The Palm Beaches – The Best Way to Experience Florida
PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. (Year 2012) – Discover The Palm Beaches, an exciting collection of luxury resorts, boutique and trusted-brand hotels, an innovative culinary landscape, trendy shops and boutiques of world-wide fame, and a nightlife that thrives year-round. With 15 distinct districts, 47 miles of pristine beaches, and a staggering collection of attractions and cultural venues, it is no surprise the destination was just ranked among the world’s best in both the Luxury and Summer Vacations categories by US News & World Report. With so much to offer, The Palm Beaches truly is the best way to experience Florida.
The following is a sampling of destination claims, story ideas, and new announcements and celebrations for the destination:
Defined by Districts
The Palm Beaches bring together 15 distinct districts- 12 featuring shopping and dining, two focused on eco-adventures, and one containing the Convention Center and surrounding entertainment. Located up and down the coast and west out to Lake Okeechobee, each district offers a completely unique experience, culture, and collection of events for visitors to enjoy. These districts include: Palm Beach and Worth Avenue, Clematis Street, CityPlace and Convention & Entertainment District in West Palm Beach, Northwood Village, Antique Row, Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter/Juno Beach Lake Worth, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Downtown Boca Raton, Boca Town Center and Glades Road, Wellington, and Lake Okeechobee.
America’s First Resort Destination
In 1893, Henry M. Flagler declared Palm Beach as a “veritable paradise.” That year, Flagler set about building the largest wooden structure in the world – The Royal Poinciana Hotel – in Palm Beach, and connected his railroad from the northern United States to South Florida. In 1896, Flagler opened the Palm Beach Inn, which soon became known as The Breakers Palm Beach – now a legendary, five-star resort. Just 18 years later, the town of Palm Beach was incorporated. Since then, everyone from Hollywood stars to heads of state, from literary and artistic icons to Old Money and international business magnates have come to enjoy this lush island as a vacation destination. Take an in-depth look at some of our time-honored resorts, explore our history at the Flagler Museum, learn about our past on a walking tour down Worth Avenue, and appreciate the architecture from one of the county’s first developers, Addison Mizner, along Mizner Park.
Beach, Waterway, Marine
With more than 47 miles of Atlantic coastline and countless waterways, there is no shortage of liquid assets to enjoy in The Palm Beaches. From fishing, diving and snorkeling to sailing, boating and yachting, the range of on- or in-the-water experiences are endless. With an average annual temperature of 75 degrees and ample Florida sunshine, the area’s enviable weather creates an ideal environment for year-round outdoor fun. Close proximity to the Gulf Stream means comfortable ocean temperatures as well, making our Atlantic waters warm for bathers and extra clear for divers. For a day on the water, an abundance of marinas up and down the Intracoastal Waterway makes docking a yacht or chartering a boat a simple task.
Internationally known as a hot spot for avant-garde designers, trendy and chic style, and world-class shopping, The Palm Beaches is like a runway for today’s top fashions. Dubbed the “Rodeo Drive of the East Coast,” Worth Avenue Avenue is the preeminent designer shopping destination in Florida. Strolling along the popular Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach is a great way to peruse quaint shops and boutiques, while downtown Boca Raton’s Mizner Park and Royal Palm Place offer upscale shopping venues with Mediterranean-style courtyards. Ideally located in downtown West Palm Beach, CityPlace is an open-air shopping and entertainment district inspired by the pedestrian-friendly piazzas of Italy. Just a few blocks away is the Downtown Waterfront District, with ample space for ongoing events and programs. If antiquing is your passion, you will love the six blocks of shopping along Antique Row in West Palm Beach offering a treasure trove of collectibles, timeless furnishings, and special home and garden accessories. The Gardens Mall, Town Center at Boca Raton, and The Mall at Wellington Green will impress every shopper with their large collections of global fashion retailers.
The Palm Beaches offers more than just a visit to pristine beaches. Travelers can enjoy a variety of unique and one-of-a-kind experiences on any budget. Here’s a sampling: full-moon bike rides along some of Riverbend Park’s 15 miles of trails, up-close animal encounter at Lion Country Safari, spring training for two teams – St. Louis Cardinals and the Florida Marlins, a dive with the country’s only private S.C.U.B.A. Country Club, and interaction with the turtles at the Loggerhead Marinelife Center’s special rehabilitation facility.
World Famous for Big Bass – and other fish too
Lake Okeechobee, which borders the county to the west, is world famous for its big bass. Anglers from all over drop their lines in what is the second largest freshwater lake in the United States, anxious to catch their “trophy fish.” To the east, nowhere does the warm northward current of the Gulf Stream come closer to the continental U.S. than off The Palm Beaches’ coastline. In between these famous fishing waters lie uncounted miles of productive fishing canals, estuaries, and the Intracoastal Waterway. The fishing season is virtually year-round, but specific species of fish are more prolific certain times of the year. While the winter is peak for bass and ladyfish, the transition into spring means snook and blue marlin. Under the summer sun, fishermen can find concentrations of dolphin (the fish), wahoo, sailfish and an occasional tuna. In the fall, black and silver mullet travel south along coastal beaches, as do bluefish, snook, tarpon, barracuda, kingfish and jack crevalle, to name just a few. And year-round, water-bound travelers enjoy free boat and kayak docking along any of the ports on along The Palm Beaches’ Intracoastal.
