Best Sanctuary from the Fast Track - 2008
Baptist Hospital of Miami
In front of Baptist Hospital, there are two gigantic man-made lakes and an asphalt jogging track. Surrounding the lakes are benches, and they are usually occupied by people feeding the ducks and their feathered friends. It doesn't matter that the signs say, "Do Not Feed the Birds." This is hallowed ground. As you begin to stroll or jog on the half-mile tree-lined track, a calm and meditative state of mind transports you. A few seconds later, you're contemplating life and death, which both occur in the hospital behind the lakes. The peach building's Italian Renaissance architecture is as beautiful as Miami's Vizcaya. Need a glass of ice water after your stroll? No problem. Inside the main lobby is a cafeteria with a water fountain, as well as a great salad bar. With all of those endorphins pumping, you might need to sit down and say a little prayer. Good news: Next to the cafeteria is a beautiful and quiet chapel (which closes at 10 p.m.). Best of all, there is 24-hour security, so if those ducks attack, you'll be saved.