The Studio Edit

Planning a girl’s trip to Miami 


June 4, 2024

Anna & Nicole

The perfect weekend in Miami

After living in Miami for almost ten years, I really figured out the things that made it special and after visiting 30+ times since I moved to LA, I know how to squeeze it all into a weekend. Me and Anna have the local connections and recommendations so we’re sharing our favorites plus we’re planning her bachelorette so it’s all top of mind. I’ve thrown a lot of girl’s party weekends in Miami over the years so this guide calls out what I’d do with my family or my boyfriend but also how to make it work for big groups.  

Miami has changed a lot since COVID its busier and more expensive so dont try to do 5 things a day – just pick a few and enjoy the scenery and neighborhood youre in. You can choose your own adventure when it comes to the newest restaurants, clubs, events and shops – but I always try to  follow this loose schedule to make the most of my time there. I try to plan activities that my local friends will want to come to so they trek to south beach to see me instead of me ubering around brickell & the grove.

TLDR: unless you’re a bigger group, splurge and stay at the nicest hotel you can afford that has lounge chairs on the beach. It makes a huge difference in your trip. Plus don’t miss getting in the warm ocean, try to make time for a boat day, and make some dinner reservations in advance near your hotel or Airbnb so you aren’t frustrated by traffic every time you want to go out.

Favorite Miami Hotels:

Faena – If money was no concern i’d probably stay here every time. Unless money was really no concern and then I might just move into the Four Seasons in Bal Harbour

Edition – The hotel in the $500/night range that really delivers on the experience. I like the breakfast bar, the lobby vibe, they have skating and mini bowling in a club downstairs lol. I like the food during the day but I typically avoid the dinner at XX because it’s so expensive and you can just do better.

W Miami Beach – old school favorite. Not the one in brickell. This is my favorite pool to hang out at. They have a definite party vibe but it’s always nice and Mr Chows/club Wall are classic for the night out. They have a great area to pre-game drinks before dinner and socialize.

Soho Beach House – small rooms but great food and you’ll be around cooler people than the average Miami bar or beach club.

The Standard – best sunset view and spa in Miami. It’s adults only and so dog friendly. The rooms are smaller and its a renovated “motel” vibe but such a nice place to spend the day. If you buy a spa treatment during the week you can use the pool and spa for the day too.

Nobu/Loews/Royal Palm/Shoreclub – these usually are cheaper options than the one’s listed above. They’re not the fanciest but loew’s is great for kids and they all still feel nice plus are in the right location with catered beach chairs and well decorated lobby/rooms.

Neighborhoods for Airbnb

I would only get an Airbnb if I have 6+ people and wanted to hang out as a group or want to save some money by cooking some meals and not paying resort fees, valet etc.. I always try to stay at a place on the water on the beach or bayside with a pool if you rent a house. I don’t love staying in Key Biscayne, Brickell or Coconut Grove because it just takes that much longer to get anywhere but those areas have their upsides too. If you’re me – you’re staying anywhere on Miami Beach, or a house somewhere between downtown and North Miami as close to the bay as you can get.

Miami Weekend Guide:

Day 1: Thursday

Check in to your place and book a late-ish dinner around 8:30 or 9pm for your first night. I love to go to Mandolin (or another cute outdoor spot with a patio) but definitely reserve a few dinners as soon as you book your hotel so you have convenient options that you’re excited about and don’t get stuck with whatever is available. I like to do a late dinner on my first night so I can fly in on the 9am-4pm flight from LAX,  check into my hotel or Airbnb, relax and unpack before dressing up for the first dinner.

A late dinner makes it easy to roll over into a night our or head back to the hotel and feel like you kicked off the weekend in Miami style. If you’re around earlier try to catch sunset at the Lido grill at Standard hotel or Joia Beach club if you want more of a party vibe.

 Whatever meal you’re looking forward to most – I’d book it for your first night of your trip so you don’t feel burned out or like you’re doing too much by the time you go. So many times I’ve ended up regretting that I have to call an uber and get dressed up when I’m mid trip and kind of  sunburnt, tired or hungover. This is especially important if you’re crossing the bridge from Sobe to have dinner at Mandolin – the traffic will probably suck but should be better if you go late and I swear,  it’s worth it.

