With hands-on pottery classes, design workshops and more, hotels are encouraging guests and locals to tap their imaginative powers.
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Miami hotels might be known for a plethora of high-end luxury brands, but its boutique...Miami hotels might be known for a plethora of high-end luxury brands, but its boutique hotels are no less glamorous, contemporary, and service-oriented. Located all over the city from South Beach to Brickell, and Little Havana, these boutique properties include desirable amenities like on-site pools, cultural programming, and rooftop bars. We selected the best boutique hotels based on personal experience, Trip Advisor and Booking.com ratings, and budget. In Miami's summer off-season, expect prices between $95 and $468 per night, depending on how posh you want to go. Read all Business Insider hotel reviews here. A note from your Insider Reviews travel editor: Coronavirus has interrupted travel on a global scale forcing travelers to cancel and reassess plans in the coming weeks and months. We understand that right now is a challenging time to plan travel. But when this time passes and things return to normal, we know you'll be eager to explore the world again. Whenever that happens for you, and we know it will, we hope our travel content helps you make informed, useful, and inspiring choices on the best places and hotels to book. So whether you use our reviews now, bookmark them for the future, or simply need an escape from the news, we'll continue to share the world with you. In the meantime, we encourage all travelers to stay safe, follow guidelines from the CDC website, and take precautions. Personal attention, intimate settings, and little risk of encountering large-scale conventions and crowds are just a few reasons many folks love to stay at boutique hotels. In Miami, boutique hotels also typically boast historic architecture in renovated Art Deco or Mediterranean Revival buildings, intriguing design and style aesthetics, and an approachable ambiance that feels far from corporate. Many are located in popular South Beach, though they're quickly popping up all over the city. Urbanica Hotels, which specializes in boutiques (see Urbanica The Meridian Hotel below), will debut new venues in Edgewater in 2020 and North Beach in the coming years. The Brickell/downtown area and region of South Miami, Coconut Grove, and Coral Gables are all starting to see more polished small properties developed. And Little Havana, too, is becoming a place to stay as its cultural resources are increasingly recognized as the citywide treasures that they are. For more Miami area hotel recommendations, click on a link below to jump directly to all our coverage of the best hotels in Miami. The best hotels in Miami The best hotels in South Beach The best hotels in Fort Lauderdale The best hotels in Key West As a longtime Miami local and travel writer who has reviewed countless hotels, I curated this list based on my experiences staying at and reviewing these properties. I also consulted reviews and ratings on trusted traveler sites such as Trip Advisor and Booking.com, and Hotels.com, where they received at least 4 stars out of 5 stars, or 8.1 out of 10. Additionally, in Miami, pool or beach access is a must, and every hotel includes fantastic places to take a dip or soak up some sun, in addition to offering high-end food and beverage options, excellent spa and fitness amenities, and impeccable design. Prices range between $95 and $468 to start in the summer off-season, and you can expect all of them to hike rates by a few hundred dollars starting around Thanksgiving, until after spring break. Resort fees vary widely but often include bicycle rentals, barre or yoga classes, happy hours, or breakfast. These are the best boutique hotels in Miami, sorted by price from low to high.SEE ALSO: The best hotels in South Beach SEE ALSO: The best hotels in Miami The Plymouth South Beach Book The Plymouth South Beach starting at $95 per night One of only two designated Small Luxury Hotels of the World on the Eastern seaboard, The Plymouth South Beach is a design lover's dream. From the dusty pink quilted headboards to the robust selection of antique armchairs in the lobby, the decor will surely inspire a few homeowner daydreams. Standard rooms start at 250 square feet, and many strategically placed mirrors try to disguise the fact the rooms and single, marble-vanity bathrooms are diminutive in nature. The retro country French styling adds the requisite allure, however, and it's completely worth the extra $60 to upgrade to a Terrace King, which offers 375 