I’m back from a mini vacation with a new Miami travel diary! We booked a Christmas in Miami trip and brought Ollie with us. He’s 11 months old now and was such a good boy the entire time. We were pleasantly surprised to find how dog friendly Miami is. He was even welcomed into the Loewe store at the Miami Design District and was lucky enough to sniff some pretty sporty sneakers! We had a great trip!
Where We Stayed
This trip we split our stay at two places: at an Airbnb in South Beach and also at The Betsy Hotel. This was our first trip with Ollie and since it was an extended trip we weren’t quite sure if he would be ok in a hotel room but he was a very good boy, even with all the new city noises! We could have stayed at a hotel with him the entire trip.
The Betsy Hotel has been on my list for a while and we booked a King Suite which was pretty spacious for South Beach. We had a really pleasant stay! Out of all the hotels we’ve stayed at this was one of the best boutique hotels we’ve tried. Super cute, very clean, good food, friendly staff – it almost felt like a home away from home. They’re dog friendly and gave Ollie treats in the lobby.
Both Andrew and I love good food and Miami has no shortage of amazing places to try. South Beach is our favorite place to stay because there is so much within walking distance.
We love Rosetta Bakery and Shepherd Artisan Coffee – they’re right next to each other! They both have a few locations throughout Miami, we love the one right in the heart of South Beach in between 9th and 10th.
Strawberry Moon at The Goodtime Hotel was a disappointment this time. I’m not sure if it was just an off day when we visited. It was much better the first time we visited over a year ago. This time the food wasn’t as good and service was pretty disappointing.
Green Street Café in Coconut Grove is a fun for a casual breakfast almost diner-style cafe. Pleasantly surprised by the food! We were seated right away even though it was packed. Quick service and fun people watching.
The Salty Donut is one of our favorite donut shops. It’s not really a breakfast spot but we like to pick up coffee and donuts here. They’re opening more shops all the time in different cities. A few in Tampa are opening up in the new year and we are excited!
The Betsy Hotel has a nice breakfast and lunch spot in the lobby area. Hotel food can be hit or miss in South Beach, but we had a few really nice relaxing meals here! Ollie had some scrambled eggs which he really loved.
This trip I managed to book a table at Mandolin Aegean Bistro in the Design District and it was exceptionally good. Will 100% be back again.
Taquiza Tacos is one of Andrew’s favorite taco spots. I prefer Bodega Tacos, but both are good and definitely worth checking out.
La Sandwicherie South Beach and Wynwood is one of our favorite sandwich spots. We always buy their signature vinaigrette sauce and pickles to take home with us.
Mr. Baguette in Wynwood is a newer spot we tried and loved! They have fresh sandwiches and delicious pastries and a super cute interior.
Joe’s Stone Crab Takeaway is always fun. They don’t have the full menu like the restaurant but the selection is still very good and I always get their Angel Food Chocolate Chip Cake to go with the chocolate mousse.
Makoto Bal Harbour is one of our favorite dinner spots. It was on my must-visit list again since we had such a great experience here. We went again and everything here is amazing. Lots of fun people watching here too!
Doya Wynwood is new to us and we 10/10 loved it. We went very early so we did not need reservations but I highly recommend booking them just in case. This was one of Andrew’s favorites and it’s in my Top 5. Great ambiance, friendly service, amazing food. It’s been a while since we had Turkish Coffee and this place has it, it’s just like the real deal.
1-800-Lucky Wynwood is a fun food court with seven Asian restaurants in one area. We love this place for good food, fun atmosphere and quick service. They have the Taiyaki NYC Japanese Ice Cream here too.
Stubborn Seed is one of the best restaurants we’ve ever tried. Reservations are a must and this time we booked the Chef’s Tasting Menu which is a prefix meal. Expensive but it’s a very special experience you won’t forget. This was our second time here and it’s incredible.
Beach, Shopping and Sights
We spent a lot of time walking or biking on the boardwalk with Ollie for a relaxing time. We also spent some time at the beach on our own as dogs are not allowed on beaches in South Beach. For fun stuff and sight-seeing we drove to Key Biscayne but it ended up being rainy and windy so we mainly stayed in the car. We will definitely go back when it’s warmer and sunny!
Shopping is so much fun in Miami. We stopped at Bal Harbour Shops which beautiful. I picked up something special from Goyard and a few things at Saks and Neimans including the Maison Francis Kurkdjian Baccarat Rouge 540 Shimmering Body Oil (still available at Franciskurkdjian.com).
We also stopped by the Design District for more shopping and I splurged on a few things from Celine and Loewe. There’s so much to explore here like the Creed Boutique, Celine, Loewe, Bottega and more!
We also visited Superblue Miami which is an immersive light experience. It was just ok for me and I don’t know that I would recommend it as a must-visit experience. The Van Gogh Immersive Experience (similar style of an immersive experience) we visited on a previous trip was much more interesting for us. If your time is limited in Miami I think there are better more interesting places to visit like the Frost Science Museum or Vizcaya Gardens.
That wraps up my Miami travel diary! There’s so much to explore and we can’t wait to go back. This upcoming year we hope to travel more now that we’re more confident Ollie will be able to travel with us pretty much anywhere.
Did you travel anywhere this past year or during the holidays? Where did you travel to or visit? Would love to hear about your adventures if you were able to travel!