Orlando Florida

For most travelers, when you say Orlando, the thought of Disney and Universal comes to mind. However, I decided to take a different path on my travels through this city. Whether passing through for a romantic weekend away, or taking a family vacation, there are plenty of places to discover.

DAYTIME Seaworld Park

Not just for kids, Seaworld is a great option, when looking for a theme park that doesn’t daunt you in size, but still provides that “Orlando” experience you seek. The park itself is easy to walk around, enjoyable both for those who like rollercaosters and those who just want to be entertained. The educational aspect of the park is also unique, and much of the sea life you come in contact with is impossible to see anywhere else. The live shows around the park are incredibly exciting to watch, and on weekends there is live music and bbq served by the park’s centrally located lake. The best part of it all, is that lines aren’t even half as long as those you will experience at Disney or Universal, and yet you will leave just as entertained!

NIGHTIME

Stay – Grand Bohemian Celebration

A unique and quaint spot, tucked away from the bustle of larger Disney resorts, Celebration provides a wonderful spot to rest your head after a day out and about. Located on a lush lake, the hotel is situated amongst cafes and restaurants and charming residential properties that are reminiscent of a seaside town. The hotel itself is beautifully decorated in a modern theme that pays tribute to its downtown counterpart, The Grand Bohemian, but classically stylized with images throughout of old Florida and Seminal Tribal artifacts.

Play – Downtown Orlando

THE MORNING AFTERThe Boheme Brunch

The Grand Bohemian in Downtown Orlando is not only famous for its lavish and modern decor, but also its decadent brunch spread, which unveils itself every Sunday. Included in the pre-set buffet is a unique blend of regular breakfast items, such as custom omelettes, alongside fresh mahi and lobster. The bloody mary’s are punchy and the crab cakes to die for. This spot is defiantly one worth reserving ahead of time.

Partigras at PGA National

Marching, dancing, singing, eating, drinking…and men on stilts…Partigras!

This month The PGA National Resort and Spa took entertainment to a new level, inviting guests to celebrate the grand opening of the new iClub Piano Bar, with Mardi Gras inspired festivities.

Guests were toured around the hotel’s infamous grounds by Oregon based March Fourth Marching Band, pausing throughout the evening at resort landmarks, to savor a range of cocktails, tapas and deserts. Trombones, drums and glitter robed entertainers serenaded an evening of jambalaya, shrimp po-boys, serloin steak, beer sampling, champagne drinking and outdoor merriment.

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Stilt walkers, hoola-hoopers and acrobats brought song, dance and party atmosphere to the PGA Resort, best known for world class golf courses and its five star spa. Located in one of the world’s most glamorous locations, Palm Beach, iClub Piano Bar will invite the visitors to linger longer and savor the music of the moment.

The spectacular event that marked the bar’s grand opening, culminated in a grand finale, held in the iClub Piano Bar itself, where the 20 person musical group invited guests to take the floor and enjoy a taste of things to come from PGA’s newest goal; to take resort entertainment to a whole new level.

Yolo Restaurant

Yolo which stands for ‘you only live once ‘ connotes precisely the ethos of this trend setting Ft Lickerdale haunt. A restaurant, a lounge, a bar and, of course, a nightclub (VIBE) this vibrant hotspot draws in a good crowd on the weekends.

‘Little Miami’ is the nickname, and it is easy to see why. The entrance opens out into a red carpet of luxury Bentleys and Rolls’ alike, while the young business people of Lauderdale flutter socially around the bar. The difference is, unlike Miami, the crowd here are talkers; people getting to know other people. The vibe is much more friendly.

If you care to join the line, the restaurant itself, which spills into the bar, is perhaps the best part of the establishment. Set under a canopy of fairy lights and lush trees, the restaurant manages to remain quaint yet trendy. The food is terrific; better than anything you could find on a Friday in Miami. Perhaps the greatest reason behind this is that the chefs ARE THE OWNERS. One can literally taste the effort they have put into cooking jalapeno stuffed cornbread, or the snapper on a bed of succotash.

Cocktails are punchy, presentation is on form, and service impeccable considering how busy the place is. The popularity of YOLO evidently stems from being able to create the atmosphere of a chic Miami evening but in the span of one building. Thus, your night is taken care of; arrive, eat, drink and walk two meters to the nightclub. Then, when you’re too intoxicated to drive yourself home, their ‘red cap’ service drives you home in YOUR car…. for free. Ummm, sounds like a great Miami night without all the hassle of jumping up and down Ocean Drive.

Its catching on fast, and citizens of Ft Lauderdale and Miami alike, know it. Drawing in a more intellectual crowd on regular basis this is one place I would recommend going if you need a break from BIG Miami and just want to dip your toe in its ‘little’ counterpart. It might be smaller than the haunts of its neighboring city;, but there is nothing small about the success of YOLO

Mammoth Ski Resort, CA

If the endless playground of runs and 300 days of sunshine aren’t enough, Mammoth Ski Resort is true to its name; gigantic in both size and satsifaction for any snowboarder. The best part is that many of these visitors hitting the snow are fellow women! Beginners, intermediate and advanced snowboarders with find plenty to ride between perfectly groomed mountain faces and powder filled tree runs. Those of you still looking to lay down some tricks, will find an endless array of rails, halfpipes and kickers to keep you busy. The Mammoth Inn, loacted accross from Main Lodge, serves as a perfect jump off point to begin and end one’s day, that features more than comfotable accomodation in a cozy wooden setting that features both a pool and jacuzzi (when the mountain chill sets in). After a day on the mountain, Tusks is the place to grab that icy beer and listen to some live music, before heading to the village for a bite to eat in one of the many options that Mammoth holds. GWS recommends checking out Sushi Siem, known for their sensational truffle infused sushi and great saki happy hour. Follow this up with a stop into Whiskey Creek and grab a local brew. Dont feel like flying with your equipment? No problem; Mammoth has a great selection of the latest demo/rental boards, boots and skis to suit all. Epic snow, epic views and a guarenteed epic vacation in California’s greatest ski resort. Get riding ladies! For more information or to book your trip go www.mammothmountain.com