There really is only one way to open this post…
‘‘Party in the city where the heat is on… All night, on the beach till the break of dawn. Welcome to Miami, Bienvenidos a Miami. Bouncin’ in the club where the heat is on…
All night, on the beach till the break of dawn. I’m goin’ to Miami… Welcome to Miami.”
I’ve always wanted to visit Miami, and I’m not sure if that was because of Will Smith or Don Johnson. That’s right I’m old enough to remember the Original Miami Vice and James “Sonny” Crockett cruising the strip in his black Ferrari 365 Daytona wearing white suits and pastel shirts! What a vibe brother! Whatever it was, Miami has always had an allure of this incredible celebrity playground and I wanted to check it out!
The Nobu Hotel Miami Beach invited us to come and spend a couple of nights with them and of course, we accepted. This hotel within a hotel concept is actually housed in the Eden Roc, a building steeped in Miami Beach history that dates back to 1956. Designed by flamboyant architect, Morris Lapidus ( famous for designing Saks Fifth Avenue and Macy’s) it quickly became a celebrity playground! The hotel has since gone through a couple of renovations and additions but the essence of that 1950’s grandeur remains. If you look close enough you can still find some pieces of the original hotel scattered throughout the lobby. Nobu Chef Matsuhisa has placed his signature style across the renovated Nobu Bar – layers of walnut, bronze, washi paper, linen, glass, and leather create a sumptuous, contemporary environment.
The Hotel is situated right on the beachfront, so you merely have to cross the promenade that runs outside the hotel to find your toes in the sand. With just 3 days at the hotel, we only managed a couple of hours on the beach to lie in the sun and sip on some cold beers. Be warned though, in true Miami style (as we came to learn) they will charge you for anything at the beach beyond your lounger. This concept was completely bizarre to us, paying for the use of a beach umbrella at a beach resort is something we’ve never encountered and truth be told put a little damper on our beach time.
The hotel has all the amenities you would expect from a beachside resort though, multiple pools, one of the best hotel fitness centres I have ever visited (it even offers group training classes) and of course the obligatory spa. The spa at the Nobu Hotel Miami Beach is beautiful, a myriad of corridors takes you into an incredibly relaxing lounge that then leads you on to your treatment. The whole feeling is pretty Zen, as you would expect from anything Nobu. Unfortunately, there had been some confusion with my Spa booking and after arriving 15min late to a 30min treatment, I was reprimanded and given a 10min treatment. This left me feeling very un-zen and a little more stressed leaving the spa than I felt arriving.
Our room on the other hand totally exceeded our expectations and was quite literally jaw dropping from the moment we walked in. Our corner Zen Suite set high up in the hotel offered the most incredible 180 views across the ocean with side views of the bay. It was also one of the biggest suites we have ever stayed in with a massive king sized bed and an awesome mix of Japanese and contemporary touches. Nothing, however, could take away from those incredible sunset views.
In stark contrast to the bright white bedrooms was the equally massive and moody bathrooms. Complete with double vanity, rain shower and bath, it was hands down the most luxurious stay of our trip. We absolutely loved the rooms at Nobu Hotel Miami Beach.
Together with its multiple pools and poolside bars are multiple dining options. The crowning glory is, of course, Nobu Miami. With such a short amount of time at the hotel, we unfortunately never managed to give Nobu a try but did manage a quick lunch at their poolside restaurant known as ‘Splash’.
Splash by Malibu Farms offers a farm to table experience right next to the main pool. It’s really simple and casual dining with a healthy twist. We brought what was left of our beer bucket back from the beach and enjoyed some pizza and burgers el fresco! Perfect for a sunny Miami day!
We decided to go completely different and ordered the Corn pizza with BBQ Roast Chicken – here the traditional tomato sauce was substituted for Crème Fraiche and local Ricotta cheese to make for a really interesting combination. The Chicken Ricotta burger on a brioche bun was a fresh alternative that totally hit the spot with a beer. The real winner though was our salted caramel ice cream sandwich. A perfect way to end a lunch in the sun!
I feel like 3 days in Miami went by in a flash and really didn’t give us enough time to cover it all. We managed to catch the hop on hop off bus tour (which stops just outside the hotel) to get a taste of the neighbourhoods and history of Miami but felt like you really needed to dig deep to get away from the tourist traps trying to nickel and dime you at every turn.
We loved our little exploration of the Wynwood Arts District and wish we had more time to find the hidden gems. Stumbling on to Coyo-Taco was a godsend for two starving travellers as we relived our time in Mexico over some pastor tacos, esquite’s and Margaritas! Definitely worth a visit!
Our first Cubano experience at Puerto Sagua didn’t disappoint and it’s no surprise this late night spot is such an institution! My mouth still waters thinking of that sandwich – we loved it so much we nearly missed our flight getting a Cubano on the way to the airport!
There’s definitely a lot to see and do in Miami, but you need the time to find it all and 3 days just wont cut it! The Nobo Hotel Miami Beach is definitely the perfect base to explore it all from. Situated on Collins Avenue you’re a stone’s throw from the strip and have quick access to the 195 taking you into downtown. If you’re looking to “Party in the city where the heat is on. All night, on the beach till the break of dawn” then this is a great location to do it from.
Okay. Travel safe and stay fancy.