First known as The Palm Beach Inn, the hotel opened on January 16, 1896 by railroad tycoon Henry Flagler. As I pulled into the historic oceanfront Italian Renaissance resort and rode down the expansive brick drive, it looked just as it had in pictures, except this week it was decked in bright bows, white lights, green garland and Lilly.
Walking into the lobby, I immediately noticed the breathtaking dome and its magnificent accents including 160,000 sparkling lights. When CNN adds you to its ‘Hotels that go all out for Christmas’ roster, you’re doing something right. As for the weather, Palm Beach experiences an endless summer, so a lit-up palm tree was quite normal for these parts. As for my ensemble, it wasn’t like I was walking around in a winter wonderland donning Uggs and a parka. In 85 degree weather, I happily had on Lilly prints as I was invited by the team to see what Palm Beach was all about. So far, so good. Something tells me Sofia Vergara thought the same when she wed here a couple months ago.
I arrived to The Breakers at nearly dusk, so it wasn’t until the following morning that I could properly see the view that my oceanfront room provided.
Vitamin D and vitamin sea, you are all I need in life. Oh, and the mini bar, too. Allow me to alter the saying – mini-bars are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get. Will there be Pringles? What about Snickers? A Butterfinger and mixed nuts if you’re lucky. Same goes with the Grey Goose. I’m happy to say The Breakers had them all – and so much more. The marble bath and cloud-esque bed deserve shout-outs as well.
This isn’t going to bode well for my new year’s diet. New year, new me amiright? Let’s get started. HMF (named for The Breakers’ founding father, Henry Morrison Flagler) completely WOWed my tastebuds with its bold cocktails, namely ‘The Redhead’ with premium lemon vodka, blood orange liqueur, cranberry juice and lime foam. The establishment is decadent, so take a seat for the number one place in Palm Beach to see and be seen.
Other noteworthy establishments include The Circle for breakfast where you can eat anything your stomach desires. For me, that’s basically the menu in its entirety. I’ll have the pancakes, waffles, eggs benedict, granola with yogurt, glazed donuts, biscuits and gravy…you know what, hold the gravy. And tomorrow I won’t be caught dead in a bikini.
The Seafood Bar has bar counters made out of aquariums. It’s just about the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. Table for one? Never! You’ll always have a fish to join you. Then there’s the Beach Club Restaurant making it hard to choose a lunch order. Will I cave for the lobster roll today? Probably. I can’t forget about Echo, which resides offsite with some of the best sushi I’ve ever eaten.
Spa. Gym. Shopping. Beachfront. Poolside. Tell me, why would you need to leave the premises? With golf for dad and tennis for mom, the kids can hang out at Camp onsite. Who needs Orlando? What even is Disney World? I’m pretty sure the chefs here know how to whip up a delectable Mickey Mouse waffle. Also, I don’t even know how many shops are located at The Breakers. I lost count, but the area resembles a beautiful promenade secluded in one corner of the property complete with beautiful alcoves, gardens and landscaping. You could probably burn off just as many calories walking into each one as I did at my sunrise spinning class (all without having to hear your alarm at the crack of dawn). Win-win.
More than an “amenity,” the Flagler Club is another establishment entirely. Situated within The Breakers resort, the Club is its own boutique hotel, offering a more intimate 25-room collection of guest rooms and suites. The little hotel within the bigger hotel is an option for those who’d like more privacy.
Let me end by saying a three-night stay will never do at this astonishing hotel. The service was impeccable and personal from each and every staff member I came across. The interiors (and holiday decor!) cannot be beat. The level of comfort was beyond pleasant. I’ll most definitely return for a second dose of paradise, perhaps during Christmas ’16.
The Road Les Traveled was invited to Palm Beach and welcomed as a guest of Lilly Pulitzer and The Breakers, but our opinion is as always, our own.