Ready for the over-the-top, booze-and-bikinis side of South Beach? If you caught a show on the CW in 2012 called The Catalina, you pretty much know what’s coming. This centrally located property dates from 1952, and whether or not it is, as it claims, SoBe’s “coolest hotel” young owner Nathan Lieberman is certainly trying his darnedest (for example, free happy-hour cocktails followed by two hours of all you can drink for $25). It’s actually three hotels combined into one, with the “rock star” rooms in the middle building more bare-bones and designed for partying, the rest more stylish and a bit quieter. Similarly, the “bamboo pool” out back is mellow while the rooftop pool is meant for loud music, going topless, and general carryings on. One of the in-house restaurants, Maxine’s Bistro, is open 24/7, and the other, Kung Fu Sushi, stays open after midnight. It’s not everybody’s cup of hooch, but if Snooki and The Situation are your role models, hey, knock yourself out.
- David Paul Appell