square feet, subway-tiled bathrooms with steam showers, and an outdoor space ideal for dining. The excellent Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar & Grill in the lobby is as popular with locals as it is with hotel guests, and might require a reservation in advance. And don't miss a selfie at the original 1940s Art Moderne pool, one of the prettiest in Miami – and that's saying a lot. Trip Advisor ranking: 20 out of 222 hotels in Miami Beach Booking.com rating: 8.2 out of 10 Pros: The Plymouth has dibs on a private slice of beach located between the W South Beach and The Setai. Grab a ride on the golf cart to get there, or stroll on over. Cons: Guests complain about indifferent customer service and lack of food and beverage amenities during the daytime hours. Circa 39 Miami Beach Book Circa 39 Hotel starting at $109 per night Located in the Normandy Isles neighborhood of North Beach, the 97-guestroom Circa 39 is a colorful, Caribbean-styled retreat. It comprises two connected buildings with a lush courtyard in between that's ideal for relaxing, reading a book, or sipping a tropical cocktail. Rooms start at 200 square feet, which is smaller than most, but they're also consistently cheaper. And what they lack in size they make up for in character with plenty of blues, greens, and oranges accenting teak furniture, plantation shutters, and hardwood floors. Bathrooms are simple and even smaller than the room might indicate. Upgrade for only $50 more and a whole new world opens up on higher floors, including better views. The public spaces, including WunderBar and Jules Kitchen give top vacation vibes as well, with lots of bright, layered textiles, wicker shades, and cane-back and cast iron furnishings. There's a refreshing pool in back, and the beachfront here is frequented more by locals and less by tourists. Trip Advisor ranking: 29 out of 222 hotels in Miami Beach Booking.com rating: 8.5 out of 10 Pros: Guests with cars can access a private parking lot via remote for the length of their stay. Cons: There is little soundproofing despite a 2014 renovation that allows traffic, guest, and staff noise to seep into rooms. Read Business Insider's full hotel review of Circa 39 Miami Beach The Marlin Hotel Book The Marlin Hotel starting at $119 per night One of the smaller hotels on this list, The Marlin Hotel was also one of the first to be renovated in South Beach's late 1980s/early 1990s renaissance. Continually updated in keeping with the times, the 33-room-and-suite hotel is a glam destination for leisure and business travelers of all kinds, including musical celebrities who record at the in-house studio. Hardwood floors, modular furniture, and sandy hues accented by some primary colors in the pillows and rugs make for streamlined but groovy digs. Contemporary bathrooms with vessel sinks and rainfall showerheads wow, as do little luxury touches in rooms like Mistral Verbena Collection products, Astor "Sleep" pillow chocolates, and Nespresso coffee. Do make plans to dine at the award-winning northern Italian Osteria Del Teatro, which debuted on the beach in a different location in 1987. It seems only fitting that The Marlin houses it now. Continental breakfast is offered from 8 to 10 a.m. Trip Advisor ranking: 12 out of 222 hotels in Miami Beach Booking.com rating: 9.1 out of 10 Pros: Sure, hairdryers are an expected fixture but Babylis flatirons? Oh, we like this amenity. The makeup remover, too. Cons: The Marlin Hotel has no pool, but you'll find a packed beach bag with two towels awaiting you for a short walk to the beach. And, as a consequence, the resort fee is only $15, which is far cheaper than most comparable hotels. Novotel Miami Brickell Book Novotel Miami Brickell starting at $119 per night Designed for the convenience of the business traveler – but without leaving out the staycation community – the Novotel Miami Brickell offers a fusion of boutique hospitality and efficient function. Located downtown, it's less than a half-mile to the Metro station and 3.5 miles to Brightline Virgin MiamiCentral Station. Standard rooms are less modestly sized than competitors, with room enough for a lengthy bureau/desk, bench, table, and chair in addition to beds with oversized, geometric wood headboards. If you don't want to stare out at the great city views, the 50-inch LCD televisions offer plenty of entertainment, as do UVA bar and Lima restaurant in the soaring lobby. The rooftop pool is the biggest draw of staying here. A DJ mixes music while guests of all ages mingle poolside with drinks and fare procured from Vista Roof Top pool bar. While the seating is competitive and the