Just steps from the turquoise Miami waters, the Betsy Hotel places you in the unequivocal heart of South Beach, right on Ocean Drive. But the hotel’s quieter-end-of-the-strip location and its upscale, plantationlike design set it slightly apart from all the other hotels. The Betsy looks like a demure Southern Belle set in a sea of flamboyant Art Deco divas.
What we love:
At the quieter end of Ocean Drive, few blocks more ahead from the Versace Mansion, facing the beach Chic and cozy rooftop bar and lounge area with ocean views B-Bar, (photo above) a superpopular and edgy nightclub, is in the basement Preppy-chic rooms with plantation shutters and dark wood floors Sprawling Southern-style front terrace for breakfast and people watching.
What to know:
A resort fee of $15 per night will be collected upon purchase on InsideMiamiBeach.com. The pool isn’t much of a scene, the way it is at some hotels. Most guests hit the beach. Rooms near the elevator get more noise than others. The roof deck and B-Bar can get booked out with events. Being a guest doesn’t mean you won’t wait in a line.
The hotel is booked long in advance for Art Basel and Winter Music Conferences.
What to do:
- Classic Cuban Diner. Cross the bridge to Wynwood for authentic greasy spoon Cuban fare at Enriqueta’s (2830 NE 2nd Ave.) or grab a café con leche from the takeout window out front.
- Best Beach. For a more natural take on South Beach’s hotel-backed scenery, grab a taxi and head for Key Biscayne National Park, where the beach is fringed with seagrapes and dunes.
- Picnic. Ask the staff at The Betsy to provide you with a picnic basket for your day at the beach filled with snacks, wine, cheese, magazines and water.
- Dining by Design. The Design District is loaded with fascinating furniture shops and incredible restaurants. The two intersect at Fratelli Lyon, an Italian restaurant adjoining a design store where your place settings — and even the table — are for sale.
- Frank Gehry Flair. Hailed as one of the architect’s best new designs in years, the New World Center is home to the New World Symphony. Time your visit for one of the Wallcasts, and you can sit in a park outside as a concert is projected on the building’s wall.
Flights are available to Miami International Airport (MIA) from major U.S. cities on a variety of carriers. Taxi transfers to/from MIA, which is approximately 13 miles away, are $37 per car, each way, and can be arranged through the property concierge.
Reserve The Betsy Miami
1440 Ocean Drive
Miami Beach, FL 33139
InsideMiamiBeach.com, like no other.