First came my biggest hit “ All the Single Ladies”. Then came ”Traveling Solo”. Since these two blog posts were so well received, I figured why not keep the momentum going and continue with this theme. Especially since I keep hearing from my friends and readers, especially the singles, that my life experience is a great source of information that I could share with single people. I want to show that there are so many ways to enjoy life, even if there is no significant other.
On any given Sunday, you may find yourself with no one to hang out with even if you have a gazillion friends. Things come up, people’s schedules don’t always match up with yours. Such is life. It is always better to get out of the house, than to sit home moping . Either way you’re alone so why not make a “me day” out of it. I am here to give you some options of things to do that can be very enjoyable "solo" . Now although I’ll be focusing on Miami, since this is where I currently reside, there are similar options in almost any city in the world.
Those of you who know me, know I left NY a little over three years ago to pursue a job opportunity. I had a A LOT of friends from different circles . Childhood friends , Fire Island friends, industry friends etc. etc . I had one huge going away party, several going away lunches , going away drinks . The “going away“ festivities lasted weeks . Even with all these friends , I still had many times when no one was around. I will admit that leaving my friends and family behind in NY was the most difficult part of the move to Miami, but the opportunity outweighed the risk so I went for it and never looked back.
Before I knew the lay of the land, there were many times I did not have a clue what I would do with myself on a Sunday in Miami. While the beaches in Miami are beautiful, sitting on the beach every weekend gets old literally. I’m not trying to look like a prune by the time I’m 60! I also didn’t want to just find different places to eat, because then I’d wind up with a much bigger problem since I’d certainly become bigger. No bueno. I had to take a page out of my New York playbook. When I lived in New York and none of my friends were around, I’d hop on a bus or subway and venture into different neighborhood. Maybe there was a street fair, art exhibit or whatever going on. In Miami, the amazing weather actually makes this a hell of a lot more pleasant. Maybe Miami does not have as much culture as NY , but it does have great walking neighborhoods, beaches , parks , restaurants, shopping. I know my east coasts buds are hating me right now . Oh well !
l began to do my research as well as ask around and I discovered many fun neighborhoods and places to explore.
This area is known for the Wynwood Walls, which is a graffiti artist dream. There are beautiful colorful murals created by very talented street artists. Once a year, new murals are unveiled during Art Basel Week. It really is something to see. I call it graffiti on steroids. There are cafes, bars, art galleries, restaurants and boutiques in the area, so you can definitely make a day out of it. You know I always stop by Le Labo Perfumes when in the area. #fragrance
2. Brickell Area
I like to refer to the Brickell area as the New York City of Miami. It has the exact same feel, just a little cleaner. Beautiful luxury high rise buildings are going up at a rapid pace in Brickell. If you like to shop, you can easily get lost in the Brickell City Centre that was just completed recently. There are also several art galleries, shops and restaurants in the area. I love going to some of the waterfront spots so I may enjoy some great cuisine while enjoying the fabulous views.
3. Design District
Just north of Wynwood and Brickell lies the Design District. A really beautiful area to walk, busier during the week than Sundays. The area is full of luxury designer shops , restaurants and art exhibitions. They also have special events year round especially the holidays. Personally, I prefer nighttime here but there are a few great brunch spots here . My favorite is Mandolin especially if you like Greek food .
4. South Pointe
If you want a day at the beach at the nicest, cleanest beaches in Miami, look no further . You can start of basking in the sun, then take a walk on the pier and through South Pointe Park. There are always people practicing Yoga, Tai chi, Capoeira, and other Martial Arts. Sometimes I'll just grab a bench and watch since I find the movements fascinating. Who knows? maybe one day I'll join in! My personal favorite spot to dine or enjoy an adult beverage is Smith and Wollensky. It’s like the Cheers of South Beach. The bar/restaurant where everybody knows your name. The reason being they get a lot of repeat customers and a lot of neighborhood peeps. I can sit at the bar and without fail I will meet some interesting characters, some who I remain in touch with til today ! You must sit at the outside bar and do not stare into your cell phones! My "book maneuver" would work well here. See my previous blog post "Traveling solo" for the 411 on the maneuver! :) https://www.followthetoes.com/blog/traveling-solo
5. South Beach
Lots of choices on South Beach. If you want a day of people watching this is the place. If you want to sit and watch the biggest train wreck of your life grab a seat at the Clevelander and watch the hot messes go by. Sometimes I wonder if people look in the mirror before they leave the house. Ocean Drive is something to see but I warn you , you will be begging for a shower afterwards! I remember back in the day it was the go to strip in South Beach. How things have changed! Wow just wow!
You can also take a walk down Lincoln Road, which is a bit more civilized than Ocean Drive . Definitely a tourist trap , but I’ll never get tired of Segafredo. I’m a regular there so I’ll usually grab a high top, order a Patron on the rocks with lime , and do some people watching . Great vibe , great music and my favorite waiter is Harold. The fact that he can pass as Adam Levine is definitely a plus , but he also provides great service and is a genuinely nice guy!
I happen to love the Sunset Harbor area. Great restaurants and some really cool shops. Mostly locals and not too many tourists which is nice for a change!
Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, previously known as Villa Vizcaya, is the former estate of business man James Deering of the Derring-McCormick International Harvest fortune. The estate, built in the early 1900s, is beautiful, but the best part is the Italian Renaissance Gardens, so be sure to visit on a beautiful day so you can explore the gardens.The landscape and architecture were influenced by Venetian and Tuscan Italian Renaissance models, with Baroque elements. You can also head to the historic Coconut Grove afterwards for a bite and some shopping. https://www.coconutgrove.com/ Love strolling through this area!
7. Spa Day
My personal favorite activity for Sundays . There is no better way to end a work week than by indulging in a relaxing spa day. If you do your research, you can find deals on Groupon, Spa Finders and Gilt. I like to make a day out of it so I’ll often choose a spa that gives you pool and/or beach access. This way I can enjoy a spa treatment, the facilities and a day on the beach! You can read my reviews of several spas in previous blog posts.
8. Aventura Mall
As much as I love to shop, I’d rather stick toothpicks in my eyeballs than shop with friends. I just need to be in shopping zone without distractions . I usually visit the mall when the weather is crappy. I mean why waste a beautiful day indoors. To avoid dealing with parking on a Sunday which can be challenging, I will drop my car off at Aventura's Finest Hand Car Wash. It is located in the garage right next to Macy's.
The mall has recently expanded adding shops, restaurants and an outdoor area with a giant slide. I still haven’t experienced the slide but I plan to !
9. Sawgrass Mills Outlets
if there is anything I enjoy more than shopping, it‘s shopping at outlet stores where you can secure some fabulous deals. Definitely worth the 45 -60 minute drive. Sawgrass Mills is a vast outlet, so you will need to start fairly early and make sure to take your vitamins! You will need all your energy to get through this outlet. I usually head straight to the Colonnade section, since that is where all the Designer shops are!
I have shared a few options. I'm sure there are more that I have yet to discover or simply slipped my mind! #gettingold. I will be going into more detail on dining options in various areas of Miami, so stay tuned for my future blog posts on Dining Solo! Feel free to share with your friends and make sure to #followthetoes!