On what seemed like the first nice Sunday afternoon in several weeks, I stepped out of my car into the covered parking lot attached to Mr. C Hotel in Coconut Grove. My drive to the property was lined with buildings both new and old. Directly across the street was the remodeled CocoWalk complex, which housed a newly opened Planta restaurant and would soon open a Sweetgreen among many others.
I chatted with the valet before being ushered inside the hotel. I was instantly taken to another country by its luxe European feel and nautical style. The properties’ innovative look was courtesy of the architecture firm Arquitectonica and Martin Brudnizki Design Studio.
I was greeted by several staff members before deciding on a seat in the outdoor area, which was also home to a new crêperie. I sat in the back of the patio for maximum people-watching opportunities. The outdoor area was reminiscent of an Italian or Parisian café, with people strewn about sipping their espresso or using the lounge as an out-of-office space.
My server, Giorgio, was bursting with friendly energy. After listing off the multitude of languages he was willing to speak with me in — I settled for English — he began telling me the story of the Bellini, a cocktail created by the Cipriani family who owned the Mr. C hotel chain. After only a few seconds of coaxing, I ordered one.
As I waited for my drink, I soaked in my beautiful surroundings. It was quiet and peaceful despite being located directly in the center of Coconut Grove — both the perfect brunch spot and a welcoming study zone.
As a University of Miami student, I was offered several discounts on parking and dining as well as complimentary WiFi access. The crêperie was open to all, not just hotel guests, and invited students to utilize their outdoor spaces for both work and play.
Giorgio strode over with my drink. The Bellini tasted like the ripest and juiciest peach. He reminded me that the fruits are juiced daily. I decided to sample several crepes — a hard decision with so many enticing flavors.
A team of servers brought out my dishes: a sweet chocolate and strawberry pair and another one with a perfect meld of peaches and cream, as well as two savory versions — both burrata and prosciutto and salmon and avocado creations. I was overwhelmed by the sweet and savory flavors which left me full and in need of a second espresso.
The experience never lacked beauty or entertainment as I indulged in delicious food and drink and enjoyed anecdotes of Giorgio’s youth. Before leaving, I vowed to come back and utilize the open space again for both productivity and pleasure.
words_olivia ginsberg photo_teagan polizzi