Freehand Miami

Freehand Miami

A Hostel for Today's Traveler

A lush, tropical destination just steps from the beach; an award-winning bar serving some of the best craft cocktails around; and a delicious restaurant focusing on fresh, local ingredients. Probably doesn't sound like any hostel you've experienced, right? Budget travelers, millennials and locals will find all those things at Freehand Miami, an eclectic hostel/hotel tucked away on a side street in the trendy Mid-Beach neighborhood, just blocks from South Beach.

Freehand is housed inside a 1930s Art Deco-era building, which was previously the historic Indian Creek Hotel. It offers shared and private accommodations, so guests can choose their desired type of stay depending on their comfort level and budget. There are 80 rooms with 214 beds, including bunk-style beds with sliding ladders; 47 rooms are hostel-style, which means they can be shared with people you know, or don't know; and 33 are private hotel rooms with private bathrooms. While the rooms are no-frills, they're affordable and clean. Let's face it, you're there for the prime location and chill atmosphere.

Bohemian vibes abound at Freehand Miami

What's on the Inside

Interiors were designed by Roman + Williams, and the hotel gives off a bohemian vibe with global decor like colorful Afghan throws, Turkish tapestries and walls dotted with art created by locals. While the lobby is always a hub of activity with travelers meeting, chattering and planning their days, the backyard/courtyard is the centerpiece of the Freehand. Surrounded by palm trees, vines and other tropical plants, you'll feel worlds away from the bustle of Miami Beach. Find a seat in one of the brightly colored chairs or a wooden bench to read or relax while listening to the trickle of a fountain; or grab a cocktail and settle into comfortable chairs that line a secluded, leafy path. At the pool, sun yourself, strike up a conversation with locals and travelers from all over the world. The best part? You're likely to meet someone with an interesting travel story, or a local with great tips on what to do/see while in town.

Visitors will want to check the property's big programming board in the lobby for a list of daily activities ranging from morning Detox Yoga to educational classes to tours that'll whisk you off to adventures in the Wynwood Arts District or the Everglades. Guests also have access to complimentary bikes so they can explore the area at their leisure.

Enjoy tropical drinks at Broken Shaker

Award-winning Food at 27 Restaurant & Bar and Cocktails at Broken Shaker

While Freehand Miami is an experience for the free in spirit and those who are light in the wallet, it's also fitting for foodies with a developed and adventurous palate. The superstar of the property is Broken Shaker, an award­-winning bar that started as a pop-up bar and morphed into a fixture of the Freehand brand. By sundown, the courtyard hums with a mix of travelers and locals sipping handcrafted cocktails and conversing under the hand-strung garden lights. Broken Shaker's mixologists conjure up inventive drinks made with elixirs, syrups, garnishes from the property's onsite garden, fresh-pressed produce and exotic ingredients. While cocktails change often and are seasonal, expect interesting concoctions like Burning to Shine, a unique adult beverage with Ron Zacapa, Kronan Swedish Punsch, Disaronno Amaretto, mango puree, and fresh lime topped with Angostura bitters. In-the-know locals ask for the Cocoa Puff Old Fashioned, made with bitters, sugar and whiskey-washed Cocoa Puffs.

Step into 27 Restaurant and Bar, which is open for dinner, happy hour and weekend brunch. The atmosphere is reminiscent of what your grandmother's house would look and feel like, with candlelit tables, mismatched plates, and art and trinkets lining the walls. Those looking for a romantic night out can tuck into one of the many nooks at a candlelit table. The menu rotates seasonally, and plates are served family-style and meant for sharing. Standouts include the crudo of the day, a fresh local fish that can be prepared as a melt-in-your-mouth ceviche; malawach, a thin fried bread that's great for dipping with the other appetizers like the oyster mushrooms with Ethiopian tahini and Moroccan chimichurri; and don't miss the whole fresh catch of the day, fried or grilled, which can be ordered with pikliz salad, a pickled vegetable relish with tropical island flavors.

Guests enjoy special offers on food and drinks

Special Offers Not to Miss

One of the most unique features of the Freehand is a variety of menus and price points, so budget travelers can take advantage of Happy Hour from Sunday through Thursday, while others can still indulge in fine wine. Those staying on the hostel side also have access to a kitchen for guests, with hot plates and refrigerators to store their food and beverages. They can also get complimentary iced coffee in the lobby from 9 a.m.-5 p.m., which can be enjoyed in the courtyard or by the pool.

At Freehand Miami, you're free to have the best vacation, or night out, that fits your personal style.

By: Melina Martinez-Echeverria | May 15, 2020


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