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Uber in Miami

2 Jul

Uber, my favorite transportation app that connects you with drivers in your area to schedule a car service, finally launched in Miami on June 4th. It’s motto, “Moving People; tap a button, get picked up in minutes”, is an accurate description of the services this amazing company offers. Already a prevalent method of transportation in several big cities around the US such as NYC and San Francisco, Uber has had a hard time getting the State Legislature’s approval to launch in Miami as the taxi lobby has been pushing back.  It’s been a long journey for Uber, but after months of lobbying and thousands of petitioners voicing their support, Miami joined the ranks of some 120 Uber-friendly cities around the world. As reported by the company’s official Blog, this new method of transportation will be “better, faster, and over 25% cheaper than a taxi.” If you still haven’t given Uber a shot, download the app and order your ride using my Uber code, mo692, to get $30 off your first journey. Redeem it at uber.com/invite/mo692
TheeBlog-UberMiami

Breaking News for Social Media Apps!

7 Sep

Miami Beach Blog

These last few weeks social media apps have taken large strides.  If you haven’t updated your apps recently I highly recommend that you do so ASAP.  When updating my own apps I recently noticed Yelp, Facebook and Youtube have made some big and long awaited changes.

Yelp has finally made it possible to post reviews directly from your phone, until now you could only draft reviews on your phone before having to post from a desktop.  I already use Yelp as my compass to good food this change will result in even more reviews being posted and therefore making Yelp more reliable.  With this ground breaking update I will be posting many more reviews from my iPhone about the Miami food scene.  Follow me on Yelp for advice on my favorite (or not so favorite) places in Miami.

An updated Facebook app will reveal that Facebook has adopted the concept of hash tags.  You can now use and search for hash tags to see what others are talking about in certain categories, just like Twitter and Instagram.

Frequent users of YouTube will be interested to know that the latest update allows users to continue watching videos while they search for the next video to watch.

If you didn’t know now you know.  Enjoy your awesome updates and have a good weekend!

DH

Let’s Bring Uber to Miami!

11 Jul

new_uber_logoI had heard a lot of buzz about Uber and I am now glad to say that I just had a first-hand experience using the transportation app on a recent trip to New York. I was about to take a cab into the city when my friend Stevie suggested that I use Uber, he said “Uber is paramount to the invention of the wheel in terms of an advance in modern transportation”.  I gladly listened to his advice.  It took less than five minutes to download the app, put in my credit card info and like magic (BAM!) an Uber car appeared.  For those of you who don’t know, Uber is an incredible taxi/car service which fully functions via an app.

This is how Uber works:

UberPPT

  • When you open the Uber app, you choose between a taxi, a black car, or an SUV.
  • The base price, price per mile and price per minute will then be displayed.  The app will also give you a price quote based on your destination.
  • Uber uses GPS to show your location as well as the closest car option.  Based on your car choice and location, it will give you a fairly accurate time estimate of the driver’s arrival.
  • Uber will then display a picture of the driver you choose along with his/her rating (five stars being perfect) so you know exactly who is coming.
  • Should you need to contact the driver, you have the option to either call or text message the driver.
  • Once the driver is on his way, you can watch as a small car inches towards your location on the map.
  • A text message alerts you that your driver has arrived.
  • The best part comes next: When you reach your destination, simply exit the car and your credit card is charged the fare + 20% tip.  You do not need to sign anything, make change, or even show your credit card.
  • Immediately after the trip has ended, you will receive a text message receipt of the exact amount charged.

As a result from the rating service, the drivers are all very courteous and pick you up in extremely clean cars.

uber_606

Here is the bad news.  Although Uber wants to come to Miami, our current taxi/car service regulations do not allow for the service to operate here.  I say if it is good enough for NYC and if it is good enough for San Francisco, then let the service operate and have the market decide!  The taxi situation in Miami is a disaster, particularly at peak times and busy weekends which is exactly when Uber is most useful.  It is well known that Miami has a bad reputation for dirty taxis and equally as many rude drivers.  Uber is the yelp of transportation and forces accountability on a broken industry.

This is not just a blog post about a great service but a call to action for anyone in Miami who has ever waited over an hour on a rainy night for a taxi, for anyone who has ever had to walk 30 block on New Year’s Eve and for anyone who has sat in a foul-smelling cab with no AC and a rude driver.  Please follow Uber Miami on twitter and support them in their quest to bring this great service to Miami. 

Sincerely,

DH

Best Nail Salons of South Beach

13 Jun
Best Nail Salons of South Beach
Guest Blog by Amanda Chamberlain

20130613-074002.jpgFinding a great nail salon is often a series of trial and error visits to the salons you see driving down the road or the salon mentioned by the lady waiting with you in the Starbucks line. In my experience many people settle for an “OK” nail salon. Here on South Beach it can seem like an endless search but we are actually lucky enough to have a few good salons out there, and I would know because I’ve tried most of them. When I rate a salon I am judging it on 3 things: cleanliness, staff and how happy I am with the final product.

