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Need formal dining ideas on a budget in Miami...

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
...if there is such a thing.


My name is Josh and I live in Ft. Lauderdale. I moved here just a few months ago and I’m still getting to know the area and still getting on my feet financially. Anyway, my girlfriend who lives in S. Carolina is coming down for the first two weeks in Dec. and I really want to show her a nice time. She is the oldest of 6 and she doesn’t get “the princess treatment” very often considering she goes to school, works, and takes care of her brother and sisters.


She just modeled in a fashion show in Charleston and fell in love with one of the evening gowns she modeled. She is going to see if the designer will let her have it. If she does I would like to take her out for a gorgeous evening in Miami. I’ve been looking around online and I’ve found a great idea (islandqueencruises.com/gondola). I’d like to try to do this after dinner though. This is where I’m having a hard time. I’d like to try and find a nice quiet place where I can wear a nice suit (I wish I had a tuxedo) and she can wear her gown and not feel out of place. If there is dancing that would be a plus, just as long as the music doesn’t interfere with conversation. The only snag is that I don’t have much money. The most I can look at spending on dinner is $150. In all honesty I can’t afford that, but I really want this to be special for her.


If anybody has a place they know of that kind of fits the description I would VERY much appreciate the help.


And if anybody is wondering, I’m 23 and she’s 24.

Thanks
post #2 of 12
Having lived in Fl. for many years ,I am afraid the Utopia type places with dancing are almost gone. Florida is very casual. The only type places other then the Breakers and the 4 Seasons or Ritz hotels I know of would be private golf or country clubs which have dancing and would be apprapo for what you want.and this would only be Saturday nights in season. There is a rest. in Lauderdale I have gone to Pier 66 which was good and nice outdoor ambiance ,also with an attched boat trip. I did this a few years ago GOOD LUCK
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post #3 of 12
I admire your style. Not too many gentlemen (our age) left that know how to treat a lady.

you might get more of a response on chowhound message boards....those guys are quick on the restaurant recommendations.
post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the help guys. Just put a post over at chow hound. I appreciate anything anybody can throw my way. I want as many ideas and options as I can get before I make concrete plans and reservations.

And as far as my style goes, all I can say is that I'm a true southern boy. Born and raised in Charleston S.C. And my mom raised me to be a southern gentleman. Lol, people actually give me odd looks when I call people sir and ma'am.
post #5 of 12
I REALLY hope you get oodles of help Stunt monkey. Cant oblige myself as i dont know the locale.

She's a lucky girl. You are a gentleman. Go you
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post #6 of 12
Stuntmonkey, I grew up in Miami and Ft Lauderdale and I contacted a few old friends and my Grandmother and Great Aunt to see if there was anything like that left in Miami and Ft Lauderdale and they are all either private or out of business. Unless you want to hit South Beach and do dinner in one place and dancing somewhere else I cant seem to find anyone who knows of anything anymore. I may be wrong, and I hope I am, but you may be SOL. Good Luck in your search.
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post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the help guys. I think I may have actually found the place(lasolasboulevard.com/new/dining/rinos). I'm going to go check it out this weekend. If it looks good and the dress is right it'll be perfect. She LOVES italian food, and the place is within walking distance of this (gondolaman.com/Gondola_Tours). So we can just "stumble" on it. If there's dancing at the restaurant, great. If not, it wouldn't be the first time we've just danced in a dining room (cuban place, great music, what were we supposed to do? :p ).

So, what do y'all think...ladies especially. We get all dressed up one of the nights she's here and head to the restaurant. Have a nice dinner (appetizer, cocktails, entree', dessert...y'know the works) and go for a walk. I apologize for not being able to find a good dinner cruise around here like she wanted. I notice the gondola and decide to go check it out and see how much he charges, but tell her chances are I can't afford it. As we get closer he greets her by name and has a bottle of wine ready for us. We get back and call it a night. I might try and buy some roses and give them to her when we get to the car, but we'll see.

I want this to be as special as it can since we won't see each other for a few months at least, so if anyone has suggestions or they see something wrong please feel free to tell me.

Thanks everyone!
post #8 of 12
how did it work out?
post #9 of 12
I wish I'd caught this thread when it started, but I missed it.

Back in the day, in the place (SF Bay Area, L.A., early and mid-seventies) of my twenties, there were still a few places where you could take a formally dressed woman to eat and dance -- Top of the Mark for instance -- but they were strictly a "blast from the past," and we'd always be at least two decades younger than everyone else.

What I used to do for formal dates was invest in a really good bottle of champagne and flowers, cook dinner, put on my tux or a suit, and dance to the stereo. You don't even have to be that good a cook. The highest compliment you can give another human being is to offer your sincere attention and consideration. Cook what she likes, don't leave a messy kitchen, and really listen.

BDL
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post #10 of 12
have done that in the past as well BDL. even so much as to clear out the living room put a table with a nice table cloth (a peice of green velvet material i had laying around left over from a halloween costume i think!) and do the candelight dinner thing (it was a smallll 1 bedroom apt.).




that was a couple of years ago, man thinking back...I cooked what was probably the worst chicken fettucini alfredo haha.
post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hasn't yet. She doesn't get here for another 3 weeks (to the day actually).

Yeah, I thought about the whole dressing up and staying home thing, but I live with 3 other people and her sister will be coming down with her so that's kinda out. It's gonna be interesting getting any alone time at all. I don't mind though. My roommates are good people and her sis is the coolest 15 year old ever so it'll be nice having a full house.
post #12 of 12
Well how'd it go?!
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