Florida's luxury hotel scene is constantly evolving, and I have some diverse hotels to share with you for your summer vacation planning, everywhere from Miami Beach to the gorgeous Gulf Coast. Herewith, a few recent luxury finds that are top of mind:
The Villa by Barton G: Miami restauranteur extraordinaire Barton G. Weiss is now at the helm of South Beach's most sophisticated and stunning address. Italian designer Gianni Versace's former mansion has been reincarnated as the Villa by Barton G, and the mosaic and fountain-studded interior feels like something straight ouf of Moorish fantasy. You're right on Ocean Drive here, a stone's throw from Florida's most-beautiful-people-ever beach, but the hotel's atmosphere could not feel more deliciously far flung.
Postcard Inn on the Beach: Surfer chic meets bohemian-inspired elegance at this trendsetting new hotel in St. Pete Beach. There's something European in the minimalist retro decor and down-filled duvets that billow crispy white on the beds, but surf-inspired touches everywhere stay true to the hotel's true blue Florida roots.
Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort & Spa: The newest luxury resort on Florida's Gulf Coast opened in Feb. 2010. I had a chance to check in recently, and absolutely loved the fact that every room here is a suite, with full kitchen facilities and a balcony! All the better to settle in for a while and enjoy Clearwater's revitalized Beach Walk promenade, just out the front the door, and the nearby sugar sand beaches on Caladesi Island State Park.
Hotel Urbano: What's more green than taking an aging property and reinventing it as something stylish and utterly fabulous? That's what happened at Hotel Urbano, a former Hampton Inn that got reincarnated as a hip new boutique hotel in downtown Miami's Brickell neighborhood. For an urban stay that's wallet-friendly, luxurious and stylish, too, this is my favorite Miami pick.
Boca Beach Club: If it's been a while since you've been to beautiful Boca Raton, it's high time to get back. The stately Boca Raton Resort & Club here recently gave rise to a style child in the form of its new oceanfront property, the Boca Beach Club. Minimalist decor, sleek infinity pools and a direct oceanfront setting will ensure you never want to check out. Rates start from $249 when you book the Best of Boca Summer Package here, which includes free daily breakfast, free beach umbrella rentals, free parking, late checkout of 2 p.m. and much more.
Have a fabulous time in Florida, wherever you find yourself!