Miami Beach has been my second home for years. The Atlantic Ocean, its beautiful Art Deco hotels and the people who come here from all over make it Florida’s most exciting city. But, the best-kept secret are the fun day trips to the islands of Key Largo, Islamorada or Key West. Stop at popular Mile Markers to find the best seafood shack, waterside inn or fishing cove. My favorite haunts are: Cheeca Lodge & Spa, Shell World, Pierre’s restaurant, Morada Bay, Postcard Inn, Anne’s Beach and Little Palm Island.
My heyday in Miami Beach began in 1995 when I opened the Delano Hotel for Ian Schrager with restaurateur Brian McNally and Madonna. Afterward, I partnered with BD Morr Group to build the Townhouse Hotel, a chic Euro hotel designed by India Mahdavi. Then, in 2004, I opened Miss Yip Chinese Cafe and brought real Chinese food to South Beach. And, I launched BUCK15 Lounge upstairs, a hip club showcasing local artists and DJs. I’ve seen a lot of changes since then — from the Versace mansion on Ocean Drive, Art Deco hotel conversions, the skyscraper condo boom to the transformation of the Miami Design District, Wynwood, Brickell, Miami River, Aventura and NoMi. The hits just keep on coming.
Here’s our 2022 Guide to the “Magic City.”