With so much to do at the Margaritaville Beach Resort and the surrounding area, you don’t even need to travel to Fort Lauderdale or Miami to have a good time! At your doorstep is local and easygoing Hollywood Beach, great for families and for bonding with your NCURA colleagues. If you have questions, Ashley Whitaker (ashlport@nova.edu) is local to the area and is happy to help!  For more information about the area, visit http://www.floridashollywood.org/.

Activities at the Margaritaville Beach Resort: The conference hotel itself has more than enough to keep you busy when not in conference sessions, and is a great destination for families and solo-travelers with beautiful pools with kids activities, water slide, FlowRider, a kids club, a rooftop adults only pool, water sports, spa, fitness center with group classes, and great entertainment, visit https://www.margaritavillehollywoodbeachresort.com/activities/resort/.

Unique to Hollywood, FL: The conference hotel is located right on the Hollywood Beach Broadwalk, a 2.5 mile oceanfront promenade with cafes, shops and complementary live music at the Hollywood Beach Theater right outside the conference hotel! Also, the Historic Downtown Hollywood is only 2 miles from the conference hotel, the downtown area is filled with quaint shops, excellent restaurants, wine bars, pubs, unique stores, and nearly two dozen murals that are a must see! Also be sure to check out ArtsPark on Young Circle with a playground for children and ongoing cultural activities and events including movie nights on Fridays, and music performances on Saturday nights. Check out the live beach cam: http://www.floridashollywood.org/beach-cam1.aspx

Easy Local Transportation: The Hollywood Trolley stops right at the conference hotel and travels throughout the local area, including Historic Downtown Hollywood: http://www.floridashollywood.org/trolley.aspx. The Water Taxi: You can board the local water taxi on-side at the conference hotel and see why the area is called the “Venice of the Americas”. The water taxi now travels between Hollywood and Fort Lauderdale on the Margaritaville express route, visit http://watertaxi.com/. The Hollywood Beach Broadwalk is also great for a casual ride, you can rent bikes at numerous places along the beach, visit http://www.floridashollywood.org/bicycle_rentals.aspx. Ride share services such as Lyft and Uber are also popular in the area and recommended for use to and from the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (only 10 minutes away from the conference hotel).

Local Restaurants/Nightlife: You don’t need to travel to Miami or Fort Lauderdale to have a great evening, you can experience all types of cuisine right on the beach from Argentinean to Peruvian to Turkish. Some local favorites that are walking distance from the hotel include Giorgio’s Bakery & Bistro, The Taco Spot, Ocean Alley, Le Sugar Reef, Toucan Hideout, Hollywood Brewing Co, Capone’s Flicker Light, and Taco Beach Shack. Some famous restaurants within walking distance are Taverna Opa, Le Tub (famous for “America’s Best Burger”), Billy’s Stone Crab, GG’s Waterfront Bar & Grill, Latitudes Restaurant & Bar, and Nick’s Bar & Grill. You can get pizza (Broadwalk Restaurant & Grill or Florio’s of Little Italy) and ice cream/treats at numerous great places all along the Broadwalk. A listing of local restaurants and nightlife is located here: http://www.floridashollywood.org/dining_nightlife.aspx.

You can also take the Hollywood Trolley to downtown Hollywood for great restaurants, pubs, and wine bars. Or, experience the Fort Lauderdale scene via the water taxi. Close by via a ride sharing service is The Village at Gulfstream Park that offers stores, nightlife, restaurants, and the Gulfstream Park Racetrack and Casino. If you feel like venturing to Miami, a unique and fun evening is to check out the Wynwood Arts District in Miami with one of the largest open-air-street-art instillations in the world, and also has some great local bars, restaurants and breweries: https://wynwoodmiami.com/.

Eco-Adventures: Another stop on the Hollywood Trolley is the Mangrove Estuary at Anne Kolb Nature Center and West Lake Park, 1,500+ acres of coastal mangrove wetlands, one of the largest urban parks in Florida, is great to explore via the nature trails or boat at Anne Kolb, or by kayak rental at West Lake Park. You can see some local university grant funding in action and visit Captain the Sea Turtle in his beach house, just a short walk down the beach from the conference hotel: http://www.broward.org/Parks/Pages/MarineEnvironmentalEducationCenter.aspx. Just down the beach you can dive/snorkel off the beach at the Dania Beach Erojacks.  The conference hotel and BG Whiskey Creek Hideout, https://whiskeycreekhideout.com/, offers beach activities and kayak/paddleboard rentals. Of course the main South Florida eco-attraction is Everglades National Park.

Family Fun: There is so much to do in the local area! From the eco-adventures mentioned above, to many parks and playgrounds local to the area within a trolley ride or walking from the conference hotel, and of course the activities at the conference hotel and the beach right outside your door. Charnow Park is a quick walk down the beach from the conference hotel with a climbing wall and splash pad. There are also many excursions and local attractions to see: Young at Art Museum, Museum of Discovery & Science, Miami Children’s Museum, Frost Museum of Science, Dave & Busters, Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood Casino, Miami MetroZoo, Everglades Holiday Park, Lion Country Safari, Miami Sequarium, Jungle Island, Palm Beach Zoo, Butterfly World, Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Gardens, Flamingo Gardens, and Monkey Jungle.

Shopping & Farmers Markets: You can stay local in downtown Hollywood or the Broadwalk (with its own Sunday farmers market), or take the water taxi up to Las Olas Boulavard or the Galleria Mall in Fort Lauderdale. Hollywood also is home to South Florida’s largest farmers market, Yellow Green, open on Saturdays and Sundays with over 300 booths in a covered facility. There is no shortage of places to shop in South Florida: North America’s largest outlet mall – Sawgrass Mills Outlet, Bayside Marketplace, Gulfstream Park, the Aventura Mall, Bal Harbour Shops, and Miami itself.

Other Local Activities: Professional Sports, Gaming, Horse Racing, Jai Alai at The Casino @ Dania Beach, Fishing Charters, Diving, Sailing, Boat Tours, Golf, and numerous Arts & Culture venues are all local as well.2