33140 Travel Guide
Miami. Remember when it used to be "God's Waiting Room?" Or perhaps more relevant for the pop culture obsessed--the place where "Golden Girls" was filmed (and where the girls once ran their own hotel?) No longer.
We've just got the official opening date for one of the several anticipated openings of 2015--the upcoming 150-room AC Hotels by Marriott Miami Beach.
Opening in April, the hotel will be the third AC Hotel for the U.S., after New Orleans and Kansas City, which opens next month. So far it looks like it will have all the same amenities as the AC New Orleans--from the AC Lounge to the AC Kitchen to the free WiFi. However, it will be the sexiest AC thanks to its rooftop pool. Not to mention, the beach is across the street. #bringyourflipflops
If you're slacking on your New Years Resolution to eat well, stay fit and be of sound mind, don't head to the Canyon Ranch Miami Beach to help you maintain your fitness goals.
The Real Deal reports that the Canyon Ranch franchise will be shed like water weight, thanks to the soon-to-be new owners, Z Capital Partners, who are expected to finalize a deal for the property this week. The new name for the property, which is a mix of residences, guest rooms and fitness facilities will go by...The Carillon Hotel & Spa. Eh. Apparently, it's a throwback name.
Here are the nitty gritty details on the deal as reported by The Real Deal:
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Pop singer and royal wedding entertainer, Ellie Goulding, recently wrapped up a stay at the new Miami Beach Edition and like most jet setting travelers, took to Instagram to show off a snapshot. But while she definitely enjoyed herself, she had a burning question--what is that smell in the lobby?
When we were there in November, we didn't really smell anything in particular, except maybe the goodness wafting out of Jean-Georges Vongerichten's Market. However, we do know that Edition carries custom-created, faintly masculine scented Le Labo toiletries in their guest rooms. So perhaps it was a variation of that? Eh, we still think it was coming from the Market. That place is gooood.
An ocean tower suite
We're all about bringing the FUN! back into a hotel stay but sometimes, it's hard to motivate to leave the hotel room, especially after a long day of
shopping travel, partying meetings or Instagramming your feet on the beach exploring.
Eden Roc Miami Beach totally understands how tired you are, which is why they are now offering to bring the fun up to your room, cleverly pairing traditional board games with decadent room service items. Here are the six new additions to the room service menu:
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Art Basel is in full swing in Miami Beach, but we're still admiring the hotel work of art that is the Miami Beach Edition. Today, we're looking at the spa, fitness center and the pool area at the oceanfront resort.
The spa is located in the basement of the hotel, but on the opposite side from Basement, the Edition's recreational area. You have to take a separate staircase from the lobby, just before the Matador restaurant, to access the spa as well as the fitness center. It's not a far walk, but you can't take the elevator directly to the spa, so make sure towel off before you head back upstairs. When returning to your room after a massage, you will just have to be comfortable with your post-treatment face and hair. Or else, shower off in the locker rooms.
There are nine treatment rooms offering massages, body treatments, and facials, along with a Beauty Lounge where you can indulge in a manicure or pedicure, as well as a blow-out. (Not sure that's worth it though because, hello, this is Miami. Humidity will always win.)
However, the co-ed Relaxation Lounge is a large and stylishly serene place to relax, pre and post-treatment, since the spa actually offers mini-treatments here, like the Power Nap, which uses electro-stimulation to give you the benefits of a four-hour nap in 20 minutes. There's also an oxygen treatment where you essentially put on an oxygen mask while lounging on a daybed and flipping through Vanity Fair in the back of the room. It sounds ridiculous and decadent and we want to try it.
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The party floor is accessed through the lobby of the hotel through a staircase practically at the back of the hotel but there is a street-level entrance at Collins, making it very open to all, should this be your kind of scene. And we think it might be, if only for an hour.
Here's what you need to know, if you didn't already know:
· Basement Bowl: Sick of the usual beach and pool routine? You can now bowl for strikes at the four-lane bowling alley which features LED screen displays and interactive light shows, that synchronize with the bowler's actions. There's a small bar that fronts the lane with small tufted-leather booths and leather club chairs. Food is also served here by Edition's resident chef, Jean-Georges Vongerichten.
· Basement Skate: Yes, there's an ice-skating rink here and hotelier Ian Schrager did it purely for the novelty of it all--ice skating in a tropical destination. (#thanksmarriott!) The rink is 2,000-sq.ft. and has floor-to-ceiling windows looking out on Collins Avenue. The space is usually lit-up in a cool blue and is surrounded by sheer white drapes, although there is a constantly color-changing LED lighting design in place by Patrick Woodroffe. And of course, there is music. While you can rent ice skates yourself, there will supposedly be professional skaters in bikinis gliding on the ice, or otherwise, models who can skate decently enough. Bonus fact: the rink has its own Zamboni.
̭ Basement Nightclub: Schrager said he wouldn't call this an outright "throwback" to Studio 54 but he did recognize the power of the sensory overload experience that Studio 54 created which was dominated by a killer sound system and performance art shows. So the micro-club at Edition is attempting to recreate some of that with custom-made lighting, state-of-the-art sound systems and hosted party nights. But no one will be able to ignore the giant disco ball above the dance floor. Now, will you be able to get in? That remains to be seen.
Since we arrived at Edition before Basement was fully ready, we weren't able to snap any "official" photos, aside from this stealth shot of the bowling lanes above. Instead, we decided to let the Instagram photos do the talking here. You can find more via @EditionHotels or @BasementMiami or with the hashtag #miamibeachedition. Enjoy!
