The Best Things To Do In Sunny Isles

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By: Shayne Benowitz

Sunny Isles Beach is considered Florida’s Riviera—and for good reason. With towering, opulent condominium resorts lining two miles of pristine, white sandy beach, it’s easy to feel like you’re living la bonne vie during your stay here. Whether it’s lounging poolside in a luxurious oceanfront cabana, seaside fine dining or sinking your toes in the sand, Sunny Isles Beach offers clean, crowd-free and relaxing beaches perfect for a family vacation or a romantic getaway.

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Acqualina Spa by Espa

One of Miami’s only Forbes Five-Star Spas, Acqualina Spa by ESPA is a luxurious delight. You’ll be greeted with a cup of tea before being escorted into the 20,000-square-foot spa, which includes a crystal steam room, Arctic ice fountain, experience showers, Finnish dry sauna and Himalayan salt wall. With a private pool and Jacuzzi perfect for a spa lunch, it’s the ideal destination to while away the day. Using luxurious ESPA products, facials are both lavish and results-oriented. They also offer a host of Day Spa Journeys with multiple treatments for the ultimate in relaxation.

    Il Mulino at Acqualina

    Enjoy a seaside setting at Il Mulino New York at Acqualina Resort for decadent handmade pasta under the guidance of executive chef Michele Mazza. The classic West Village trattoria is an elegant dining affair in Sunny Isles Beach where you can enjoy beef carpaccio or caprese salad for your anti-pasti course and move onto soups, salads and, of course, classic pasta dishes like rigatoni alla bolognese and spaghettini alle vongole. You’ll also find entrees from New York strip to red snapper. And for dessert, don’t skip the tiramisu!

      Oleta River State Park

      Oleta River State Park is Florida’s largest urban park at just over 1,000 acres and it provides a true escape from the city. Renowned for its 15 miles of mountain biking trails from novice to expert, it’s also a popular destination for kayaking and canoeing through the Oleta River estuaries through tangles of tidal mangroves where you might spot ospreys, manatees and other native wildlife. You’ll find a nature trail perfect for a quiet hike, as well as a beach, picnic pavilions and an area for fishing.

        Newport Fishing Pier & Beach Bar

        Take a stroll on Newport Fishing Pier located at Sunny Isles Boulevard and Collins Avenue at Pier Park. This historic site was originally built in 1982 and it's long been a popular destination for fishermen and sightseers. While the original pier was destroyed by Hurricane Wilma in 2005, it’s been rebuilt at 766-feet jutting into the gorgeous aquamarine water. You’ll find the kitschy Beach Bar for dining directly on the pier overlooking the water, serving a scrumptious selection of fresh seafood and craft cocktails. It is the only public fishing pier in Miami-Dade County, so soak up the salty ambiance over a bite to eat in Sunny Isles Beach.

          Timo Restaurant & Bar

          Timo is a landmark Sunny Isles Beach restaurant serving up a signature blend of Italian-Mediterranean fare since 2003. Chef Tim Andriola specializes in wood-fired pizzas, delicious pastas, fresh seafood and fine steaks. There’s even a vegetable tasting menu for vegetarian diners that includes items like Sicilian eggplant agrodolce with pine nuts, raisins and chickpea puree. For the carnivores in the party, you can’t go wrong with pizza topped with slow-roasted short rib, wild mushrooms and fontina or the Maine lobster cavatelli. The menu changes constantly, so there’s always something new and exciting to try. Enjoy your dish with a selection of global wines inside their warm, homey dining room.

            Baleen Kitchen at Sole Miami

            The oceanfront Sole Miami resort recently debuted Baleen Kitchen with an emphasis on global cuisine inspired by its wayfaring namesake, the baleen whale. Think, miso-glazed mahi-mahi, linguine Bolognese and steak frites. They also have a playful small plates menu with tantalizing items like lobster sliders with crispy jalapeño, spicy tuna tacos and duck carnitas served with cornmeal crepes, chipotle blackberries and apple slaw. Pair all of that with a gorgeous mid-century-inspired dining room overlooking the ocean through floor-to-ceiling windows and you’ve got yourself a fabulous dinner out!

              Miami Juice

              When in Miami, do as the Miamians do and eat clean. Miami Juice has been around since 1992 serving up a healthy selection of juice, smoothies, salads, sandwiches, baked potatoes, and even pizza and burgers. Whether it’s a post-beach boost of nutrients from their B-52 Happy’s Special juice made with carrots, celery, beets, cucumber, spinach, garlic, ginger and apple, or a wholesome lunch, you’ll feel at home inside their inviting dining room. Lunchtime temptations include vegetarian options, like veggie burgers, falafel, hummus and tofu marinated in ginger and curry. For the carnivores, opt for the rosemary chicken platter or the blackened red snapper served with organic brown rice and steamed vegetables.

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