Art-Deco Hotel in Miami’s South Beach
South Beach's iconic art-deco district is visually arresting—before a backdrop of towering palm trees, hundreds of pastel hotels are stacked side by side, making up the greatest concentration of art-deco architecture in the world. The swanky Royal South Beach Hotel, built in 1938 at the height of art deco's Streamline Moderne movement, is right at home in this setting. Outside the hotel, you'll find a bright-purple sun deck complete with umbrella-topped tables surrounded by tropical foliage.
Miami's South Beach: World-Famous Beach Parties and Art-Deco Icons
Just east of downtown Miami, on the southern tip of the barrier island that forms Miami Beach, South Beach is one of the world's epicenters for nightlife. The clubs along Ocean Drive are legendary for their all-night blowouts, and for good reason—between the rum-soaked mojitos, colorful neon, and celebrity sightings, it feels a bit like you've stepped into an endless party. Perhaps that's why the area pops up so often in film and TV, including Burn Notice and The Birdcage.
South Beach's actual coast is known as Lummus Park, which Frommer's calls Miami's "best beach for people-watching." While the bleached sand and curving palms are gorgeous, they're almost overshadowed by the chiseled beach-goers dotting the sand. From here, a wood-slat boardwalk runs all the way up to North Beach, attracting joggers and roller bladers. You can also head about a mile south to South Pointe Park or to Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park across the bay for quieter, more secluded shores.
It’s easy enough to spend the entirety of a trip to South Beach face-down on a beach towel, but that would mean missing out on the city's other trademarks. The historical art-deco district boasts iconic, streamlined hotels in pastel shades. Every morning at 10:30, local experts from the Miami Design Preservation League lead a 90-minute walking tour that highlights the neighborhood's signature architecture.