TRAVEL: West Palm Beach has its own identity

By RUTH ROVNER
Special to the Times

West Palm Beach is a city of unsurpassed beauty, from its sub-tropical waterfront location to its vibrant downtown for shopping and exciting dining experiences.

It’s located across the Intracoastal Waterway from posh Palm Beach, so it’s no wonder West Palm Beach sometimes seems like it’s in the shadow of its high-profile neighbor.

But West Palm Beach, so named because it is indeed west of Palm Beach island, is not simply a subordinate version of its counterpart. Instead, it has the vitality of a city that has undergone a renaissance and offers varied attractions to visitors.

For example, CityPlace is a 55-acre multi-level shopping and entertainment complex which features a large plaza, fountains, and walkways lined with tall palm trees. The $55 million complex, which was part of a massive urban renewal project, includes a cultural arts center, 78 regional and national stores, 10 restaurants, and a fountain display at its center.

Read more…

In the Footsteps of Worth Avenue’s Founder: A Palm Beach Legend Comes Alive

By Steve Winston

Worth Avenue walking tours tell the story of how architect Addison Mizner transformed an alligator wrestling attraction into a glamorous shopping and dining destination.

Addison Mizner, the man who founded Palm Beach‘s Worth Avenue in the early 1900s, was a lot heavier than Rick Rose. And Rose doesn’t stroll the avenues of “the gilded isle” with spider monkey Johnnie Brown on his shoulder.

But when Rose steps into the courtyard of Via Gucci to lead his historical walking tour of Worth Avenue in Palm Beach, he wears a wide-brimmed white hat, a light blue seersucker sport coat, a crisp blue shirt and tie, and bright white pants. In this sense, he bears a striking resemblance to Mizner, the high-living architect who created Worth Avenue.

And when he tells the story of zip code 33480 – the wealthiest in America – he takes on Mizner’s charismatic personality, too.

Read more…

Girls’ Trip to Delray Beach Florida

By: Susan B. Barnes

Catch Some Rays on Delray Beach

Thinking about a girlfriend getaway in Florida? Tucked in between the understated elegance of West Palm Beach and the high energy of South Beach in Miami is a beach town that sets itself apart from all others in Florida. Don’t be mistaken, however – Delray Beach sits confidently on A1A and isn’t overshadowed in the least by its swanky neighbors to the north and south.

Some friends and I recently spent a weekend in the very walkable downtown Delray Beach – once we arrived, we parked our cars and didn’t move them until it was time to (unfortunately!) head back home. Here’s how we spent 48 hours in the Village by the Sea.

Though the sun sets over the Intracoastal Waterway to the west, what better way to toast the start of the weekend than with a cocktail overlooking the Atlantic Ocean? There aren’t any places directly on the beach, so we went upstairs to 50 Ocean with its ocean views and toasted with signature, hand-crafted cocktails. The décor at 50 Ocean is fun and sophisticated at the same time… the lit bar throws off hues of blues and greens, and the wood beam ceilings are an unusual accent.

Read more…

Developer to demolish Palm Beach Mall to make way for proposed luxury retail outlet destination.

By  Alexandra Clough

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

WEST PALM BEACH — A developer who bought the Palm Beach Mall last year has decided to tear down the mostly shuttered center on Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard and build a new structure for the proposed luxury retail outlet destination.

“We’re going to do a major demolition and remove the existing mall,” said Stephen Karp, the billionaire mall magnate and chairman of New England Development, a Massachusetts-based real estate firm. New England partnered with Eastern Real Estate and Lubert-Adler to buy the 80-acre mall in October for $35.5 million.

The decision transforms the Palm Beach Mall’s purchase from a bargain-basement deal into a major redevelopment, the largest retail project in the area.

Plans are to throw open the doors to the Palm Beach Fashion Outlets by 2013. Read more… 

 

 

By: Jackie Froeber

 

We know.

The holidays are over and it’s tough to get back in the swing of things.

Why not try a post-holiday pick-me-up in Palm Beach, Florida?

The days here are sunny and warm (think mid-70s) and while you’re in town, check out these gems:

Shop: Bring your walking shoes: Palm Beach is the place to find anything from designer labels to vintage decor. The waterfront Worth Avenue (dubbed Rodeo Drive of the East Coast) is a playground of more than 200 international boutiques and specialty shops. For more unique finds, the Antique Row Art & Design District has more than 40 antique shops and art galleries.

Snack: Café Boulud at the Brazilian Court Hotel & Beach Club is a fine dining (but casual) spot for exciting dishes such as housemade ravioli with braised short ribs, and sautéed Florida flounder with olive oil crushed potatoes. For dinner, the new Buccan American bistro boasts an eclectic menu of fried Ipswich clams and pork belly, to hot dog paninis and squid ink orrechiette.

