With work and life back in full swing, I find myself day-dreaming of the days when Em and I were sipping prosecco pool-side in Miami. What I love most about Miami are the unique boutique hotels that line South Beach. From old world charm, to quaint art deco, or funky and modern, each has a meticulously crafted character. Rather than spend all my time at the beach, I like to explore these architectural gems, and their pools of course.
My four favorite South Beach hotels just happen to be right next to each other on Collins Avenue (around 18th and 17th streets). Obviously, you will likely only stay in one, but the others are equally worth exploring for their gorgeous grounds and delicious dinning.
The Kimpton is the most modern and affordable of the bunch (they offer periodic promotions online). While it might be more modern and relaxed than its neighbors, it offers all the amenities (pool, spa, etc.), beach access, complementary bikes, communal games, and brightly colored cows, which dot the property. The Kimpton is great for groups of friends and for people traveling with kids, but it is probably the least romantic for couples.
The SLS is on par with the Kimpton in terms of price. But, it won me over with the pink accents throughout its decor and coordinating pink-striped beach umbrellas on the beach. In general this hotel is much posher than the Kimpton and has a thriving pool scene. Instead of a traditional lobby, the SLS has an open restaurant/kitchen. Like any well-designed hotel, this place is all about the details, from pink stripes, to chandeliers, and all-white rooms — the SLS definitely has style.
While equally stylish, The Raleigh is much more traditional showcasing its famed art deco design. An icon on the beach since 1940, The Raleigh is best known for its palm tree-lined pool (seen here), which was deemed most beautiful pool in America by Life Magazine in 1947! Even if you are not staying here, make sure to stop in and admire its architecture and pool… and fabulous martini and coffee bar!
The chicest and grandest of my favorite hotels, The Delano is full of small eclectic details placed playfully in grand spaces. Like the others, it has a fabulous (and elusive) pool scene and gourmet dining. And, like any fashionable hotel, the rooms are all-white with marble accents and rainfall showers. This hotel even has a roof-top spa.
What is your favorite hotel in Miami?