Girls’ Weekend in Atlantic City (Part 2)

May 29, 2014 - Leave a Response

Day two of our “Girl’s Weekend” started with brunch at the new Caesars buffet in the Caesars Hotel and Casino (www.caesarsac.com) We had mimosas, shrimp, london broil, waffles, and everything else you could possibly want…but no crab legs (Boo). The dining room was bright and the service was extremely pleasant. I left extra pleasant 🙂

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After brunch we took a ride out to Egg Harbor, NJ to Renault Winery Resort & Golf (www.renaultwinery.com). Renault offers a variety of rooms to host social & business events. Renault has both gourmet and casual dining restaurants. The Tuscany House Hotel offers a wide variety of amenities to anyone who visits the winery or the surrounding area. You can even reserve a tee time (for my avid golfers). We decided to take a tour of the winery. The tour guide gave us background history on the founder and the winery. Then we were shown the facility and where the wine is made. Last (the best part) we were taken to the tasting room to sample a few of their signature wines, which are also for purchase in the shop. The shop is where we ended our tour…of course. The tour guides are very helpful and informative. If you are in the South Jersey area schedule a tour of Renault and find out why they are the only N.J. winery able to call their sparkling wine “champagne”.

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That night, after some heavy drinking, we went to Dos Caminos Mexican Restaurant (www.doscaminos.com) in the Harrah’s Hotel and Casino (www.harrahsresort.com). We had a 9pm reservation (my fault on the late dining). We were a little late but, we were seated only 15 minutes after arrival. The atmosphere was very loud from the many large parties. The restaurant appears to be trendy and upbeat. If you have a headache, like someone in our party, I would cancel my reservation for the night…lol. Our party of five was seated in a section that was tight and cramped. There were two other parties in that area. I have an energetic circle of friends, but these two parties made us irritated. Despite our surroundings, all of us (except for one) enjoyed our food. We had guacamole (made fresh to order) and a pitcher of margaritas. I had enchiladas which were very tasty. We ended dinner with a round of “pity shots” since we clearly looked like we didn’t enjoy the whole experience. But, as a matter of fact I would return again. The entire experience was not THAT bad. The bar area is very inviting. I may just indulge in a few drinks and appetizers, next time. Dos Caminos also have four locations in New York and one in Florida. The A.C. location has Happy Hour, during the week, with a dj. The price for a meal is reasonable for a casino restaurant. Based on the “$” system, it would be $$.

The entire weekend had its ups and downs, but we ALWAYS found the rainbow in the cloud. I got some rest, recreation, and wreaked havoc on A.C. …Totally enjoyed myself.

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Until our next outing…Smooches!

Girls’ Weekend in Atlantic City (Part 1)

November 10, 2013 - Leave a Response

I thought that I’d return with an outing from my annual girls’ weekend to Atlantic City. Even though I live in NJ and take many trips to A.C., I volunteered the gambler’s play destination for an annual gathering with my college friends.
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We stayed 2 days/ 3 nights at Bally’s Atlantic City (www.ballysac.com) . We had two rooms in the Dennis Tower, on the 9th floor. The beds were extremely comfortable. The room was clean with an ocean view and a refrigerator(filled with alcohol). This was not my 1st time staying there, but it was my 1st time having the inconveniece. On Friday, while getting ready to go out, the shower pressure was low. After an hour had passed, the shower was back to normal…and then the toilet stopped working (yes, it did). But after another hour and a fixed toilet, we were out the door…2 hours late. I must add that on the final morning of our stay the shower in the other room had to be fixed. So my friends left for PA…late. I will say that when we voiced our dissatisfsction, we were compensated.
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Friday night we went to Dusk Nightclub (www.duskac.com) in Caesar’s Atlantic City (www.caesarsac.com)…because it was late (I was a little salty). Dusk is a multi-level nightclub. The hotels were booked for the weekend, but this club was not filled to capacity. The dj played everything from top 40 to old school. I danced all night…indeed. The bathrooms had a sitting area (well needed for those killer heel wearers) and nicely lit vanities. I couldn’t deny myself of taking a couple of selfies. Dusk has been voted “Best Bottle Service in A.C.”. We enjoyed the luxury of V.I.P. thanks to the graciousness of two guys from the Bronx. V.I.P. service was good, but the prices are equivalent (or more) than some places in NYC. If it was my money and I had to take it or leave it…I would leave it in a hot minute. It has to be a HELLA “turnt up” weekend…I’m just saying.
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…Until Part 2…Smooches!

