Carissa Chesanek

Correspondent

  • Miami, FL, USA

Carissa Chesanek is a correspondent who lives in Miami and covers the city for Forbes Travel Guide. She has her Master’s in Journalism and is involved in the Writers’ Network of South Florida. An avid eater and expert diner, she has used her fascination with food to write culinary-inspired pieces for various publications including CityEats.com, Dining Out Magazine, Zagat Survey and Gayot.com. When she’s not busy eating, Carissa works as the Miami Editor with Rundown.com, a locals guide to must-see places and happenings, and finishing up her first novel. Follow what she’s up to on her website, www.carissachesanek.com.

  • On May 31, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What is nightlife like in Miami?


    Miami’s nightlife is always booming, so when you’re here there’s a chance you’ll always be able to find something to do. From the club scene, to the parties, the bars, and even the late night art walks, there is always something fun going on. There are many clubs to hit up in South Beach that tourists enjoy such as the bigger name attraction spots like Mansion, LIV, and SET Nightclub. However, there are other hole in the wall hotspots that locals like to slip into including Foxhole, Rec Room, and The Broken Shaker. Of course, Miami has grown a lot over the years and while South Beach is still the Mecca of all parties, there are other areas to enjoy such as the Design District where The Stage shells out tons of amazing live bands, along with taking a tour of the art scene in Wynwood, and hitting up Midtown for a nightcap over at Bar Louie or Sugarcane.
  • On May 30, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    Where is the best Miami diving?


    Miami offers amazing underwater exhibits for divers. Not only does the area offer beautiful wildlife to see, but there are over 75 different shipwrecks to see down under too. If you’re looking for some of the best spots to dive while you’re in Miami, be sure to take the plunge at any of these areas.

    Orion Steel Tug Boat (South Beach Dive and Surf Center)
    Not only will you be able to get lessons on snorkeling and diving when you head over to this Washington Avenue dive center, but you can also enjoy some of the most amazing underwater attractions around. When you dive here, you’ll be able to see the first sunken boat in Miami called the Orion,which is a steel tug boat found right by Key Biscayne. Divers are also able to catch a glimpse of the Princess Brittany boat that sunk back in 2003, three miles off shore.

    Half Moon Preserve
    When you dive here, you’ll be able to see the wreck site of the German racing yacht called the Half Moon that was built in 1908. Situated right within the Biscayne National Park, divers will also be able to take in the beautiful artificial reef and marine wildlife, which is why this very spot if considered to be “Florida’s Seventh UNderwater Archaeological Preserve.”

    Army Tank #1
    Buried deep below 48 feet of water, this M60 Army Tank is just one of the two that can be found in this location in Miami Beach. Scuba divers can swim along the tanks while also weaving in and out of hard and soft corals and “spiny oysters.” A while back, there was also limerock boulders that were placed by the two tanks which have helped grow even more wildlife below the waters, where divers are able to see many lobsters in habitat.
  • On May 30, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What new museum exhibits are in Miami?













    Interested in checking out some new exhibits this summer? Miami has plenty of museums that are offering fun and unique exhibits for both kids and adults to enjoy. Here are a few of the top new shows to enjoy this summer.

    Hurricanes at the Miami Science Museum
    Now that we’re in the brink of hurricane season, it only makes sense for us to get prepared during this current Hurricane exhibit. Here, guests are able to not only see different artifacts from Hurricane Andrew, but will also get a chance to step into the cockpit of a P-3 Hurricane Hunter airplane.

    Miami Children’s Museum’s Dino Island
    Bring the kids to the brand new Dino Island exhibit starting with the opening day on June 8th. An exhibit that is fully geared toward dinosaurs will be up and running until 2014 showcasing a 2,5000 square foot space with robotic dinosaurs spread throughout. Visitors will also be able to see prehistoric fossils and learn about the common theory of the extinction of dinosaurs, all while opting for a photo session with the suspended Pteranodon.

    From Picasso to Koons: The Artist as Jeweler
    An exhibit created by jewelry collector Diane Venet, this collection of “wearable sculptures” can be seen from now until July 21st. These pieces that were made by some of the most well-known, sought-after artists of our time, shows not only precise beauty and craft, but displays a sense of romanticism as most items were specifically made for a lover, friend, or family member close to the artist.
  • On May 30, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What new museum exhibits are in Miami?












    Interested in checking out some new exhibits this summer? Miami has plenty of museums that are offering fun and unique exhibits for both kids and adults to enjoy. Here are a few of the top new shows to enjoy this summer.

