Saturday, February 13, 2010

A Few Days in the Sun.....

When my parents said they were hopping on down to Fort Lauderdale for a week.....we spontaneously agreed to join them for a few many asked why only for a few days? We just needed a few days in the sun...a few days away from the drama we are always pulled into and a few days for us (if we may be so selfish) ;)

We had a blast....we were concerned about Monk on the plane but she did great- both ways! The best decision was getting her, her own seat. She was so proud of herself sitting in a big seat, all by herself. Then she had fun walking between both of us...playing with her phone...reading her books...and just working the crowd (the flight crew)

Although it was only in the mid 60's in Fort Lauderdale...we thoroughly enjoyed soaking up the rays by the pool (and getting ALOT of color I may add). The Marriott Harbor Beach Resort and Spa is THE place to stay down far, the best hotel and only resort I believe. The service was impeccable....gorgeous grounds...all the little extras....we really didn't feel like we were in Florida...we felt like we were at a resort in the Caribbean...kudos to my mom for finding this place!

A big shout out to Cyd, our Concierge. Usually I do lots of research and pick our dining destinations...this time...I truly didn't even plan and I am so glad. We truly experienced the best dining experience that any of us have EVER HAD at Mario's Catalina. Cyd (the Concierge) recommended Mario's if we were up for being adventurous and open to trying Cuban food....we said...why not! WELL...from the moment we walked in the door, we were treated like royalty (I guess Mario treats all Marriott customers like gold!)

Mario, himself, greeted us at the door with kisses. We had four servers and the first one recommended the sampler platter as an appetizer so we could try different Cuban foods like plantains, empanadas, grilled pork, ham croquettes and grilled was ALL so yummy!

While my parents enjoyed a pitcher of traditional red sangria, Rob and I went out on a limb and enjoyed a pitcher of the white had just the right combination of melon, peach and apple flavors.

For dinner, my mom and I enjoyed the red snapper with prawns and white sauce. Rob enjoyed the Jack Daniels pork and my Dad enjoyed the skirt steak with lobster.

We decided to pass on dessert BUT Mario had other plans....he ordered his staff to bring us four complementary desserts so we HAD to indulge...we enjoyed trying the caramel flan, chocolate peanut butter cake, chocolate torte and some other chocolate madness...sheer heaven.

Just when we didn't think it could get any better, as we are leaving, Mario brings my mom and I each a bottle of wine...a nice Cab Shiraz blend from California. We were thrilled!

We are fans of Cuban food now and would highly recommend Mario's Catalina in Fort Lauderdale- definitely 5 Breton Stars...ha ha!!!

Check out our resort
It truly felt like paradise

Enjoy the photos...especially my Patron nip...that is necessary "pre-flying drinkage"

On our second day, we enjoyed more time by the pool and dinner at 15th Street Fisheries...not nearly as much as Mario's but the view was second to none...right on the intercoastal.

Right before dinner, we had a family photo shoot right on the beach, which is complimentary for all Marriott guests as well! Wait until you see those photos...I will need to add them later as they are being shipped to us!

The time away, though for a few days, was truly relaxing. It was quality family time with my parents and "The Monk" and we will never forget it.


bsharp said...

Hey PL,

Without a doubt, this is my ALL TIME fave spot in all of FL. Even beyond the Ritz! We've been going here for the past 10 years. I am currently planning my hubbie's 50th (surprise) here and of course it involves an evening at Mario's. We always send friends to Mario's and they all walk away with an experience to share! Next time you are there, be sure to ask for Luis if you did not see him on your recent visit. So glad that someone else has such rave reviews for our favorite Ft. Lauderdale places;-)

Holly said...

So good to know BSharp! Thanks :)

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