The Raleigh Hotel
1775 Collins Ave.
Dress: Beachy chic
Crowd: Models, collegiate types, New Yorkers
Peak hours: 7pm-Midnight
Come for early-evening drinks and stay for the bonfire. The laid-back scene at André Balazs’s joint is so coolly enticing, some weekenders stay an extra night to lounge amid the models, jet setters, and sun-kissed, flip-flopped Abercrombie kids.
929 Washington Ave.
Crowd: Hip-hop moguls, sports stars, groupies
Peak Hours: 11pm-3am
Heaving cleavages and the rap moguls who love them come out for this down-and-dirty hip-hop bash. For the ladies, dinner is free starting at ten o’clock. Justin Timberlake appearances: no extra charge.
956 Washington Ave.
Dress: Cocktail cool
Crowd: Real-estate agents, fashion-media-art-whatever hipsters
Peak Hours: 9pm-1am
Karim Masri, Nicola Siervo, and Miami party fixture Tommy Pooch host the Hotel Astor’s buzzing indoor-outdoor dinner party. Dine at ten, then wander off to the breezy patio bar for cocktails.
432 41st St.
Dress: Beach formal
Crowd: Sugar daddies, developers, heiresses
Peak Hours: 10pm-5am
Only here can you bare your midriff while eating filet mignon in a restaurant resembling a Parisian mansion (after a few drinks, anyway). Add in the chance of a Michael Jackson sighting and you can’t go wrong. After midnight, head next door to the club Glass.
1144 Ocean Dr.
Dress: Anything goes, jeans to cocktail dresses
Peak Hours: 11:30pm-3am
Miami’s busiest promoter, Michael Capponi, offers one of the best reasons to spend the evening on Ocean Drive. Have a curry at Vix, the Hotel Victor’s Spice Route–inspired restaurant, then decamp to the ocean-view lounge to watch the socialites parade past.
1766 Bay Rd.
Dress: T shirts, tanks, designer jeans
Crowd: Twinks to trannies
Peak Hours: 11pm-1am
Once a week, the popular South African restaurant transitions into one of the city’s most ecumenical gay scenes: Though there are plenty of chest-waxers here, this party’s not just for the pretty boys. The evening’s big draw—a wild drag show—starts at eleven.
1235 Washington Ave.
Dress: As little as possible
Crowd: Party-photo aspirants
Peak Hours: 12:45am-3:15am
Mansion is the kind of ear-splitting, strobe-light-blasting, oversize dance theater you envisioned when you planned your trip. Wear enough makeup, show enough skin, and your photo will wind up on MichaelCapponi.com. Come prepared to make out with strangers.
Next: The Best 4 A.M. Pit Stop