Once the sun goes down in The Palm Beaches, the night comes to life with a variety of fun and exciting activities for all ages. From the hottest dance clubs and rooftop bars, to waterfront family movie nights and evening street festivals, the area’s various districts light up with entertainment options. Some of the more popular areas for nighttime play include: Downtown West Palm Beach, with Clematis Street, the Waterfront Commons, and CityPlace, which showcase free live music, outdoor events and street parties throughout the week, all connected by a free trolley; Atlantic Avenue and Pineapple Grove in vibrant Downtown Delray Beach, which brings together more than 100 bars and restaurants to appeal to every lifestyle; and the eclectic and artsy Lake Worth, known for its music venues and colorful vibe. In Palm Beach Gardens, the newly emerged Downtown at The Gardens features everything from swanky jazz clubs to boisterous breweries, located right beside the upscale Gardens Mall. Just off of Worth Avenue on the island of Palm Beach, visitors might spot a celebrity or two at late-night hot spots and the hottest new restaurants, as well as legendary locales, such as The Chesterfield Palm Beach’s famous Leopard Lounge and The Colony Hotel’s Royal Room, featuring a Cabaret Series and Motown Fridays. Ongoing and annual events, such as Clematis by Night, Saturday Evenings on the Avenue in Lake Worth, On the Avenue in Delray Beach, and the Art & Wine Promenade in Northwood Village, and SunFest, Southwest Florida’s largest outdoor music festival, all ensure non-stop, after-hour fun.
Florida’s Cultural CapitalÂ®
More than 200 theaters, museums, arts centers, indoor and outdoor performance stages, and other cultural venues are located throughout the county. From the Boca Raton Museum of Art, Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens, the Norton Museum of Art, Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse & Museum, Maltz Jupiter Theater, and the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, The Palm Beaches bring together a variety of thriving art districts, nationally recognized performers and dozens of internationally renowned annual events. Some of the most notable events include Art Palm Beach, the American International Fine Art Fair, SunFest, Lake Worth Street Painting Festival, and Delray Affair, all of which are great ways to experience art and culture in the area.
Florida’s Golf CapitalÂ®
Visitors at all skill levels can play on the more than 160 public and private golf courses, including the Boca Raton Resort & Club, The Breakers Palm Beach, and PGA National Resort & Spa, to name just a few. In addition to some of the best courses in the world, Florida’s Golf CapitalÂ® is also home to numerous pro shops, teaching facilities and driving ranges, as well as the Junior Golf Academy. The Palm Beaches is also home to The PGA of America and two of its most highly anticipated tournaments, The Allianz Championship and Honda Classic, held in February and March, respectively.
With more than 100 family-friendly attractions, families of all sizes and on any budget can enjoy a variety of active, educational and cultural experiences, including a climb up the historic Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse, a visit to the Loggerhead Marinelife Center’s special sea turtle rehab facility, a giraffe-feeding at Lion Country Safari, a discovery in the South Florida Science Museum, or an afternoon canoeing the waterways or hiking footpaths through Florida’s Natural Scenic Trail.
The Palm Beaches’ west-central community of Wellington is one of the top three places for polo and equestrian activity in the world. The International Polo Club Palm Beach features the world’s top Polo players and is the epicenter of social activity among Palm Beaches’ elite from January through April. Designed for novice to experienced players, Polo School, is available for kids and adults interested in learning the sport. Just down the road at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center, Saturday nights “in season” bring thousands out to witness internationally recognized equestrians compete in high-intensity competition, followed by a nightlife with an energy to match.
Thriving Culinary Landscape
A well-balanced fusion of celebrity chefs, cutting-edge newcomers and classic masters give The Palm Beaches a true advantage among travelers seeking the ultimate palatable experience. The vast array of independent, provincial restaurants, five-star resort dining, and eclectic, avant-garde eateries come together to give The Palm Beaches its global reputation as a true melting pot for culinary exploration. Cuisine from every corner of the world in every imaginable gastronomical style can be found throughout the 15 dining and entertainment districts within The Palm Beaches. World-renowned chefs including Masaharu Morimoto and Daniel Boulud have added The Palm Beaches to the list of select destinations to carry one of their signature restaurants. In addition, numerous chefs have earned prestigious accolades, including the James Beard Foundation’s “Best Chefs of the South” list. The destination is also home to some of the most anticipated annual food events in Florida, including Boca Bacchanal, Savor the Avenue, Palm Beach Food & Wine Festival, and Taste of Palm Beach, to name just a few.
Spas & Wellness
A wealth of luxurious spas recognized internationally for their rejuvenating treatments abound in Palm Beach. From mineral pools and Dead Sea salts to exclusive product lines and lavish treatments, soothing experiences for the mind, body and soul are available at a variety of spa and wellness centers. Some of the most renowned include The Spa at the Four Seasons Resort, The Spa at PGA National Resort & Spa, The Spa at The Breakers, Spa Palazzo at the Boca Raton Resort & Club and Eau Spa at The Ritz-Carlton, Palm Beach.
Unexpected ‘Wild Side’ of The Palm Beaches
As the gateway to The Florida Everglades, The Palm Beaches offer a number of opportunities to explore this natural treasure. The Arthur R. Marshall Loxhatchee National Wildlife Refuge comprises more than 221 square miles of The Everglades, and is surrounded by a 57-mile canal and levee system. Area visitors can enjoy the unique experience of an airboat tour along what are often regarded as Florida’s most serene and scenic waterways in the destination’s western region. Kayaking and canoeing are also popular ways to explore the awe-inspiring surroundings and spot the captivating wildlife. The area’s close proximity to the Gulf Stream – keeping comfortable ocean temperatures year-round – and more than 20 reefs, also make this area a hot spot for divers and snorkelers.
About Palm Beach County Convention and Visitors Bureau
The Palm Beach County Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) is the official destination marketing organization for Palm Beach County, Fla. Tourism is among Palm Beach County’s major industries generating a direct annual economic impact of $2.8 billion in the local economy, producing $23 million dollars in bed-tax revenue and lodging sales of approximately $623 million.