Girls Trip 2017 Top 10 Destinations
Whenever I get a case of the blues or run out of “f’s” to give, my main escape is either traveling or grabbing a few cocktails with my girls. Imagine the journey when these two pastimes are combined and we embark on a much-needed girls trip. I enjoy getting together – sharing, laughing…even crying, over whatever comes to our minds. Be it our job, kids or our significant others – we try to have an excuse to come together, and just get away.
Escaping can be truly therapeutic. But, there is more to simply jetting around the globe. There is a method, to the madness! I had to compose a list of the top ten destinations for girls travels in 2017. These places are my all-time favorites. As your local travel ambassador, it’s my job to bring you all the best – in travel, beauty, and style.
10. Girls Trip to New Orleans
Known as the ultimate party capital, this locale offers tons of chic shopping! No wonder its the go-to destination for the Girls Trip Movie. During the day, stroll down Magazine Street, through their distinguished boutiques; or explore the Royal Street Mall antiques. Take a cuisine course at Culinary Crossroads. Check out live music venues, such as D.B.A or a burlesque show at an Irvin Mayfield’s Jazz Playhouse. Take the girls and head for a taste-test, and see why New Orleans is ranked number one in desserts. Be your own judge! Check out Morning Call, Café du Monde, and Gracious Bakery. Most of all, head over to the Essence Music Festival, which is held every year, between July 1 and the 6th.
Ranked number one for romance and family getaways, Honolulu offers an abundance of stress-relieving experiences. Grab your besties and head on over to explore Hawaiian food by bike tour. Yes, you heard me right. Gather in Waikiki, for a 3 to 4-hour tour of Honolulu (Hawaiian Foodie Tour), and get an insider’s perspective. Stop at anywhere from 10 to 13 various restaurants, cafes, bars – at local favorites – as you bite, taste, and sample the islands exotic flavors. Next, shop shop shop – again, in Waikiki, at the Royal Hawaiian Center. This shopping mecca boasts cultural and entertaining activities such as lomilomi massages, ukulele playing, hula dancing, lei making – in addition to top high-end stores and The Cheesecake Factory. And Honolulu has some of the best nightlife (check out RumFire Bar & Night Club) – what more can your girls ask for?
I have to admit, hanging with my girls in Miami – is always an amazing experience. I will always cherish and remember. We usually go around the Columbus Day holiday, which is Miami’s Caribbean Carnival time. We play mass and have loads of fun. It has made me realize that I can never go to Carnival – anywhere – and not play mass. It’s not the same. Miami is so diverse and culturally rich – it’s impossible to not find something to do. Our favorite place to shop is the Aventura Mall. And walking along Collins Avenue, in Miami Beach, stopping to mix with the locals, grabbing a few drinks and devouring the local Cuban cuisine…ah, the memories. Collins also offers a great nightlife. This strip is always jumping.
7. Girls Trip to New York City
New York City has an abundance of girly things to do! This is my former stomping grounds, as I am – and happy to say – a Caribbean-New Yorker! I was raised in New York, from the age of three. Much like the image above, NYC offers an array of day-to-night frolic. One can literally get lost in shopping, as the locations are never-ending. From Soho to Fifth Avenue – to Times Square to Union Square. Then there is the chic nightlife, in the city that NEVER SLEEPS! One can literally bar hop on the Lower East Side, or check out some fine dining and high-end shops through the Upper West Side. And FYI, 34th Street is definitely a must! Head over to Brooklyn, and visit Coney Island for some laughs and thrills – and stop by Footprints Caribbean Restaurant for an unforgettable experience, set to an amazing ambiance. And venture over to Fort Green/Downtown Brooklyn and visit the Atlantic Center Mall. The eateries in this vicinity are some of the best in NYC, like Sugar Cane’s Caribbean Lounge.
6. Las Vegas
Your Vegas vacation will explode with excitement. There is so much to do, it doesn’t even begin to make any sense. You can ride the gondola at The Venetian – or head over to Paris, Las Vegas and explore the Eiffel Tower. Catch a fountain show at the Bellagio or venture the Vegas strip, and witness the glitz and glam of Las Vegas Boulevard. Stretch your muscles at the Red Rock Canyon, catch a history lesson at the Neon or Mob Museums or see a light show at the Fremont Street Experience. Shop through the enormous collection of brands, and as for nightlife…just step outside and pick whatever tickles your fancy. There is never a dull moment in Vegas. And remember ladies, whatever happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.
The Bahamas promises a totally different experience. Grab your girls and head over to some gorgeous beaches and ocean-themed fun in the sun. Opt to experience Paradise Island’s Cabbage Beach – with flanky hotels, water activities, and eateries galore. Check out the One&Only Ocean Club, which offers complimentary access to Atlantis Resort Complex – their 21 restaurants, and 19 lounges. The Bahamas offers quintessential relaxation during this Caribbean escape. Try scuba diving at Thunderball Grotto, to explore the coral reefs or you can hike Lucayan National Park in Freeport, for a 40-acre spread of mangroves, palm, and pine trees.
