Take your puppy to West Palm Beach, which accepts dogs
In a recent report, a chihuahua snuck into luggage as his humans direction Las Vegas. The dog, Icky, had buried himself in a boot, only to be discovered when the suitcase exceeded its weight limit. Icky, luckily, was fine.
My first thought while reading this was: yes, absolutely, of course. I also have a small dog, a 5 pound rescue Pomeranian named Rocket. Rocket puts himself in danger by constantly trying to go on an adventure. He slips out the door, sneaks into handbags, throws his bird bones on the doorstep as if protesting the kidnapping of a mature oak tree.
We left him with dog sitters. Yet sometimes, it’s hard to deny her desire for undivided attention, 100 percent of the time, without any breaks.
As there are three of us in this wedding, we took Rocket about four hours southeast to West Palm Beach for an anniversary weekend. To my knowledge, West Palm Beach hasn’t billed itself as the most dog-friendly destination in Florida, but I’m giving this idea free to tourists.
We stayed at a new boutique hotel called The Ben which is part of Marriott’s autograph collection. Not only are dogs allowed (for $ 125), they’re themed. We are talking about a pop-up dog bowl and sachet dispenser offered on arrival. We are talking about sculptures of golden dogs at the end of the corridors. We are talking about room service with a “baby fur filet mignon”. Don’t insult my character; we didn’t buy Rocket a trickle of $ 30. He prefers the sirloin. I am joking. He prefers chateaubriand.
The patterns are also very pleasant for humans, like a bookcase bound in leather. Our room had a sliding door hidden at the back of the shower which is great if you want to terrorize that special someone while they are trying to relax.
We ate a romantic birthday dinner, with the Pomeranian watching us, on the patio of Pistachio French Bistro, only a short walk from the hotel on Clematis Street. After dinner we watched a light show outside the restaurant. Rocket enjoyed the fountains attached to Katy Perry.
A vegan restaurant called Darbster, named after the owners’ poodle, offered a few hours discount on Sundays if you brought a dog. I have never refused a discount and am not about to start. We visited Civil Society Brewing, which has a dog mascot and a large canine clientele. And we discovered BRK Republic, tucked away at the back of a Clematis Street taco shop. You need to register your dog to make sure he is not Cujo. Then, he is free to walk behind the bar and into an outdoor pool. The place is covered in fake grass, so you know what that means.
Rocket was cleared at the West Palm Beach Antiques Festival, a monthly gathering at the South Florida Fairgrounds. He also made the cut at a few antique shops, riding a dog backpack we bought online. Once inside the bag, it doesn’t squirm or make a sound, it just looks outward like a possessed Furby.
Yet, because I was raised in the Catholic Midwest, I always ask permission, apologize, and assume the worst. This posture is apparently not needed in West Palm. We saw a guy with two large breeds inside West Elm in Rosemary Square, just considering the sofas.
We ventured into the multi-story Restoration Hardware, which looks like Beyoncé’s house and has a restaurant at the top. My husband said I had to act confident with the dog, like the guy did in West Elm. I agreed, and then I practically shouted, “I AM A PEASANT, CAN I HUMBLY ENTER WITH MY FARM HERD?” “
“Dogs are allowed! The employee said cheerfully, before getting annoyed at the placid gremlin in the backpack. Rocket looked back at him, fully understanding that he was running our lives and enjoying the vacation designed especially for him.
It was time to go.
Receive Stéphanie’s newsletter
For weekly bonus content and a preview of Stephanie Hayes columns, sign up for the free Stephinitely newsletter.