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Thursday, June 9, 2016

One of the world’s most exhilarating and dynamic getaways


South Beach

One of the world’s most exhilarating and dynamic getaways

Story by Heidi Chackel

Photography provided by The Tides South Beach


South Beach, otherwise known as SoBe, is one of the more popular tourist destinations in Florida, and probably the globe. A neighborhood of Miami Beach, it reminds me a bit of Vegas—round the clock fun. It is trendy and quirky, and truly just a fun place to be.

Excellent nightlife, a plethora of hotels, amazing dining options, numerous parks and recreation options, shopping galore, and one of the hottest club scenes around are synonymous with South Beach. And to top it off, South Beach offers a killer public beach and magnificent ocean views.

Spout Beach seems to attract a wide variety of tourists and residents from around the world. Condos have sprung up in every available space, and literally go up and up dozens of floors. Permanent and second homes abound, and have become very popular for retirees as well as foreigners from Europe, Israel and the entire Western Hemisphere. Young, old and everyone in between; you will see families strolling the beach, Ferrari’s driving up and down Ocean Drive, and groups hopping from club to club.

Dining options are immense—literally everywhere you look and walk. Along Ocean Drive, patio dining is competitive with representatives of every restaurant recruiting passersby. Bars offer live shows and DJs to entice customers. The Lincoln Road Mall area, just blocks away, reminds me of a quaint Italian village, overflowing with trendy restaurants, dessert options and shops.

South Beach occupies a highly sought-after beachfront location between the Atlantic Ocean and Biscayne Bay, east of Miami. South Beach was the first area of Miami Beach to be developed, beginning in the 1910s. A bridge connecting Miami to Miami Beach was completed in 1913 and the area expanded from farming to an independent city 

During the 1920s the Miami Beach land boom began and in the 1930s an architectural revolution came to the area, which gave root to its current claim of Art Deco Playground. Colorful lifeguard huts dot the beach, and were apparently donated to the city by architect William Lane in the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew in 1992. The huts instantly became symbols of the revival post hurricane.

Our hotel—The Tides South Beach—was built in 1936 and was the tallest building at that time and also the first hotel in Miami Beach to have an elevator. “The Diva of Ocean Drive” is the hotel tagline and accurately paints a picture of what The Tides offers. The hotel’s architecture is rich with Art Deco influences, creating a nostalgic environment and a unique brand of luxury. Architect L. Murray Dixon built The Tides and it quickly earned rave reviews for its asymmetrical design and striking decorative detailing.

“Trends may come and go, but style and sophistication remain timeless,” says David Mills, sales and marketing manager at The Tides. “I think this is the nicest property you will find on this beach. Every room in the building has an ocean view. You are right in the middle of it. You can go out and enjoy the sites and party, but have peace and relaxation here.”

With its high ceilings, huge windows and expansive outdoor terrace, The Tides exudes Old World Miami Beach elegance while also enveloping guests in modern-day comfort and sophistication. The Tides boasts 45 rooms, all about 550 square feet in size. With the recent 2008 renovation, the hotel offers three penthouse suites up to 2,000 square feet in size that boast spectacular terrace views. The Tides Penthouse offers 2,000 square feet of living space with guaranteed views of the Atlantic Ocean and Ocean Drive from a 900 square foot private rooftop terrace. Inside you will find a large living area with 42-inch flat screen television, full kitchen, dining room, two-and-a-half baths, a master bedroom overlooking the ocean and a second bedroom.

The Tides Restaurant and Terrace features all day indoor and outdoor dining. The terrace spans the length of the building and was our go to spot while dining. The hotel’s culinary team serves an eclectic blend of international and American favorites. The region’s seafood and fresh produce are abundant throughout the menu that boasts creativity, comfort and imagination. Set slightly farther back from Ocean Drive than most restaurants thanks to the large terrace, we were able to enjoy our meal privately while people watching and taking in the sights at the same time.

All guests of The Tides receive complimentary beach set up of two beach chairs, one umbrella and two towels. We definitely took advantage of this, enjoying the beach both afternoons of our stay.

I am sure the amazing weather plays a part in the popularity of this vacation dream spot. With an average temperature of 76 degrees, you can’t go wrong. 

While we did not take advantage of the many water sports, the options are plentiful—sailing, yachting, fishing, swimming, surfing, scuba, snorkeling, SUP, kite surfing, jet skis to name a few. And as in every tourist destination, day spas are abundant as well as shops, boutiques and galleries.


The Tides South Beach

1220 Ocean Dr., Miami Beach


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