97.9 WRFM adds 50% off weekly dining deals for South Florida restaurants

WRMF Dining DealsAs you know via my previous posts, restaurant deals seem to be the latest and greatest craze, and for me, dining out has become a luxury since having my baby. So of course, if I can save 50% or more, I’m thrilled.

97.9 WRMF, a South Florida radio station, has just added an online dining deals area where every Thursday around 9:50am, they’ll feature a new restaurant of the week at 50% off.   They do advise that you have to be fast, since they’re only providing a limited number of half off gift certificates each week. 

As of this writing, there are still a lot of certificates left.  But I’m betting just like Pauly’s Picks on Big 106, once this catches on, the deals will sell out fast. They’re featuring either $25.00 or $50.00 in food/drink credit for $15.00–so sometimes you’re getting more than 50%, sometimes a bit less.

I’m not crazy about the layout of their webpage–it’s pretty sloppy and you have to scroll aaaallll the way down because of the placement of their pictures. But really? The deal information is what’s most important.

I’ve personally only heard of one of the restaurants they’re featuring–Six Tables, that literally only has six tables and they offer a fixed price menu for a four-course meal. It’s at Mizner Park, and I probably wouldn’t drive all that way with the family in tow–not to mention it’s not particularly a “family” restaurant. But I’ve heard great things about it and this is a less expensive way to try it, as it normally costs $65.00 per person. 

In any case, check the online dining deals every Thursday to see what’s being offered…I know I’ll be popping over next week to see if I can score a good deal on a great South Florida restaurant.

Bon appetit!

Himmarshee Grill serves up savings–and awesome food! in September

Himmarshee Bar and GrillOne of my favorite restaurants in downtown Ft. Lauderdale is Himmarshee Grill. Their menu is creative, incredibly tasty, and service is always fantastic to boot. Unfortunately, the outstanding experience can be a bit on the pricey side for those of us trying to save a few bucks.

But…enter their “Monday Madness” deal, where you receive 50% off your dinner entree every Monday night…(with the exception of Monday, September 27, 2010 when the restraurant will be celebrating Chilean wines with their monthly Whole Foods Wine Dinner.)  No, most of us don’t pop out to dinner on a Monday night, but maybe we should since it’s a great opportunity to enjoy their delicious menu at half price.

They also feature “Tuesday Night Wine-d Up” where they offer a weekly wine special:  Buy one glass, or one bottle, and get one glass, or one bottle free on select wines. And the selection changes weekly. I raise my glass to that deal! In my household, we’d be going for the bottle.

Lastly, on Fridays and Saturdays for you single, happening peeps, Himmarshee rocks their Side Bar with their $2 Appy Hour: 2-4-1 drinks till 8 PM and tasty $2 appetizers.

So…while some of us are home-bound watching Yo Gabba Gabba with our little ones and attempting not to burn dinner, the rest of you can head over to downtown and imbibe in these fantastic deals. Or maybe we’ll just bring the bambina along for the ride–she does tend to be somewhat of a foodie already!

September 15th is Free Dessert Day!

Free Dessert DayDessert is sometimes the best part of the meal, so I’m excited to share that September 15, 2010 is “Free Dessert Day”, an event in celebration of tonight’s premiere of Top Chef Just Desserts on Bravo. You can enjoy a sweet treat compliments of OpenTable and Bravo, at participating restaurants in your area. 

Just make an online reservation at OpenTable, have dinner at a participating restaurant on September 15, and get a free dessert for every 2 diners at your table. (Each person must order a minimum of one entrée.)

Here’s a link to the restaurants in the Ft. Lauderdale area where this promotion applies.  If you live in a different area, just change your search to find venues where you can get your free dessert tonight.

Here’s to eating more desserts!! Thanks, Bravo…

Save 50-90% on restaurants, spas and more daily deals with sites like Groupon and LivingSocial

A few weeks ago, I came across a website called Groupon.com, that offers up a daily deal in your local area, usually at 50% off, sometimes more. Since I love a deal, I of course had to check this out further.

