Miami is brimming with original, well-designed hotels and eateries.
According to the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau, hotel occupancy and tourism for 2007 totaled 72 percent and 12 million visitors, respectively, up slightly from the previous year. New properties should keep crowds coming, even during hurricane season. Here are a few spots worth noting:
-This is not your grandmother’s Fontainebleau. Unveiling its $1 billion expansion and renovation this July, Fontainebleau Hotel & Resort Miami Beach offers 1,504 guest rooms, a revamped lagoon pool with luxury cabanas and a 40,000-square-foot spa. London’s Hakkasan is among its 11 restaurants and nightclubs. Preservation purists can rest assured architect Morris Lapidus’ circa 1954 “cheesehole” wall and staircase to nowhere remain.
4441 Collins Avenue; 305-538-2000; fontainebleau.com. Summer rates start at $189.
-Gansevoort South’s 334 rooms are decorated with charcoal gray suede walls, hot pink accents and retro pinup photographs. The adults-only playground has a 26,000-square-foot pool deck, shark tank and David Barton gym and spa. A Big Drop boutique, Philippe restaurant and Louis nightclub from The Opium Group round it out.
2377 Collins Avenue; 305-604-1000; gansevoortsouth.com. April rates begin at $595.
-Shopaholics and fashion execs alike stay across the street from Bal Harbour Shops at The Regent Bal Harbour. Opened in March, the 18-story hotel’s 124 rooms are accessed by semiprivate or private elevators. Its curved glass facade plays up the oceanside locale, while the spa is Guerlain’s first in North America. Emphasizing seafood and local greens, 1 Bleu is the second Le Cordon Bleu restaurant partnership in North America.
10295 Collins Avenue; 305-866-2121; regenthotels.com/balharbour. April rates start at $750.
-Badrutt’s Place is the Brickell district’s sexy spot with chic interiors to match fare like tapas, caviar and octopus carpaccio.
1250 South Miami Avenue; 305-415-0070; badrutts-place.com.
-Popular for burger specials and pomegranate glazed duck with lentils, Brosia restaurant has a mosaic courtyard shaded by live oaks.
163 Northeast 39th Street; 305-572-1400; brosiamiami.com.
-Daringly dine beneath 2,000 samurai swords is Kobe Club, where beef is the star.
404 Washington Avenue; 305-673-5370; chinagrillmgt.com.