Favorite Miami restaurants:

Day 2: Friday

My go to day for self care – if I’m booking a massage it’s on this day and I’m definitely waking up grabbing a coffee and walking the dogs on the beach when it’s empty and still pretty cool. If you like biking or walking on a path there’s a great paved path that goes from south of 5th street to mid beach and  most nice hotels have bikes + there’s always a nearby citi rental.  If I’m working out it’s a quick weights session in my hotel or a pilates class at Jetset or Fuze House.  I usually end up having a few calls on Friday and working from my phone at the pool/beach or running up to the room for a zoom call.

Spa Recommendations Miami:

Friday is all about enjoying the ocean, hotel pool and getting the R&R I need. My local friends love a beach day so I normally have friend’s meet up at my hotel for fun in the afternoon and order food and cocktails on the beach. If you’re staying in an Airbnb this is great day to enjoy the pool, have a barbeque or do the cultural activities you bookmarked (shopping counts as a cultural activity) but paddle boarding, art galleries or Vizcaya and the botanical gardens are fun options if you rented a car and want to explore the city.  Since it’s a weekday I’d try to avoid driving across the bridges and i95 during either rush hour.

Friday night is usually my favorite night out. I honestly never go clubbing but whenever we’re in town with a group celebrating this is the night we try to do a fancy dinner, connect with a promoter and see what DJs are playing. There are literally so many amazing restaurants in Miami that you should go with whatever sounds good and has good reviews. 

Pre -Club Dinners to get in the mood

Club Recommendations from friend’s that go out:

  • Space
  • Eleven
  • Liv

Day 3: Saturday

Boat day! More than anything else I recommend everyone goes out on the water in Miami. Unless the weather is shit – there is a boat day for everyone. I normally just like to get some floaties and find a sandbar to drink and swim but if you want more adventure there’s so many options. If you want to scuba dive, fish, snorkel or wake surf you can book with one of the companies below or even go to and find someone with good reviews. It doesn’t have to be that expensive.

Depends on your activity but if you can – try and find a way to each some fresh ceviche on the boat and start later in the day so you can catch the sunset and avoid stressing out in the morning when you’re inevitably running late. For the me the perfect start time is 1pm and finish around 7 for the epic views.

After a boat day I’m always so drained I’ll just get room service or order tacos in. Whatever you’re in the mood for. I just wouldn’t try to plan a big night out after the boat, the sun will take it out of you. Pack sunscreen (we love Elta MD) extra beach towels, snacks and snorkel gear if you’re into that kind of thing. If you don’t have time for a full boat day you can paddle board or rent a jetski to make sure you still get that feeling of the ocean breeze.

Note: US coast guard mandates that charters can only have 13 guests so plan accordingly – most boat places are going to strictly enforce it.

Day 4: Sunday

Beach Day.  You typically have to check out early from your place on the last day but I still like to book a later flight because im never ready to leave and I just ask the concierge to hold my bags while I get my last rays of sun on the beach and take a final ocean dip.

If you don’t have a hotel on the beach, book a brunch reservation at Cecconi’s and research where you can rent a chair from Boucher Bro’s or check Resort Pass to get the full experience.


Should you go to the keys or stay in Miami? Definitely at least once in your life but I prefer Miami. Go to the keys for Lobster diving, if you seriously want to fish, get naked at Fantasy fest or have access to a boat down there. The beaches aren’t great and it’s just further away from wherever you are.

What to Pack/Wear? Miami is colorful and if you’re ever gonna wear stilettos you’ll fit in here. But going out in uncomfortable clothes makes it suck so think ahead about how you’ll feel at 2am. I bring a bunch of bathing suits, sandals that i can wear at the beach, cover ups, sweaters/sweatshirts in case there’s a little chill and shorts/dresses. Unless it’s winter, stick with linen vs. denim. Sunglasses and baseball caps too.

Do you need to rent a car? No but uber can be painful here. Be ready to try and speak some spanish. Valet at hotels is pretty pricey so if you get a car try street parking (you might get a ticket but its less than valet)  or budget $50/night for the convenience.

When’s the best time of the year to go? It can get cold in winter but it’s still way nicer than anywhere else. Every season has pros/cons. 

  • Summer: Hot, humid and rainiest but also cheapest 
  • Spring Perfect weather but expensive with the unfortunate spring break crowd
  • Winter can be windy and colder but is usually a great escape from the cold
  • Fall can be amazing but you might have a hurricane spoil the trip

What to do if it rains? Honestly I check the weather the week ahead and try to make trips refundable. If it looks awful sometimes I’ll rebook for another weekend. If your dates are set just enjoy the food and you’ll probably have some sunny hours even on a rainy day. Good luck!

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