Sleep: The Breakers recently completed an $80 million redesign of all guest rooms and suites where the soft blue and white decor represents the oceanfront location. The beachfront Four Seasons also had a renovation and now offers newly styled guest rooms and suites, a new spa and pool area near Worth Avenue.

To view the article, click here: http://ow.ly/8kiCb

New trolley route coming to West Palm Beach

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – Beginning in February, city officials in West Palm  Beach will be launching a new trolley route that caters to local residents.

City leaders are using about two million dollars in federal grant money to  add an additional trolley route downtown.  Plus, they’ll be constructing  bus stop shelters as well for the trolley stops. Right now, people can catch a trolley traveling from CityPlace to Clematis  Street.

The new route will travel from the downtown bus and train station, along  Okeechobee, to places like Palm Beach Atlantic University and Phillips  Point.  The new route will also connect to the current route and will  include at least an additional five trolleys.

The new route will operate seven days a week.  The hours include 7a.m.-6  p.m. Monday -Friday.  On Saturdays, trolleys will travel the new route from  9 a.m.-6 p.m. and from 11a.m.-6 p.m. on Sundays.

Read more: http://ow.ly/8ilqN

Sights & Sounds of the Holiday at Mizner Park

SIGHTS & SOUNDS OF THE HOLIDAY SEASON AT MIZNER PARK

 Boca Raton, Fla. – Mizner Park is lighting up Downtown Boca this holiday season with a dazzling display of 400,000 LED lights along Plaza Real. To get in the spirit, visitors can enjoy Magical Music In Motion, a 40-foot Christmas tree (view tree), featuring ‘dancing’ lights choreographed to holiday music favorites, nightly at the south end of MIzner Park.

Mizner Park is located on Federal Highway, between Glades and Palmetto Park roads in downtown Boca Raton.  For more information, visit www.miznerpark.com for a full roster of shops, restaurants, and events information, or call 561 362-0606.

 

# # #

ABOUT MIZNER PARK

Mizner Park is owned and managed by General Growth Properties, Inc.  GGP has ownership and management interest in approximately 180 regional shopping malls in 43 states.  The Company’s common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol GGP.  For more information visit www.ggp.com.

Historical Walking Tours of Wonderful Worth Avenue

Mr. James Ponce and Mr. Rick Rose

The ever-popular tours of the famous Worth Avenue that Providencia Award winner, Mr. James Ponce, led

for many years will continue with a few changes. Mr. Rick Rose will now be leading the tours bringing a slightly different perspective to the tours and adding a level of energy that makes the one hour walk a great deal of fun.

For more information, please click here.

‘Tis the Season to Explore the 12 Shopping Districts of The Palm Beaches

 The approaching holiday season brings with it the joy of gift-giving, and with 12 distinct and colorful shopping districts within its borders, there’s no more perfect place to tackle that holiday gift list than in The Palm Beaches and Boca Raton. With all the hustle and bustle of holiday shopping, the destination’s resorts and retailers have put together some great packages for guests to help ensure that finding the perfect gift remains a joyous component of the holiday season. Here are just a few items included on the list:

STAY:

  • Located within walking distance of The Gardens Mall, the Hilton Garden Inn Palm Beach GardensShop Till You Drop package starts at just $199 per night and includes one $50 gift certificate for The Gardens Mall with each night’s stay, as well as Platinum status at the mall when booked by Dec. 31, 2011.
  • The Seagate Hotel & Spa, located in Delray Beach, offers guests the opportunity to be Queen for a Day. The package starts at $1,150 through Dec. 31, 2011 and includes a two-night stay in a beautiful Parlor Suite, complimentary bottle of wine and fruits and cheeses, an in-room amenity provided by Neiman Marcus, a lavender relaxation bath, and a 50-minute Swedish massage at the spa. After a day of pampering, the package includes a $100 gift card from Neiman Marcus with private transportation to the Boca Raton store for the day, lunch at its restaurant Mariposa, a personal shopper, and a complimentary Elemis gift.
  •  Starting at just $89 per night, the Palm Beach Gardens Marriott is offering a Platinum Shopping Package that includes a $25 AMEX gift card and breakfast buffet for two with additional perks at The Gardens Mall, valid now through Dec. 31, 2011.