Let’s Meet at the Commons on 3rd St.

August 2, 2012 - One Response

Before meeting our party , in the city, we made a pit stop at Barcade, in Jersey City, NJ (www.barcadejerseycity.com). The little gem celebrates vintage arcade games and american craft beer under ONE ROOF!  The beer menu changes frequently, so if you find something you like write it down.  There is a kitchen where you can order things to nosh on, while you drink or play games.  It is strictly small appetizers and sandwiches.  The bar & games are the best things there…wink wink.  Barcade is open Mon.-Thurs.(4pm-2am), Fri-Sat(12pm-3am), and Sun.(12pm-2am).  The bar has Happy Hour Mon.-Fri with bar and food specials.  This place is definitely for the “big kid” in every adult.  Sorry no children allowed…21 and over. If you can’t help throwing a quarter into a Mrs. Pac Man or Zelda machine when you see it…This is your place.

After throwing back 2 beers at Barcade, we rolled through the Holland Tunnel to a birthday gathering at West 3rd Common, in New York, NY (www.west3rdcommon.com). This place is perfect for intimate gatherings.  The red couches in the lounge area (in the front by the bar) line the windows of the restaurant.  Our party had enough room to lounge and walk around.  It was a semi-private set up.  There were platters of Chicken, Sliders, Chips, Sweet Potato Tots, and Mozzarella Sticks.  I sipped(and threw back) Lychee Martinis and Blue Moon beer.  Of course there was the birthday shot of Grey Goose Vodka(Whoa). Everyone expressed how pleased they were with the venue. Thanks for the invite Meka and Therm.

West 3rd Commons boasts about having the best happy hour.  For happy hour specials visit the website.  On Sunday nights the entire bar is “half off” from 8pm- close.  During brunch, noon-4pm, diners can savor unlimited Bloody Marys, Mimosas, or Screwdrivers.  West 3rd Commons is open at 12pm everyday (Sun at 11am).  The kitchen closes at 12am every night.  If you choose to venture over to.  West 3rd Commons, ENJOY!

…Until our next outing…Smooches!

Sushi Only…No Sake?

August 1, 2012 - One Response

Our unit at work was treated to lunch. We decided (some were out numbered) on Fujiyama Mama in Westfield, NJ (www.fujiyamamama.net). It was during working hours, so sake was out of the question (Boo).

We started lunch with different appetizers, rolls, gyozas, and more rolls. Everyone ordered their individual entrees afterwards. I ordered the “Knock Your Socks Off”(Shrimp tempura, spicy lump crab, pine nuts, & avocado) I shared mine with another co-worker who ordered the “Bomb”(Lobster tail tempura & crab rolled with thinly sliced cumber). I was full half way through. I can’t say that I had any complaints about my lunch.  Another co-worker ordered the Tiger’s Eye…It really did look like the eye of a tiger. I was not brave enough to try it…But my co-diners enjoyed it.  Another co-worker ordered a dish from the kitchen (…the co-worker that was out numbered…Ha!) She enjoyed her food none the less.

Fujiyama Mama offers a Kitchen, Sushi, and Hibachi menu, along with a full bar. They are open for lunch (Mon.-Sat) and dinner (Mon.-Sun.). The restaurant says “We offer an impressive selection of specialty appetizers, as well as many other unusual and unique specialty rolls”. Enjoy the journey.

…Until our next outing…Smooches!

Imagine That!…It’s a Party!

July 3, 2012 - Leave a Response

My son’s friend at school was turning 4, and invited him to a birthday party at Imagine That: A New Jersey Children’s Museum in Florham Park, NJ (www.imaginethatmuseum.com ). This was an extremely fun morning for him (Yes…10am).

After I made a boo boo and directed us to the old location, we finally got to the museum at 10:45am. All of the food and singing was done and the kids were set loose (like bats out of a cave) to explore the museum. My son hit the ground runnin’. There was a VW Beetle, airplane, & a Firetruck that gave great photo ops. There were different sections dedicated to service occupations. There was a dentist office, post office and a supermarket (with the check out line). There was a section just for the little ballerinas and a castle for the knights in training(so cute). There was a music room, arts & crafts section, and trains. My son stationed himself in the area that held the jungle gym. I was exhausted myself, when it was time to go…and I did NOTHING but sit the entire time (lol).

