Friday, October 1, 2010

Return to South Beach

We'd waited ten years for the chance to enjoy this view
As part of our family-and-friend reunion travels last week, Jenny and I overnighted in South Beach, Florida. Again. Yep, we're suckers for consistency. Except this time we finally stayed in the Delano Hotel. It was our most expensive night of lodging that I can recall, and well worth every penny. The all white room (accented with a single green apple), the near excessively attentive service, and (finally) the chance to play on that oversized chess set, past the area where they ask, "room number, please…" The Delano was a delight!

Where the heck is that King?
One occasional hassle: September rain. Yeah, we grew up in Florida, but we'd forgotten about the seasonal storms that the "Sunshine State" racks up that kind of year. In fact when we pulled behind the tall hedges separating Collins Avenue and the Delano's long, dreamy hallway lobby and flowing curtains, I was planning to drop Jenny off and find parking elsewhere. The pouring rain convinced me to pay for valet parking instead. We didn't mind the weather, though. Our room was comfy, and when we couldn't sit out by the pool we played the indoor variety (I generally won our games until an "all the marbles" competition in which Jenny earned a hard-fought victory).

With evening, the clouds parted, so Jenny and I toured Lincoln Road and checked out the neon signs of the art deco district. Once again we left the D5000 at home and stuck with our tiny, imminently losable (but lovable) PowerShot. My first trip to South Beach, back in '91, hooked me, and every time we return I have to see the gorgeous marquees of those hotels by the sea. We also savored some of Jenny's beloved cuban food (this time at David's Cafe II; I think Lario's is a bit better), split a desert at Ghirardelli's, and picked up some cigars for a pal. Returning to the Delano we found a velvet rope blocking the door for a party inside. The world parted for us, though. We had a key.

Blue skies greeted us early the next morning, inspiring us to lounge by the pool. We ordered up a sinfully expensive breakfast delivered to our chairs and then hung out at the beach for a while. The waves smashed against the warm sand, and once more I turned to that friendly skyline of art deco rayguns. Early on I figured this would be our last trip to South Beach for a while, given the expense of the Delano. But Jenny and I agree: we'll be back this way again soon.

Yeah, they got a table in the pool.
(Photos and video by Andrew Wood)


Marilyn said...

You have to stop by Lincoln Avenue and see the Miami Poster Project before you leave...a wonderful artist...Philip Brooker designed the posters for the first Miami Poster Project, which he founded. You all look like you are having the time of your lives there.

Lynnae said...

Ahhh, that looks wonderful. I love that first picture.
You really deserve to splurge once in a while right? Especially for that sweet wife of yours!

highway163 said...

Yep, Jenny's worth it!