Miami is a pretty happening place for a honeymoon. Hip, sun-loving couples will find a lot to like about the city’s hotels –stunning design, top-notch service, relaxing spas, and plush beds you’ll never have to leave. After sleeping at more than 100 hotels throughout the city, we found the best spots for that romantic splurge, or at least for some quality bedroom time that won’t push you further into debt after the wedding.
Built in 1925 as William Vanderbilt II's winter estate, Fisher Island feels like it's from another era: Peacocks roam the property and tuxedo-clad waiters know residents by name. In hip, glitzy Miami, Fisher Island is a welcome taste of old-world romance, and its location on the private 216-acre Fisher Island is as secluded as it gets. It doesn't have the high-design rooms or gourmet restaurants that you'll find in Miami's other luxury hotels, but it compensates with its history and charm. Honeymooners should opt for the 675-square-foot courtyard gardenview villas, which are located in the beautiful garden at the resort's entrance and have private terraces with their own Jacuzzis.
The Regent Bal Harbour has Miami's sexiest bathrooms, with freestanding tubs next to floor-to-ceiling windows and walk-in showers that fit two. Body polishes in couples treatment rooms at the world-class Guerlain Spa will leave skin silky smooth for cuddling, and the large terraces off of the ultraluxe suites (many with stunning ocean views) are the perfect place for honeymooners to enjoy their morning coffee. If you can manage to leave the lavish rooms, you can buy what you didn't get off of the wedding registry right across the street at one of the country's best malls.
The Setai's dark, mood-lit design, black granite soaking tubs in the bedroom, and phenomenal, discreet service make it one of the sexiest hotels in Miami -- and a great honeymoon splurge. Plus, the hotel's astonishingly quiet shore is better suited for a romantic rendezvous in the waves than anywhere else in South Beach.
The W South Beach's style and luxury compares to that of the Setai, but the price is (slightly) less painful. The terraces off of every room (Miami's best) all have stunning views of the ocean; at the pool, and mellow music and lush, Mediterranean-inspired landscaping create an atmosphere of serenity.
A national landmark that dates to 1926, the Biltmore offers grand, old-fashioned romance -- from the painted, veil-draped headboards in the rooms to the fancy, candle-lit dinners under the stars to the dramatic, white-pillared lobby. The famous afternoon tea transports guests to a time when lace gloves and finger sandwiches were the norm. Before you know it, you'll feel like the leading couple in a black-and-white film, and the staff will help the fantasy along by treating you like movie stars.
Even if the exotic honeymoon to South America wasn't in the budget, you can still get a steamy tropical experience at the affordable Mayfair Hotel and Spa: Bamboo, waterfalls and embedded ivy make it feel like an ancient jungle civilization. The outdoor spa tubs in every room are spectacular, and a latticed garden area creates shade and privacy. If you decide to venture out of the erotically dark rooms, couples treatments area available at the peaceful Jurlique Spa, and the cute shops of the charming, historical Coconut Grove are within walking distance.
The Standard is like a sexed-up yoga retreat: It's blisfully remote, relaxing, and has a focus on wellness with its daily yoga and meditation programs -- but it also has body painting by the pool and a coed sauna. Honeymooners can swim in the ectoplasm glow of the saltwater pool or get up close and personal in the waterfall hot tub at any hour of the night, and then head back to suggestively named rooms (the Missionary or the Full Spread). Guests staying in the "wet" rooms get their own private soaking tub on an outdoor terrace.
The Tides' bright, opulent, oceanfront suites are very popular with honeymooners, and specacular service -- complete with private designated assistants -- means that newlyweds never have to lift a finger. Party noise in the rooms from the thumping Ocean Drive isn't very restful, but you probably won't be sleeping much anyway, right?
The first-rate Wellness Spa (with complimentary thermal baths) and gorgeous gym (with dozens of free classes daily) make this a solid honeymoon options for fitness-minded newlyweds. The beachfront location and large, exquisitely decorated rooms with Jacuzzi tubs and decadent, pillow-topped mattresses will appeal to all honeymooners, though -- fitness-minded or not.