AT&T upgrades more than 130 cell sites across South Florida

AT&T announced this week that it has upgraded more than 130 cell sites in South Florida, adding extra capacity that the company said would allow it to handle more network traffic in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami Dade counties.

The upgrades will result in faster data speeds and better overall network performance, the company said.

RELATED: Comcast to cap home data usage for Palm Beach County customers

AT&T said areas covered by the network upgrades in Palm Beach County include: Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Highland Beach, Jupiter, Lake Park, Lake Worth, Loxahatchee, North Palm Beach, Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, Riviera Beach, Royal Palm Beach, Wellington, and West Palm Beach.

“AT&T works hard to deliver a great network experience for our customers, wherever they are,” AT&T Florida President Joe York said. “That’s why we continue to invest in our South Florida networks. Our investments will help customers get the most out of their mobile devices.”

 

This local airport was named one of the best in the country

Palm Beach International Airport is one of the best in the country, according to Travel + Leisure magazine.

PBIA took the 9th spot on the magazine’s list of the Top 10 best domestic airports, which was released on Tuesday. The list appears in the August 2017 issue of the magazine and on Travel + Leisure’s website.

A Frontier jet taxis toward its gate at the Palm Beach International Airport Friday, November 21, 2014 after arriving for the first time from Trenton, NJ just before noon. (Damon Higgins / The Palm Beach Post)

RELATED: This local resort made Travel + Leisure’s Top 10 list

PBIA bills itself as a “user-friendly, congestion-free, comfortable yet modern airport.” It has nearly 200 daily non-stop arrivals and departures to more than 25 destinations in the US, Canada and the Caribbean on 13 airlines.

Other airports that made Travel + Leisure’s Top 10 list include: Minneapolis – St. Paul International; Austin-Bergstrom International, Texas; and Tampa International, Florida.

Portland International in Oregon claimed the top spot — marking the fifth consecutive year its earned the number 1 ranking.

This local resort made Travel + Leisure’s Top 10 list

The Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa ranks among the Top 10 hotels in Florida, according to Travel + Leisure magazine.

The Manalapan resort took the 10th spot on the list, which appears in the August 2017 issue of the magazine, and on Travel + Leisure’s website.

Eau Spa (Provided)

RELATED: Chinese leader stay at Eau chance for resort, county to stand out

Other Florida hotels to make Travel + Leisure’s list include: Omni Orlando Resort at ChampionsGate; Acqualina Resort & Spa in Sunny Isles Beach; and Little Palm Island Resort & Spa in Little Torch Key. The top spot went to the Gasparilla Inn & Club in the small beachfront town of Boca Grande.

The list marks the second time this year the Eau Palm Beach has been honored by a major travel publication.

In February, the Eau was one of two Palm Beach County resorts to earn top honors from Forbes Travel Guide. Both the Eau and the Four Seasons Palm Beach received Forbes’ Five-Star Award — the highest designation.

RELATED: Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa receives Forbes five-star rating

The Eau, located on a 7-acre site with ocean views and lush tropical gardens, underwent a major transformation in 2013 — dropping the Ritz-Carlton name and re-branding itself as a beachfront getaway for both out-of-town guests and locals looking for a beachfront retreat.

It’s amenities include an award-winning spa; four restaurants and lounges; three Har-Tru clay tennis courts; two pools; children and teen clubs and more than 30,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor event space.

Chinese President Xi Jinping stayed at the resort when he traveled to Palm Beach County in March to meet with President Donald Trump — a visit that put an international spotlight on the hotel.

President Xi’s visit marked the second time in five years that a president stayed at the property.

Former President Barack Obama spent a night at the resort while on the campaign trail in 2012. The property was still operating under the Ritz-Carlton brand during Obama’s stay.

 

 

Amazon Prime Day 2017: 5 tips for finding the best deals

Amazon plans to bring back its popular “Prime Day” sale on July 11, offering 30 hours of deals to members in 13 countries.

