How to Plan the Perfect Long Weekend in Miami Beach

Miami Beach beckons visitors from around the globe, offering white-sand beaches, glamorous accommodations, world-renowned museums and galleries, and restaurants where you don’t want the meal to end. There is so much to do and see that it can be hard to plan the perfect itinerary. Here are our recommendations on where to stay, what to do, and where to eat for a weekend in Miami Beach.

The Setai Miami Beach Tower and Pools
Courtesy of The Setai, Miami Beach

Day One

Head straight to The Lido Bayside Grill at The Standard Spa, Miami Beach from Miami International Airport for lunch. The atmosphere at the open-air restaurant overlooking Biscayne Bay provides the perfect welcome — relax and cheers the beginning of a sun-filled weekend with the signature Frosé. Spend the rest of the day sunning by The Standard Spa’s incredible pool.

NYC favorite, Osteria Morini, just opened a Miami outpost. Dinner by the canal eating their signature battilardo late into the evening just might be the best way to end the first day. Alternatively, Stubborn Seed is also nearby. Jeremy Ford, the Top Chef season 13 winner, curates an 8-course tasting menu that is equally as inventive and fun as it is delicious.

Day Two

Shops along the Design District

Taylor McIntyre/Travel + Leisure

In the morning, head to mainland Miami and sample the Miami Design District aesthetic, beginning with the graffiti art of Wynwood Walls. The timed-ticket gallery has murals from legendary artists like Shepard Fairey and Kenny Scharf, but also emerging stars. The recently-opened Superblue Miami is an immersive masterpiece. The large-scale installations (and the artists behind them) push the boundaries of what art can be.

Interior of Superblue Miami
Courtesy of Superblue

Before making your way back to Miami Beach, stop by Bakan for lunch. The Mexican dining experience is built on three elements that date back to pre-Hispanic times: nixtamal, mezcal, and wood fire. After lunch, head to Surfside to enjoy the Four Seasons at the Surf Club’s daytime cabanas (available to hotel guests only), or the beach, before enjoying the main attraction of Surfside — The Surf Club Restaurant by Chef Thomas Keller. This iconic restaurant honors the location’s history of good times and grand parties through classic continental cuisine, interpreted for a contemporary palate.

Day Three

Depending on where you are staying — Bal Harbour, Surfside, South Beach — spend the morning at The Setai’s Valmont spa for a relaxing massage or The St. Regis Spa at The St. Regis Bal Harbour for a facial. Then, lunch at Makoto. One of Miami’s most accomplished chefs, Makoto Okuwa is a master of Edomae-style sushi. He reshapes tradition to create some of the most delicious and inventive dishes, like truffle salmon with yuzu and crystallized soy or wagyu cooked table side on a hot river stone.

Where to Stay

The Standard Spa, Miami Beach

The Standard Spa might be the coolest spot to stay in Miami Beach. Located on Belle Isle, seemingly away from it all, is actually smack dab in the middle of the action. A lush tropical paradise lines the courtyard from the entrance to the pool. Hidden among the flora and fauna are art installations and private areas with hammocks or hanging lounge chairs. The crowning jewel of the property is the beach-like pool that overlooks Biscayne Bay.

St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort

For an escape from the crowds, head to Bal Harbour and enjoy quiet beaches and luxe shopping in the glam accommodations at the St. Regis Bal Harbour. Each room offers floor-to-ceiling windows, which lead to spacious, glass-walled balconies overlooking the vibrant turquoise waters of the Atlantic Ocean. The rooms and suites are so comfortable and relaxing, that it becomes difficult to do anything but lounge on your private balcony.

The Setai Miami Beach

The penthouse pool at The Setai, Miami Beach
Ken Hayden/Courtesy of The Setai, Miami Beach

The Setai stands out among the other hotels in South Beach. The elegant design, three pools, Asian-inspired cuisine at Jaya, and impeccable service combine to offer an unforgettable stay in South Beach. Steps away, lounge in luxury on the crowded beaches in a private sunning chair with food and beverage service. And just maybe, you’ll spot a celebrity.

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