Peachhead™ Approved Vacations: Vacation in Bahamas and Florida, Ft. Lauderdale Beach Resort and Atlantis/Harborside Resort
One of my kids' favorite places to travel is the Atlantis at the Bahamas. With Amber being in middle school we are limited on the time we can take our vacations. That being said, we started searching for a timeshare to buy during spring break and luckily found one. We bought a 1-bedroom at the Haborside Resort at Atlantis.
We flew to Miami and spent the night at the Ft. Lauderdale Beach Resort. This is a hotel one block off of the beach in Ft. Lauderdale. We arrived pretty late at night but we raced to Café Del Mar, a restaurant/bar on A14 where our favorite guitar player, Alex Fox, performs. Unfortunately we only got to hear him for about 20 minutes. We left there and found another restaurant/bar called Spazio that had another guitar player and dancer performing. We hung out there and ordered food and everyone enjoyed the food so it was a good choice. After getting something to eat, we headed to the Ft. Lauderdale Beach Resort. We got in late but what I loved is that there was no wait to check in, they gave us bottles of water to take up to our room, and had the bellman set up the fold out bed for us. We had a 1-bedroom suite with an incredible view of the ocean. The room had a full kitchen (I only wish we were staying longer to enjoy it). There is a fitness room on the 6th floor that is open 24 hours with your room key. The next morning we had breakfast at ilios where they have a wonderful breakfast buffet that is beautifully displayed. Even the salmon was displayed on individual spoons. The made-to-order omelettes were yummy, as well as the chocolate croissants, and the service was wonderful. Since it turned out be a cloudy day we decided to tour the city and visit Las Olas, a great restaurant and shopping area. The kids always love visiting Kilwins Chocolate and Ice Cream Shop. After walking around a bit, my husband was in the mood for a chicken soup so I googled delis in Ft. Lauderdale and found Pomperdale’s New York Deli. What a trip. It was like being back in New York. When the deli guy asked, "What’s sa matter with ya," we knew we were in the right place. The portions were huge and the food was fantastic; in fact, we had so much food left over, we took it with us on the plane to the Bahamas. The restaurant has been there for 25 years and you can clearly see why.
We arrived in the Bahamas late, so after checking into our room we decided to take a walk and ended up at the Marina Village. We stopped at Bimini Road for a drink and a little salad. They have live music playing outside. The village has a parade that goes through the Marina Village twice a week. Everyone in the parade was dressed in costumes and playing instruments. It was very lively. After our dinner we walked to the Royal Tower Casino and stopped at Nobu Restaurant for a drink and a little sushi. Yummy!!!! One thing we definitely learned is to make sure you make your dinner reservations in advance. Every restaurant (except for the buffets) were completely booked for the entire week. We were able to go to Seafire Steakhouse one night early and eat at the bar but other than that we decided to eat off property to avoid the long waits. We ate at the Poop Deck Restaurant twice, which we really enjoyed. It overlooks the water and it a very comfortable setting. The following night we ate at East Villa (Chinese), which was so great we went back a second time. The restaurant has been there 20 years. East Villa is a fantastic Chinese restaurant but they also have Continental food. We had shrimp scampi, filet, ribs, roasted chicken and more…everything was fantastic and not nearly as expensive as Atlantis Restaurants. It costs approximately $16.00 for the taxi each way from the hotel.
For lunch I ate at the pool every day. They have value meals that are pretty reasonable (hot dog, chips or fries, and drink for $7.00). They also have hamburgers, chicken fingers, chicken sandwiches, and salads to choose from. The best deal is the family deal (4 hamburgers, 4 french fries, 4 sodas) for $25.00. Other affordable options for food are Johhny Rockets in the Marina Village, Quiznos across the street from the Marina, and Anthony’s Grill.
As I mentioned earlier, we bought a 1-bedroom timeshare at Harborside Resort. The room we had was a small one-bedroom but it did have a kitchen, which meant we were able to at least eat breakfast in the room. It worked out great for us because we love having a separate room for the kids and a kitchen to make breakfast in. The hotel offers a complimentary shuttle to Atlantis which is a 5- minute drive. Harborside has a nice pool as well as a pool table, shuffle board and ping pong table at the pool and a nice little fitness room that was not crowded. Atlantis is a blast to hang out all day. They have a number of pools, including a lazy river that goes through rapids and lifts you up to huge slides (or you can just stay on the lazy river). There is also a glass tube you can go through on a raft while fish and sharks swim around you.
The hotel offers many different activities throughout the day. Some of them you have to pay an additional fee for and others are free. One night they had a free comedy hypnotist show in the Atlantis Theatre. What a fabulous show. I had never seen a hypnotist show before and it was very entertaining. I still wonder how he does it. They also offer free movies for both kids and adults in the Atlantis Theatre. One of the activities that we love to do when vacationing is to interact with the dolphins. The Dolphin Cay on the Atlantis property (near the Cove Tower) offers a number of different programs including swimming with the dolphins and interacting with the dolphins, as well as seals and stingrays. I was invited by Nassau Paradise Island to experience the dolphin interaction. We had a great time playing with the dolphins which included feeding, petting, and even kissing them.
We were sad to leave the Bahamas but the nice thing is that they have a new airport so it was a breeze to go through customs there and they have a number of restaurants/food/bar places to hang out while you wait for your flight. There is a also a cute area for the kids to play in.
I was given a discounted rate at the Ft. Lauderdale Beach Resort.