Hotel at a Glance: Winter Haven, Autograph Collection
A stay in Miami Beach should include two things: first, sand; and second, a bit of history. The Winter Haven has both. Its Art-Deco structure was designed by famous architect Albert Anis in 1939, and it sits directly on famed Ocean Drive, steps from the beach. Retro tufted couches and interesting textures abound in the lobby, harking back to Miami Beach's most glamorous era.
- Walk to everything on South Beach, including boutiques, restaurants, popular nightclubs, and Lummus Park beach.
- Catch some sun on the rooftop sun deck, complete with cushy lounge chairs.
- Retro drinks: Have a tipple in the martini bar located in the stylish double-height lobby.
- Lobster spaghetti and surf 'n' turf specials at the hotel's Il Bolognese Restaurant & Bar.
Miami's South Beach: World-Famous Beach Parties and Art-Deco Icons
Just east of downtown Miami, on the barrier island that forms Miami Beach, stands one of the world's epicenters for nightlife: South Beach. The clubs along Ocean Drive are legendary for their boisterous, all-night blowouts, and for good reason—between the rum-soaked mojitos, colorful neon, and celebrity sightings, it can feel like 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 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 and was the first 20th-century neighborhood to be recognized by the National Register of Historic Places. 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.