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Rooftop Pool

The Hotel suite


The Cachaca Marinated Tuna,
a specialty of the house
The enchanting patio Wish restaurant

By Theresa Catena

If you love the idea of a relaxing weekend by the beach, but your significant other requires a bit more, before packing a bag, then consider this. Situated in the heart of South Beach, The Hotel is the perfect retreat for couples in search of a comforting, yet hip hotel with a 24-hour option to party. Crafted by fashion designer/DJ/photographer/interior designer Todd Oldham, this young boutique hotel combines Oldham's stylish flair and whimsical nuances, with the deep-sea and beach-toned colors of the nearby Atlantic Ocean. Void of any pretensions or airs one might expect from a trendy hotel revamped by a designer, The Hotel offers respite and revitalization to its guests with consistently gracious service and outstanding decor.

Built in 1939, the landmark art deco building on the corner of 8th and Collins was originally the "Tiffany Hotel", until a trademark infringement lawsuit filed by the jeweler of the same name suggested the 1998 reincarnation obtain another name - one more fitting of its new persona. Open and airy with a homey vibe, each room sports a comfy window box backed by satin interwoven pillows (great for people watching). Stylish yet comfortable, the color scheme of sand-colored wood furnishings and blue-green accents is amusingly topped off with odd-shaped mosaic-tiled draw-pulls and handles. But the "oohs" and "aahs" really come when you discover the bathroom. Even my beau couldn't help but marvel at the funky, colorful tiled floor and stainless fixtures. Make sure you ask for a room with a tub; it's big enough for two and it will give you some extra time to appreciate... each other.

The fourth floor rooftop is the crown jewel of this establishment, boasting a blue emerald shaped pool, downy white lounge chairs and cocktail bar. The tranquil view of the ocean almost tricks you into believing you're on a cruise ship, but pure heaven is sipping a cocktail in the pool while groovy, lounge music plays. Cocktails can also be had at the lively bar downstairs at Wish. For fun, try one of their electronic martinis; a bright, battery-operated cube keeps your drink glowing and your spirits high.

Romantic wishes do come true when you dine on the intimate, tropical patio at Wish. Executive chef E. Michael Reidt's ingenious French-Brazilian cuisine is a definite crowd pleaser. Ask your waiter for his suggestions, for he's got the inside track and you won't be disappointed. We had the unforgettable Cachaca Marinated Tuna served rare atop a crunchy salad with pineapple, cilantro, and mint and seared cachaca-soaked watermelon. The unexpected combinations of textures and inspiring flavors throughout the menu were certainly worthy of a "wow" at the end of the night.So, if you're looking for a couple's getaway that has just the right balance of relaxation and fun, then The Hotel is no doubt the way to go...

Click here for more information of The Hotel. The Hotel is member of the prestigious National Trust Historic Hotels of America.

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