pool bar sometimes understaffed, the scene has that appealing Miami vibe. Trip Advisor ranking: 7 out of 134 hotels in Miami Booking.com rating: 8.7 out of 10 Pros: Brickell City Centre and The Shops at Mary Brickell Village, which have outstanding dining and drinking options, as well as upscale boutiques and live music venues, are only just over a half-mile away. Cons: You can hear the trains from the rooms, and even during prime time service, the staff is often missing from the bar and host stands. The Redbury South Beach Book The Redbury starting at $139 per night A perennial favorite, The Redbury South Beach is a 69-room bohemian charmer that attends to every detail. From rooms with record players and curated collections of vinyl to custom hemp-blend mattresses, this boutique gem delivers on the promise of its premise. Rooms start at an unstinting 375 square feet and feature natural hues that reflect Miami's famous light. Updated bathrooms with triple filtered-water, oversize steam showers, and bathtubs, complemented by all-natural bath products, are ideal for washing off the salt from the nearby Atlantic or the chlorine from the 12,000-square-foot rooftop pool. That pool, by the way, with its terrific sight lines, is a social hot spot day or night. Also a community darling: Cleo Mediterráneo, with its extensive menu of fresh, shareable mezze. Partake in any meal here before you depart for the day, or ask the attentive concierge team for ideas about other local spots to indulge. Trip Advisor ranking: 14 out of 222 hotels in Miami Beach Booking.com rating: 8.8 out of 10 Pros: While the hotel is not located on the beach, guests have access to the sand as well as towels, chairs, and other accouterments via The Delano. Ask the concierge. Cons: The 17th Street and Collins Avenue location makes The Redbury eminently walkable to all the prime South Beach locations, but noise and tourist unpleasantness can be a factor, especially during some of the wilder festivals and party weekends. Life House, Little Havana Book Life House, Little Havana starting at $149 per night Founded by Rami Zeidan, Life House Hotels is a boutique brand offering alternative lodgings to big-brand hotels. And this Little Havana edition is different indeed, supplying a "bespoke narrative" along with its digs. Every room and public area, from library and courtyard to rooftop bar, is designed as if a global traveler had collected decor from around the world. It's an interesting concept, resulting in rooms that all feel unique, well-appointed, and attractive – but astoundingly small. They start at just 140 square feet. Guests complain that they are darker and not as clean as they should be, although the hotel only opened in January, 2020. That said, other guests have had positive experiences exploring the hotel's Parcela Café in the landscaped courtyard, meant to evoke Hemingway days, and Terras Rooftop bar, which offers a terrific view of this culturally vital area of Miami. Trip Advisor ranking: 66 out of 124 hotels in Miami Booking.com rating: 8.1 out of 10 Pros: The location is prime for exploring all Miami has to offer, especially if you don't want to bother with a car. If you love Latin music and dancing, you're in the right region. Cons: Because this is a refurbished urban mansion in a Little Havana neighborhood, guests say the neighbors make them feel unsettled. In addition, while there's sunbathing on the rooftop, there's no pool on the premises or beach nearby, so this is a pick best for urban dwellers. Urbanica The Meridian Hotel Book Urbanica The Meridian Hotel starting at $149 per night A restored Art Deco building originally from the 19303, The Meridian fits right in on South Beach but stands out with its more sedate, high-end South of Fifth location. Run by Urbanica The Hotels, a brand that specializes in boutique properties in Miami and Buenos Aires, the three-story Meridian features 71 rooms designed in minimalist style, with beds that have slatted wooden headboards and luxurious white duvets. The rooms themselves are small but are clean and bright with floor-to-ceiling windows. Some of them are over Minibar, a colorful speakeasy that gets its share of pretty people business, however. If you're retiring early, ask for a room away from these amenities. An attractive plunge pool is located on the rooftop, and plants abound in the outdoor public spaces. For fare, the famous New York City deli Regina's Grocery offers Italian eats, and vending machines, a microwave, water, coffee, and tea supplement whenever the bar and cafe aren't open. Trip Advisor ranking: 7 out of 222 hotels in Miami Beach Booking.com rating: 