    Hurricanes at the Miami Science Museum
    Now that we’re in the brink of hurricane season, it only makes sense for us to get prepared during this current Hurricane exhibit. Here, guests are able to not only see different artifacts from Hurricane Andrew, but will also get a chance to step into the cockpit of a P-3 Hurricane Hunter airplane.

    Miami Children’s Museum’s Dino Island
    Bring the kids to the brand new Dino Island exhibit starting with the opening day on June 8th. An exhibit that is fully geared toward dinosaurs will be up and running until 2014 showcasing a 2,5000 square foot space with robotic dinosaurs spread throughout. Visitors will also be able to see prehistoric fossils and learn about the common theory of the extinction of dinosaurs, all while opting for a photo session with the suspended Pteranodon.

    From Picasso to Koons: The Artist as Jeweler
    An exhibit created by jewelry collector Diane Venet, this collection of “wearable sculptures” can be seen from now until July 21st. These pieces that were made by some of the most well-known, sought-after artists of our time, shows not only precise beauty and craft, but displays a sense of romanticism as most items were specifically made for a lover, friend, or family member close to the artist.
  • On May 30, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What new museum exhibits are in Miami?
















    Interested in checking out some new exhibits this summer? Miami has plenty of museums that are offering fun and unique exhibits for both kids and adults to enjoy. Here are a few of the top new shows to enjoy this summer.

    Hurricanes at the Miami Science Museum
    Now that we’re in the brink of hurricane season, it only makes sense for us to get prepared during this current Hurricane exhibit. Here, guests are able to not only see different artifacts from Hurricane Andrew, but will also get a chance to step into the cockpit of a P-3 Hurricane Hunter airplane.

    Miami Children’s Museum’s Dino Island
    Bring the kids to the brand new Dino Island exhibit starting with the opening day on June 8th. An exhibit that is fully geared toward dinosaurs will be up and running until 2014 showcasing a 2,5000 square foot space with robotic dinosaurs spread throughout. Visitors will also be able to see prehistoric fossils and learn about the common theory of the extinction of dinosaurs, all while opting for a photo session with the suspended Pteranodon.

    From Picasso to Koons: The Artist as Jeweler
    An exhibit created by jewelry collector Diane Venet, this collection of “wearable sculptures” can be seen from now until July 21st. These pieces that were made by some of the most well-known, sought-after artists of our time, shows not only precise beauty and craft, but displays a sense of romanticism as most items were specifically made for a lover, friend, or family member close to the artist.
  • On May 30, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What new museum exhibits are in Miami?


    Interested in checking out some new exhibits this summer? Miami has plenty of museums that are offering fun and unique exhibits for both kids and adults to enjoy. Here are a few of the top new shows to enjoy this summer.

    Hurricanes at the Miami Science Museum
    Now that we’re in the brink of hurricane season, it only makes sense for us to get prepared during this current Hurricane exhibit. Here, guests are able to not only see different artifacts from Hurricane Andrew, but will also get a chance to step into the cockpit of a P-3 Hurricane Hunter airplane.

    Miami Children’s Museum’s Dino Island
    Bring the kids to the brand new Dino Island exhibit starting with the opening day on June 8th. An exhibit that is fully geared toward dinosaurs will be up and running until 2014 showcasing a 2,5000 square foot space with robotic dinosaurs spread throughout. Visitors will also be able to see prehistoric fossils and learn about the common theory of the extinction of dinosaurs, all while opting for a photo session with the suspended Pteranodon.

    From Picasso to Koons: The Artist as Jeweler
    An exhibit created by jewelry collector Diane Venet, this collection of “wearable sculptures” can be seen from now until July 21st. These pieces that were made by some of the most well-known, sought-after artists of our time, shows not only precise beauty and craft, but displays a sense of romanticism as most items were specifically made for a lover, friend, or family member close to the artist.
  • On May 29, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What are the best family hotels in Miami?


    Looking for a place to stay with the family in Miami? If you’re planning a trip this season to the Magic City and plan to bring the entire family, you want to make sure you find a place for a decent price with family activities, and is also close to all the location attractions. Here are some of the best family friendly hotels that will make your Miami stay a memorable one.

    Holiday Inn Express Miami Springs
    Not only are you close to the Miami International Airport when you stay at the Holiday Inn Express, but you’ll also be close to some great family attractions too, such as the very popular Jungle Island.There is also a 24-hour shuttle service to conveniently get you to the airport, along with a free hot breakfast bar every morning. The service and accommodations are always up to par without the expectation of super high prices.

