By Juan Lopez
Looking for some ideas of what to do while on South Beach? Here are some suggestions that range from cheap to pricey.
Low on funds? Looking frugality right in the eye? Well, pull out your beach towel, throw on the shades and head on over to gay beach (12th and Ocean Drive). The weather isn't the only hot thing going on there. Slamming bods in very fashionable swim wear abound. (Be on the lookout for Pride Flags that signal you're in the right place!)
Not into sand on your towel and don't mind paying a fee? Then chill out at The Standard’s or The Raleigh's hotel swimming pools.
The Standard Hotel (located on the bayside of Miami Beach) and The Raleigh (located beach side) are sister hotels and provide a shuttle service between the two. Both places are very gay friendly and devoid of the typical touristy crowd. These pool hangouts are a great place to do some celeb spotting. There are pool fees for hanging out and food and drinks are not cheap. (Tip: Try the watermelon mojitos and mini-burgers at The Standard.)
The Standard Hotel, 40 Island Ave., Miami Beach; 305-673-1717
$50 a day from Friday to Sunday, or $40 on a weekday. The day pass is good from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day but Friday, when it's good until midnight.
The Raleigh Hotel, 1775 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-534-4300
$25 pool entry fee.
WORK IT OUT
Sick of the sun? Head to David Barton Gym at the Gansevoort South hotel and get your workout on. This is a gym like no other you've experienced before. Designed with a Moroccan theme, don't forget to look up and check out the metal ceiling panels that give you the feeling that you're inside a genie’s lamp. The mood lighting makes everybody look good while they pump up. Looking to see where the boys are? Peek gay hour is from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. There is also pool and beach access, so if you want to spend the day there you can. Day passes are available at a $50 fee and include the use of the pool. Or if you're friend's a member, hit them up for a guest pass (they get four free passes a year).
David Barton Gym @ Gansevoort South, 2377 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach; 305-534-1660
12th Street Beach. Photo: Alex Guerra