Miami - swaying palm trees, pink bougainvillea and the azure sea lined with white sand beaches are juxtaposed to the Art Deco and Modernist styled buildings. Add in a world-class nightlife, incredible restaurants and a distinct and vibrant art scene, and you’ve got the ideal long weekend destination (or longer, if you can handle it…). These are the hot spots I tried and tested, just for you, dear reveler…
Soho House members and their guests may enjoy these facilities anytime but non-members should book a room. This gorgeous spot (a restored Art Deco building) offers a gym, Cowshed spa, three restaurants, two bars, two swimming pools, and a private stretch of beach. Striped sunbeds and chic umbrellas are provided along with your personal server to pour you rosé all day long…. Why would one go anywhere else? Soho House hosts unique beach parties with music provided by international DJs – I won’t soon forget dancing barefoot in the sand until the wee hours …
Rum Punch by Elmore Leonard with a cocktail on the beach. You’ll understand why this highly entertaining thriller, set in Miami, was loved by Quentin Tarantino so much, he adapted it into his “Jackie Brown” movie.
Open all day, Cecconi’s boasts an incredibly romantic atmosphere – the faux outdoor seating is highlighted by trees twinkling with fairy lights, and candles hung to create a picturesque setting. The Italian fare is delicious and wine list excellent; I am still dreaming about the whipped ricotta, black truffle and honey appetizer!
Named after the lavish train that connected New York and Miami (its founders are a mix of New York-born and Miami natives) in 1890, this is THE place for brunch. Your attentive server will aide your hangover with liver-cleansing juices, and retoxing cocktails. We skipped the bottomless Mimosas/Bloody Marys/ Bellinis on offer in favour of a Watermelon Basil Lemonade. The Quinoa Fried Rice and Huevos Rancheros were just what we needed to start our days.
All-you-can-drink-rosé-brunch. Have I got your attention? This Wynwood Peruvian restaurant offers the best eggs I’ve ever eaten, in the form of Soft Shell Crab Eggs Benedict. If you’re particular about your rosé (as everyone should be), we're not referring to the cranberry-coloured swill you pick up from Tesco…. The rosé on tap is the real-deal, almost-golden-hued nectar from Provence. Once you’ve satisfied your hunger and thirst, the Wynwood walls are just around the corner…
A hotspot on top the design heaven that is the 1 Hotel, this Polynesian/ Japanese fusion restaurant has spectacular ocean views and delicious fare. My friend referring to the Brie and Unagi Roll as an upscale Smoked Salmon and Cream Cheese roll made me reluctant to try it, but it is mouth-wateringly good and not to be missed. Cocktail pairings enhance the flavours of the food, and offer a change of pace from the usual wine accompaniment.
Escape Miami Beach and its hordes of tourists and come to this locals' haunt. This dimly lit bar has the best cocktails in town: a favourite is the Hot and Smokey. If you’re keen for a wild night after you’ve finished your drinks, sometimes-strip-club-always-a-good-time E11even club is only 50 metres away…
Miami’s arts district buzzes year-round, even if you don’t make it in time for Art Basel. This hive of galleries and studios is a perfect place to spend days roaming, checking out emerging artists’ pieces, as well as works by Andy Warhol, Basquiat, and Jeff Koons. We particularly liked the de la Cruz Collection, Locust Projects and Rubell Family Collection.
Stop in for coffee at Brothers and Brawlers, set up as a concept store for sunglasses brand Dirocco. Everything in the store, including mid-century furniture, vintage motorcycles, clothing, and my dream car (Santa, if you’re reading this, I’ve been very good) is for sale.
Although a bit crowded, the Wynwood Walls are impressive, and a great opportunity to get up close and personal with the artists who paint the large-scale walls that adorn the garden.
Do as the locals do, and head to the Perez Art Museum Miami. The PAMM is worth visiting for its stunning architecture alone, and its mix of contemporary and modern art does not disappoint. The museum has a fantastic collection of Latin American art, an influence that is clearly evident throughout the city.
Miamians work hard for their beach bods – why not have a little fun while doing it? You’ll feel more like you’re in a club than in a fitness class as you lift weights and dance as you spin to a playlist rivaling the last party you attended. The second most fun sweaty activity you can partake in…
Founded by the same owners of super club LIV, this is your destination for the best dance party in South Beach. Bottle service, 1000-deep capacity, confetti and lasers… you get the idea. Come here to dance the night away to the best international DJ’s (Diplo, Steve Aoki, and Afrojack are regulars) Miami has to offer – we raved all night to Krewella and are counting the weeks until we can return.