    Trump International Beach Resort
    Located right along the sandy beaches in Sunny Isles, the Trump International Beach Resort offers luxury services but with kids in mind. They offer an exclusive Kids Club that is free for its guests, along with extra large rooms that are specifically suitable for families, and a shallow area at the pool that is perfect for the young beginner swimmers.

    Loews Miami Beach Hotel
    For those braving the South Beach craziness with the family, the Loews Miami Beach Hotel is the perfect stay. Noted as one of the first family friendly hotels to ever hit the beach, this hotel offers so many amazing kids attractions such as tours, camp, video game competitions, and a “shallow, free-form pool.” There’s also plenty of water sports for the whole family and the Dive-in Movies in the pool to take part in.

  • On May 29, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What are the best family hotels in Miami?


    Looking for a place to stay with the family in Miami? If you’re planning a trip this season to the Magic City and plan to bring the entire family, you want to make sure you find a place for a decent price with family activities, and is also close to all the location attractions. Here are some of the best family friendly hotels that will make your Miami stay a memorable one.

    Holiday Inn Express Miami Springs
    Not only are you close to the Miami International Airport when you stay at the Holiday Inn Express, but you’ll also be close to some great family attractions too, such as the very popular Jungle Island.There is also a 24-hour shuttle service to conveniently get you to the airport, along with a free hot breakfast bar every morning. The service and accommodations are always up to par without the expectation of super high prices.

    Trump International Beach Resort
    Located right along the sandy beaches in Sunny Isles, the Trump International Beach Resort offers luxury services but with kids in mind. They offer an exclusive Kids Club that is free for its guests, along with extra large rooms that are specifically suitable for families, and a shallow area at the pool that is perfect for the young beginner swimmers.

    Loews Miami Beach Hotel
    For those braving the South Beach craziness with the family, the Loews Miami Beach Hotel is the perfect stay. Noted as one of the first family friendly hotels to ever hit the beach, this hotel offers so many amazing kids attractions such as tours, camp, video game competitions, and a “shallow, free-form pool.” There’s also plenty of water sports for the whole family and the Dive-in Movies in the pool to take part in.

  • On May 29, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What are the best luxury hotels in Miami?


    With all the extravagant hotels in Miami, it’s hard to narrow down all the best-of-the-best. However, these four hotels have well proven their signature status in the city, creating a strong name for themselves by providing topnotch service and lavish amenities. 

    Acqualina Resort & Spa
    Inside this stunning luxury Mediterranean villa-inspired hotel, you’ll find pure sophistication located right on the sandy Florida’s Rivera. Noted for its unique architecture and grandeur charm, the Acqualina Resort & Spa brings pure lavishness in the heart of Sunny Isles. Between the five-star quality rated rooms, the decadent cuisine, and serene ESPA spa, this is a hotel for both locals and tourists to enjoy.

    Mandarin Oriental, Miami
    Located away from the chaos of South Beach and conveniently set in its own domain in Brickell Key, the Mandarin Oriental, Miami is a standby waterfront luxury property. Offering its guests topnotch amenities with a private beach, picturesque views of the bay, and lovely suites with built in exclusive spas, this is the hotel for anyone who prefers the finer things. Even the dining experience will tantalize the taste buds with the Asian fusion menu at Azul, al fresco selections at Cafe Sambal, and thirst-quenching cocktails at the waterside M-Bar.

    The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami
    The word “lavish” doesn’t even remotely come close to describe the luxurious accommodations that The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami has to offer. A home-away-from-home for many locals, this resort offers its own luxury private beach setting fully equipped with immaculate service, food, and features. Not only does this hotel offer its guests a beautiful surrounding with breathtaking views and superb dining, but it also provides the sports enthusiasts a proper retreat too, with 11 tennis courts designed by tennis pro Cliff Drysdale, and abundant amount of water activities such as sailing and kayaking.

    Delano Hotel
    As far as South Beach goes, there’s nothing more luxurious than setting up shop inside the beautiful Delano Hotel. Ultra glam, sexy chic, this hotel offers it all right in the middle of the always happening beach scene. Noted as having the very first indoor/outdoor lobby, this space is designed to give its guests a truly unique stay, especially with the many different restaurants, bars, and the penthouse Club Essentia spa providing traditional spa treatments and unique anti-aging services with “personally formulates IV supplements.”
  • On May 16, 2013
  • On May 8, 2013
    Beth Sadowski is now following Carissa Chesanek
  • On April 30, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What are the best waterfront restaurants in Miami?

    IL Gabbiano
    There are many restaurants here in Miami that offer killer water views that it's hard to really list them all. However, here are a few staples that have been supplying good food in an incredible waterfront atmosphere for many years and continue to wow us today. 

