When the temperatures dip, South Florida takes centre stage. Winter is the prime jet-set season in Miami, with internationally-acclaimed events and incredible weather for frost-fleeing snowbirds the world over. Miami is a hot destination - in every sense of the word - and it's always changing. The city’s dynamic nature means no matter how many times you visit, you'll find the hotspots, activities, and nightlife are always evolving; it’s a special place, both familiar and filled with discovery at the same time. Even if you’re not in town for the usual suspects (such as Art Basel and Rakastella), a season in Miami is always a hit. From spa oases to sexy theatrical performances and everything in between, here are your best options for making the most out of a quick weekend trip.

The Fabulous Outdoors

A trip to Miami isn’t the same without serious time spent outdoors. However, go beyond the usual beach day to incorporate a little social action into your afternoon. While in South Beach, visit Lido Bayside Grill at The Standard Spa, Miami Beach. Unlike the other hotels that share its name, it's a wellness oasis more than anything else with outdoor soaking tubs, alfresco mud treatments, and one incredible spot for waterside cocktails and lunch.

For a fun-filled afternoon on the Miami River, an up-and-coming destination, head to The Wharf Miami. Days at The Wharf stretch on forever, with DJs, food trucks, tropical cocktails and an endless rotation of themed events often benefiting charitable causes. With a clubhouse ambience able to suit your every mood, you can dance the day away, relax and people watch, or kick back and play games with friends.

The Standard Spa, Miami Beach

Credit: The Standard Spa

Shopping, Meet Design

Shop like a local, transforming the experience into an immersive tour of architecture and design. Start by heading to level five of 1111 Lincoln Road to peruse designer fashion and luxury streetwear at Alchemist. You'll see the view is like no other at the multi-use space/high-design parking garage designed by none other than Herzog and de Meuron. For shopping options spanning Dior, Marni, Fendi and more, take a trip to the Miami Design District. You’ll also encounter contemporary art galleries and public art at the neighbourhood developed by art collector Craig Robins- including a geodesic dome and a photo-ready, giant bust of Le Corbusier. 

Miami architecture

Credit: Derek Torsani

Wellness, South Beach-Style

In sharp contrast to Miami’s reputation for all things glitz and glamour, it’s actually a major community for self-care and wellness too. Unwind with a yoga workshop, meditation session, sound bath or any one of a number of informative panels at The Sacred Space Miami. There's even delicious vegan and Kosher dining available on-site so you can make a whole day out of it. To experience more plant-based food that even the biggest meat enthusiasts can get behind, Planta South Beach is the place. 

The Canadian vegan restaurant recently made its American debut in the heart of Miami, thanks to nightlife king and serial entrepreneur, Dave Grutman (LIV Nightclub, STORY Nightclub, Papi Steak, Swan…). Planta is open for lunch, dinner and weekend brunch with dishes like avocado-lime tartare, the heart of palm “crab” cakes, vegan sushi rolls and pizzas with gluten-free options.

South BEach palm trees

Credit: Mimi Di Cianni

When Cocktail Hour Comes Around

Meat Market on Lincoln Road offers a lively social scene, a delicious Crudo bar and access to the inventive steakhouse’s entire menu. The exclusive rooftop space, Juvia, is another great option (and only blocks away) merging French, Japanese and Peruvian cuisines and offering drinks like the Summer Lychee, Hennessy Jam and Elderflower Mule. Finally, the new Swizzle Rum Bar and Drinkery at The Stiles Hotel on Collins Avenue represents a relaunch and new location for Miami's tiki-themed speakeasy. Looking for more of an underground scene? Gramps in the artsy Wynwood District is a favourite among locals with hot DJ nights and offbeat, themed events… all with a totally eclectic vibe.

Swizzle Rum Bar

Credit: Swizzle Rum Bar

From Cabaret to Karaoke

A Miami trip without some partying may be unheard of, but it doesn't have to mean a generic night of clubbing is in order. The city is growing up with new and ever-sophisticated events. El Tucán Miami is a standout with delicious Asian cuisine and sexy burlesque shows in an intimate restaurant/lounge atmosphere; dress to the nines and make it a big night. Then there's the Faena Theatrer… cross-reference your travel dates with their events. 

You're bound to have a memorable time- whether enjoying an intimate concert, a cabaret-nightlife hybrid or an art performance in their 150-seat space inspired by the opera houses of Europe and Old Hollywood. If you're lucky, you may even catch their luxurious karaoke event: Rock the Mic. You'll socialise with the coolest locals and their friends while enjoying professional instruments and an amazing sound system to make your secret rockstar aspirations a reality, even if it's just one night.

Faena Hotel

Credit: Faena Hotel

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