Summer in Miami can be brutal. With temperatures consistently creeping into the 90s, humidity beyond reason, zero breeze and a heat index closer to 100, the only place for refuge (aside from inside with the a/c cranking) is perhaps at the pool under the cool shade of an umbrella.
So where does one turn for cushy lounge chairs, cabana service, ice cold cocktails and dips in the water at regularly scheduled intervals? To one of Miami’s many hotel pools, of course. We’ve come up with your plan to get past the gilded gates typically reserved “for hotel guests only” with our Summer Hotel Pool Guide. Read on to find out where to go and how to get in to enjoy a prime spot in the sun (or shade) this summer.
Surfcomber – We were surprised to learn that the Surfcomber is totally locals friendly. While they’ve wrapped their raucous weekend pool parties for the season, locals are welcome to use the pool at whim. Chairs and towels are absolutely free on a first come first served basis.
1717 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-532-7715 surfcomber.com
The James Royal Palm – Plan your pool day to coincide with one of The James Royal Palm’s bi-monthly Wellness Days (next up Saturdays August 2 and 16) and you’ll get a whole lot more than a free day at the pool. Attend a 9 a.m. yoga class by Green Monkey instructor Noelle Bowman. Post-class perks include:
- Complimentary healthy bites and fresh pressed juice from the Florida Cookery
- Mini spa treatments and a $25 spa credit from Renew the Spa
- Free access to use The James’ pool and beach chairs (umbrella rentals $10)
All is gratis. Just RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.
1545 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-604-5700 jameshotels.com/miami
For a Fee
The Price: $25 Day Pass
The Deal: A lounge chair, towel, welcome cocktail and 15 percent off at Aqua Bar & Grill and Tamara Bistro through September 30.
1677 Collins Ave, Miami Beach; 305-532-2311 nationalhotel.com
Epic Hotel – While the Epic Hotel offers pool day passes, you can also access the pool with a spa treatment at Exhale Spa also located on the hotel’s 16th floor.
The Price: $25 Day Pass
The Deal: Pool access, chair and towel.
270 Biscayne Blvd. Way, Miami; 305-424-5226 epichotel.com
Hilton Bentley – While it’s not a pool day, the Hilton Bentley is inviting locals to their beach.
The Price: $35 for two people
The Deal: A beach day for two including two beach chairs, two towels, an umbrella, two glasses of bubbly and valet parking.
101 Ocean Dr., Miami Beach; 305-938-4600 hilton.com/Miami_Beach
Mondrian South Beach
The Price: $50 F & B Minimum
The Deal: Open a tab and keep the drinks coming. Fifty dollars spent at the pool will earn your keep of a chair, towel and access to the pool.
1100 West Ave., Miami Beach; 305-514-1500 morganshotelgroup.com/mondrian/mondrian-south-beach
The Standard Spa Miami Beach– While you can purchase day passes to the pool, a treatment at the spa will also grant you access to one of The Standard’s coveted yellow pool chairs and offer more bang for your buck.
The Price: $75 Monday to Thursday, $125 Friday to Sunday
The Deal: Pool access, chair, towel and spa amenities.
40 Island Ave., Miami Beach; 305-673-1717 standardhotels.com/Miami
Fontainebleau Miami Beach
The Price: $175
The Deal: A Day at the Fontainebleau:
- Lunch at La Cote (pris fixe menu)
- One 50-minute treatment at Lapis Spa
- 10% savings at The Shops at Fontainebleau
- Use of Fontainebleau pools, beach and gym
4441 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-538-2000 fontainebleau.com
With a Day at the Spa
A spa day is a classic way to gain entry to a fancy hotel pool. With Miami Spa Month in full gear, $99 will get you a select spa treatment at participating spas through August 31. And these hotels will grant you access to their pool with a spa treatment this summer:
- Epic Hotel*
- Fontainebleau Miami Beach*
- JW Marriott Marquis
- Mayfair Hotel & Spa
- The Sagamore
- The Setai
- The Shore Club
- The Standard Miami Beach*
- The Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove
- Viceroy Miami*
For a complete list of Miami Spa Month participants and offers, click here.
* – Editor’s picks
For a Pool Party
If Redbull and vodka and DJs spinning poolside is more your speed, then hit up one of these hot spot hotels for their weekly pool parties. The only trick: getting past the doorman.
SLS South Beach
The Party: XIV Sessions at Hyde Beach, a Champagne-fueled monthly theme party featuring DJ Julian Ingrosso and friends. Note: This party has a notoriously tough door. Get their early or prepare to purchase a table.
When: Sundays once a month. Next date: August 31 over Labor Day Weekend
1701 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-674-1701 slshotels.com/SouthBeach
The Party: Privileged Sundays at Delano Beach Club, deep house from a rotating cast of resident DJs with dancers, body paint models, and contortionists for your entertainment. Daybeds and cabanas available for purchase starting at $1000.
When: Sundays, 2 p.m. to Sundown
1685 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-672-2000 morganshotelgroup.com/delano
The Party: It’s a Shore Thing and Ladies Who Brunch, sounds by DJ Ollie Sanders and a boozy brunch buffet
When: Sundays, 1 p.m. to Sundown
1901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-695-3100 morganshotelgroup.com/originals/originals-shore-club-south-beach
Pool Crashing 101 Tips:
Still want to forgo the fee or slip into a pool not on this guide? You didn’t hear it from us, but here are a few tips to get you through the gate and into the cool, blue water:
- Walk in like you own the place – Don’t stop to talk to the man guarding the back gate by the beach or the woman checking room keys past the lobby, breeze past them with confidence like you belong there and know where you’re going
- Have lunch or drinks at the poolside restaurant, then casually make your way to the pool and take a dip
- Snag towels and set up your chair when the pool attendant isn’t looking
- Have an exit strategy – If you get busted, know how you’re going to handle it ahead of time. Playing dumb works, “Oh, I didn’t know I wasn’t supposed to be here.” Then, calmly and quietly collect your things.
- Don’t bother during a holiday weekend when hotels are sold out and security is on high alert