The bargain hunters at FatWallet.com and BestBlackFriday.com have offered up these eight money-saving tips to make sure you get the best deal.

In this Tuesday, May 9, 2017, photo, a package from Amazon Prime is loaded for delivery on a UPS truck, in New York. Amazon is extending its annual “Prime Day” promotion to 30 hours this year. Amazon will offer discounts and other deals in an effort to boost sales during the slower summer months. This year’s Prime Day will start at 9 p.m. ET on July 10, 2017. While Amazon has claimed success, there have been grumblings that Prime Day deals have been unimpressive or involve older models. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

Check your account settings

Prime Day starts at 9 p.m. ET (6 p.m. PT) on Monday, July 10 – and Amazon said new deals will be offered as often as every five minutes. FatWallet’s experts recommend checking your account settings now to make sure you’re ready to shop.

RELATED: Amazon’s “Prime Day” deals return July 11; Here’s what to expect

Deals can sell out within seconds, so FatWallet offered these tips to save you time at checkout:

  • Let Amazon know all of your information (billing/shipping) so it’s much easier and faster to purchase an item
  • Add your billing, shipping addresses and credit card(s) Once those are saved it’ll be
  • Enable 1-Click Ordering (some Lightning Deals do not allow 1-Click Ordering)
  • Make sure that your cart is empty before you start shopping
  • Clear your browser’s cache to help avoid any issues during checkout

Do Research

Amazon’s Lightning Deals do not have a visible price until they become available, so it can be tricky to know if it’s a great deal in the moment, FatWallet says. The website recommends making a list of upcoming deals you’re interested in and scouting around the web for competing prices. You can also use a website like camelcamelcamel.com to check pricing histories to help you buy with the confidence you’re saving money.

Check for a preview of deals

Over the past two years, Amazon has held off until the day or so before Prime Day to provide a significant preview of deals, according to BestBlackFriday.com.  The website expect Amazon to wait until early in the day on July 10 or sometime on July 9 to release this year’s list.

Use your desktop or laptop computer for purchases

While Amazon’s app is a great tool for browsing and finding upcoming deals, BestBlackFriday.com recommends purchases on a computer. It is quicker and allows you to have more than one window open, which is essential for comparing prices and looking up third-party reviews for products.

Watch for sales at other stores

Don’t forget sales from competitor stores.  While Amazon is the star on Prime Day, BestBlackFriday.com says competitors like Walmart, eBay, and Best Buy are likely to have strong sales themselves.

Back-to-school shopping: Retailers already stocking shelves with school-related items

Students won’t return to school in Palm Beach County for another five weeks, but retailers are already lining store shelves with back-to-school items in hopes of catching early-bird shoppers.

The Fourth of July holiday marks the unofficial start of the back-to-school shopping season, as big box retailers mark down summer items like patio sets and backyard supplies to make room for pencils, paper and other school-related items.

RELATED: Will 20 new programs spell the end of gifted clusters?

Back-to-school is the retail industry’s second biggest shopping season of the year, falling behind Black Friday and holiday shopping rush.

Parents of K-12 and college students are expected to spend more than $121.6 billion in this year, according to MediaMath, a programmatic ad tech company for marketers.

(Photo by Taylor Jones/The Palm Beach Post).  School supplies Indiantown Community Outreach will give away during the 5th annual Back to School Bash.

Spending on back-to-school items starts ramping up right after the Fourth of July holiday, peaking between late July and mid-August, according to a MediaMath study.

Back-to-school related sales are expected to grow by 4 percent this year, according to eMarketer, a market research firm.

Workers at the Target on Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard spent part of the Fourth of July clearing out a corner of the store to make way for school supplies. Patio items were marked down as much as 70 percent to make room for the back-to-school rush.

Florida’s popular back-to-school sales tax holiday will return next month. The holiday, which runs Aug. 4-6, is worth an estimated $33.4 million.

During the three-day weekend, shoppers won’t be charged the state’s 6 percent sales tax or the county’s discretionary sales surtax on certain school-related and other specified items.

