BEST RESTAURANT FOR KIDS - 2004
Kids -- you can't live with 'em, you can't pawn 'em to finance a meal at Casa Tua. So take 'em to Aquatica. The Eden Roc's casual indoor-outdoor restaurant is open from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 a.m., which gives you plenty of flexibility. After the little ones have had roughly three bites of Aquatica's heroic hamburger or kid-friendly Cuban sandwich (crustless, noncrumbly bread), both of which come with tasty shoestring fries, then they'll want to ignore their food and run around the restaurant. So let 'em. Aquatica's outdoor deck dining area is practically on the beach. That's all playground out there! So they can bury each other in sand while you eat your grown-up food -- maybe the South Beach fish stew or a rock-shrimp quesadilla, and definitely one or three of Aquatica's cocktails, like the not-too-sweet Floridian: Stoli, Cointreau, fresh lime, orange juice, and a splash of cranberry. You don't have to be staying at the Eden Roc to enjoy the place; there's plenty of parking in the public lot immediately north of the hotel. And the prices are among the Beach's best bargains.