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The Boca Raton: One Of Florida's Most Iconic Resorts Gets A Revamp

At The Boca Raton in South Florida, a 200-million dollar renovation has transformed what was once an exclusive playground for elite travellers and locals into a world-class destination.

In roaring twenties’ America, few things seemed impossible to create – especially if you were lucky enough to be one of the wealthy elite building a luxurious playground for the rich in South FloridaThe Boca Raton, which originally opened in 1926, is a prime example of the ‘more is more’ mindset of the time. 

After its biggest renovation to date, the resort has recently reopened, showing off a new look. Citizen Femme checked in to discover why this iconic resort gained its reputation in the first place, what it’s done to maintain it, and how it’s merged its notable history with a 21st century outlook.

The Vibe

One of the architects of The Boca Raton, Addison Mizner, stated that he wished to create “the world’s most architecturally beautiful playground.” On entering the resort’s stunning, recently-renovated grounds, its still easy to envision what he must have intended. Though updated, the new version pays homage to the propertys rich history, which continues to be felt throughout the resort.

The iconic property sprawls across 337 acres and plays host to five branded structures for lodging, 17 restaurants and bars, a luxurious marina, a handful of  swimming pools, a 71-hole golf course, a 50,000 square foot spa, several fitness facilities, kids’ and teens’ activity clubs. The list goes on… 

The Rooms

With over 1,000 rooms and suites, you have options of where to stay. The original hotel (The Cloister) features iconic architecture, lush grounds and hidden gardens, and 294 guest rooms and suites. It now also serves as home to immersive experiences, such as rotating art collections and fashion brand collaborations. 

For an elevated perspective on this grand resort, The Tower offers 224 freshly reimagined, spacious rooms and suites with stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and South Florida coastline.  Once the tallest building in Boca Raton, the structure provides 27 stories of modern luxury. Robotic butlers – named Johnnie and Ethel, after the monkey pets of the original owner and famed aforementioned architect, Addison Mizner – will bring you things like a delicious bottle of bubbles, while younger guests can order milk and cookies. 

Other lodgings include The Yacht Club (which is adults-only and offers guests exclusive access to Aston Martin SUVs); The Beach Club located – you guessed it – right on the beach; and the charming Bungalows, ideal for long-term stays, with a terrace or balcony in every suite, and washers and dryers in Premium units. 

The Food + Drink

Take a trip around the world in one of the resorts impressive 17 bars and restaurants. Some of the best include Japanese Bocce Club – a fun and modern choice, serving a twist on traditional Japanese cuisine. While the sushi dishes are divine, the shredded iceberg salad drenched in ginger dressing, and the crispy rice topped with tuna or wagyu beef are worth crossing the pond for. 

Drink rosé all day and snack on shareable dishes at the breezy beachside spot Marisol, whose triple-decker raw bar platter presents some of the best seafood on the East Coast. Not to miss are the rainbow of crisp veggies such as purple ninja radishes, sourced from a local farm.

The interiors by hospitality design guru Ken Fulk, a brilliant wine list, impeccable service and ample people-watching opportunities are the draw at Principessa. Order the octopus as a main and save room for the cherry and almond crostata.

The Spa

Designed with Spain’s Alhambra Palace in mind, a 50,000-square-foot heaven awaits you at this architecturally-stunning space. Serene vibes meet impeccable service at Spa Palmera, where guests can rest and recharge at the exclusive outdoor spa pool and gardens, partake in a beautiful bathing ritual inside a real-deal hammam, or utilise the Himalayan salt steam room or sauna.

Before heading to your treatment of choice, loaf around in the grand and glamorous waiting lounge, filled with plush couches and lounge chairs, gargantuan ceilings and rustic decor. Queen Isabella of Castile would have approved.

From mindfulness experiences such as Reiki, to signature services like the Alhambra Citrus Body Ritual or the decadent Diamond Facial, Spa Palmera has a vast range of services sure to satisfy any – and all – of your wellness needs.

The Little Extras

Hire the 42-foot, classic cruising yacht, “Relentless” for a captained adventure at sea with delightful refreshments served alongside an insider tour of the area, including a peek at the socialite and celebrity-owned homes along the water.

Kids and teens will have the time of their lives at the Harborside pool club, making waves on the surf simulator, FlowRider, before refuelling at the snack bar.

Other tidbits of note: the property is dog-friendly; chic, reusable water bottles are provided in your room which can be filled at water stations around the property; and there are over a dozen beyond-gorgeous shops for retail therapy, including a boutique filled with certified Birkin bags.

The To-Do List

While you could spend your entire time inside this hidden paradise – taking part in tennis or pickleball, cruising on a yacht, perfecting your golf swing, snorkelling, kayaking and paddle-boarding, or simply enjoying a chilled game of pool at The Flamingo Grill – the local area offers plenty to see too. Take the 25-minute drive towards posh Palm Beach and stroll Worth Avenue to people-watch, dine and shop.

Feed your inner culture vulture with a visit to the Boca Raton Museum of Art or dine, shop and play at the outdoor shopping centre, Mizner Park. You’ll be surrounded by Mediterranean Revival architecture, adorable boutiques and delicious dining options. This chic spot sometimes hosts cute outdoor markets, fun events and live entertainment – check their event calendar to find out when.

For a chilled escape, immerse yourself in nature inside the healing, lush Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens. Beyond its majestic gardens, this stunning centre for Japanese arts and culture offers rotating exhibitions, tea ceremonies performed in the Seishin-an tea house and educational outreach programs.

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