A Miami Beach Weekend, LGTBQ+ style

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By: Gino R. Campodónico

Who among us doesn’t need a weekend getaway? A weekend in the sunshine is the perfect place to catch up and reconnect with your BFFs!

Here is a curated weekend itinerary for an unforgettable visit full of culture, sunshine and nightlife.

Gaythering bartender pouring a drink
Hotel Gaythering has a bar & a spa

Friday: Day 1 - Keep It Local On Miami Beach

Check-in Time: LGBTQ+ Hotel Options Abound

Decide on the vibe your group is feeling while planning the trip, then check out our list of hotel options. You can customize your search to easily find hotels catering to your needs. If you want to “stay gay,” don’t miss Hotel Gaythering. With great year-round rates, handsome industrial design and a men’s spa onsite, Hotel Gaythering is a gay-owned and operated adults-only hotel on Lincoln Road in South Beach. The AxelBeach Miami is another great option. Also located in the heart of South Beach’s Art Deco Historic District, it is known for its gay, bohemian spirit and lively Sky Bar, which overlooks Washington Avenue and regularly hosts dance parties and drag shows.

Grilled meat, seafood & vegetables at Los Fuegos
Dine on Argentinian grilled meats at Los Fuegos

First Stop: Tryst Cabaret at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach

For a true Miami Beach moment, head over to the glamorous Faena Hotel Miami Beach in Mid Beach and take a selfie with the gilded wooly mammoth by artist Damien Hirst on the hotel’s outdoor patio. Feast on Argentinian grilled meats at Los Fuegos at Faena Miami Beach. After dinner, visit the stunning Faena Theater, where the productions are guaranteed to blow your mind. Faena LIVE’s new original production, TRYST Cabaret: A Lovers’ Rendezvous, combines teasing burlesque, riveting cirque nouveau and spellbinding music into a night of provocative sensations.

Nightcap: Nathan's Video Bar

After the show, visit Nathan’s Video Bar on Washington Avenue in South Beach. An intimate yet lively space, Nathan’s is known for its vibrant music paired with music videos playing on large screens. From iconic diva performances to your favorite pop videos, there’s something for everyone. Nathan's is a unique experience you won't find anywhere else.

Insider tip: Head to Hotel Gaythering for its Bears & Hares Friday night party, with late night happy hour from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. Don’t worry if you aren’t a bear or a hare; the party welcomes everyone and the drinks are strong.

People doing yoga on the sand
Start the day with yoga

Saturday: Day 2 - Art And Architecture Everywhere

Early Morning Stretch: Get the Day Started with Morning Yoga

Try Glow Hot Yoga at 15th Street and Lenox Avenue in South Beach or join a pop-up yoga class at South Pointe Park in Miami Beach’s trendy SoFi (South of Fifth) neighborhood. New World Center also has a monthly outdoor yoga class called Yoga Mornings, which takes place at the outdoor SoundScape Park.

Official Art Deco Walking Tour: Presented by the Miami Design Preservation League

The Official Art Deco Walking Tour is offered Fridays through Mondays at 10:30 a.m. from the Art Deco Welcome Center at 10th Street and Ocean Drive in South Beach. This 90-minute tour will help you get your bearings in Miami Beach and will ensure you leave with a better understanding of exactly what “Art Deco'' is and why Miami Beach has one of the largest collections of Art Deco buildings anywhere in the world. A private group tour can also be arranged upon request, highlighting gay and lesbian history in Miami Beach and fun facts.

Rainbow flag waving in the breeze
The rainbow flag marks "Gay Beach"

Beach Day: Catch Some Rays

Spend the afternoon on the iconic 12th Street “Gay Beach” in South Beach. You can’t miss it. Just look for the rainbow flags near the lifeguard station.

People admiring Wynwood Walls' murals
Explore Wynwood Walls' colorful murals

Dinner and Culture: Exploring Wynwood

Miami’s eclectic art scene is anchored in Wynwood, an old industrial neighborhood that has been completely overhauled with art galleries, public art spaces, delicious restaurants and a vibe to match other artist enclaves around the world. Wynwood is located on the mainland, and it’s about a 15-minute drive from Miami Beach. Visit the Wynwood Walls or just wander the streets admiring the murals that have popped up on virtually every single wall in the neighborhood.

Variety of dishes at R House
Don't miss gay-owned R House

Food + Art + Music: R House Wynwood

A dining must if you are in the neighborhood, R House Wynwood is a gay-owned business that serves up farm-to-table delicacies worthy of an Instagram post or two. Reservations are highly recommended.

Saturday Night: Made for Dancing

A visit to Miami Beach is not complete without a night out at Twist, a mainstay that has regularly been voted one of the top gay bars in the country. Twist is open until 5 a.m. all weekend and never has a cover charge. Like any good nightclub, the later it gets, the more crowded, so pace yourselves because it could be a long night. Another option is SCORE Nightclub, which is open on select nights throughout the year for big circuit parties featuring international DJ talent.

Bonus: For late-night munchies, check out the 11th Street Diner next to Twist or get your Cuban fix at Puerto Sagua Restaurant.

People working out on the sand at Lummus Park
Work out in Lummus Park

Sunday Funday: Day 3 - Wrap It Up Right

Early Morning Workout: Sand it Down

Gather the troops early and jog to Muscle Beach in Lummus Park (9th Street and Ocean Drive) to work out Miami Beach-style – in the bright sunshine, right in the sand.

Drag Queen Alien performing at Palace
Brunch comes with a legendary drag show at Palace

Every Queen Needs a Palace: A Brunch Like No Other

For more than three decades, Miami Beach’s drag queens have held court at Palace on iconic Ocean Drive. This long-running gay fixture is best known for its weekend drag shows, all-day breakfast and bar food. The weekend brunches at Palace are legendary. In fact, in 2019, the drag brunch at Palace was named one of OpenTable’s Top 100 brunch restaurants in America. Get the camera and your bills ready ‘cause these queens are ready to work.

Front exterior of Artechouse
Immerse yourself in the art at ARTECHOUSE Miami

Afternoon Art: ARTECHOUSE Miami (Art + Tech + House)

For your daily dose of culture, head over to ARTECHOUSE Miami for innovative digital art exhibitions. At the crossroads of art, science and technology, ARTECHOUSE is a pioneering space curating art forms that redefine audience participation.

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