Miami Beach is booming again. Here, the most noteworthy arrivals—and a few long-standing favorites.
Gale South Beach & Regent Hotel: If you’re young and beautiful and looking for value, you’re staying at the Gale, a redo of a 1941 L. Murray Dixon hotel just a block from the ocean on Collins Avenue. Nightlife is a priority here—Amy Sacco’s Rec Room club thumps in the basement. Handsome rooms are white with navy blue accents; some have balconies with Persian lime trees. $
James Royal Palm: A retro vibe permeates the 393-room Deco high-rise on South Beach—terrazzo floors; mod furniture; a sky-blue and sea-green palette. Thoughtful extras include free Wi-Fi and triple-distilled water, solar-powered beach huts, and an outdoor spa area with salt-scrub stations. $$$
SLS Hotel South Beach: High celebrity wattage (eye-popping designs by Lenny Kravitz and Philippe Starck; tapas by José Andrés; LeBron James sightings) makes this 140-room hotel the center of the South Beach social scene. The sexy poolside Hyde Beach lounge helps, too. Spring for a suite; standard rooms are teensy. $$
The Raleigh: Miami is holding its collective breath to see what new owners (the SLS folks and partners) will do with the beloved Deco dowager and its glorious, scallop-edged pool. The changes so far—refreshed lobby furniture and a restaurant from Michael Schwartz—are positive. Our hope: dreary hallways and scuffed furniture will go, bohemian charm will remain. $$
The Setai: Miami Beach’s most grown-up hotel has a serene atmosphere, deferential service, and graceful Asian design. The new Setai Grill is a steak house with extravagant French touches: côte du boeuf with Roquefort sauce; a caviar tin filled with layers of osetra, crème fraîche, and Florida stone crab. $$$
St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort: Across the street from the vaunted retail mecca, this opulent resort draws a well-manicured crowd who are in town to shop, spa, and relax. Beachfront yoga and fitness classes from cult trainers Tracie Wright Vlaun and Christopher Vlaun help offset all the indulgence. $$$$
W South Beach Hotel & Residences: We like the large-for-South Beach studios at this condo-hotel: 500 square feet and up, all with balconies and kitchen facilities. We love the art—co-owner Aby Rosen rotates contemporary works from his collection. On view now: Damien Hirst, Rob Pruitt, Jonathan Horowitz, and others. $$$
On the Horizon
Big international brands continue to put down roots here. Look for Como Hotels & Resorts, Edition, and Faena as well as an outpost of L.A.’s Redbury Hotel.
Hotel Pricing Key
$ Less than $200
$$ $200 to $350
$$$ $350 to $500
$$$$ $500 to $1,000
$$$$$ More than $1,000