My last vacation was a helluva long time ago. Before kids. Yes, I have traveled since I’ve had my (2) kids (ages 4 and 5), but those were “trips,” not vacations. A vacation is where you don’t have responsibilities to pick up after/feed/referee your small children.

So, I have frequent flier miles to use and I no longer live in the same town as my parents, so there is actually the possibility that my mom and dad will come to our home to take care of the children while we go away — ON VACATION. When we all lived in LA together, our house was kinda shabby and their house was kinda far away (45 minutes in traffic) from the kids’ school, so it was not a great situation. Now that we live in Boise where life is easy (seriously, Boise is Shangri-La), we have a dedicated guest room and the local ski resort is free for seniors (!), I believe I can make a vacation happen for my husband and me. My parents miss my children tremendously.

We can’t go far (international travel is out, dang), and we want to go someplace warm and fun — and that seems like another country. Miami. Last time I was there, we stayed in a shabby hotel. Not sure why. Oh, right. We were poor. This time, if I can make it work, here is where I would like to stay:


You can’t really go wrong with the Four Seasons, right? (Until you get the bill, that is.) I’ve stayed at a Four Seasons in Chaing Mai and in Los Angeles: calm, extreme attention to detail (in a good way) and the most excellent beds ever. But the Miami Four Seasons is in the Business District. I’d prefer to be in South Beach (who wouldn’t?).

Last time I was there, I wandered through the Delano lobby. Fabulous Phillipe Starck design. Very kid unfriendly. I liked this place. The rooms are all white. To me, that screams “VACATION!” This is a place where I can be an adult and not a parent. Despite the too-cool-for-school vibe, I would feel relaxed here.

Another option would be the Albion, also in South Beach.

(by the way, I’m getting my reserach done on — they have photos and reviews from real people who PAID for their lodging themselves — problem is, they only have seven cities’ hotels reviewed right now. Can someone please invest in this company? it’s like the yelp/Zagat of hotels — but will all the photos, you get a much more in depth view.)

The Albion is a more modestly priced hotel, 2 blocks from the beach and is purported to be one of South Beach’s best values. Hey, I can do a value vacation. No kids? Still a vacation.

Now, what I would really like is for to get an iPhone app (please, investors?) so that I can do all of this research in-between shuttling my kids from school to their activities. I would just be able to enter: South Beach, Kid-Unfriendly, and Value (you know my priorities). This is something that Oyster could accomplish in two weeks. Come on, guys! I would even pay 99 Cents for it!

This is a TravelingMom dedicated post.