8.8 out of 10 Pros: Bicycles are included in the resort fee, and the location is accessible to bus and trolley stops. Cons: Guests have few complaints, but they usually relate to billing practices and documents. Read the fine print and check your statements. Greystone Miami Beach Book Greystone Miami Beach starting at $149 per night Charming, chic, and eco-conscious, the 91-guestroom Greystone debuted at the dawn of 2020. Owned by VOS Hospitality, the Greystone occupies a 1930s building, originally designed by famed Art Deco architect Henry Hohauser. Designated a Historic Hotel of America, its facade sits on Collins Avenue, but the property also includes another building next door on the side street, as well as a contemporary, beautifully lit courtyard between them. Adults-only and pet-friendly, this is a hotel for folks who only have fur babies to worry about. The rooms, with white-on-white decor, interrupted only by splashes of pastel pink and blue, are sleek and high-tech. Every room includes an INTELITY tablet, which you can use to order extra ROIL bath products. A smartphone app also controls everything from keyless entry to towel service at the rooftop pool. The food and beverage options are top-notch and impressive. Chef Pawan Pinisetti leads Sérêvène, a restaurant that fuses Japanese, French, and Indian flavors with luxe ingredients, and the fast-casual KOBO, which features Japanese sandwiches. Sebastian Dubonet handles the mixology at UISCE, an upscale whiskey bar, and Golden Gator, an underground Champagne lounge that's open until 5 a.m. When it starts pushing on toward morning, snack on Caviar Push Pops and Foie Gras & Pop Rocks Lollipops, and then tumble onto your Felicity Plus Mattress for a few blissful hours of sleep before hitting the beach across the street. Trip Advisor ranking: 178 out of 222 hotels in Miami Beach Booking.com rating: Not listed, too new Pros: The location is extremely walkable, with the beach right across the street and Lincoln Road only a few blocks away. Cons: Guests from a few early reviews had trouble with housekeeping, and noise from Collins Avenue, especially exotic sports cars gunning their engines, which can be disturbing. Mr. C Miami – Coconut Grove Book Mr. C Miami – Coconut Grove starting at $167 per night If you observe the 100-room Mr. C Miami – Coconut Grove from a distance, you might mistake it for a posh midcentury modern yacht. Art Deco influences include portholes and hairpin stilts, while the design inside leans heavily nautical with lots of glossy lacquered wood, rich blue tones, and sailing maps and photos. Lodgings begin on the second floor with built-in bar carts and gem-tone headboards that seamlessly blend in with the deep blue walls. Everything is designed to feel like you're on a sleek Italian superyacht cruising around Capri. The white marble and blue-tiled bathrooms and balconies separated from each other by sailing tarps heighten the oceanic impression. On the rooftop, the indoor-outdoor Bellini is a dining destination and gathering place for the community as well as the hotel. It's revered for Italian pastas, seafood, and the signature drink for which it's named, all served by white tuxedo-clad servers. After all, Mr. C is owned and run by the fourth generation of the Cipriani family, which also owns Harry's Bar in Venice where the Prosecco cocktail was invented. A small but serene rooftop pool and an idyllic courtyard round out the tranquil offerings. Trip Advisor ranking: 65 out of 134 hotels in Coconut Grove Booking.com rating: 9.1 out of 10 Pros: A rooftop pool is a view-worthy, refreshing place to hang out with plush cabanas available to book. It's a short flight of stairs away from the outdoor dining, so there's some separation of church and state. Cons: The positioning of the hotel is smack in the middle of the busiest part of Coconut Grove, where shops, plazas, schools, parks, and festival grounds collide. When everything is in season, the area can be a logjam of traffic and construction. Also, the gym is quite small. Read Business Insider's full hotel review of Mr. C Miami - Coconut Grove Prime Hotel Miami Beach Book Prime Hotel Miami Beach starting at $200 per night Prime Hotel is something of a secret. It's an extension of Myles Chefetz's luxury Prime brand that includes Prime 112, Prime Fish, Prime Italian, and Big Pink, which are all some of the highest-earning restaurants in the nation. The hotel is equally sweet, chic, and a celebrity-frequented boutique. It's not unusual for rooms to be leased by high-caliber athletes and actors who only eat at Prime restaurants while in town, and for no one to know