On Location: The Breakers & The Palm Beaches

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The Breakers
The Breakers lobby

It all harks back to The Breakers. More than a century ago, this stunning resort in Palm Beach put the destination on the map and now, in the 21st century, we’re still singing its praises.

Why? Consider that there’s a 30-person onsite team that works on The Breakers’ floral arrangements and that the family that owns the property (fourth generation) pours $25 million yearly into enhancing it. The resort is a stunner in a destination that knows how to wow. 

Yes, The Palm Beaches—located on Florida’s southeast coast, just one hour north of Miami and two hours southeast of Orlando—never disappoints and it’s certainly not resting on its laurels. It pays homage to its past while welcoming the future with open arms. Within The Palm Beaches, there are 39 cities and towns—spanning from the coastal cities of Tequesta and Jupiter to Boca Raton and Highland Beach and out west to Lake Okeechobee—47 miles of beaches, more than 200 hotels, over 3,200 restaurants, and more than 160 public and private golf courses.  

 We got a taste of what the destination can offer in some of its most well-known cities—West Palm Beach, Palm Beach and Palm Beach Gardens—and we’ve put together a few top activities that make for a fabulous incentive program.  

Brunch at The Breakers

There’s nothing more iconic in all of Palm Beach than this 538-room resort. With a recent renovation, this “Palace by the Sea” is as striking as ever—there are newly redesigned public spaces such as the HMF restaurant (named after the resort’s founder, Henry Morrison Flagler), four inviting pools, including a more expansive adult pool, a fish tank that doubles as a counter at the sparkling Seafood Bar and spectacular ocean views. We got a taste of breakfast at The Circle—with its soaring 30-ft. frescoed ceilings and eight oval murals depicting Renaissance landscapes and a backdrop of palm trees and ocean through the arched windows—and imagined enjoying a Sunday brunch in this lavish setting (think raw bar, baby lamb chops, Belgian waffles, a caviar station, and more than 30 desserts).  

Tour the Flagler Museum

History buffs will want to dive head-first into the destination’s history and one of the best places to do that is at the former home of the man who made it all possible, Whitehall, now open to the public as the Flagler Museum. Here, visitors learn what made Flagler tick and why Palm Beach was his paradise. Completed in 1902, Whitehall, Flagler’s Gilded Age estate, was hailed by the New York Herald as “more wonderful than any palace in Europe, grander and more magnificent than any other private dwelling in the world.” A museum showpiece is Flagler’s private railcar (Flagler founded the Florida East Coast Railway), which is displayed in the Kenan Pavilion. After being wowed by the railcar, recommend clients sit down for afternoon tea in the pavilion’s Cafe de Beaux-Arts

Admire Works of Art at the Norton Museum of Art

A Picasso here, a Miro there, a Monet around the corner. This gem of a museum in West Palm Beach is made for the art aficionado with a knockout collection that features American, Chinese, Contemporary and European art as well as more than 4,500 photographs. In 2019, the museum underwent an expansion and now features a new 59,000-sq.-ft. building as well as a 37,000-sq.-ft. sculpture garden.

Take a Golf Lesson at PGA National Resort

The newly revitalized resort—it underwent a $100 million transformation—is home to six world-class golf courses including the first-ever Match Play Course. This is the place to improve one’s game as it’s home to the Leadbetter Golf Academy; the Dave Pelz Scoring Game Golf School; and full process golf lessons. 

Hang with hipsters at the Grandview Public Market

With its trendy establishments and a food hall-style market showcasing 12 chef-inspired vendors, the Warehouse District is one of the coolest hangouts in West Palm Beach set to rival Miami’s Wynwood neighborhood. For fun cocktails, recommend isla & co. and for home-goods there’s Quinn

 This article previously ran in our sister publication, Recommend.

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