The annual tax break this year includes clothing, footwear and certain accessories selling for $60 or less; certain school supplies selling for $15 or less per item; and personal computers and certain computer-related accessories, selling for $750 or less per item, when purchased for noncommercial home or personal use.

See which new store just opened at CityPlace

CityPlace

Natuzzi Italia has opened a 9,000-square-foot store at CityPlace in West Palm Beach, a move that signals the shopping, dining and entertainment center continues to boost its home furnishings offerings.

The Italian furniture brand is located on Rosemary Avenue, just south of the Cheesecake Factory restaurant.

Natuzzi’s products, made in Italy, feature sofas, armchairs, furniture and home furnishing accessories. The company is known for its sleek, contemporary styles.

Natuzzi has six other stores throughout Florida but only one other in Palm Beach County, in Boca Raton. Worldwide, Natuzzi has 1,200 stores.

In a statement, Natuzzi’s global retail chief, Nazzario Pozzi, said the company is moving quickly to expand its presence in the United States.

Plans for Natuzzi’s new store first were revealed to the Palm Beach Post in September 2015 by Ken Himmel, president of Related Urban, the mixed-use unit of New York-based Related Cos. and the developer of CityPlace.

At the time, Himmel predicted the store would open in the spring of 2016. It’s not clear why the store is opening more than a year later.

But back in 2015, Himmel said Natuzzi was lured to the site by the presence of a massive  “mansion” being built in the median of Okeechobee Boulevard for Restoration Hardware, a furniture and home furnishings store.

The 60,000-square-foot store is slated to open soon and will kick off Himmel’s plans to transform CityPlace into a home furnishings destination.

CityPlace has changed up its retail roster during its 17 years of operation.

It was designed as a large retail destination, with a number of high-end stores. Then it focused on home furnishings during the real estate boom. It then switched heavily to entertainment and dining when the recession hit.

Lately, women’s retailers have cycled out due to the advent of on-line sales, so Himmel has said home furnishings stores will play an important role at the center.

Last September, The Shade Store, a  Port Chester, N.Y.-based company selling premium custom window treatments, opened at CityPlace.

 

Lilly Pulitzer lovers in South Florida get early access to new summer items

Lilly lovers in South Florida have the chance to score the company’s latest summer items a week before anyone else.

Photo provided by the Lilly Pulitzer store in Boca Raton.

The store in Boca Raton is the first location in the country to offer the retailer’s new summer items, including dresses, strapless tops and resort evening wear.

RELATED: These new stores are coming to The Gardens Mall

Assistant manager Sara Mignano said the Boca store was selected by the company to be a model for visual displays for the last summer delivery, and as a result those items are already available here.

You won’t be able to get the items online or in any other Lilly store until July 5, Mignano said.

“We have the product out,” Mignano said. “It is the only place people will be able to shop this brand new line.”

The store is located at the Town Center at Boca Raton.

These new stores are coming to The Gardens Mall

Three new stores, including two jewelry retailers and a cell phone provider, are slated to open over the next few months at The Gardens Mall in Palm Beach Gardens.

Alex and Ani, a jewelry store known for its bangles and other American-made pieces, is scheduled to open in September. The 1,000-square- foot store will be located on the upper level between Marmi Shoes and Tumi, mall officials said.

RELATED: This new store just opened in the Wellington mall

Kendra Scott, a women’s jewelry and home goods retailer, is tentatively scheduled to open on July 21. The 1,062-square-foot store will be located on the mall’s lower level outside of Nordstrom.

T-Mobile plans to open a location in the mall this summer. The 2,373-square- foot store will be located next to Macy’s on the mall’s upper level.

RELATED: Why Park Ave BBQ is going into The Gardens Mall

The mall welcomed two other stores this spring — Kay Jewelers and at Fast-Fix Jewelry and Watch Repairs.

Meanwhile, Park Avenue BBQ and Grill will take over the Counter Burger space (on the lower level near Sears) at the end of the summer.