where they're staying. That said, the hotel is open to everyone, and is especially ideal for honeymooners, couples celebrating an anniversary, and travelers who enjoy privacy. It's also surprisingly family-friendly, given that there are only 14 custom-designed rooms. The front desk offers 24/7 service and an on-site concierge can arrange anything from babysitting to beach activities. Rooms are modern and chic with white and chrome decor and look out on South Beach's upscale South of Fifth neighborhood through floor-to-ceiling windows. Many also have balconies. In addition, if you don't want to walk the half-block to the beach, a rooftop pool is perfect for a spot of sunbathing or resting under the shade of the cabana. Trip Advisor ranking: 158 out of 222 hotels in Miami Beach Booking.com rating: 8.6 out of 10 Pros: Room service from Prime 112, Prime Italian, or Big Pink is a big perk. If you're not in the mood for any of them, the location offers access to plenty of restaurants within walking distance. Cons: Noise from Prime 112 and the neighborhood, in general, can trickle up. The Betsy South Beach Book The Betsy South Beach starting at $239 per night The Betsy South Beach comprises two renovated and connected buildings: The Betsy Ross, a Florida Georgian hotel on Ocean Drive, and The Carlton, an Art Deco hotel from 1938 that stands directly behind it on Collins Avenue. The main entrance is on Ocean Drive, just across from the beach. Owned by the Plutzik-Goldwasser family, The Betsy is an epicenter for the literary, visual, and performing arts. The Lobby (with bar and restaurant), The B Bar, The Library, The Gallery, The Carlton Room (with bar and gallery), and rooftop spaces all host poetry readings, musical performances, academic lectures, visual arts displays, and more. Programming every day and night of the week allows guests up-close-and-personal meetings with artists-in-residence. Also, meet the CEOs – Canine Executive Officers – at golden (retriever) hour on Fridays. One of the larger boutique hotels on the list, The Betsy offers a wide variety of rooms and suites. They start at 250 square feet, which is small, but the art-filled public spaces are generous and vibrant. Food and beverage offerings are under the direction of Laurent Tourondel; don't hesitate to luxuriate in the dishes at LT Steak & Seafood – especially the noteworthy popovers. Trip Advisor ranking: 6 out of 222 hotels in Miami Beach Booking.com rating: 8.4 out of 10 Pros: Beach towels, loungers, and umbrellas are included in the resort fee, so pop across the street to the Boucher Brothers concession and they'll set you up near the landmark Art Deco lifeguard stand. Cons: If you're looking for the kind of beach hotel that promotes parasailing and jet-skiing, you'll be disappointed. But you can always inquire with the concierge about how to participate in those activities. Read Business Insider's full hotel review of The Betsy South Beach The Villa Casa Casuarina Book The Villa Casa Casuarina starting at $468 per night Gianni Versace's storied former mansion is a Miami Beach landmark, and now, an intimate hotel. While prices are usually sky-high, weekdays in the off-season offer a relative bargain in this all-suite, elaborately decked-out hotel. Originally built in 1930 by wealthy architect Alden Freeman as an apartment building, the Spanish-Mediterranean property is now a 10-suite hotel, thanks to Versace's $32 million investment and that of various owners over the years after his murder. Staying at The Villa Casa Casuarina affords you access to the historical statues, columns, fountain, and the absolutely stunning Thousand Mosaic Pool, which is made out of 24k gold tiles. The suites themselves are absolutely lavish with murals on both walls and ceilings and tapestries, carved rare wood furniture, objets d'arts, and more. Marble bathrooms include oversize double showerheads and double sinks, and every suite has a balcony or terrace; some even have two. It may be hard to leave these quarters for even a second, but do head up to the Rooftop Lounge for a sunset drink. Trip Advisor ranking: 15 out of 151 specialty lodging in Miami Beach Booking.com rating: 8.4 out of 10 Pros: Daily breakfast is included in the room rate, and other food and beverage options include Onyx Bar and the poolside Restaurant Gianni's At The Villa. Cons: The Ocean Drive location and famous history means this place is not only subject to the typical tourist action, but a busy photo opp for lots of tourists too, due to its notoriety. Also, the design includes a lot of slippery stairs and no elevators or ramps, so it is not accessible for everyone.