Robbie Wilson, Founder of Singapore-based PR and creative agency Raw Creative, takes us on a journey to Miami, Florida
Talk about Miami and the first things that tend to come to mind are the beautiful beaches, Art Deco buildings, year-round sunshine, and glitzy nightlife. However, today the city offers so much more. It’s also a hub for top international events from Formula 1 to Art Basel, Bitcoin, and LIV Golf. There is something for everyone to enjoy in the coastal city. Take a tour with me as we explore some of my favourite places in the city.
Editor’s note: More Robb Stopovers here.
Sip and savour
Miami is known for its melting pot of cuisines from Latin America to European and Asian, and you can’t go to Miami without having some Cuban food. There is no place better than Versailles in Little Havana. Be sure to try their Cuban sandwiches, and what is possibly my favourite coffee in the world—cafe con leche.
Those that have visited Soho House locations around the world will be familiar with Cecconi’s. Cecconi’s Miami Beach at Soho Beach House is a wonderful spot for food and drinks, offering wonderful Italian cuisine within the ever-buzzing courtyard of the club just moments away from one of the best pool scenes in the city.
For dinner, head to Sexy Fish. The restaurant from London opened in Miami early in 2022 and serves up contemporary Japanese cuisine and lots of party vibes in one of the most decadent venues in the city.
Robb Tip: If you’re searching for a quick fix, head to Doggi’s Arepa Bar for a Venezuelan classic, and choose the Arepa de Pabellon with shredded beef, beans, and cheese.
Sights and sounds
Miami is an exciting and vibrant city with lots to see and do. It has some of the best beaches of any major city in the world, as well as a large bay and plenty of islands to explore. Rent a cabana at one of the numerous luxury Art Deco hotels on Miami Beach and soak up the atmosphere and the rays over refreshing ice-cold cocktails, or try a new water sport, such as windsurfing at one of the numerous rental places dotted around Biscayne Bay.
If you love street art, then you should definitely head to the Wynwood Walls and check out the latest urban graffiti. Sports fans are also in for a treat as Miami has some of the best college and professional teams in the country. If you’re there during football season, head to the Hard Rock Stadium where you can watch both the University of Miami and the Miami Dolphins play.
Robb Tip: Don’t visit during Spring Break. The crowds are enormous and the traffic is intense.
Miami is great because compared to many other cities in America, you don’t have to just do your shopping in a mall. There are plenty of al fresco places to walk around at. I love heading to the Design District, where you’ll find a plethora of designer shops in really sleek modern buildings that are surrounded by public art. Miami Beach also has some great shopping, including one of my favourites: Kith. Be sure to check out their latest sneaker collaborations and grab a customisable cereal-inspired ice cream at Kith Treats.
Robb Tip: When shopping in the Design District, be sure to check out the numerous pieces of public art on display by famous artists throughout the area. My favourite is the Museum Garage Facade, which was conceptualised by architect and curator Terence Riley and inspired by the parlour game, Cadavre exquis.
Anyone visiting Miami will know that there are an abundance of stylish luxury hotels with stunning waterfront views. I recommend staying in Miami Beach or around Brickell.
If the beach is your thing and you’re looking for all-out luxury, head to the Faena Hotel Miami Beach. The Art Deco design of the place is stunning, as is the service. It even has a Damien Hirst mammoth sculpture beside the pool. Another trendy spot just down the street in South Beach is Pharrell Williams’ and nightlife entrepreneur David Grutman’s The Good Time Hotel. Its rooftop pool is one of the hottest destinations on the weekend.
For a bit of history, stay at Gianni Versace’s former mansion,The Villa Casa Casuarina on South Beach. You can even stay in the famous designer’s bedroom, now known as Gianni’s Master Suite.
Heading back over Biscayne Bay to the mainland, Brickell is Miami’s financial centre. If CBD vibes are more your thing then there is nowhere better to stay than East Miami. It’s situated right above the enormous Brickell City Centre shopping mall, and its Sugar rooftop bar and garden offers some of the best views of Miami.
Robb Tip: Miami has some of the best hotel pool party scenes in the world. If you’re looking for something a bit more relaxing though, head to The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne. The hotel pool there is quiet but still equally luxurious, making it one of my favourite places to relax in Miami.
It’s America, after all, so it’s easier if you have a car although, public transport is still relatively good as compared to other cities in the US. Hop on the Metrorail, Metromover, Metrobus and Trolleys to get around the city or use Brightline which is an inter-city rail service that connects Miami to other major cities in Florida. You can also catch an Uber or Lyft.
Robb Tip: The Metromover and Trolleys are completely free, so take advantage of them if you’re going to be in one of the areas where they operate.