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Unique Cafes by Altis Sand Lake

Everyone who lives in Orlando knows that there is a Starbucks around every corner, but what if you’re craving something different? Lucky for us, Orlando has plenty of other coffee shops, many of which offer delicious pastries and sandwiches to accompany that cortado you’ve been craving. Read on to discover our favorite local cafes with a unique twist.

If you feel like you need an escape, stop by Le Cafe de Paris right off of Dr. Phillip’s Blvd. This quaint little cafe has an adorable back story – the owners (Claude and Chantal) met at one of Claude’s coffee shops in a small French town called Metz. The couple fell in love and decided to treat America to a taste of French coffee and cuisine in 2007, when they opened Le Cafe de Paris right here in Orlando. Since this cafe is so family oriented, all of the recipes are made by hand and completely embody French traditions (this place doesn’t limit themselves to just coffee). Stop by for breakfast and treat yourself to a croque monsieur or a delectable French salad during lunch – bon appetit!

If you’re in the mood for something a little more Mediterranean, the Sahara Cafe Hookah Lounge offers a comfortable setting to sit back, relax, and enjoy the company of your friends. They have some of the best hookah in town, a type of water pipe that allows you to smell mild, flavored tobacco. If you’re not into the hookah, you’ll be impressed by their wide selections of coffee, Moroccan tea, and Middle Eastern appetizers. If you’re looking for something a bit more upbeat, Sahara Cafe offers live DJs and belly dancers on Fridays!

The beauty of Orlando is in its diversity. What other city allows you to have breakfast in Paris, spend the afternoon lounging around on the beach, and finish the night at a Middle Eastern lounge?


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Valentine’s Day Cocktails

We’re pretty sure everyone agrees that nothing quite sets the mood on Valentine’s Day like a handcrafted cocktail. There’s something very romantic about holding a delicate glass filled with a bubbly, delicious drink. Cocktails also remind us of a celebration, so just because you might be single this year (us too.. don’t worry), it doesn’t mean you don’t have anything to celebrate on Valentine’s Day. Surround yourself with loved ones (yes, your cat counts), whip up a few cocktails, and toast! 

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Whether you’re planning a romantic night out on the town with your sweetheart or hosting a single’s soirée at home, these Valentine’s Day themed drinks will have everyone raving!

If you’re already thinking of warm, summer afternoons try these refreshing strawberry slushies. Provocatively named the “Redhead in Bed,” this cocktail requires very simple ingredients (think strawberries, vodka, and riesling). If you need something that can be made in a few minutes, this is the drink for you because you probably already have all of the ingredients at home.

If you want to impress your date (or your gal pals), we suggest this sparkling Lillet and grapefruit cocktail. These aperitifs are meant to be sipped before a night out, so whip up a few, play some jazz, and relax! The only unfamiliar ingredient is grapefruit bitters, but you can find those at any liquor-themed store.

If you’re feeling traditional, this pomegranate champagne cocktail is the one for you! All you need is some chilled champagne, a few ounces of pomegranate liquor, and a lemon for garnish if you’re feeling fancy. There’s just something about toasting with champagne flutes that instantly puts everyone in a celebratory mood and what better day to celebrate than Valentine’s Day?

Valentine’s Day has such a bad stigma these days. There’s no reason why we can’t take a day to celebrate the ones we love – our significant others, our mothers and fathers, our friends, and maybe even the pizza delivery guy that visits every Wednesday night. Whether you’re getting ready for your big night out and staying in, these yummy cocktails will put you in a lovely state of mind!