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We've been teasing you about the items in the minibar at the Miami Beach Edition but you won't have to wait any longer.
Here's a look at some of our favorite items from the minibar tray that's stashed in the closet of the guest rooms (the closet also has gorgeous banana leaf wallpaper.) The goodies are separate from the mini-fridge filled with just as interesting drinks (Cafe Bustelo forever!) so don't be alarmed if you can't find them right away.
Forgot underwear? You can buy that from the minibar. Need a backpack to tote your beach gear around? You can find that here in the minibar too, along with Sun Bum sunscreen, Joe's Kettle chips, Joe & Seph's popcorn, Dang coconut flakes, Sir Richard condoms, Urbanears ear buds, Japanese facial masks, lip balm, the "Where Chefs Eat" book and even, Illesteva sunglasses. All at an additional charge, of course.
Since the Edition London carried a jar of bacon jam we shouldn't have been that surprised by this minibar extravaganza but still, it seemed way more exciting than we had anticipated. Just when everyone thought minibars were nearly extinct, Edition finds a way to bring them back to life. (For what it's worth, the minibar was overseen by someone on the Marriott side, not Schrager's side. #innnteresting.)
Oh, and don't worry, there's a Snickers in there for old times sake.
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The 294-room resort has plenty of traditional ways to keep you occupied during your stay whether it be relaxing at the pool, sunbathing on the beach, hiding away in the spa or just holing up with room service. There are also several non-traditional ways to stay occupied like bowling, ice-skating, or reliving your disco days in the Basement. (More on that coming soon, we promise.)
But the one part of Edition that seemed the most "game-changing" to us was Market, the modern diner concept from Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, located just off the lobby.
Market is unlike anything we've seen before in a hotel. Yes, we've seen grab-and-go markets and cafes in hotels, but let's be real, they've been just a step above an airport restaurant. But here, you have the accessibility of a grab-and-go spot, with the offerings of a Michelin-starred chef. Yet the space is so pretty, you won't want your food to go. You're going to want to sit down, enjoy your meal and take in the fascinating people-watching scene we've come to love about Miami Beach.
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It was only a year ago that we were nearly weeping tears of joy at the long-awaited opening of the Edition Hotel in London and just six months since we actually slept there but hotelier Ian Schrager and Marriott International have done it again, and a lot closer to home, too.
Here are a few snapshots of an ocean view king room at the hotel. We'll have more photos and tidbits about the resort for you tomorrow, including a peek at the already-infamous Basement ice-skating rink and bowling alley, the Matador restaurant from Jean-Georges Vongerichten and a few words from Ian Schrager himself.
Oh, and you're gonna want to see what's in the minibar. It might be the best hotel minibar we've ever seen. Ever.
Bagatelle, a popular restaurant brand that originated in NYC's Meatpacking District before expanding to Sao Paolo, St. Tropez and St. Barth (with a brief stint in Las Vegas), is now heading to Miami Beach. But instead of opening another hot restaurant or beach club, owners Aymeric Clemente and Remi Laba are opening a restaurant + hotel + pool club, called Villa Bagatelle.
Located at 21st and Collins in the current Boulan Hotel, Villa Bagatelle will take about 18 months to fully open. The first phase of the renovation is happening now, with a cosmetic touch-up of the hotel's common areas and guest rooms. The rooms are actually all suites and have at least one bedroom with a deluxe Tempur-Pedic bed, a fully equipped epicurean kitchen with dining areas, living room with queen-bedded sofa bed, and oversized marble spa-inspired bathroom. Some suites have private terraces with either views of downtown or the ocean.
The second renovation phase will transform the rooftop pool deck into a "complete Bagatelle St. Tropez experience" with a full service food and beverage concept. The courtyard at the hotel will also transform in to The Bagatelle Gardens where guests can enjoy breakfast, light lunch, dinner, coffee and cocktails. Is that Bagatelle enough for you?
You can actually stay at the hotel now, although the Villa Bagatelle branding is not complete. Rates start around $379 a night but we found a suite king in a few weeks for $289 a night.
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Last we checked, the Thompson Miami Beach was opening on November 14 but that opening date has been moved just a little bit back to November 21. However, the hotel is now offering a special opening package that starts at $399 a night, based on double occupancy, and includes the following:
· Minimum two-night stay in plush accommodations
· Daily breakfast for two at Seagrape, the restaurant from Miami's own Michelle Bernstein
· Signature welcome cocktails for two
· Beach swag bag with Coola sunscreen products, including body sunscreen, facial sunscreen and moisturizing lip balm
· Admission for two to Perez Art Museum Miami, so you can get a jump start on all the Art Basel festivities.
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Miami and Las Vegas have become sister cities of a sort. Both are well-known for their robust hotel scenes, their penchant for partying, their "less is more" credo when it comes to clothing and their general love of excess.
More recently, we've been seeing an influx of South Beach in Sin City, thanks to the opening of the SLS Las Vegas and the Delano Las Vegas. But now, Vegas is sending off something to Miami--Michael Mina's StripSteak restaurant.
Stripsteak can be found in Vegas at Mandalay Bay, where the Delano Las Vegas also lives, but Mina plans on spinning off StripSteak Miami at The Fontainebleau sometime this fall. Mina already operates the Michael Mina 74 restaurant at the resort so he's already familiar with the property. StripSteak will replace Gotham Steak restaurant. We'll keep you updated on the opening date. In the meantime, peruse the StripSteak Vegas menu for a hint of what's to come. We'll take the 10oz filet mignon, the truffle mac n' cheese and one, make that two, orders of the potato gratin please.