In Miami, it pays to seek out alternative accommodation options in a place where posh hotel penthouse suites can soar upwards of $30,000 a night. Not only can you save a few—make that many—bucks by checking into an Airbnb in Miami, but you’ll also be able to experience the city’s neighborhoods the way that locals do, beyond the glitz and glam of the tourist epicenter at South Beach.
If you haven’t been to Miami in a minute, the first thing you’ll notice is how much the area has grown up. Culture abounds: The (free) Institute of Contemporary Art Miami opened in 2017 in the Design District, while the funky young Nu Deco Ensemble bills itself as a chamber orchestra for the 21st century. The food scene is better than ever. Ghee Indian Kitchen, with two locations in the Design District and Kendall, has changed people’s perceptions of what Indian food can be. Ariete in Coconut Grove showcases talented chef Michael Beltran’s interpretation of modern American food through his Cuban lens. And it’s a lot easier to suss out these types of locals’ favorite places when you’re staying in those neighborhoods and not sequestered in some touristy hotel.
From a tree house on an urban farm in Little Haiti to a studio in artsy Wynwood, here are some of the coolest and most comfortable Airbnbs in Miami right now:
1. Colorful Studio in Wynwood
Book Now: from $205 per night, airbnb.com
This spacious loft-like studio (pictured above) is located in the heart of Miami’s Wynwood Arts District. Its modern kitchen and oversized balcony make it ideal for extended stays for solo travelers or couples. Guest reviews rave over the central location in hip Wynwood, which is home to top galleries, world-class street art, and must-try restaurants like Kyu, serving wood-fired Asian-inspired cuisine.
2. Tree House Hideaway
Book Now: From $100 per night, airbnb.com
Little Haiti, Miami
Located on a working permaculture farm in Little Haiti, this tree house canopy, built into a large pithecellobium tree, is equipped with a double bed; there’s a separate bathroom, set at the ground level, just a few steps away. You can watch goats, roosters, and emus roaming about the property, or take part in volleyball games with the farm’s volunteers on weekends. Fair warning: The tree house features an outdoor shower, shared kitchen (albeit with super-fresh eggs!), no air-conditioning, and—due to the potential height dangers—no children are allowed.
3. Luxury Condo in a Trendy Hotel Tower
Book Now: From $206 per night, airnb.com
From the 22nd floor of the W Miami hotel tower, this two-bedroom condo, in the residential section of the building, grants views over the Miami River and Brickell (downtown’s bustling financial district). A night here costs considerably less than a hotel stay at the W would but doesn’t skimp on amenities; it incorporates two passes to the hotel’s Iconbrickell Spa facilities and state-of-the-art gym, as well as a $25 guest pass that can be redeemed at the 50th-floor rooftop WET Deck, a prime vantage point for sunset cocktails. A king-size bed and two twin beds sleep four comfortably.
4. Waterfront Villa Venetia
Book Now: From $6,500 per night, airbnb.com
Miami Beach, Miami
Villa Venetia is an eight-bedroom, six-and-a-half-bath dream house in the posh Venetian Islands, situated on Biscayne Bay between South Beach and downtown Miami. Up to 15 guests can sleep here; chill in the home’s pool, Jacuzzi, and sauna; or relax in the theater-like entertainment center or over a game of billiards. “A lot of memories made in this spot,” one reviewer noted, but be prepared to shell out: Those memories come with a hefty price tag.
5. Bohemian Retreat for Two
Book Now: From $137 per night, airbnb.com
Coconut Grove, Miami
Surrounded by lush landscaping, including a koi pond, this private cottage, which oozes a ’70s-era hippie vibe with bamboo window treatments and A-frame ceilings, supplies a quiet retreat in the heart of Coconut Grove, one of Miami’s best dining and shopping neighborhoods (located a few miles south of downtown). Guests note that it’s “super clean and charming,” and an on-site pool provides a cool escape from Miami’s heat.
6. 36-Foot Sailboat Airbnb
Book Now: From $108 per night, airbnb.com
South Beach, Miami
It doesn’t get more Miami than this: Spend the night on a 36-foot sailboat, docked in South Beach. A small kitchen with propane burners allows you to eat in and fuel up ahead of a night out at the clubs. The bathroom has a freshwater shower, and the three-bed setup sleeps up to five (that includes one main suite and one bedroom with a queen and twin bed; note it’s $20 extra per night for each guest after the first two). If you want to pull anchor and explore, the host will captain the boat for rides along Biscayne Bay and the Miami River for a modest $10 per trip.
7. Huge House in Suburban Miami
Book Now: From $403 per night, airbnb.com
You and 13 of your closest friends can book this home in Kendall, a southwest suburb of Miami, which features five bedrooms (with seven beds), three bathrooms, a huge kitchen, and a private backyard patio and pool. (Note that it’s a 35- to 40-minute drive to Miami Beach.) For a supplemental fee, the hosts—who kindly ask for no guests under 21 years old—will even arrange to have rental cars waiting for you at the airport and can charter a boat and captain if you want to spend a day on the water, too.
8. Zen Garden Cottage by the Design District
Book Now: From $96 per night, airbnb.com
This cozy one-bed, one-bath guesthouse in Miami’s historic Morningside neighborhood is located a few miles (and a short drive) from the luxury shops and fashion boutiques of the Miami Design District. You’ll love the zen-inspiring reclaimed wood throughout, as well as the quiet outdoor patio, perched under tropical mango, avocado, and banana trees. Use this as a jumping-off pad to some of Miami’s best restaurants, including Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink, Mandolin Aegean Bistro, and Blue Collar.
9. Glamorous Downtown Condo
Book Now: From $139 per night, airbnb.com
You’ll feel like a local when staying at this one-bedroom, one-bathroom unit (with a washer and dryer) in a downtown condo. With marble floors throughout and a balcony that offers views of the city skyline, you’ll be within walking distance of AmericanAirlines Arena and Pérez Art Museum Miami and just across the street from Bayside Marketplace and Bayfront Park. But you needn’t venture out at all to unwind, thanks to the building’s on-site pool.
10. South Beach Penthouse
Book Now: From $213 per night, airbnb.com
South Beach, Miami
If you’re keen on the South Beach scene, we’ll throw in this one for good measure. This one-bedroom penthouse apartment features midcentury-inspired decor and access to the building’s rooftop pool. Rain shower–equipped bathrooms, a kitchenette, and a washer and dryer in the unit make for comfortable stays. Located one block from Biscayne Bay, this rental is just a five-minute bike ride to Ocean Drive and the beach (there’s a CitiBike dock located right on the corner of the building).
This article was originally published on December 11, 2018; it was updated on December 22, 2020 to include current information.
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