Imagine That is open 7days a week. Admission is $9.95 (ages 1 & up). Adults are $7.95. The museum is open to hosting birthday parties. There are a number of packages (with add-ons) to suit your child’s needs and wants. Be sure to catch the Ice Cream Sundae, Princess, or Super Hero events that take place throughout the year.

…Until Our Next Outing…Smooches!

Pack Your Bags! Let’s Go to D.R.! (Part 2)

June 8, 2012 - Leave a Response

When we didn’t soak up the sand at Lifestyles Holiday Vacation Resort (www.lhvcresorts.com) we ventured into Sosua, a small town in Puerto Plata. We had a driver that knew the town well and set us up on a beautiful part of the local beach. The food was amazing. We had shrimp(huge shrimp) and a whole fried fish. The fish was the size of a car dashboard(Really). I was sort of skeptical about eating a whole fish, but BOY it was definitely something I got over. There were all types of things to do on the beach from water sports to glass bottom boats. There are all types of things being sold; from food, hand-made crafts, and massages. Don’t get pressured into buying everything from everyone that walks up to up to you…you’ll go broke. I truly enjoyed the day off the resort.

After spending our days on the beach, we enjoyed the luxury of having a private pool. We had mini pool parties until we tired ourselves out. A short nap, shower, and cocktail and it was time for dinner. The resort had a number of restaurants, which we were given the privilege to eat in. Every night we had a three course meal. The 1st night the entire traveling party ate together at a restaurant. Unfortunately the name of the restaurant escapes me. It was very good and the wait staff was very accommodating to our party. Even when our dining party did not want to leave, the dining room remained open. The 2nd night there was a big show and bbq, on the beach, to welcome the returning guests. The food would’ve been better if it didn’t get cold before you got back to your table…But the champagne stayed cold! On Monday night, the people in our villa went to Jazz( Cajun fare). Thank God we had the print out of our dinner reservations because, they had us down for an earlier reservation. After their “boo boos” were corrected, we enjoyed our dinner. The lights were low and since the service was sooo spread out, our party started to doze. Was it the flowing cocktails?(IDK)…but dinner was great. Tuesday we had dinner at Azul (Seafood). The clean lines and ceiling to floor windows were beautiful. The highlight of dinner was the LAVA CAKE! (OMG) I could’ve had 4. Be sure to take pictures on the balcony.  The view of the mountains are memorable.  Wednesday night was the private BBQ at the villa. The pork, beef, shrimp, & lobster was on freakin’ point. Even though I was getting sick(yes…sick), I was still stuffing my face…Ha!

The Lifestyles Holiday Vacation Resort had everything from spas& gyms to night clubs& bars and watersports. I indulged in a massage one morning. It wasn’t as good as the many I’ve had. But the masseuse did get a kink out of my neck, that I woke up with. If you are interested in purchasing timeshare, they can help you with the process. But, if you are not interested, DO NOT get on the van when they tell you that you are going on a tour of the resort. They’ll drop you off right at the “big white building” (customer service ).

It is hard to get bored on the resort. I had the pleasure to enjoy this location two years in a row. I really find it hard to believe that this visit will be my last.

…Until our Next Outing…Smooches!

Pack Your Bags! Let’s Go to D.R.!(Part One)

May 18, 2012 - Leave a Response

I took my husband to D.R. for his birthday this past April.  The weather wasn’t as great as my first visit, but it was good enough for the 20 of us that went.  Our hostess (w/the mostest…Ha!) is an owner at the Lifestyles Vacation Resort in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic.  She is a gold member(1 tier below the highest tier), so our service was IMPECABLE (Nuff Said).

So we were on our way to the resort in the limo that they send (our party was so big…the men rode in the van) and the people in our party don’t consume 2, 4, or 6 bottles of champagne…THEY DRANK 7!  Francesco, our driver was WELL prepared.  We took the long route through town with a view of the beach… I was too excited for the week ahead of me.

