Miami's boutique hotels come in all shapes and sizes and aim to create a unique world
Boutique hotels come in all shapes and sizes, from modern to retro and everything in between. Some are relaxed, secluded hideaways while others are hotspots for the see-and-be-seen. Some are full-service featuring every amenity under the sun and others focus on doing a few things really well while leaving the rest to the city you’re exploring.
With stylish hotels that reflects the city they are in, the common thread among boutique hotels is their aim to create a unique world for visitors with an attention to personalized hospitality. They’re typically independent hotels with significantly fewer rooms than big brands or lavish resorts, but even hotel groups like Marriott, Thompson and W are responding to this hotel trend with eclectic boutique experiences of their own. They can even be a less expensive alternative.
Miami is a prime city for boutique hotel stays with a collection of properties bursting with character and variety. Here are a few of the most dynamic and unique boutiques in Miami and Miami Beach.
Sense Beach House
The 18-room Sense Beach House is located in South Beach’s relaxed and residential SoFi neighborhood. This boutique hotel is designed to feel like you’re checking into your friend's beach house for the weekend—and a very chic one at that.
In soft shades of blue and sand with white-washed wooden tables and shelves stocked with nautical knick-knacks and hardbound books, the lobby vibe is more Hamptons cool than South Beach neon.
The onsite Local House restaurant is a favorite among locals, serving fresh, low-calorie fare (think finger- licking shrimp, goat cheese croquettes and lake trout) inside and on the lovely wraparound front patio. It also boasts a game room, free paddleboards to use and a mellow rooftop pool with views of the ocean just across the street.
Fully renovated in 2014, Circa39 is the new kid on the block on Collins Avenue across the street from the beach. With a pretty, bohemian design aesthetic, the 97-room hotel makes for a cozy, stylish stay.
The WunderBar inside the lobby serves a delicious mix of libations sure to wet the palate and have your vacation off to a great start. There is even a secret WunderGarden where you can unwind in an oasis of calm under a lush, tropical canopy. With plush loungers and floral umbrellas, the onsite pool is also a great escape.
Jules Kitchen, adjacent to the lobby, dishes up global comfort food like Thai lemongrass soup, Moroccan couscous salad and spaghetti Bolognese. Created for those travelers with an adventurous spirit, this boutique hotel offers you a home away from home in Miami Beach.
The Vagabond Hotel
A special gem in Miami’s Upper East Side neighborhood, The Vagabond Hotel is a lovingly restored example of Miami Modern (MiMo) architecture. A former motel, the Vagabond has all the hallmarks of MiMo aesthetic, from its kitschy neon sign to playful acute angles, delta wing accents and an interplay between indoors and outdoors with catwalks, balconies and courtyards.
The 44 rooms take this even further with a stunning combination of designer home comforts and high-tech must-haves. These rooms come with sleek 1950s inspired custom-made furniture, hypo-allergenic Italian beds, free WiFi and intricately stenciled geometric wall art. You will feel like you stepped in the past with its rat-pack chic air and glamor.
Spend the day by the pool bar, which is for hotel guests only until 5 p.m. and open to the locals until midnight on weekends. With feel-good vibes and luscious cocktails like the signature Vagabond Collins, this is the place to have fun and be yourself.
Vintro Hotel & Kitchen Vitro Hotel
A playfully chic art hotel on the periphery of South Beach’s Collins Park, Vintro Hotel opened in August 2014 with 50 rooms. Inside the former Park Ave. Hotel, Vintro honors the Art Deco history of the neighborhood’s past through the lobby’s “Memorabilia Mural” and other ephemera.
The property makes great use of its space with a rooftop deck and plunge pool complete with rainbow-bright hammocks and day beds for lounging. It also features a restaurant serving gourmet Mediterranean fare inside or outside on a beautifully landscaped patio with a waterfront view of the Collins Canal.
The Kimpton Angler's South Beach
A cozy hideaway and rare Mediterranean Revival marvel on Washington Avenue, The Angler’s has been a boutique mainstay in South Beach since 2007 and is currently undergoing a massive reinvention. Coming soon, this beautiful hotel will have an all-new architectural space to offer even more of a South Beach refuge with a rooftop pool and 85 new guestrooms complementing the original 47 suites, lofts, bungalows and villas. A lushly landscaped property, some of the rooms even come with private soaking pools or hot tubs. Privacy and tranquility are the hallmarks here. All this, and the buzzy scene of Ocean Drive is a mere two blocks away for you to enjoy.
El Paseo Hotel
Located on Espanola Way in South Beach, El Paseo Hotel is set amidst a street replete with Mediterranean Revival-style charm. With a pink stucco façade, Spanish tile roofs, striped awnings and arched windows opening up to Juliet balconies, this boutique hotel makes a classic first impression. Upstairs, you will find a sun-drenched library with cushioned wicker chairs and arched glass doors opening up to a balcony overlooking Espanola Way where a complimentary wine happy hour takes place every evening from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., as well as complimentary coffee every morning.
El Paseo’s spacious rooms include suites with up to two bedrooms and a living area. Walls are painted in pastel shades of sea foam with colorful throw pillows and beachy artwork that add to the rooms’ ambience. Bathrooms are modern with glass-enclosed showers and putty-colored tiles. There’s even a fully equipped kitchen onsite and all rooms have a full sized or mini fridge, as well as a stocked honor bar.
The Shepley Hotel
The Shepley Hotel is an art deco dream, with walls adorned with portraits of Miami from long ago that will leave you with lasting memories to cherish in the future. From the first moment you step in the door, the incredible Shepley service will charm you with smiling faces and their signature “Welcome to the Shepley” greeting . They are always happy to assist in making your stay the best one you could possibly have, delivering high-profile treatment with a level of intimacy only found at an exclusive boutique hotel.
You can’t help but appreciate the rooms that offer up reminders to “Do more of what you love” while also offering luxurious beds and quality linen thread counts that will have you sleeping like a baby during your stay. The Shepley even serves up continental breakfast every morning from 7 a.m. – 9 a.m. where you can enjoy cereals, pastries, sliced ham, cheese, yogurts and delicious coffee to start your day off right.
Check out the complete list of boutique hotels in Miami.
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