Bienvenido a Miami! While I used to come here frequently in my early NYC days, it had been a while so it felt like the perfect time for a long weekend escape down the coast in January. Packed with others escaping the North East cold, it’s no wonder Florida is a popular (close, warm) destination from Miami to Palm Beach, St. Augustine to the Keys. Miami has a lot to offer beyond the beaches of South beach, so it’s worth venturing out to other areas and exploring, and you can find itineraries on the local CVB website.
See: Art & Music! This City has a lot to offer, and offers a unique culture like no other US City. Cuban music is clearly a must-do. Street art in the Wynwood district (with the Rubell gallery nearby), which neighbors Little Havana. There are walking tours available for these art areas but also culinary tours, and art deco ones too.
Eat: The restaurant scene here is tremendous. You will see a lot of favorties that exist in South Beach – like Cecconis, Scarpetta, Nobu, Katsuaya, Bazaar- but also Cleo, All primes, Komodo, Zuma, Lure, matador room (make reservations early for all). And of course, a local institution: Joe’s Stone crab (*tip, the restaurant is also rammed but next door is their takeaway spot which you can eat there, and order cheap bottle of wine. Key lime pie is a must!). Also, Coyo tacos in Wynwood was delicious. Bar hop into different places along south beach for a cocktail to get a taste of what other hotels are like.
Shop: I didn’t do much of it, but all the basic popular stores can be found on Lincoln mall. Luxury shopping at Bal Harbour. Also, best curated luxury store is Webster at 1220 Collins Ave.
Stay: The world is your oyster! Assuming you want beach time, South Beach offers you a spectacular array of hotels up up and down the strip. You’ll find the areas to the north (above 17th street) generally less crowded than the south, and also offering direct beach access. Hotels.com and the Hotels tonight app (if you are already in the area and have flexibility) are a great place to start. And I would avoid the giant Vegas-like monster complexes like the Fontainbleau or the W. Opt instead for Soho beach house, The Raleigh, Thompson, Sixty Nautilus, Delano which are all solid options. The Standard is nice too, but it’s a bit off the beaten path.
*Uber is extremely inexpensive in Miami, I used it often, including to the Airport.