ASK THE EXPERT
Pedro Ortega | Concierge The Diplomat Beach Resort a Curio Collection by Hilton 3555 South Ocean Drive, Hollywood, Florida, 33019 954.602.6000
What do you love most about Fort Lauderdale?
What I definitely love about Ft Lauderdale is the fact that is the perfect escape destination of Miami, located only 25 minutes with extraordinary dinning destination at the world - renowned Las Olas Blvd and at the beautiful Ft Lauderdale Beach; The Venice of America offers a wide array of shops, restaurants, bars, and hotels amongst the strip creating a very unique experience right on the beach. East Las Olas Blvd has a mile of upscale shops and restaurants. Across the railway lines, West Las Olas caters to a younger crowd. There are funky nightclubs and restaurants between the railway lines and the Broward Center for the Performing Arts and extraordinary rooftops which is the new trend in the city.
Where are your favorite spots for the quintessential Fort Lauderdale selfie?
In my personal opinion the great place for a selfie would be the top of the SE 17th Street Causeway that offers breathtaking vistas of the Hilton Ft Lauderdale Marina and the iconic Pier 66 Marinas along of the views of Millionaires Row and the skylines of Ft Lauderdale Beach and Downtown.
What is your favorite "live like a local" secret you share with your guest?
I am myself a runner so what I try to suggest to my guests is to take a run on the beach side on the Ft Lauderdale Beach Strip, Ft Lauderdale is also known for the local markets, the Yellow Green Farmer Market down in Hollywood which happens to be my favorite offers healthy smoothies, green juices and vegan and vegetarian items in every restaurant; also, there is always live musical entertainment, special events, chefs’ demonstrations, children’s activities, and plenty of prepared food to enjoy. Breweries and brewpubs have been popping up over Broward County in the last few years, delighting craft beer enthusiasts. The Native Brewing Company is one of the oldest, but LauderAle, Khoffner and of course Funky Buddha are also worth a try.
Tell us about your dining options at the Diplomat Hotel?
The restaurants in my property are just spectacular, please see below our 3 different dining destinations:
Diplomat Prime: The restaurant sets the standards for steak and seafood fine dining. This intimate dining experience offers the freshest catches and prime beef with impressive wine selections.
Monkitail: Celebrity Chef Michael Schulson brings this modern Japanese fare to our beautiful luxurious Resort. The menu is a contemporary take to the classic Izakaya, featuring sharable small plates and sushi as well as an array of specialty cocktails and sake, recently voted # 1 Hotel Restaurant in the nation.
Point Royal: This restaurant by Geoffrey Zakarian is our indoor – outdoor Coastal American establishment featuring a lively raw bar and cocktail using local flavors.
For a guest looking for a night on the town, what would you recommend?
Starting with one of the most happening Happy Hours in town at Louie Bossi’s a favorite local or Grill 401 both on Las Olas Blvd. For evening drinking, Fort Lauderdale boasts several speakeasy-inspired bars, like Stache and Apothecary 330. when I travel to any city I try to go to rooftops for that reason I suggest to go to one of my absolutely favorite place The Rooftop@1WLO with live DJ, offering hand crafted cocktails, light fares and outstanding views of the City; recently I went to The Balcony on Las Olas Blvd place that I felt in love immediately, this is an upscale two-story restaurant which features an open-air rooftop offering an authentic taste of New Orleans, which blends French, Spanish, West African, Amerindian, German, Italian, Irish and Vietnamese influences and ingredients and last but not least The Muse in Hollywood FL the newest skyline gathering spot. Vibrant and chic, with breathtaking views, relax with signature cocktails and bar bites
What are some off-the-beaten path places, visitors should see?
From my own experiences and feed - backs from my guests I believe that The Riverside Market and Café the Ft Lauderdale location is the perfect off-the-beaten path, Serving over 550 crafts beers, this place has earned the title of “Fort Lauderdale’s Official Craft Beer Hangout, in the menu pizzas are the most also the subs and wraps are to die for. For brunch the restaurant offers a unique pizza and eggs that our guests can pair with any of the local beers.