Chic Philippe Starck-designed rooms with comfy beds
Poolside Villas have large bathrooms, couches, and espresso machines
Serviced beach area with free loungers
Two pools, including a guest-only pool and weekend pool parties
Four restaurants, including well-known Katsuya and The Bazaar
Two bars with popular happy hours, and a poolside bar
Full-service salon and poolside nail treatments
Small gym with cardio machines and free weights
All pets accepted (for a flat fee)
Free drop offs within a two-mile radius
Free property-wide Wi-Fi
Most rooms are on the small side
Valet-only parking (daily fee)
Some evident wear and tear
Daily resort fee (typical for the area)
SLS South Beach is a trendy, upscale hotel with 140 rooms and a hip, beachfront location. Rooms are designed by Philippe Starck and feature a mostly white color scheme with black and pale-pink accents, plus fantastic minibars, flat-screen TVs, and quality Ciel toiletries. Expect mirrors above the beds, balconies off the pool villas, and the possibility of slight wear and tear in some of the details. The Bazaar by Jose Andres and Katsuya give the hotel serious foodie cred, and two bars crank out popular tapas and cocktail happy hours. A full-service beach, two pools, weekend pool parties, and all-pets-accepted policy are popular, but beware there are daily resort fees (typically for area). For those who want even more of a scene and style, the Delano South Beach Hotel across the street offers it in droves.
Playful and trendy hotel with a historical designation and boutique vibe
Originally built in 1939, SLS South Beach is a designated Historic Art Deco building, set in an area with lots of trendy properties. During a 2012 renovation, the hotel added both the Villas and Hyde Beach lounge and pool area. This stylish hotel manages to feel both pretentious and down-to-earth, depending where you're hanging out. An upscale and artsy look greets guests in the lobby -- think white walls, red and black carpets, red-velvet curtains, and a mounted bull's head wearing a shiny, colorful Mexican wrestling mask. Also look out for the brand's signature duck sculpture by the pool. Other spaces feel less edgy and contemporary, leaning into a modern take on classic decor with mostly all-white spaces, decorative moulding, and vintage mirrors. The hip vibe, exclusive feel, and fun weekend party vibes draw mostly young couples and groups, and transient business travelers in their 20s to 50s.
Convenient setting in the upscale, hip area of South Beach
The SLS South Beach is located on the northern part of South Beach, on the corner of Collins Avenue and 17th Street. This area is home to several upscale hotels featuring chef-helmed restaurants and trendy bars, and it's walking distance to Ocean Drive’s famous collection of Art-Deco buildings. The Miami Beach Convention Center is a seven-minute walk, while guests can reach the Fillmore Theater in only five minutes. Popular city spots like downtown Miami and Wynwood can be reached less than 25 minutes by car. Miami International Airport is a 30-minute drive from the hotel, depending on traffic.
Stylish, if small, rooms design by Philippe Starck
Rooms here excel when it comes to style and convenience. The 140 Philippe Starck-designed rooms are done in the same style as the SLS in Vegas and Brickell area of Miami, featuring a mostly white design with pops of black and pale pink. While modern and stylish, occasional wear and tear of the carpet rugs and furniture can take away from the rooms' glam feel. Also on the downside, rooms are largely on the small side. Minibars are a highlight and offer up seemingly everything, from a wide variety of top-shelf booze and pre-mixed cocktails to a fully stocked mini-fridge and intimacy kits. Expect black-and-white wall tapestries with a classic motif, white wood floors, solid central carpets, suggestive mirrors above the beds, and super soft bathrobes in the closets. Standard units have long, white-vinyl sitting couches and mounted flat-screen TVs. Bathrooms feel tight, and feature walk-in showers with rose-tinted glass and rainfall showerheads, as well as quality Ciel toiletries.
Villas are large, junior suite-style rooms with a minimalist lean. They have black-and-white couches in the center of the rooms, and pops of color in pink walls inside the closets and rose-tinted glass in the bathrooms. These rooms are spacious, overlook the pool, and have large and luxe, five-piece bathrooms with upgraded amenity kits that include exfoliating loofahs and dental items. Extra perks include balconies, espresso machines, deep soaking tubs, and large showers with both regular and rainfall showerheads. Sensor-activated fans in the toilet areas and fresh orchids in the main rooms are nice touches. These rooms are typically quiet at night unless there's a pool event, though noise seeps in from the outdoor hallway.
Two chef-led restaurants, plus two bars with casual bites
Food is taken seriously here and the hotel's four restaurants deliver with two chef-led restaurants and good options for casual bites. In fact, the first thing a guest sees when they walk in is The Bazaar by Jose Andres, a lobby bar bistro serving up Spanish cuisine with a South Beach influence. The Rojo front terrace and lobby seating are open for breakfast lunch and dinner, while the restaurant's dining room Blanca section is only open for dinner. Chef Katsuya Uechi's famed Katsuya is the other showstopper here. This Japanese spot is only open for dinner, and has a popular happy hour in the Dragon Lounge.
For more casual fare, Bar Centro is open for three meals a day and offers a good happy hour featuring cocktails and tapas. Hyde Beach Bar services the pool and beach area with drinks and casual bites like burgers, plus a few easy menu items from Katsuya. There are a vintage foosball machine and vinyl L-shaped couch here.
Two pools, including a guest-only pool and a popular party pool for adults
SLS South Beach has a trendy pool scene, and on the weekends it's likely to be packed with both hotel guests and public pool-goers with day passes. The main party spot is Hyde Beach, an open-air, adults-only day club and evening lounge. This space is landscaped with thin trees strung with lights and features upscale wooden couches. Hyde Beach's pool area is also 21-and-up and has first-come, first-served padded sunbeds. For a minimum consumption fee, pool partiers can also claim one of the personal tented cabanas with contemporary couches and tables, TVs, and fans. A second pool is restricted to hotel guests only. First-come, first-served cabanas are available alongside a collection of cushioned sunbeds that are in fairly rough condition.
A salon but no spa, plus a small fitness center, direct beach access, and liberal pet policy
The sands behind the SLS South Beach are popular and open to the public. The area is serviced and guests receive two free padded beach chairs with the resort fee, though umbrellas and shell daybeds cost extra. Guests can access the beach's soft sand from the pool area.
There's no official spa here, but the Heaven Salon has full-service hair and makeup menus. Additionally, third-party mani-pedis are available either in-room or in poolside cabanas. The fitness center is a small, interior room with a rubber floor, a few cardio machines and free weights, and self-serve water, apples, and towels.
Other features include a luxury car rental service, dividable meeting and event space, and lifestyle magazines in reception. All animals are accepted for a flat fee, and valet parking has a daily fee. The resort fee (common in Miami) covers Wi-Fi, two beach chairs, drops offs within a two-mile radius, welcome juice, New York Times newspapers in reception, and free entrance to Hyde Beach on the weekends.