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The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach

Not Your Father's Ritz-Carlton: SoBe is Hip with a Latin Beat
Let me put the good news front and center: This is not your father’s Ritz-Carlton (nor your mother’s). For example take the infinity pool, which practically drops you in the Atlantic. Then, there’s the art deco décor, which comes alive with the Latin beat infused throughout the property. Finally, consider the location: the completely restored landmark hotel is literally steps from Lincoln Road, the epicenter of South Beach life – at least the part of life that’s off the beach. I, for one, could not have been happier reading in a poolside chaise or taking a soak in the Jacuzzi, unless it was when I headed up to the state-of-the-art spa, and then down to the beach, where attendants are standing by to cater to your (nearly) every whim. Sunrises are breathtaking — instead of taking photos to post online, I suggest you do what I did: Stand there and let the new day bathe you in its rays. But there is one important way that this Ritz-Carlton is like every Ritz-Carlton: The top-flight service. I barraged handsome Patrick, the day concierge, with a series of questions: “Where can I have dinner that is quiet and outside?” “Can you find me a yoga studio with ‘flow’ classes?” And so on. Let me say this: He knows his stuff and so does the rest of the staff. I was genuinely sad to leave, wanting more time at the pool, at Bistro One LR. Basically, more of everything, which is the ultimate compliment for any hotel. (A $28 resort fee is charged per night, per room)

Dine at the Only Waterfront Restaurant on South Beach
While staying in South Beach, I can't imagine wanting to dine anywhere else but on the water. The DiLido Beach Club at The Ritz-Carlton South Beach is the only oceanfront restaurant in the area. Make your way to one of the brown and Tiffany Blue lined tables or plush couches with comfy pillows, set to leave you relaxed while taking in the gorgeous oceanfront views. Sit right against the waves and sip sweet and fruity cocktails that are smoking with cool dry ice. Mixologist Ramsey Pimentel will match the perfect cocktail to your preferred choice of sweet and savory flavors. I had a passion fruit cocktail with fresh mint and pomegranate. As you look out onto the sparkling blue waters you'll feel a cool breeze against your skin as you slurp oysters served with liquid nitrogen tequila. Sing along to beach and reggae tunes as a guitarist performs with the emerald ocean as his backdrop. You'll really start to get into the South Beach vibe as you sample one of two ceviche's that Chef de Cuisine Andres Meraz spent almost two years concocting. Finally, you can't end the evening without DiLido's famous mango sorbet. The cool and refreshing tastes are perfect while laying out by the water or as an after lunch dessert. Foodies, remember to chat with the chef as he pops by your table. You'll begin to learn the local markets DiLido's sustainable cuisine comes from. It's the perfect spot to watch the sunset in South Beach.

Let the Essential Oils Take You Away
The spa at the Ritz-Carlton South Beach offers unique treatments that will leave you relaxed and refreshed. The spa includes 14 treatment rooms, a luxurious relaxation lounge with tasty refreshments, a full-service salon and two couples suites. The spa is known for the rhythm massage that uses swift and fluid motion to the sound of traditional Latin music. An innovative treatment is the Raindrop Technique wellness experience. The treatment uses 11 different essential oils. As you lay on a warm table the therapist will drop the bits of oil onto your back and feet like rain. The mixture of peppermint, sage, thyme and other herbs are feathered into your muscle tissues before hot compresses are applied for greater absorption. This extraordinarily potent treatment remains active within the body from five to seven days and is ideal for detoxification, spinal alignment and optimal immune system function. Not only will the aromas open your pores and nostrils, the treatment includes deep stretching of your arms and legs, providing you with a complete and total detox of the body and the mind. After your treatment is complete, be sure to stop into the steam room to really take in all that the Ritz-Carlton spa has to offer. The facility has been voted many awards, including the #1 spa in Miami.

The Best View on South Beach
A white sand beach, turquoise blue water and gorgeous people wherever you look. What's not to love about South Beach? If you want to stay in the heart of the action, but not skimp on the luxurious details, then The Ritz-Carlton South Beach is the perfect escape for you. It's located where infamous Lincoln Road intersects the Atlantic Ocean. Stroll down the pedestrian walkway on Lincoln Road and have every shop, boutique, café and bar at your fingertips. A must-do: the Sunday champagne brunch on the resort's oceanfront pool deck. Enjoy mouthwatering seafood, locally sourced ingredients and handcrafted cocktails. Oh, and bottomless mimosas. Delish.

Club Hopping at the Ritz-Carlton South Beach
South Beach: An iconic, one-of-a-kind destination. Situated in the former DiLido Hotel, a hotspot in the famed Art Deco District, the beachfront Ritz-Carlton South Beach has been restored to its 1950s style and décor. The lobby, romantically lit and stocked with comfy couches and lounge chairs doubles as a sophisticated art gallery. Stepping just outside we were on the famous South Beach strip, standing on the urban edge of an international playground known for its dazzling style and wild nightlife. There were so many beautiful people that the strip seemed stocked with supermodels, floating along a sandy, sunlit runway that ran past trendy clubs and beachside shops. Suddenly I felt dowdy in my pedestrian two piece and confessed as much to a fellow club member, who boosted my ego and pointed me toward Collins Avenue and Lincoln Road, the epicenter of the chi-chi South Beach boutiques. I bought a sexy, black and gold bikini at Dash boutique. The next day, I slipped it on and went to sunbathe at the hotel’s pool area, which is designed to look like a cruise ship’s multi leveled aquatic paradise. I was feeling more like a South Beach sort of girl. On the last night of our South Beach stay, the club concierge reserved a hookah table at the DiLido Beach Club, the only oceanside dining spot in South Beach. We sat along the sand, watched the sun set and inhaled the exotic tastes and aromas of apple merlot tobacco. It was an ethereal experience we won’t soon forget.