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The Grove vs. Sunset Place

By: Carla Tabag // Staff InSight Writer

Issue date: 7/8/08 Section: Insight
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One of the perks of attending a university so close to a big city like Miami is the seemingly endless list of places to go and things to do. Two of the closest spots to UM are the Grove and Sunset Place. Both spots sport an AMC movie theater, restaurants, shops and countless nightlife options. But, depending on what you're looking for and what you're used to, there is definitely a better choice of the two.

The Grove is the popular haunt for UM students looking for a consistent good time. Especially on Thursday nights, the Grove is usually the place to be with is great dive bars like Moe's, Tavern and Sandbar, along with a few clubs. There's also a plethora of dining options ranging from the burger and soda joints like Hooters and Johnny Rockets to the pricier places like The Cheesecake Factory and The Knife. Another spot frequented by UM students is Monty's during happy hour. This restaurant and bar right on the waterfront is a great place to unwind after classes from 5 pm to 8 pm when the crowd is usually large and lighthearted.

While the Grove is great for nightlife and bars, Sunset Place steals the spotlight for shopping and movies. Within walking distance from campus, Sunset Place offers a great place to just hang out. With shops like American Eagle, Gap, Victoria's Secret, and Lucky, Sunset Place is more like a mall than the Grove, which has only a few stores. Sunset Place is usually the more frequented movie theater because both the Cocowalk theater because its proximity make Sunset Place the usual movie go-to for UM students. It also has a few dining options like Johnny Rockets and Cheeseburger in Paradise. Nearby restaurants expand Sunset's dining options with fancier fare like Trattoria del Sol and Carrabba's. Adding to Sunset's amusement selections is a bowling alley which is set to open around August.

Another consideration to take into account when deciding on where to go is parking, which can be limited or expensive in the Grove. Meter parking is limited and flat rate lots range from $5-8, with the higher rates after 6 pm. Drivers can even save money on parking in the parking garage at Sunset by validating their parking ticket. Tickets can be validated either in the second floor of Barnes and Noble or in AMC. While both locations offer similar amusements, generally if you're looking for nightlife go with the Grove. If the night calls for a movie or shopping, Sunset is the best option. No matter what the particular form of entertainment UM students are looking for, whether a night out or a nice dinner away from Charty's, there's always fun to be had nearby.

Carla Tabag can be contacted at c.tabag@umiami.edu.
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