PLAY:

  • Worth Avenue is the perfect place to shop for the label-luster on that Holiday shopping list. Luxurious designer brands including Cartier, Gucci, Jimmy Choo, and Emilo Pucci, to name a few, make the destination the perfect place to shop for brilliant diamonds, stunning shoes or that must-have Chanel Quilted Flap Bag.
  • Delray Beach is home to some of the trendiest, chic boutiques in The Palm Beaches. From specialty stores offering handmade jewelry or one-of- kind home furnishings, Atlantic Avenue is dappled with the latest fashions, custom-made gifts, local art galleries and an assortment of quaint retail stores offering distinctive merchandise. Pineapple Grove, the destination of choice for art enthusiasts, is a colorful collection of boutiques and antique and furniture stores, combined with public art displays and charming wine shops.
  • There is no shortage of retail stores in Boca Raton, including 220 storefronts, including Bloomingdales, Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus and Apple at the Town Center Mall. Downtown, Mizner Park and Royal Palm Place offer a diverse collection of interior design specialty shops, fine-jewelry designer and luxury clothing retailers in an upscale setting complete with dining and entertainment.

SHOP:

  • For the ultimate shopping experience, The Gardens Mall, located in the Palm Beach Gardens shopping district, offers out-of-town guests courtesy Platinum status in their coveted Platinum Program. The VIP service includes complimentary valet car service upon arrival and a Gardens Mall tote bag, complete with bottled water and vouchers for a delicious appetizer at Brio Tuscan Grille and free Starbucks coffee for an energy boost after spending the afternoon browsing 160 specialty shops including Louis Vuitton, Tiffany & Co. and Palm Beach-born brand Lilly Pulitzer. Platinum guests also receive complimentary baggage checking.

For more information and a complete listing of special offers and cultural activities, visit the CVB’s monthly Stay. Play. newsletter at www.PalmBeachFl.com/stay-play

Palm Beach CVB Launches Social Media Contest In Celebration of National Fashion’s Night Out

The Palm Beach County Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) announced today the destination-wide events for this year’s Fashion’s Night Out (FNO), a worldwide initiative celebrating the fashion industry through promoting retail businesses.  In its third year, Fashion Night Out at The Palm Beaches’ has expanded to include live runway fashion shows, giveaways, and in-store events.

The Palm Beaches is launching a Facebook Contest on September 8, 2011 highlighting the destination’s shopping venues. FNO shoppers will be instructed to take photos of themselves at the participating locations and post them on the CVB’s Facebook http://www.facebook.com/PalmBeachesFL. Following the event, the CVB will randomly select three winning photos, one winner from each shopping location, to win a $50 gift card.  In addition to the Palm Beach CVB’s social media contest, the following Palm Beach County shopping districts will be hosting dedicated FNO events.

West Palm Beach’s CityPlace will celebrate with great incentives and prizes including a weekend getaway to Orlando and gift certificates to CityPlace retailers.  Shoppers can enjoy live music from 97.9 WRMF and cuisine from CityPlace’s most celebrated restaurants including Blue Martini, BB King’s Blues Club and Taverna Opa.  The latest fashions from stores such as Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, Macy’s and Francesca’s will be modeled by local celebrities including Mayor Jeri Muoio; Former Mayor and Congressional Nominee Lois Frankel; Palm Beach Post reporter Leslie Streeter; and the CVB’s Communications Director, Carli Smith.

The Palm Beach Gardens Mall will host a VIP Fashion’s Night Out party in the two-story Saks Fifth Avenue courtyard featuring live music with “Fashiontinis” and tastings provided by Capital Grille.  The FNO merchandise collection will be available in addition to fabulous gifts-with-purchase, raffles and giveaways. More than 45 stores will celebrate with in-store events including makeovers, champagne, desserts, samples, gifts, giveaways and much more.

In celebration of Fashion’s Night Out, Worth Avenue, nicknamed the Rodeo Drive of the East Coast, is offering shoppers live musical entertainment, informal modeling and special offers starting at 6 p.m.  Official participating stores includeA.B. Levy, A.R.T Fine Jewelry, Alex and Ani, Betteridge, Bottega Veneta, Chanel, Emilio Pucci, Frank Cassi Beauty, Frederic Fekkai, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Hamilton Jewelers, Jimmy Choo, Juicy Couture, Marley’s Palm Beach Collection, Max Mara, Michael Kors, Neiman Marcus, Ralph Lauren, Rangoni Firenze Shoes, Saks Fifth Avenue, St, John Boutique, Stubbs & Wooton, Tiffany & Co., Tory Burch, and Valentino.

The Four Seasons Resort Palm Beachis joining in the fun of FNO on famous Worth Avenue at Via Gucci where shoppers can win prizes including a complimentary stay at the Resort, dinner for two at Four Season’s The Restaurant and a signature spa treatment.  Complimentary mini massages and hand treatments courtesy of The Spa and an array of hors d’oeuvres prepared by the Four Seasons chefs await tired shoppers in the courtyard.

For a list of special FNO hotel packages, or for information about the different shopping and entertainment districts in The Palm Beaches, please visit www.PalmBeachFL.com

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