resort pools
Diplomat Beach Resort pools photo credit: John Cameron

If the ocean is too rough or too cold, swim the Diplomat’s two beautiful pools, a shallow rectangular infinity pool with a unique glass-bottom window and a large, elongated kidney-shaped pool at beach level.

Where to Eat

Monkitail Sushi Bar at The Diplomat
Monkitail Sushi Bar photo credit: John Cameron

Whether you’re staying at the Diplomat or just come for a meal, you have great options for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Restaurants Point Royal from celebrity chef Geoffrey Zakarian and Monkitail from Chef & Restaurateur Michael Schulson complement the luxury steakhouse Diplomat Prime and beachfront patio cafe Playa.

There is also Counterpoint, an all day grab and go, featuring specialty coffees, sandwiches and pastries, open seven days a week, Candy & Cones for your sweet tooth and a secret, intimate karaoke bar, Nokku, where you can drink and sing your heart out until 2am.

Point Royal at The Diplomat Beach Resort
Point Royal at The Diplomat Beach Resort photo credit: John Cameron

Point Royal has an appetizing array of breakfast buffet choices and a custom omelet chef. Choose your ingredients and the chef will magically create one of the best omelets you have ever tasted. Tip: if you’re not that hungry, ask for a one or two egg omelet. Point Royal is also open for lunch and dinner.

Michael Schulson & Chef Taek Lee
Michael Schulson & Chef Taek Lee at Monkitail photo credit: The Diploma

Michael Schulson’s Monkitail has a beautiful Japanese themed sushi bar, main dining room and private speak-easy karaoke, all conceived by design team Rohe Creative.

Start your meal with a cocktail – the Monkitail – a great variation on a Manhattan with extra visual pizzaz – our waiter placed cinnamon and cloves on a barrel stave, torched it until it smoked, then captured the smoke in an overturned glass. Once the glass was filled with smoke, our waiter filled it with the cocktail. The smokiness remains for the entire drink and takes the ordinary Manhattan to another level. 

As it was our first visit, we chose the chef’s tasting menu – a perfect introduction to Monkitail’s take on the classic Izakaya.  Some favorites: the big eye tuna special roll, the lobster tail, neatly split in two, the Duck Scrapple Bao Bun – duck confit with maple teriyaki syrup wrapped in a home-made steamed bun covered in black sesame seeds. Ice cream sushi was the perfect finish to our meal.

When you want to celebrate a special  occasion head to Diplomat Prime, featuring both steak and seafood. Stone crabs, found only on Florida’s gulf coast, make a great appetizer. Two large claws, perfectly cracked, arrive at the table. Eating them is 100 percent satisfaction, zero effort. Tip: Florida stone crabs are only in season from October to May.

Diplomat Prime at The Diplomat Beach Resort
Diplomat Prime at The Diplomat Beach Resort photo credit: The Diplomat

We enjoyed a crisp wedge salad followed by the walnut crusted halibut and a buttery melt-in-your mouth salmon.  And since this is one of the best Miami steakhouses, we couldn’t leave without tasting the delicious Japanese certified A5 Kobe NY Strip. Attentive service and a great sommelier with spot on wine pairings made this dinner a memorable one.

Experience Miami Modern at Eden Roc Miami Beach

Architect Morris Lapidus designed some of South Florida’s most glamorous hotels, notably the Eden Roc in Miami Beach and Hollywood streamed in. Elizabeth Taylor celebrated a birthday there and Jayne Mansfield honeymooned. Eden Roc was also featured in back to back episodes of I Love Lucy in 1956.

The Eden Roc further entered popular culture in the lyrics of Steely Dan on their 1972 debut album Can’t Buy a Thrill. In 1995 Madonna was photographed by Patrick Demarchelier at the Eden Roc Miami Beach for her album “Bedtime Stories.”

Lobby Bar Eden Roc Miami Beach
Lobby Bar Eden Roc Miami Beach photo credit: John Cameron

While we didn’t recognize any Hollywood stars or music legends during our stay,  the Eden Roc’s glamorous must-see 1950’s circular lobby bar with an impossibly high ceiling, supported by fabulous columns, has been beautifully preserved.

Derided early in his career for his flamboyant exuberance, Lapidus’ era-defining architectural style later became known as Miami Modern. Lapidus often said that he couldn’t abide a straight line. ”A staircase isn’t a staircase unless it’s curved,” he said.

Eden Roc Miami Beach Bedroom
Eden Roc Bedroom photo credit: John Cameron

Our well-designed spacious room featured a large balcony overlooking the ocean, perfect for entertaining guests. A circular fluorescent tube around the bathroom mirror provided a soft beauty light over the his and hers sinks. An ingenious compact desk with table top chairs was fashioned from the bed’s headboard.

Esencia Wellness Spa at Edec Roc

Esencia Wellness Spa at Eden Roc
Esencia Wellness Spa photo credit John Cameron

Upon entering Esencia Spa, the beautiful view of the ocean and surroundings creates a peaceful, calming atmosphere. The professional, attentive staff will personalize your experience to suit you. Too busy to celebrate on the actual date, we enjoyed a couples massage at Esencia as a luxurious belated Valentine’s Day present. Starting with champagne and ending with a massage – it was a relaxing and rejuvenating time.

Eden Roc Miami Beach Infinity Pool
Eden Roc Infinity Pool photo credit: John Cameron

Swimmers at Eden Roc have a choice between three beautiful infinity pools as well as the Atlantic Ocean, just steps away. Don’t miss the free fitness classes for all Eden Roc guests such as Vinyasa Yoga, Pilates Fusion, Abs & Core, HIIT Circuits.

Pampered Pets at Eden Roc Miami Beach

Lucy at Eden Roc Miami Beach
Lucy at Eden Roc Miami Beach photo credit: John Cameron

The AAA Four Diamond Eden Roc is one of the few luxury hotels that allows guests to bring Fido with them on a vacation. Eden Roc partners with PupJoy and South Florida Pet Sitter to make sure pups enjoy their stay. Up to two dogs can stay in the room upon presentation of vaccination records and a 150.00 fee per stay.

In 2016, a portion of the hotel, including 206 guest rooms and the hotel’s bar and restaurants, was converted to the Nobu Hotel Miami Beach, a “hotel-within-a-hotel”. The only Florida location of Japanese celebrity chef “Nobu” Matsuhisa’s namesake restaurant is at Eden Roc. Other dining options are Ocean Social and the poolside Aquatica Bar. Cafe Inez on the lobby level is the perfect spot for freshly brewed coffee, paninis and pastries to take to the beach.