Miami Magic: Sensational stays and splendid spas

- Kimberley St. Pierre, A lover of luxury and innately in tune with the tastes of discerning travelers, Kimberley St. Pierre is a luxury hotel reviewer. With over 12 years of previous sales experience and a passion for travel, Kimberley knew that Kiwi Collection was the place for her. 4 years of corporate account management dealing with some of BC's largest companies in a variety of markets equipped Kimberley with the tools to tackle big issues and large-scale projects. One of the markets she dealt with extensively was hospitality, and after her first peek into this exciting industry, she was hooked. She hasn't looked back since, and her skills and work ethic are infused with the same passion she has for travel. Whether it's walking on a beach in a beautiful, exotic paradise, biking across lush green hills, roller-blading down a picturesque path, or exploring city streets, Kimberley makes the most of every opportunity to travel and every chance to learn something new for her clients. And at the end of the day, a divine dinner, a good bottle of wine and fantastic friends make for a perfect conclusion to any grand adventure.

Miami is a great destination for the adventure seeker and relaxation aficionado alike. Whether you’re into sunshine, surf, shopping, salsa or sensational spa experiences, Miami is a magical year-round destination, complete with world-class hotels and restaurants, great beaches and a nightlife that never sleeps.

I had an opportunity to tour some Kiwi Collection properties during my recent trip to Miami, and I was blown away by the service and amenities, and pampered myself with some remarkable spa treatments. Hey, when in Rome…err, Miami.

My first stop was at the Fairmont Turnberry Isle Resort, which has undergone extensive renovations recently – a really impressive end product! With two of the best golf courses in the area and huge 25 treatment room state-of-the-art spa, it really is a “getaway” destination. Almost making one forget they’re actually in Miami, it feels more like a remote tropical resort. The property is over 300 acres and very secluded, however it is right across the street from Aventura Mall for great shopping if you want to indulge in some retail therapy. The resort caters to both families and quiet getaways with two separate pools catering to each group. I had the opportunity to experience the Salon within the spa for a pedicure, manicure and hair cut, the 3 hours flew by and I felt like family by the time I left.

Speaking of spas, two spas that I absolutely need to experience are at the Regent Bal Harbour and the Aqualina Resort and Spa on the Beach. I had a tour through each and both were very alluring; that “spa fragrance” the minute you walk in the door and easy listening music instantly puts you into “spa mode”.

Hotel Victor has such an appeal to the guest looking for trendy but still very classic accommodations. The dark theme throughout the hotel truly feels “VIP” but the jellyfish theme gives it that South Beach spark. The hotel recently hosted the Christian Audigier, Ed Hardy swim wear launch at the chique pool deck – what a perfect venue!

During the trip, I also visited the Ritz-Carlton South Beach – true luxury on one of Miami’s hottest beaches. The guest experience was truly outstanding; nothing was overlooked! The location of this hotel was perfect – one side hugging the beach and the other facing Lincoln Avenue for shopping and dining. I also discovered my new favorite cocktail; the frozen blueberry mojito – a definite must try! The crab cake burger at Bistro One is absolutely delightful as well. The famous Di Lido restaurant is very popular for its gorgeous views of the beach promenade and the ocean.

If you are looking for a true VIP experience, you definitely need to check out the rooftop scene at Gansevoort South (minimum age is 21). Similar to Gansevoort in NYC with the private pool area for guests only, the other half of the rooftop is an extremely trendy popular local night spot. Hardy Hill with the Opium Group headline Thursday night festivities – you don’t want to miss them; the vibe and the crowd are very sexy – truly Miami. One thing that is extremely unique are the outdoor restrooms…..might sound odd, but it’s really cool.

Another stop in my Miami trip was at the Four Seasons Hotel, located in the downtown area of the city. Rumored to be one of the tallest buildings south of New York City at 70 stories high, this property feels like a resort with its enormous pool deck. You can choose a very private area or have the option to share some family time with the kids, the area is definitely large enough for both. The property’s fitness center, Sports Club/LA is absolutely enormous with 50,000 square feet of anything you need, its definitely catering to the fitness conscious travelers. The beds at the Four Seasons are incredible, I can actually sleep all the way through the night here, which can be a difficult feat whilst on the road.

I visited the Fisher Island Hotel & Resort and words simply cannot describe it. Its completely exclusive and accessible only by ferry, their security is absolutely incredible and the resort is beautiful. Most of the island consists of private residences and I mean “private”, that is the whole point of this island. The hotel currently has 48 rooms but will likely grow to 65 rooms and be capped at that once the rest of the development is completed. If you want a very secluded VIP vacation – this is the spot!

The last visit during my Miami stay was the stunning Setai – I was completely blown away by the Asian design influence. Not a detail has been ignored in this luxury design property. Every area in the hotel is gorgeous, its no wonder so many people have chosen to make this their permanent residence. The property stands on its own in Miami and is an absolute masterpiece…a walk through the lobby into the outdoor lounge area alone is enough to entice you to stay.

  1. There are numerous Miami Beach luxury hotels that have reached and deserve the five star statuses they have received.