By: Kara Franker
Expect nothing but the best from Miami’s many luxury hotels.
Whether you’re searching for a lavish hotel situated on the sand, an urban showstopper or a golfer’s paradise, Miami has a luxury hotel that will fit the bill.
Truly luxurious hotels crisscross the county — from Downtown Miami to Coral Gables and from South Beach to Sunny Isles Beach — and everywhere in between.
To create a list of Miami’s most luxurious hotels, we referenced the Forbes Travel Guide for a selection of four- and five-star hotels. And then we categorized them based on whether they’re located in the city, on the beach or on a golf course.
Miami’s Most Luxurious Beach Hotels
Eight Miami area hotels make the coveted Forbes Travel Guide list and also happen to be located directly on a pristine, white-sand beach featuring panoramic ocean views that go on for miles.
Situated directly on the Atlantic Ocean in Sunny Isles Beach, Acqualina Resort & Spa is a five-star property, where hammocks sway between palm trees, VIP cabanas line the sparkling pool and there are a number of lavish amenities.
Another five-star property, the St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort, is located about four miles south of Acqualina in the picturesque Bal Harbour neighborhood of Miami Beach. Not only is the hotel located across the street from the Bal Harbour Shops (one of the most luxurious shopping areas in Florida), the St. Regis is renowned for it’s glamorous art collection and interior design by Yabu Pushelberg, impressive services like personal butlers and, of course, a spa, pool and view that will make your heart skip a beat.
Nearby, The Ritz-Carlton Bal Halbour, is a four-star resort sporting panoramic water views and Trump International Beach Resort in Sunny Isles Beach is quite the showstopper.
Continuing the journey south from Sunny Isles Beach, there are a number of four-star hotels that dot the sandy coastline. Located within a four-block radius of each other, The Setai, The Ritz-Carlton South Beach and the Loews Miami Beach Hotel are four-star beauties that are situated directly on the beach and located within walking distance to the Lincoln Road entertainment and shopping district, a pedestrian-friendly promenade lined with sidewalk cafés and trendy boutiques. For a luxurious boutique-style hotel, book a room at The Betsy Hotel on infamous Ocean Drive.
Nestled on an island just south of Miami Beach, The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, is another stellar four-star option. A family-friendly property, the resort is just far enough away from the action on South Beach to feel like a laid-back tropical retreat, but close enough (only about seven miles from downtown) to enjoy all of the attractions that Miami has to offer.
We’ll round out the list of beach hotels with one of the Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Hotels, a special list reserved for hotels that have a distinguishing design and ambience, giving the property a strong sense of location. Famous for it’s historical and architectural significance, as well as it’s glamorous crowd, it’s no surprise then that Fontainebleau Miami Beach enjoys this specific distinction.
Miami’s Most Luxurious City Hotels
While there are a number of elegant hotels located in Downtown and Brickell, there are two showstoppers that make the Forbes list.
Situated on exclusive Brickell Key, Mandarin Oriental, Miami is a five-star stunner with a secluded island-meets-urban setting, views that stretch from skyscrapers to the beach and award-winning dining and spa options (both Azul and The Spa make the Forbes lists for five-star restaurants and spas, respectively — a distinction separate and apart from the five-star hotel list) make for a killer combination of refinement and prestige.
Next on the list is the four-star rated Four Seasons Hotel Miami, located on Brickell Avenue and calling Florida’s tallest building home. The hotel features a two-acre resort-style pool deck with private cabanas and stunning vistas of Biscayne Bay. Stop by the hotel’s Edge Steak & Bar, rated as one of the best happy hours in Miami.
For a more neighborhood feel in an urban setting, The Ritz-Carlton in Coconut Grove is offers views of Biscayne Bay and Dinner Key Marina that stretch far into the horizon.
Miami’s Most Luxurious Golf Hotels
Two luxury hotels not only make the Forbes list, but also feature golf courses that will make any casual golfer or enthusiast want to play the game.
A four-star property, The Biltmore Hotel is a National Historic Landmark built in 1926 and is situated on 150 tropical acres in Coral Gables. The hotel grounds, including the Biltmore Golf Club, are lushly landscaped and resembles the finest in classic Mediterranean architecture. The 18-hole course, designed by premier golf-course architect Donald Ross, first debuted in the 1920s and still highly regarded today.
Located in Aventura, Turnberry Isle Miami is on the Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Hotels list and the Golf Club at Turnberry Isle features two legendary courses: The Soffer and Miller Courses. Both 18-hole championship courses were originally designed by Robert Trent Jones, Sr. and then re-interpreted by golf icon Raymond Floyd.
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