 The way it works is, they offer a deal with a minimum number that has to be purchased (the tipping point) in order for everyone to get the deal. Once the deal is “on” then it’s available for purchase for only that day.  You basically sign up to receive an email every day for your local area, and it changes each day. They have harnessed the power of “collective buying”, and it’s all the rage these days, with competitors popping up left and right–which is fine by me, I’ll take all the deals someone is willing to offer! And although some of the deals tend to be similar, I’ve seen very little overlap so far.

This is fantastic for people like me who hate paying full price, and fantastic for local businesses to get exposure, to get some new folks trying out their services or restaurant, and hopefully gain some repeat customers along the way. I do know Groupon takes half of the money generated from the daily deal, which earned them a pretty penny a few weeks ago when they sold about $11 million dollars worth of Groupons and crashed their servers during a Gap.com promotion.

The first Groupon I purchased (play on the words “group” and “coupon”) was for a site called ShapeLovers.com, a local service that prepares fresh and healthy lunches and dinners daily.  I snagged 3 lunches and 3 dinners delivered to me fresh for only $20.00. I bought the max amount of Groupons (there is usually a limit, most likely to prevent “scalpers, I imagine”) for that deal, which was five. And for the past five weeks, I’ve been enjoying having my lunch and dinner prepared for me and delivered to me at work.

Normally it would cost about $50 or $60 a week for what I received, so it’s been fabulous. The food has been delicious, and although I did indulge in one extra week (my Groupon also included 15% off my next purchase), I most likely won’t continue because it’s not in my budget to spend that kind of money on lunches–sadly, it’ll be back to brown-bagging it next week.

However, I’ve also gotten many other awesome deals from Groupon–like a Shutterfly photobook for only $10.00 ($30.00 value), $150 worth of services from Canvas on Demand, and $30.00 worth of credit at beauty.com for only 15.00. I have to admit, I look forward each day to see what’s waiting for me in my email inbox!

I also signed up for LivingSocial.com, which is just like Groupon (and their biggest competitor, if I’m not mistaken) but they offer a bit of a twist. If you refer three friends to the daily deal and they buy it, yours is free. I haven’t gotten my freebie yet, but hopefully soon!  Groupon does offer “Groupon Bucks” as a referral incentive; you get $10.00 in Groupon Bucks when someone you invite gets their first Groupon, which can be used toward future purchases.

There are also two new similar sites in the South Florida area:  GottaHalfIt.com and CrazyGoodDeal.com.  I purchased $25.00 worth of credit for food/drink at Bru’s Room for $5.90, as well as a 50-minute hot stone massage for $35.00 (for the hubby’s upcoming birthday) at the Diamante Day Spa from GottaHalfIt.  I got a 50 minute deep tissue massage for $25.00 at Spatopia in Ft. Lauderdale from Crazy Good Deal about a week ago.

One thing that differentiates GottaHalfIt is that the deal is on for more than one day–sometimes it’s available for4 or 5 days. I don’t know if that’s because they recently launched, but I do like the ability to find out more from a venue if need be, before purchasing. Though I wonder if it’s hurting their sales? Groupon has a really helpful feature where you can join in a discussion with questions about the daily deal, and that helps alleviate the need for a phone call. This also sets them apart from some of the other sites.

The last daily deal website I signed up for is AdilityDeal.com (strange name), where I purchased $300 worth of services at Hair Venture Salon for only $29.99 (includes a mini-facial, manicure, hair cut-style-blowdry, and eyebrow wax). Just for the mini-facial alone it was worth the money.

However, what I don’t like about Adility is instead of offering your voucher via .pdf right away like the other sites, you have to pay for shipping and handling and they mail it to you. Very old school and we of the instant gratification generation prefer to be able to get our paws on our deals immediately. Not to mention, I hate to pay any more than need be and to pay for shipping is kind of silly in this highly technical day and age.

These websites certainly offer a great way to be able to get your champagne fix on a beer budget!  Be sure to check them out in your local area today and start getting the most bang for your buck, and I’d love to hear if you have any more Daily Deal sites that you recommend or enjoy.