 

British Airways to launch nonstop service between Ft. Lauderdale and London

British Airways on Thursday will launch new nonstop service between Ft. Lauderdale and London’s Gatwick Airport.

The flight marks the airline’s first schedule commercial service from  Broward County’s Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, officials said.

British Airways will offer service on the route on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays, the airport said.

Airport officials said the new service will not only connect Ft. Lauderdale and London, but will also provide a link to more than 150 destinations around the world.

 

 

This Florida attraction was named the world’s top amusement park by TripAdvisor

Universal’s Islands of Adventure was recently named the world’s top amusement park by TripAdvisor — marking the third consecutive year the Orlando-area attraction has earned the coveted title.

Three weeks after the grand opening of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, guests jam the attraction, shortly after the Islands of Adventure park opening on July 9, 2010, at Universal Orlando in Orlando, Fla. (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel/TNS)

Orlando’s Discover Cove took the second spot on the list, while Disney’s Magic Kingdom came in 4th place.

RELATED: Is Lion Country Safari going to be sold?

Universal Studios Florida and Disney’s Animal Kingdom — both in Orlando — also made the list.

For water parks, Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Aquatica Orlando both ranked among the best in the world.  Siam Park, a Thai-themed aquatic facility, topped TripAdvisor’s Water Parks list for the fourth consecutive year.

TripAdvisor said award winners were determined using an algorithm that took into account the quantity and quality of reviews and ratings for amusement parks and water parks worldwide, gathered over a 12-month period.

Here are TripAdvisor’s complete lists:

Top 10 Amusement Parks in the World:

  1. Universal’s Islands of Adventure – Orlando, Florida
  2. Discovery Cove – Orlando, Florida
  3. Europa-Park – Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany
  4. Magic Kingdom – Orlando, Florida
  5. Universal Studios Hollywood – Los Angeles, California
  6. Le Puy du Fou – Les Epesses, France
  7. Beto Carrero World – Penha, State of Santa Catarina, Brazil
  8. Universal Studios Florida – Orlando, Florida
  9. Epcot – Orlando, Florida
  10. Disney’s Animal Kingdom – Orlando, Florida

Top 10 Water Parks in the World:

  1. Siam Park – Tenerife, Spain
  2. Beach Park – Aquiraz, State of Ceara, Brazil
  3. Waterbom Bali – Kuta, Indonesia
  4. Aquaventure Waterpark – Dubai, United Arab Emirates
  5. Thermas dos Laranjais – Olimpia, State of Sao Paulo, Brazil
  6. Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park – Orlando, Florida
  7. Hot Park – Rio Quente, State of Goias, Brazil
  8. Wild Wadi Waterpark – Dubai, United Arab Emirates
  9. Aquatica Orlando – Orlando, Florida
  10. Yas Waterworld Abu Dhabi – Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Top 10 Amusement Parks in the U.S.:

  1.  Universal’s Islands of Adventure – Orlando, Florida
  2. Discovery Cove – Orlando, Florida
  3. Magic Kingdom – Orlando, Florida
  4. Universal Studios Hollywood – Los Angeles, California
  5. Universal Studios Florida – Orlando, Florida
  6. Epcot – Orlando, Florida
  7. Disney’s Animal Kingdom – Orlando, Florida
  8. SeaWorld Orlando – Orlando, Florida
  9. Disney California Adventure Park – Anaheim, California
  10. Disneyland Park – Anaheim, California

Top 10 Water Parks in the U.S.:

  1. Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park – Orlando, Florida
  2. Aquatica Orlando – Orlando, Florida
  3. Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park – Orlando, Florida
  4. Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari – Santa Claus, Indiana
  5. Water Country USA – Williamsburg, Virginia
  6. Noah’s Ark Water Park – Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
  7. Splash Lagoon Indoor Water Park Resort – Erie, Pennsylvania
  8. Morey’s Piers and Beachfront Water Parks – Wildwood, New Jersey
  9. Waldameer Park & Water World – Erie, Pennsylvania
  10. Water World – Federal Heights, Colorado