After we got to Lifestyles, a gated resort, we went through all of the check-in formalities. You are given your bands (gold), which serves as your temporary jewelry during your stay.  You can’t do ANYTHING without that band.  Believe me they check (color & all).  While we waited we started our vacation with drinks and food in the Sports Bar.  The chicken wings are so tasty when they are fresh.  Being at an all-inclusive resort, you only worry about tipping, which is rather reasonable.  The money over there is .36 to the U.S. dollar.

We finally got into our villa, which was a 3bdr, 3.5bth, full kitchen(stocked with alcohol, water, and fruit), living room, indoor dining room, outdoor dining room and personal pool and lounge area. I love the living quarters, but the lighting was horrible.  The television service isn’t the best either.  Thank God that I didn’t plan on watching much television.  If you are lucky you even get a DVD player.  Our transportation(golf cart) arrived as we got settled in.  Cars are NOT needed on this resort (if you have a villa). They’re very fun to drive, but try not to crash…and NO DUIs PLEASE…LOL.(I was so guilty) Every morning the maid(Maria) made breakfast for the people in our villa.  If you have any special requests, they will try their hardest to accommodate you.  The pool guy came to clean the pool everyday, while we were at the beach.  This was only the BEGINNING of the service that was given.

Everyday we, as gold members(I keep mentioning the color, because it matters) have a choice of 3 beaches: V.I.P. Beach(Miami like…), Harmony Beach (Very Zen like…), and Serenity Beach(must I say more…Peace & Quiet). De’ja View Beach is right next(literally) to Serenity Beach, but it’s only for Shareholders.  Not much different from Serenity Beach. You must have a gold band to get onto Serenity Beach.  I’ve seen a number of people escorted off of the beach with “colored” bands.  After you choose which beach you want to enjoy, you choose your bed , swing, or cabana, to lounge in for the day; it is on then you can enjoy the sun and sights on the beach.  You MUST get out early or you will wait hours for someone to leave.  The food & drinks leave me hard to find a complaint.  The wait staff was more than willing to serve, especially if your tipping is on point (acceptable).  We even had one waiter try to come over and take our original waiter’s patrons(so wrong). The water was very rocky and the view was amazing.  I laid on Serenity Beach 3 out of 4 days and read my book (Fifty Shades Freed) and listened to music…And drank tequilla, tequilla, and more tequilla…lol

…Until Pt. 2…Smooches!

Sit Back, Enjoy, & Think Like a Man

May 11, 2012 - Leave a Response

On a quiet weekday afternoon, I went to the Essex Green, AMC Theatre(www.amctheatres.com ), in West Orange, N.J. The hubby and I decided to see the “dine-in” matinée showing of “Act Like a Woman, Think Like a Man”. The movie was very entertaining…My experience was good (not great).

If you don’t know how the dine-in theater works, I’ll briefly explain. The Cinema Suites, one of the two viewing styles in the dine-in theater experience, has a 21 and older requirement. You purchase your tickets and pick your seat(s) at the same time. If you wait too late, you’ll either (1) get horrible seating(up front) or (2) won’t get a seat at all. So you sit in these nice comfy recliners(Cinema Suites). There is a button that you push when you’re ready to order your drinks or food. Food prices are between $3- $15.  Towards the end of the movie the waitress brings out the bill. I enjoyed my visit.  But, I was a little irritated that my food was served on paper plates, instead of real plates.  According to a friend of mine that goes frequently, the food is usually served on real dishes. I’m confused. If I pay money for a movie like the people who get real dishes, I should get my dish…I’m just sayin’.

Anyway, I will attempt another visit in the near future.  But, I am NOT going to a matinee…Oh Yeah, the movie was great. I loved the cast and all…Well done.  The AMC Theaters also have a lounge (MacGuffins), where you can enjoy a quick happy hour. You can even rent out one of the theaters for a group viewing (Sweet).

…Until Our Next Outing…Smooches!

Open Mic Live!

May 9, 2012 - Leave a Response

My girlfriend celebrated her “something something” birthday at Jacksonville Live(www.jacksonvillelive.net)  in Paterson, NJ. I must say, it’s a jewel. I had too much fun.

