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The Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan

See the Kid-Friendly Side of South Beach

Believe it or not, Miami isn’t just about trendy clubs and pools lined with perfect bodies—there’s plenty of fun for families, too.


1. Where to Stay

The Ritz-Carlton South Beach's suites offer spacious living areas.   

Find all the space you need at the Ritz-Carlton South Beach (rooms from $529, suites from $679), whose family-friendly one-bedroom suites and adjoining standard rooms offer a welcome alternative to the cramped quarters found in other Art Deco gems. The Ritz Kids program ($50 for a half-day, $85 for a full day) keeps children ages 5 to 12 busy with swimming, seashell hunting, and jewelry-making, giving parents an opportunity to enjoy Astro Balance massages ($200 for 80 minutes), a fun mash-up of bodywork and astrology, or settle into chaise lounges on the pristine stretch of sand.

Kick back around the iconic pool at the Raleigh (from $320), where local moms take little waders to splash around in the one-foot-deep outer rim. The hotel’s kid-friendly staff can arrange for swim lessons ($30 per hour) or babysitters ($20 per hour with a three-hour minimum), and on rainy days they’ve been known to screen movies for the youngsters and serve popcorn. The Royal restaurant, located outdoors under a verdant tree canopy, features a menu created by chef John DeLucie of the Lion.

Take shelter from the crowds at the Sense Hotel (from $179), a small boutique property located in the relatively quiet SoFi (South of Fifth Street) district that is still within walking distance of bustling Ocean Drive. There are no suites or connecting rooms here, but eighteen units offer two king-size beds, and kids under 12 stay free. Keep the family entertained at the non-sceney rooftop pool or less-crowded Brazilian Beach across the street—or just let the hotel staff create an itinerary for you from a selection of themes like music, sports, or shopping.

Published on Mar 31, 2011 as a web exclusive.

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