After the departure of the snowbirds, those of us who have made South Florida our permanent home can finally take a deep breath and appreciate all the beautiful things this area has to offer. As a result, hotels, attractions, theme parks, and restaurants tend to have fewer guests and lower prices in the summer. Yet, things may turn out differently this year.
A new pattern is about to emerge, which could mean summer is no longer our slow season. Constant postseason gridlock can be attributed to the permanent relocation of many people from other states following the pandemic. It’s also true that people who had previously delayed their cruises are finally going on them, which is good news for businesses that would otherwise be struggling to attract customers.
It may be more difficult to find summer deals this year than in years past because business owners aren’t as financially motivated to offer discounts. There are still businesses eager to boast about being open after COVID-19 and show that they are doing fine. All customers are eligible for some deals, while others are limited to Floridians. Take a look at our selection of unique services, including vacation packages to hotels with everything you need to make a sandcastle or a trip to a historical site for the whole family.
Did you know that sommeliers are responsible for more than just making wine recommendations? A new “Sandcastle Sommelier” package is available at the Marriott Harbor Beach Resort & Spa in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, perfect for families looking to spend quality time together at the beach. The hotel will provide you with sandcastle molds, buckets, tools, a cabana, and a beach bag. If you stay for four or five nights, it will cost you $549 per night. The time period of availability is from June 1 through September 30.
The Boca Raton has changed its name many times over the past few decades, but I’ll never forget it as the Boca Raton Resort and Club. From now until August 14, you can get 50% off a second room and a $500 dining credit when you stay at least two nights between now and September 30. Room rates in June are $399 to $599 per night.
During the summer, guests from the Sunshine State can save money at Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort. Rooms with king beds cost $365 per night in June before taxes and fees, while the same room costs $436.50 per night for guests from outside of Florida. On the weekend of June 11-13, the resort will host Summerfest, a series of events featuring live music, hair braiding, henna tattoos, a variety of food vendors, and, of course, a Margarita-making demonstration.
Additionally, Florida residents can take advantage of 15% off summer rates and upgrades (based on availability) at the Diplomat Beach Resort in Hollywood. In Florida, a king room on a weekday is $296 before taxes and fees, according to the latest check. At the Hillsboro Beach Resort, Floridians can get a discount of 15%, bringing the price of a midweek room down to $178 (before taxes and fees).
Where to eat
During August and September, Fort Lauderdale’s restaurants offer discounts to locals in anticipation of the off-season. As part of Dine Out Lauderdale, participating restaurants will provide a three-course feast for $35 or $45. Last year’s lineup included Steak 954, Boatyard, 3030 Ocean, and Lona Cocina & Tequileria. Still, this year’s participants have not yet been announced.
The summer menu specials at some restaurants have already begun.
Starting on June 1, Prezzo, an Italian restaurant with places in Palm Beach Gardens (4520 PGA Blvd.) and Boca Raton (5550 N. Military Trail), will offer a Summer Date Night Menu for two that costs $100. The menu, shown on Sundays through Thursdays, features a bottle of wine with your choice of an appetizer to enjoy, two entrées, and a sweet treat.
Free kids’ meals are available Monday through Wednesday this summer at Burt & Max’s (9089 W. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach) when an adult meal is ordered from the menu. Every bottle of wine is half price with the purchase of an entrée from Sunday through Thursday.
Wine by the glass and half-priced beer and spirits will be available during the extended happy hours at Deck 84 (840 E. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach) from noon to 6 p.m., beginning on Monday, June 1. The summer season also marks the return of Wine Wednesdays (any bottle with the purchase of an entree will be discounted at 50%).
Max’s Grille in Boca Raton, Florida (located at 404 Plaza Real) has started its summer specials with a Daily Wine & Dine offer valid from 4 to 6 p.m. With the purchase of two entrees, you will receive a complimentary bottle of house wine. Grilled meals and drinks are discounted from 3 to 7 p.m. every day this summer.
Summer Early Dining Deal ($18.95 for eggroll, soup or salad, and drink) at Pagoda Kitchen (14917 Lyons Road, Delray Beach) is available from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m., Sunday through Thursday, and 4:30 to 5 p.m., Friday and Saturday. Sunday through Thursday, with a minimum $20 per person food purchase, guests can enjoy all-night happy hour pricing at the indoor bar during Pack the Bar. Kids eat free from Sunday through Thursday throughout the summer when an adult meal is ordered.
Places to visit
A Summer Savings Pass grants admission to three exciting destinations in sunny South Florida. Visits to Zoo Miami, Lion Country Safari, and the Cox Science Center & Aquarium in West Palm Beach are all included in the pass price. Adults pay $60, and children (ages 3-12) pay $50 for admission between May 27 and August 31.
The Bonnet House Museum & Gardens, located on 35 beachfront acres at 900 N. Birch Road in Fort Lauderdale, is hoping to attract families in the coming months. Special savings are available from June 1 through September 4: Tours can be self-guided for $20 for adults and $8 for children (6-17).
Silverball Retro Arcade (19 NE Third Ave., Delray Beach) has more than a hundred classic pinball, arcade, and skeeball games, as well as three bars and a restaurant in a boardwalk theme. From 12 p.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday, they offer a $6 food menu and half-priced alcoholic beverages for happy hour.
The South Florida Adventure Pass grants unlimited access to four Broward County attractions (the Butterfly World in Coconut Creek, Museum of Discovery & Science in Fort Lauderdale, Flamingo Gardens in Davie, and Sawgrass Recreation Park in Weston) from now until September 30. Ticket prices are as follows: $50 for adults and $40 for children (3-12 years old).
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