For as long as I can remember, Miami has been a second home. I have visited with friends, and for most of my life it has been my family’s top vacation spot. For 2 weeks a year we give up snow for sunshine, and immerse ourselves in incredible restaurants and eateries, shopping, beaches and nightlife. I’ve developed a pretty concrete list of my favourite spots, all of which are tried and true!
When I go to Miami I usually have access to a kitchen, so I make a conscious effort not to go off track during the day (leaving more time for the beach!) I personally feel like it’s easier to be healthy in hot weather because I naturally gravitate towards yummy salads, smoothies, and fresh fruit during the day. That being said, as a foodie I definitely indulge at night, and don’t think twice. YOLO! My key to moderation in Miami is keeping it healthy during the day, walking a ton, and using portion control at dinner. If I get pizza or pasta for dinner I skip the apps and dessert- to the best of my ability.
- Standard Hotel– Okay so let’s start off by saying, I didn’t actually stay here! I spent a day here and it was the BEST day. On one of my most recent trips to Miami with fellow blogger Marlie (@kale_and_krunches), we spent the day eating and lounging at The Standard Hotel. Guys! It was magical. It’s actually more of a spa than hotel to be honest. We got day passes which were LUXURY. We had access to their spa amenities (steam room, sauna, etc), pool and their lounge area with hammocks. We stayed for the entire day, watched the sunset with a glass of rosè, showered and then went to their restaurant Lido Bayside Grill, where I got the most amazing cheeseburger and fries.
- Miami Juice– My version of heaven! Warning: there is almost always a line out the door, so try going during off times. This place is the ultimate haven for morning/brunch lovers. They have healthy breakfast options and the best salad and tuna (of life!). They also happen to have an incredible dinner menu if you’re looking for a fresh fish or a packed salad kind-of-dinner.
- Mandolin Aegean Bistro– This restaurant is in the fashion district and it makes you feel like you’ve entered into a secret garden somewhere in Greece. I love Greek food because it’s the perfect combo of comfort-meets-healthy. For the most part, I find Greek food is typically a healthier option while still being substantial. I love their chicken skewers, greek salad, and tzatziki. Oh! and the sangria is also incredible!
- Carpaccio– this Italian restaurant is located in the heart of the Bal Harbor Shops. Carpaccio has been one of my go-to restaurants since I was a kid. It’s always busy and the food is always consistent; delicious and right on point. You can definitely make healthy choices here, but my go-to is sharing the caesar salad to start, and then getting my own seafood pasta. I refuse to share this seafood pasta- it is THAT good.
- Cecconi’s– Unbelievable food & vibe! If you love Italian + a fun vibe- this is your spot. The food is consistently delicious and the space is gorgeous! If you are coming during busy season- you NEEEED a reso. p.s if you are into spicy tequila cocktails, you need to order a picante. trust me. but only if you like it hot.
- Joe & The Juice– This healthy spot is all over the States and is one of my faves. I typically pop in for a coffee or 100% green juice. It has a fun, yet relaxed atmosphere and at times can almost feel like you’re in a club… you’ll see what I mean!
- Juice & Java– There are a bunch of locations, and apparently they even do delivery. It’s a great spot for pressed juices, breakfast, and salads.
- Joe’s Stone Crab– This place is a classic seafood joint! It’s very tough to snag a table, so definitely come early. I keep it healthy by sticking to the crab (sans butter) and avoiding the deep fried menu options. This place will transport you to a time of the past. All of their staff have been there for AT LEAST 20 years!
- Makoto – Delicious fresh sushi restaurant in Bal Harbour Shops! Not to sound totally boring but you have to get the house salad. It’s pretty big so I usually split it and share some sushi! Fun fact – there’s a back patio area! You’re welcome ;).
- Exhale Spa Bal Harbour– This spa overlooks the ocean and is pretty remarkable. I try to do a yoga class there at least once whenever I go. It’s so zen and serene- you gotta check it out. It’s the perfect way to to start your day, unwind and really relax while on vacay.
- Flywheel Barre or Spin– I first started going to Flywheel for the spinning, but then I tried their Barre class and I fell in love. If you are looking to get your heart rate up, both classes are sure to do just that.
- Walk on the Beach– I know this seems so cliche, but for me, Miami is all about the walks on the beach! I like to take advantage of the beaches and gorgeous weather by going for long walks on the beach either solo or with my fam. I love being active while soaking up some vitamin d!
- Barrys Bootcamp– This workout is INTENSE, so prepare to die. I’m not kidding. It’s a full body workout with intervals of cardio and weight training. Not going to lie- the first class can be a bit intimidating so definitely come a few minutes early and let your instructor know if it’s your first time!
- Prime Italian – massive portions so share everything!
- Nobu– $$$ sushi restaurant, and definitely an experience! A stand out for me is the rock shrimp. It’s deep fried shrimp covered in spicy mayo. For the record- I don’t really eat anything fried, and avoid mayo, but make the exception for this dish. The trick is sharing it with a few people. ALSO- if you’re into lychi you NEED to order a lychi martini.
- Michael’s Genuine – Somehow I haven’t been yet, but it’s been on my list for years so thought I had to include it here!