Our reservations were for 8pm, but majority of our party (including me) arrived after 9pm. The “upscale meeting place” is rather empty around that time. Even though you have reservations you should get there early because the place gets packed right before your eyes. The band was setting up as we sipped on cocktails. The waitresses didn’t take our food order until right before the entertainment began. We sipped on Moscato as “J King” and “Allie” sang all types of pop & r&b songs. Patrons were able to show their vocal skills also. There were many talented people in the house that night. I believe that Jacksonville Live’s Open Mic Night is the “watering hole” for the local vocally gifted. After various appetizers (all great) my order arrived. I had catfish, mac& cheese, and spinach…YEAH BUDDY. It was freakin’ divine. My only problem was that the portion was small for the price that was paid(even if I have to take the rest home). The entrees were also served on a rather large plate. No matter if it was chicken & waffles, salmon, whatever, I didn’t hear any complaints about the smell or tastes of anyone’s entrée. After everyone was done eating, the birthday girl joined the other individuals celebrating their birthdays on the stage, champagne was served and the singing commenced. I have to say, I didn’t want to leave, when we did. I absolutely love this place.

Jacksonville Live has events on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. They are also available for private functions. They also have an outside area for eating & drinking. There may be parking on the street but if not they have a shuttle that runs back and forth from the club to the parking lot up the street. If you’re in the mood the listen to talented voices or want to indulge in their Latin events, check out this spot.  Be sure to tell the owner, Mike Jackson, how much you enjoyed his establishment.   I WILL be back.

…Until our next outing…Smooches!

Cuttin’ up on the Barber’s Birthday

April 19, 2012 - Leave a Response

On a beautiful Saturday night in April, we celebrated the birthday of my husband’s barber(and close friend). It was a looonngg night…Ha!

 

The night started at Cafe Wha? (www.cafewha.com ) in the Village.   After getting by the doorman you walk down the stairwell to the main floor(don’t fall).   It appears to be a basement like “intimate” atmosphere. You are in CLOSE proximity to everyone.   But, you soon forget about your seating arrangement when the band begins.   Everyone was up and dancing in the isles.   I had to dance with everyone I walked by, just to get to the bathroom. The house band (who is available for private events) played that night with a special guest who turned the place upside down.   Little to say there was not any skimping on the talent.   We had finger foods, beer, and sangria. The food was tasty…nothing extravagant though.   The beer was bottled…you can’t mess that up.   BUT, the sangria (…or kool-aid) left a lot to be desired.   Little to say, I won’t get it again.   Cafe Wha? is open 7 days a week. There is no cover on Wednesday and Sunday.

After Cafe Wha? we went to the Brandy Library(www.brandylibrary.com ) in the Tribecca section of NY.   It is a laid back lounge setting, with low lights and bottles of spirits lining the wall like library books.   I managed to snap a couple of pictures before the host informed me of the “no picture-taking” rule(oops).   There is a wealth of spirit information in this establishment.   You can order flights of various spirits or you can attend one of the classes that are offered in their “Spirit School”.   I ordered a Bostonian, which was very appealing to the Gin drinker in me.   I did not eat, but the birthday boy had an appetizer that’s like duck in blanket.   I wasn’t too adventurous that evening (or morning) to try it…But he liked it…and others may too.   The Brandy Library is available to host, and coordinate, private events. This establishment is a MUST DO, especially for brandy and cognac drinkers. Sorry.  Cigar smokers have to puff outside.

As we left the Brandy Library, we searched for a little dive bar, that we fell in love with some time ago.   We couldn’t find it, but we stumbled upon Bubby’s Tribecca (www.bubbys.com ). Bubby’s is a restaurant that offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner.   Bubby’s serves American fare of which many of “the recipes are handed down for generations…or stolen” (their words ,not mine). We weren’t very hungry, but a little snack with another drink didn’t hurt anyone.   I had an espresso martini. It was ENERGIZING!   The bartender, Josh, made a masterpiece and topped it off with some espresso beans.   It’s one of the best that I’ve had.   My friend had a chocolate chip cookie, that I just couldn’t stop talking about.   It was so sweet and it was the perfect complement to my martini.   According to the birthday boy, the cake that he had held its own award.   Bubby’s has locations in Brooklyn(Dumbo section) and in Tribecca.   Bubby’s Tribecca is open 24 hrs a day(12am on Monday).   It is a nice little compliment to the area.

…Until our next outing…Smooches!