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By: Angela Caraway-Carlton

Sultry nights. Tempting ocean breezes. Breathtaking views. Top chefs and exotic food meant for sharing. When it comes to romance, Greater Miami & Miami Beach is the place. Whether you’re looking for cozy and intimate, or jaw-dropping vistas that will amaze any date, we’ve rounded up some of the most romantic restaurants in Greater Miami. Reserve a table and let the sparks fly.

Juvia rooftop dining
Juvia rooftop dining

Juvia

Sometimes romance needs a little boost… so, if you really want to impress your date, head to Lincoln Road in South Beach to elevate your dining experience at Juvia. Perched on the top of a designer parking lot, the restaurant has bragging rights to spectacular views of Miami Beach. Time it right for the golden hour to watch the sunset from the ultra-modern dining room swathed in purple, or from the open-air patio flanked by vertical gardens that glow at night. You’ll enjoy cuisine perfected with the triple threat of French, Japanese and Peruvian techniques, along with inventive cocktails.

Jaya, at The Setai

Everything about The Setai in South Beach is sexy, so be prepared: Its modern-Asian restaurant, Jaya, will seduce you with both its ambiance and its amazing dishes. For a truly special evening, reserve a table in the stunning courtyard surrounded by stone-filled pools, where you’ll dine under the stars and feel the cool ocean breeze. On weekends, live music fills the air, and on Friday nights things really heat up with exotic entertainment such as contortionists and fire breathers. On your visit, sample signature items such as the tender Peking duck and the melt-in-your-mouth truffle dumplings.

Casa Tua Restaurant

Another fairytale experience can be found at Casa Tua, a Mediterranean-style villa hidden away behind tall hedges in the middle of busy South Beach. As its name suggests, this restaurant makes you feel like you’re dining inside a close friend’s home. Couples can choose between an intimate table inside the villa, or one in the lush garden where lanterns dot the trees, creating a romantic glow. Order a bottle from the impressive wine list, savor starters such as indulgent caviar and oysters, and then move on to delicious Northern Italian-inspired dishes.

La Mar by Gastón Acurio

Tucked away on tranquil Brickell Key, which feels a world away from bustling Downtown Miami/Brickell, the lavish Mandarin Oriental, Miami is the perfect setting to share a Peruvian feast at Lar Mar by Gastón Acurio. The upscale restaurant overlooks Biscayne Bay, and you can be sure that you and your special someone will be dazzled by waterfront views as well as the twinkling Downtown Miami skyline. Expect to be equally wowed by the food, which is some of the best in town. Start the night off with one of the fresh ceviches, then move on to inventive dishes with a Peruvian-Asian flair. When you’ve wrapped up dinner, cozy up with an après-meal drink at MO Bar + Lounge.

Ariete

Coconut Grove’s charming sidewalk cafes are a calling card for romance, and the lovely Ariete, tucked away on a tree-lined avenue, sets the mood with dim lighting and amazing food from rock-star Miami chef, Michael Beltran. The menu revolves around the wood-fired grill, and you can choose from a mix of high-brow and low-brow dishes – such as a chorizo frita or fancy foie gras with smoked plantains – keeping your date night glitzy and fun. If you really want to amaze your date, reserve the underground wine cellar, La Cava, for a candlelit dinner that will be forever in your memory. It’s a stunning place for a proposal, if that’s in the cards.

Bellini Restaurant and Bar

For a taste of glamour and nostalgia, head to the rooftop Bellini Restaurant and Bar housed inside the ultra-swanky Mr. C Coconut Grove Hotel. You’ll be greeted by waiters in white jackets, served delicious dishes on gorgeous platters, and be wowed by floor-to-ceiling windows that present dazzling views of Biscayne Bay. Set the night’s passionate pace by ordering a round of the famous Bellinis, then indulge in dreamy Italian dishes.

Mandolin Aegean Bistro

With ambiance that is reminiscent of the tranquil Greek islands, Mandolin Aegean Bistro has become a go-to for locals looking for a romantic night out in the Miami Design District. Sweep your date off their feet as soon as you pass through the blue-framed doors, where you can hide away at a table inside the intimate 1940s bungalow, or settle on the lush patio at a lantern-lit table beneath the trees. The husband-and-wife team who own the restaurant are from Greece and Turkey, so expect authentic recipes in shareable, light dishes such as a Greek sampler of dips, steamed mussels, marinated grilled octopus and lamb kebabs.

Amara at Paraiso

When date night calls for beautiful views, Amara at Paraiso will leave you starry-eyed with its idyllic bayside setting. When James Beard Award-winning chef Michael Schwartz is involved, you know the food will impress. Located near Edgewater, just north of Downtown Miami, this sprawling restaurant offers two seating options that inspire romance – the main dining room with floor-to-ceiling windows offering dramatic vistas of Biscayne Bay, or the deck right on the water, where cool breezes will entice you to linger. Expect fresh-caught seafood and farm-to-table dishes with bold Latin American flavors, and plenty of plates for sharing.

Really, it’s easy to find romance anywhere you go in Greater Miami. Find more great restaurants in Miami.

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