    Monty's Stone Crab Seafood House & Raw Bar
    A staple restaurant in Coconut Grove, Monty's Stone Crab Seafood House & Raw Bar has been around for many years, shelling out decent seafood alongside an impeccable water view setting. The dining area is a bit fancier, while the outdoor patio area is casual with its beach bar-style and live music, but both areas provide stellar views. 

    Rusty Pelican
    Panoramic views of the Biscayne Bay and Miami Skyline are what really makes this seafood house a must-see. An old-stand by for many years, the Rusty Pelican provides boat docks, hearty brunches, and some of the best views around. 

    IL Gabbiano
    Situated right in the heart of Brickell, IL Gabbiano provides its guests with authentic Italian cuisine while showing off their stellar water view. The outside terrace is the place to be, where you can twirl your spaghetti while watching the boats cruise by the large Miami skyscrapers in the back drop. 

    Red Fish Grill
    A hidden gem that takes a good ride to get to, the Red Fish Grill has one of the most beautiful views of the bay. Sit outside along the sandy beach and take in the gorgeous view, especially at night when the moon dances over the water. 


  • On April 30, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What are the best places to get a hair blowout in Miami?















    With the high levels of humidity here in Miami, having a good hair day isn't always an easy task. Let the experts help your hair look its best with a proper blowout at any of these topnotch salons. 

    B Dry Blow Bar
    Located right near Lincoln Road in South Beach, B Dry Blo Bar offers exceptional blowouts without the exaggerated prices. For just $35, customers are able to choose from getting an effortless beach wave blo dry or retro makeup application with sexy cat eyes and red lips.

    Blo Blow Dry Bar Midtown
    Inside a pretty pink setting right smack in the middle of busy Midtown Miami, there is Blo Blow Dry Bar Midtown that offers many lavish services. Choose from getting the signature blo out with either a classy or vamp finish, or try one of the blo-on-the-go features, bringing the styling service directly to you at home or the office.

    Salon Vaso
    Known to have some of the best hairstylists around, Salon Vaso has been making plenty of customers happy for years, especially when it comes to blow drying. With a very chic yet comfortable atmosphere and topnotch stylists, this South Beach salon will turn anyone's unruly tresses into a stunning smooth works of art. 
  • On April 30, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What are the best places to get a hair blowout in Miami?













    With the high levels of humidity here in Miami, having a good hair day isn't always an easy task. Let the experts help your hair look its best with a proper blowout at any of these topnotch salons. 

    B Dry Blow Bar
    Located right near Lincoln Road in South Beach, B Dry Blo Bar offers exceptional blowouts without the exaggerated prices. For just $35, customers are able to choose from getting an effortless beach wave blo dry or retro makeup application with sexy cat eyes and red lips.

    Blo Blow Dry Bar Midtown
    Inside a pretty pink setting right smack in the middle of busy Midtown Miami, there is Blo Blow Dry Bar Midtown that offers many lavish services. Choose from getting the signature blo out with either a classy or vamp finish, or try one of the blo-on-the-go features, bringing the styling service directly to you at home or the office.

    Salon Vaso
    Known to have some of the best hairstylists around, Salon Vaso has been making plenty of customers happy for years, especially when it comes to blow drying. With a very chic yet comfortable atmosphere and topnotch stylists, this South Beach salon will turn anyone's unruly tresses into a stunning smooth works of art. 
  • On April 30, 2013
    Carissa Chesanek answered the question: Carissa Chesanek

    What are the best places to get a hair blowout in Miami?




    With the high levels of humidity here in Miami, having a good hair day isn't always an easy task. Let the experts help your hair look its best with a proper blowout at any of these topnotch salons. 

    B Dry Blow Bar
    Located right near Lincoln Road in South Beach, B Dry Blo Bar offers exceptional blowouts without the exaggerated prices. For just $35, customers are able to choose from getting an effortless beach wave blo dry or retro makeup application with sexy cat eyes and red lips.

    Blo Blow Dry Bar Midtown
    Inside a pretty pink setting right smack in the middle of busy Midtown Miami, there is Blo Blow Dry Bar Midtown that offers many lavish services. Choose from getting the signature blo out with either a classy or vamp finish, or try one of the blo-on-the-go features, bringing the styling service directly to you at home or the office.

    Salon Vaso
    Known to have some of the best hairstylists around, Salon Vaso has been making plenty of customers happy for years, especially when it comes to blow drying. With a very chic yet comfortable atmosphere and topnotch stylists, this South Beach salon will turn anyone's unruly tresses into a stunning smooth works of art.