You don’t have to be a tourist to enjoy one of Miami Beach’s hotel bars. From see-and-be-seen cocktail lounges to New York-style speakeasies to alfresco spots with tropical vibes, hotel bars are locals' havens for classic drinks, craft brews, and stellar wine lists. Here are six of the best on the Beach.
Broken Shaker at the Freehand Hotel2727 Indian Creek Dr., Miami Beach
Located in the back of a Mid-Beach hostel, this outdoor drinking den is known for putting Miami’s cocktail scene on the map. The bar has expanded outside of South Florida’s borders, opening locations in L.A., New York, and Chicago in recent years. A backyard pool vibe, tropical décor, and an ever-changing list of handcrafted cocktails are some of the draws at this perennially busy tropical oasis. The eclectic menu of snacks and plates from the adjacent 27 Restaurant doesn’t hurt either.
Driftway and the Jim & Neesie at Generator Miami3120 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
Located on the ground floor of the new Generator Hostel, these two drink spots are equally enticing and filled with creative cocktails by Broken Shaker veteran Gui Jaroschy, who now helms all onsite bar and restaurant operations. Open from day to night, Driftway is perfect for poolside frozen drinks. The Friesling — made with Riesling, pear, and parsley — is a must-try ($12), while the Jim and Neesie boasts cozy, living room-like digs, bottled cocktails served tableside, a funky wine list, and a menu of global comfort food by chef Daniel Roy (formerly of Matador Room and Stubborn Seed). Be sure to try something you’ve never had before, like the raspberry- and pistachio-infused Negroni Supreme ($12), or better yet, ask the well-informed bartenders for a recommendation based on your taste.
The Living Room at the Faena Hotel Miami Beach3201 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
Outfitted with dramatic golden chandeliers, sexy animal-print couches and chairs, leopard and tiger statues, and red accents, this lavish lounge is right in step with the Faena’s more-is-more aesthetic. The well-heeled clientele flocks here for nightly entertainment like jazz combos and salsa performances, and for a wide array of inventive house cocktails (most around $18) and wines from around the world. And in case all those libations have you feeling a little more shaken than stirred, the Living Room also offers a snack menu stocked with globally inspired, elevated bar fare ranging from truffle sliders ($21) to artisanal cheese platters ($25).
Matador Bar at the Miami Beach Edition2901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
Matador Room, the Edition hotel’s signature restaurant by renowned chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, gets attention for its elegant food driven by a world-class chef. But its namesake bar is just as much of a draw, especially on Friday night when the place is bustling. With dramatic floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the ocean, a long walnut bar, plush seating, and bullfighter-themed photographs, the room has a sophisticated vibe. You’ll want to kick back here for a cocktail or a glass of wine, especially during happy hour for special deals on drinks and food, starting at 6 p.m.
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Rose Bar at the Delano1685 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
The historic Delano hotel is located in the heart of South Beach, and its glitzy cocktail bar is the perfect place to start a long night of decadence. The rose-colored space overlooks the Delano’s whimsical, Alice in Wonderland-inspired lobby, offering great people-watching as you sip on throwback cocktails like James Bond's Vesper martini ($20) or the Ruse with Maker's Mark, Aperol, and fresh lime juice ($20).
The Regent Cocktail Club at the Gale South Beach1690 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
Inspired by old-school New York jazz clubs, this swanky little cocktail bar tucked away behind the Gale hotel offers nightly live music and strong and colorful cocktails in Art Deco surrounds. There's no better place to get a properly made sazerac ($13) or papa doble ($15) outside of New Orleans or Havana. Small dishes are also available, and for something a little more substantial, Dolce, the hotel’s onsite Italian restaurant, has you more than covered.