24-hour room service: Soho Beach House Miami Beach, Florida

Join the club where Soho meets Miami

It's a members' club. It's a hotel. It's a restaurant. And above all, it's Miami Beach's coolest new hangout. Overlooking golden sands, the hybrid that is Soho Beach House opened last October in an area north of South Beach that had fallen somewhat off the fashionable radar.



As the name indicates, this is an offshoot of Nick Jones's Soho House empire that started in London in 1994. The Miami Beach property is the most recent of his US ventures, which include a club in West Hollywood and a club-hotel in New York. Only here, laid-back urban insouciance is recast as mellow beachside glamour, as devised by Chelsea-based designer Martin Brudnizki, who has worked with Jones on several projects.

You arrive at a pleasingly proportioned Art-Deco building with a small oval driveway and a neon banner announcing that this is the Sovereign Hotel. The doorman explains to any mystified new arrivals that the property's original sign has been retained in accordance with Miami Beach's conservation code ("It's a Miami Beach thing") as he ushers you in.

That's the end of any immediate formality as you enter a club-style lounge furnished with comfy sofas and chairs and wood-panelled walls hung with stylised photographs and prints. A late family breakfast was taking place along sofa-backed tables when I arrived, while to one side a couple of casually chic women were dawdling over coffee, Jimmy Choos kicked off, feet tucked up on the leather chairs.

The club-and-hotel reception is in a discreet annexe to the left, while on the right is a desk taking bookings for the already hugely popular Cecconi's restaurant. Offering an upscale Venetian-inspired menu, it is set under retractable awning in a pretty patio area. For all the carefully evoked mood of club intimacy, these are the public areas of Soho Beach House. You need to be a member (or one of their guests) to use the rest of the property.

Happily, hotel guests are treated as members for the duration of their stay, which means they can lounge on the eighth-floor roof terrace with plunge pool, curl up in the library with ocean views and eat at the second-floor Club Bar restaurant, which evokes 1940s Cuba (buzzing on the night I was there and serving the likes of lamb chops and chimichurri sauce at $20/£13). There's also sunbathing by the 100ft pool in the garden – should it get too hot, the waiters will turn on one of the fans – and a host of treatments at the signature Cowshed spa, plus complimentary club events such as movies in the screening "snug" and morning yoga or exercise sessions at the private beach area.

While guests chill out, staff exude energy and enthusiasm. Those I encountered evidently took great pride in the property, explaining how the refurbishment of the old Sovereign Hotel took five years and pointing out which elements have been retained – the lounge flooring, Art-Deco light fittings – and those which are new, including the 16-storey tower at the back of the property, conceived to harmonise with the original building. Their big challenge, they acknowledged, is in blending the services of a sleek, boutique hotel with the club atmosphere.

Location

Soho Beach House is about 15 blocks north of the South Beach strip – and a world apart from its razzle. It sits next door to the renowned and sprawling Fontainebleau Hotel in an area that in the 1940s was regarded as something of a millionaires' row – but which until recently had become little visited.

You can, if you're feeling energetic, walk to Ocean Drive and other South Beach highlights from here. The small garden beyond the main pool gives directly on to Miami Beach's lovely two-mile boardwalk down which a 40-minute stroll will take you to the area's party heart. Across from the boardwalk are quiet golden sands with the Soho Beach House's dedicated seaside club area.

Comfort

The 50 bedrooms are comfortingly decorated in blues, browns, greens and ochre and are equipped with free Wi-Fi as well as iPod dock, flat-screen TV and DVD player. Most feature furniture in keeping with an overall mood redolent of the Art Deco period, from well-worn leather armchairs to huge mahogany beds.

My room had an old cocktail cabinet lavishly filled with Hudson single malt whiskey, Bombay Sapphire gin, Grey Goose vodka, fresh lemon and a cocktail shaker. To add to the stylishly homely mood, there were period leather suitcases under the bed and a bookcase filled with an eclectic mix of reading matter, from a manual on furniture maintenance to a hardback of Philip Mason's Kipling: The Glass, the Shadow and the Fire.

