Small, intimate and quirky, the Freehand has more character than many of its South Beach competitors. The interior is a whimsical Pueblo-Deco blend, dotted with vintage pieces from flea markets. Pleasant rooms offer tasteful touches such as writing desks—indeed, the whole place has a homey feel. It is technically a hostel, so you can choose from shared rooms for four or eight or private rooms for two. Mingling among the international guests—who often socialize with bikini-clad locals by the Freehand’s courtyard pool—is encouraged.
Neighborhood: Mid-Beach is a great place to be on Miami Beach. The central location puts you an easy drive away from South Beach and also gives you access to Mid-Beach gems like the Faena and Fontainebleau. Plus, the sand is just a short walk away.
Matador Bar: Sultry class and beautiful (though pricey) cocktails
Bird & Bone: Fried chicken so good you'll want thirds
Los Fuegos: Argentina’s grill-master Francis Mallmann strikes again with this concept
Time Out Tip: Great food and drink are about a five-second commute. The Freehand's onsite bar, the Broken Shaker, is as popular with locals as it is with guests. And 27 Restaurant, the adjacent locavore concept from Bar Lab, is wonderful, serving up dishes inspired by Latin America, the Caribbean and the Middle East.