Life has taught me that patience is essential for manifesting the luxury lifestyle, especially…after you’ve put in the work. For this reason, I was inspired to select the Gates Hotel South Beach - A Doubletree by Hilton as the first step in my quest to plan a sophisticated vacation for my sister and myself, as well as, to celebrate our mother’s retirement from a teaching career that spanned three decades in South Carolina’s public schools. So, our Uber driver dropped us off at the Amtrak train station at 2 am on June 24th to embark on a sixteen hour ride from Columbia, SC to South Beach Miami, FL!
The Gates Hotel opened up to a lobby with a potent aroma of incense and floral potpourri; its intimate ambiance was created with low lights, smooth charcoal flooring, and turquoise and tan, textured ottomans. A suave, older gentleman informed us of the amenities and gave us warm cookies, which is part of the Doubletree brand experience. As we strolled towards the pool, we encountered an open layout with posh tufted, turquoise sectionals and peachy pink pillows, as well as a pool table. We noticed that the pool was cozy in size, but suitable for its guests and location. We couldn’t help, but be satisfied with our surroundings because it seemed so familiar; it felt like home.
Room 504 was perfect considering that it was the last of 5 rooms with a balcony overlooking the pool and the historic Collins Avenue; its location was divine because my mother always preferred accommodations juxtaposed to the very end of the hallway. Our room opened up to a horizontal and modern bathroom with an all white color scheme that contrasted with the warm and sultry vibes of the bedroom. Two comfortable double beds with faux leather headboards and overhead lighting were positioned against the wall that separated the bedroom from the bathroom. In addition, our room was equipped with a flat screen TV, as well as, a business desk. The style highlight was the sheer curtains that sashayed with the wind while we slept with the balcony sliding glass door open. Overall, the design was consistent with the warm and sleek vibes of the Gates Hotel. My Hilton Honors membership afforded us free bottled water and coffee to enjoy during our stay.
We enjoyed breakfast and lunch at the Orange Blossom, which was located a few blocks away from the Gates Hotel, as recommended by our young shuttle driver. We ordered whatever our palettes desired and found each dish to be fresh and made with love. Next, we booked an Uber to the location of our Miami Vice speed boat tour of mansions and the ocean. Afterwards, we retreated to the poolside to indulge in shrimp and fish tacos while conversing with a French speaking, black man from Amsterdam and then we decided to jump massive waves at the beach. Finally, we donned summer dresses and body oils on our final quest to eat Cuban cuisine at a restaurant, selected by my sister, in Little Havana.
Our last night in room 504 felt blissful as the Miami breeze seduced us into a deep sleep. As I reflected, I realized that my initial hope and prayer was just to book accommodations that honored my mother’s legacy of teaching, but ultimately I learned that beginning my quest with a divine intention created a luxurious experience that was in exact alignment with where we’ve been and where we’re going.
Two nights at the Gates Hotel South Beach - a Doubletree by Hilton was valued at $508.00.