4. Girls Trip to Los Angeles
Ladies, you will quickly get exhausted, before getting bored, in LA. Shopping on Rodeo Drive is like an experience unlike any other. Beverly Hills and High-End shopping just seem to go perfectly together. Think Pretty Woman, and I mean the movie. Cruise Sunset Boulevard in style, or look flawless in your two-piece bikinis as you swag on Venice Beach, Santa Monica Pier and Beach, or Zuma Beach (Malibu, Wealth, all are welcomed). Want a more eclectic feel? Check out Santa Monica’s Third Street Promenade – a shopaholics dream! Cocktails? Try funky The Roger Room or L.P Rooftop Bar.
There’s never a dull moment in Tokyo. With over 12 million locals, you will have to expect an abundance of things to fit every personality. Shop Ginza for those designer pieces and the Tsukiji Market for food; head for a sky view of the Tokyo Tower or a bird’s eye view of the city at the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building. Witness how the royals lived by visiting the Imperial Palace.
I fell in love with love in Jamaica. Negril to be exact. The atmosphere, ambiance, and culture were simply unforgettable. I’ve spent time in Ocho Rios, Montego Bay, Kingston, and yes, Negril. I am planning to go visit Portland Parish, to take “a leap of faith” at The Rabbit Hole at Reach Falls. This location is less popular than the coveted Dunn’s River, but the excitement and lure of seclusion make it an amazing bucket-list, girls trip must! But don’t forget Margaritaville restaurant, in Montego Bay, or the seven-mile beach of awesomeness in Negril (I highly recommend an all-inclusive) and for nightlife, head over to Rick’s Cafe (no jumping at night).
1. Punta Cana, DR
Another bucket list fave, Punta Cana makes it impossible to be disappointed. Experience nightlife like never before, at this old country cave, turned nightclub – Imagine Nightclub. Dance until dawn. Shuttle service is provided by hotels. Journey down a tree-lined path, approaching the cave’s entrance – as you’re greeted by the bass of the music and neon lights. For daytime fun, take a day trip to Saona Island. Sail on a catamaran – touch down on pristine shores, to the yacht anchoring spot of Palmilla. Book a day trip with lunch included.
Interested in getting away?
Queens of Virtue was birthed through the desire to create a brand for multicultural women – to inspireHER, motivateHER, influenceHER, educateHER, empowerHER, and leadHER to make her passion and purpose, her paycheck. Travel has always been my passion and therapy, with beauty and style being my creative outlet. Originally, the brand was my blog – ‘Travel. Beauty. Style.,’ but I decided to plant seeds of expansion. I focused on becoming a certified travel consultant, but I wanted to create a platform where women can not only travel but connect through genuine togetherness. I did not want just another travel agency, so the brand operates as a DMC (Destination Management Company) and a DMO (Destination Marketing Organization) as well.
As a blogger I noticed that influencers of color were being left out of the “influence” space, especially in the luxury sector. Campaigns continued to go to black and brown destinations, yet the message appeared extremely whitewashed. So, I became the change I desired to see! No longer did I care to come to the table. I realized that my entire life, I was a master chef. I asked myself, why sit at the table, when I am the createHER of the Michelin 5-star menu? Coming from a Caribbean culture, raised in Brooklyn, NY – I knew that it takes a village! So, I built one.
The ‘She Rize” movement is all about the ‘Power in the Pack.” We are Women of Power, uplifting multicultural women, helping them to recognize their role by unleashing their Queendom that exists within. The brand offers resources within pillars of motivation – through coaching and mentoring – for small businesses and entrepreneurship development. As a woman, one of the hardest things to accomplish is being mentored and/or coached by other women. Not too many women take the time to be our sisters’ keeper. I remember looking up to Toni Morrison, Terry McMillan, and of course, Maya Angelou. Their creative works gave me the inspiration and fuel I need to ‘rize’ when the world told me I cannot! “You may shoot me with your words, you may cut me with your eyes, you may kill me with your hatefulness, but still, like air, I’ll rise!” – Maya Angelou.
I work 1-on-1 with women aspiring to take their brands higher. For those who are interested in the travel industry, you will receive mentorship and coaching, in addition to training and job placement upon industry certification. In fact, you can expect my guidance and support throughout the entire process.
For the last decade, as a digital influencer, I recognized a void within the industry. The goal is to be the bridge that connects the not-so-invisible dots. Working with women influencers and creators of color, is my passion – as well as a privilege! This initiative works with top brands, professionals, and influencers/creators (by invitation only) to create content as storytellers! Throughout the year, this collective hosts exclusive FAMs (familiarization) and Press trips for influencers to experience destinations and events, saturated in luxury and style. I also create luxury campaigns in the Travel and Lifestyle arenas. The initiative also provides a luxury digital magazine for creators and influencers, by creators and influencers called ‘Shades of Beauty, Influence of Color,’ as well as a podcast series called the ‘Queen’s Qorner,’ training, courses, and virtual travel content – all launching soon.
The vision I have for Queens of Virtue continues to transform. I hope to impact over 1,000 women globally by the end of 2022, leaving a digital footprint of change and growth. By 2025, I hope to reach over 10,000 women. When I say impact – I mean to influence, inspire, empower, educate, lead – to shape in some way, helping HER to not just tell her story, but to manifest her dreams into a sweet reality. My goal is to have properties; Airbnb’s, resorts, and Inn’s in exotic destinations around the globe, in addition, catamaran(s), private jet(s) and thousands of sustainable women-led and owned businesses under my wing by 2030. I plan to leave a legacy for my children and grandchildren. Queens of Virtue aims to be a household staple and world-renowned luxury lifestyle brand for decades to come.