Soho Beach House

4385 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach, Florida, US (001 786 507 7900; sohobeachhouse.com)

Rooms *****

Value ****

Service *****

Double rooms start at $299 (£200) for members, room only and $492 (£328) for non-members

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Architect Frank Gehry is regarded by many as the most important architect of the modern era
arts + entsGehry has declared that 98 per cent of modern architecture is "s**t"
Sport
Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi during Barcelona training in August
footballPete Jenson co-ghost wrote Suarez’s autobiography and reveals how desperate he's been to return
Money
Welcome to tinsel town: retailers such as Selfridges will be Santa's little helpers this Christmas, working hard to persuade shoppers to stock up on gifts
news
Arts and Entertainment
Soul singer Sam Smith cleared up at the Mobo awards this week
newsSam Smith’s Mobo triumph is just the latest example of a trend
News
Laurence Easeman and Russell Brand
people
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Sport
Fans of Dulwich Hamlet FC at their ground Champion Hill
footballFans are rejecting the £2,000 season tickets, officious stewarding, and airline-stadium sponsorship
News
Shami Chakrabarti
people
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch has refused to deny his involvement in the upcoming new Star Wars film
filmBenedict Cumberbatch reignites Star Wars 7 rumours
Sport
football
News
news
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Junior Application Support Engineer (ERP / SSRS)

    £23000 - £30000 per annum + pension, 25days holiday: Ashdown Group: An industr...

    IT Systems Analyst / Application Support Engineer (ERP / SSRS)

    £23000 - £30000 per annum + pension, 25days holiday: Ashdown Group: An industr...

    SCRUM Master

    £30 - 50k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a SCRUM Master to joi...

    Franchise Support Assistant

    £13,520: Recruitment Genius: As this role can be customer facing at times, the...

    Day In a Page

    Wilko Johnson, now the bad news: musician splits with manager after police investigate assault claims

    Wilko Johnson, now the bad news

    Former Dr Feelgood splits with manager after police investigate assault claims
    Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands ahead of the US midterm elections

    Mark Udall: The Democrat Senator with a fight on his hands

    The Senator for Colorado is for gay rights, for abortion rights – and in the Republicans’ sights as they threaten to take control of the Senate next month
    New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

    New discoveries show more contact between far-flung prehistoric humans than had been thought

    Evidence found of contact between Easter Islanders and South America
    Cerys Matthews reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of Dylan Thomas

    Cerys Matthews on Dylan Thomas

    The singer reveals how her uncle taped 150 interviews for a biography of the famous Welsh poet
    DIY is not fun and we've finally realised this as a nation

    Homebase closures: 'DIY is not fun'

    Homebase has announced the closure of one in four of its stores. Nick Harding, who never did know his awl from his elbow, is glad to see the back of DIY
    The Battle of the Five Armies: Air New Zealand releases new Hobbit-inspired in-flight video

    Air New Zealand's wizard in-flight video

    The airline has released a new Hobbit-inspired clip dubbed "The most epic safety video ever made"
    Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month - but can you stomach the sweetness?

    Pumpkin spice is the flavour of the month

    The combination of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg (and no actual pumpkin), now flavours everything from lattes to cream cheese in the US
    11 best sonic skincare brushes

    11 best sonic skincare brushes

    Forget the flannel - take skincare to the next level by using your favourite cleanser with a sonic facial brush
    Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo

    Paul Scholes column

    I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Jones and Rojo
    Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

    Frank Warren: Boxing has its problems but in all my time I've never seen a crooked fight

    While other sports are stalked by corruption, we are an easy target for the critics
    Jamie Roberts exclusive interview: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

    Jamie Roberts: 'I'm a man of my word – I'll stay in Paris'

    Wales centre says he’s not coming home but is looking to establish himself at Racing Métro
    How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

    A crime that reveals London's dark heart

    How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
    Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

    Lost in translation: Western monikers

    Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
    Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

    Handy hacks that make life easier

    New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
    KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

    KidZania: It's a small world

    The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker