This year Miami Beach revels in its centenary celebrations – so why not join in? Throughout 2015 there will be music concerts, art shows, children’s events and comedy festivals – not to mention the city’s ever-present Art Deco architecture and fabulous social scene to enjoy.
This may be a particularly special year, but Miami is always abuzz. Remember the CSI trailer: sunny blue skies, palm-lined sandy beaches, a dazzling emerald ocean, and jet skis in front of a glittering skyline? Well, that’s pretty close to the reality. This famous Florida city has the perfect mix for a jet-set break: just take Latin beats, candy-coloured Art Deco buildings and funky art galleries, throw in some ultra-hip hotels, add triple shots of glitzy nightlife, and sprinkle with kitsch and glam. And now go and shake it!
As you might expect, Miami is all about sun, sea and fun – and no more so than in fabulous Miami Beach, which is blessed with long sweeps of sand and clear, warm water. Glitter Beach is where the model scene hangs out; for a good swim and a relaxed stroll on the boardwalk, head to Mid Beach. And if you want city-skyline views as you sunbathe, try Key Biscayne.
Fabled South Beach is always ready to party – start in the ultra-cool bar at the Shore Club, then work your way up iconic Ocean Drive (where you’ll also find the Versace mansion) and finish off at LIV Club. Fresh, no-frills Townhouse Hotel is perfectly placed for making the most of this lively area without breaking the bank.
But there’s more to Miami than glitzy bars. Wander down Ocean Drive to see the world’s largest collection of Art Deco architecture, or drop into the Art Deco Welcome Centre and book a walking tour with a guide. To truly immerse yourself in the Art Deco experience, book into i-escape’s newest Miami addition, Metropolitan by COMO Miami Beach.
Don’t forget to spend a few hours at The Wolfsonian museum of art and design, and browse the galleries in trendy Wynwood and the Design District. Then indulge in some fine dining. South Beach is known for its excellent foodie scene: try Meat Market Miami Beach for steak served with rich butters and creative sauces, or the legendary Osteria Del Teatro for homemade Italian fare. The SoFi (South of Fifth) district is home to a range of old favourites and trendy new spots – Hotel St Augustine makes a great budget-friendly base among them.
When to go
Balmy December to April is Miami’s high season, and the best time to visit weather-wise. But don’t rule out a stay at other times: it can get humid, and hurricanes are a risk from June to November, but prices are lower and 2015’s centenary celebrations stretch across the year (check out Miami Beach 100 to get an idea of upcoming events). You might want to avoid the March spring break, when the city is packed to the rafters with scantily clad, intoxicated youngsters.
Our top tips
If you fancy a day away from the city hubbub, head to the Everglades and soak up the serene beauty of its mighty swamps by canoe or kayak. Just watch out for crocs!