Saturday, May 8, 2010

Acqualina, North Miami Beach - an Absolute Jewel

What a wonderful long weekend Acqualina presents for us folks n the Northeast, or from anywhere for that matter - the hotel/resort is that good!

Acqualina is officially in Sunny Isles - the northern tip of Miami's barrier island.  Here are some of the best beaches of the island.  Yes Acqualina is  a high rise, usually not my preferred sort of resort, but they do things very differently.

First there are only 4 to 6 rooms per floor which creates an amazing 775 sq. feet of privacy. Even  the standard rooms are as large which face the intracoastal, with views of  the Miami skyline. The oceanfront rooms offer magnificent sea views. All rooms have expansive balconies which solved my concern of high rise hotels without windows that  open.

The rooms are beautifully appointed with all the amenities one would expect of a 5 star hotel, and a few little unexpected extras as well.  Everything is done in a thoughtful way .  We had a classic suite which has only 4 in the complex - a huge balcony overlooking the sea, a full parlor with dining area and a very comfortable bedroom & bath.

The colors at Acqualina are warm and vibrant and set the mood nicely.  The ambiance is one of international flair and guests come from Europe, South America and the U.S.  There is an air of casual sophistication, and  the guests ages range from the young successful side to older folk like myself who enjoy the pleasures of a fine hotel. Families with children are comfortable also and they have a fine children's program.

The service at Acqualina is impeccable,  From the time one checks in it is hard to miss that everyone cares about the guest experience.  There are two restaurants at the beach where one can dine al fresco then move to the lawn in comfortable lounge chairs or to the beach adjacent.  A sign of good service was when i moved to one of the lounge chairs after lunch and  a pool boy, without my requesting it, quietly placed a pitcher of water with lemon, (he remembered), and the latest Vogue at the table alongside - just in case i wanted some reading material.

The main dining room is operated by Il Mulino of New York fame.  We met several local friends here for dinner one evening, and they are local gourmands.  The pasta was good, but not up to the expectations, and I suspect that the executive chef was not in residence.  They have some house infused grappas which are displayed in big glass jugs on the bar.

We also went down to South Beach to a wonderful Argentine restaurant we know there, and also enjoyed a wonderful Brazilian churrasco rotisserie which was nearby Acqualina.

In a word, the hotel is sexy and vibrant.  One feels quite pampered in this sybaritic oasis of tranquility.

for more information contact Barbara