Chalk Ping Pong & Billiards Lounge
Logan Fazio

You think pool halls and you envision dark, smoky rooms filled with tables covered by worn-out green felt. And until early January 2012, that was probably true. Since then, Chalk Ping Pong & Billiards Lounge has proven the pool hall can also be a sexy place where beautiful people lacking leather vests and tramp stamps can play together. Chalk also has seven Ping-Pong tables in addition to five pool tables, two expansive bars, and VIP rooms. Don't want to miss the game? Don't worry — each bar has a pair of flat-screen TV sets hanging overhead. Prices for a game vary based on the time. Early birds (7 to 9 p.m.) can enjoy a 30-minute game of table tennis or pool for $8. The rate goes up to $10 after that but drops to $5 from 3 to 5 a.m. For pool sharks, Chalk also offers memberships for $50 a month or $500 annually. And a fair warning: Though Chalk is a sexier, South Beach version of the pool hall, it hasn't inherited the Beach's mantra of table reservations, which means waits on the weekends for pool or Ping-Pong at peak hours can be long. That being said, cozy up to the bar and talk to the friendly bartenders while you wait for your name to be called.

FDR Lounge at the Delano

There is no denying South Beach was abuzz with the news that Chris Paciello would be returning to the scene with a new project. After years as a guest in federal prison, he found a very different South Beach than the one he encountered in the 1990s. Sure, South Beach is just as vain as it was back then. But the free-spirit, bohemian attitude has been replaced by Vegas-like aspirations of hospitality and entertainment. But Paciello has brought back the old days at FDR at Delano, the Florida Room's former digs. This is a low-light, cavernous space filled with richly textured, expensive-looking décor and pricey drinks. Try one of the signature cocktails for $20 — seriously worth the price — such as the New Deal, made with Bulleit bourbon, peach purée, and ginger beer. Or check out the Eleanor (notice a pattern?), made with Plymouth gin, muddled strawberries, and lemon juice. Cocktails aside, it's what FDR represents that really has us calling it Miami's number one: a return to the ultra-VIP glamour that first put South Beach on the map. Which means just trying to get across the velvet ropes is half the fun.

Best Of Miami®

Best Of Miami®