126664_54_bThe best manicure on South Beach is at The Standard Spa. It doesn’t matter which technician you use (a strong testament to the quality of the salon) everything is very clean and I found the spa environment super relaxing. My manicures at the Standard seem to resist chipping longer than anywhere else on South Beach and they do a very good job. It is more expensive but if you really want to treat yourself to a superb mani then you will likely find the $30 worth it.
433928261_640My second favorite manicure on South Beach is over at the Sean Donaldson salon. I considered my self lucky when I found this nail salon directly across from Macy’s. At first glance it would appear to be a hair only salon, but that is not the case! The salon has a very bright, clean, minimalist atmosphere (which I love) and their manicurists are really spot on. Reasonably priced at $17 for a manicure, Sean Donaldson is a great spot to book on a weekly basis.

20130613-080309.jpgLace Nail Lab seems to be the most popular salon on the beach. It’s bright pink interior and very sociable staff make you feel like you are in a salon straight out of the Hairspray movie, it really is a lot of fun and a unique experience. They have a fabulous boutique in the front of the store that always has something (usually a candle) I will end up taking home with me. My only issue with Lace is that it is always busy and I feel rushed to leave with my nails wet, which means if I’m lucky I will make it 15 minutes before I smudge up the polish.

20130613-075118.jpgCanyon Ranch is a bit further up North Beach but they have a great manicure and hands down the best pedicure I have ever had in my life (and they are consistently that good)! Again it does not matter which technician you use, I have been blown away each time I go and I do go often. They also have a great environment and always use a new set of filing tools (bonus points on cleanliness) for each customer. At Canyon they offer to send you off with the filing kit and the bottle of polish you used during your service.

I hope these suggestions help a few people out! If I missed any great nail salons please comment here about it, we are all in this search together.
Yours Truly,
-Amanda Chamberlain

The Pilates Place South Beach

19 Nov

The Pilates Place is the kind of studio that grows by word of mouth due to it’s top of the line equipment, intimate group class sizes and most importantly an extremely high caliber level of instructors. Whether you are looking for a great workout or to improve an old sports injury, this is the spot.

Jackie and Louis are both true professionals. They custom tailor each class and private lesson to meet the specific needs of their students. The Pilates Place is located on the corner of Collins Avenue and 8th street. Work the core, improve your golf swing, or just stop by for a serious work out.

DH

763 Collins Avenue #305 Miami Beach, FL 33139

(305) 316-3341

Click HERE for the class schedule.

Baywash Wash-Wax and Carrot Express – The Perfect Combination

21 Jun

Two things I am always hunting for include a great car wash, and delicious, healthy lunch spots.  Recently I hit two birds with one stone when I decided to check out Baywash Wash-Wax at the Texaco station on Alton Road and 18th Street.  I pulled in to drop off my car and was pleasantly surprised when I went inside to wait and found a luncheonette counter serving up smoothies, salads and sandwiches.  One glance at the sign “Carrot Express” and I immediately recalled the delicious “Gourmet Carrot” restaurant that previously sat on West Ave.  The friendly owner behind the counter, Mario Laufer, confirmed my suspicion, and proceeded to whip up a fantastic, wholesome lunch and a fresh-squeezed smoothie for me.

This place is truly a hidden gem: Mario hand-makes everything from scratch using only fresh and natural ingredients.  The cilantro chicken salad is exceptional, the hummus is delicious and according to Mario, the veggie burger is “the best” (that’s next on my list of things to try here along with the spinach pies).  The sandwich options (including white albacore tuna salad, tofu, fresh veggies and turkey breast) are served in a wrap or on whole-wheat pita bread.  Top it off with one of Mario’s savory, home-made dressings (my favorite is the carrot ginger) and add some sliced avocado.  Absolutely delicious and only $4.99-$6.99.

Finally, a trip to Carrot Express is not complete without a Julie’s Smoothie.  Named after Mario’s daughter, this smoothie includes fresh pineapple, orange, mango, strawberries, banana and honey.   At $3.50 – you can’t beat it.   If you have a real sweet tooth, satisfy it with a slice of coconut guava cake, handmade by Mario’s mother.

As for the car wash?  For $12.95, “The Deluxe” gets you a brush-less, squeaky-clean, shiny car wash.  Be sure to ask for a Frequent Customer Card – 6 washes gets you one free.

Baywash/Carrot Express (in Texaco station)
1840 Alton Road, Miami Beach, FL 33139
305-534-1132

Sudsies – The Better Miami Dry Cleaning Choice

23 May

Let’s face it: finding a reliable dry cleaner in your neighborhood is not easy.  We’ve all been there.  You drop off your favorite shirt only to have it come back ripped, or – even worse – maybe it never comes back at all.

Recently, in the midst of several hectic, back-to-back work trips, I found myself in need of same day dry cleaning.  I had a very important meeting and I needed my favorite suit looking 100% – fast.  I had been hearing about Sudsies Dry Cleaners and decided to give them a try.

If you live in Miami and haven’t tried Sudsies, you’re in for a very pleasant surprise.  If you like the sound of top-notch customer service and FREE pickup and delivery, then Sudsies is definitely the dry cleaner you’ve been dreaming of.  Whether you need same day service or couture or specialty items in need of cleaning, Sudsies has your back.  In addition, Sudsies uses an eco-friendly cleaning process which means water and energy conservation, as well as the use of less tissue paper or plastic bags upon request.

You don’t need to take my word for it – just look at these rave reviews on Yelp to see what others are saying about Sudsies.

This post brought to you by Danny Hertzberg.

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