Tony Montana probably said it best when he quipped in Scarface: "Miami is like a great big chicken just waiting to get plucked” (At least that’s what he says dubbed on AMC). And if your buddy's only going to be plucking one chicken for the rest of his life, don't you wanna send him off in a city flush with gorgeous beaches and gorgeous women, legendary night clubs and sizzling strip clubs, fishing (!!) and… ah... well, some other stuff Tony Montana used to talk a lot about? Of course, you do.
In addition to these 25 things you should know before arriving in Miami, you’re also gonna need details on the best places to stay, the clubs you can get into with a dozen dudes in tow, and, of course, where to find the friendliest dancers who are totally going to be into you. Which is why we're giving you this authoritative bachelor party guide to the Magic City.
The nicest time to visit Miami weather-wise is from early November until late April. Going in the Summer (mid-May to mid-October) is a crapshoot. First, it rains; although people will often tell you, “But it only rains for an hour then it’s gone”. That is, until it rains for a solid week and you spend your entire bachelor party inside watching reruns of Vega$. Second, it’s hot.
Spring Break: The first two weeks of March are Spring Break, and while it's not exactly Panama City South, there is a solid influx of young college girls (and some guys) enjoying themselves on the beach, in clubs, and probably in the hotel room next to you. Whether this is good or bad depends on your (aka the bride’s) definition of “good”.
Winter Music Conference: The last week in March is when the world's best DJs descend on the city. Expect great parties, painfully hot girls, and even more-painfully expensive hotel rooms.
President’s Day Weekend: Is consumed by the Miami International Boat Show. So just replace "DJs" with "boats you can’t afford" and "painfully hot girls" with "old dudes in blazers".
Art Basel: The first weekend in December (and by far the worst weekend of the year), the city fills up with pretentious New Yorkers pretending to know about art. Hotel rates get jacked up, naturally, and there tends to be a dearth of good drugs and prostitutes.
...if money’s not an issue (or at least you’re going to pretend it’s not): Fontainebleu
Not only are you upstairs from LIV, but you’ll be hanging at the most famous pool in Miami. Plus, you've got FB Steak, Scarpetta, Hakkasan, and loads of other dinner choices.
...if you're a little more budget-minded: Catalina on Collins Avenue
It ain’t quiet, but this is a bachelor party, not finals week. This place is a favorite among similarly-budget-minded bachelorette parties, who you’re almost guaranteed to meet at their nightly open bar for guests from 7-8pm.
...if you think bachelor party budgets are better spent on red meat and strippers than hotel rooms: The Freehand Hostel
The nicest youth hostel you’ll ever stay in essentially rents you a one-bedroom apartment and an eight-man bunk house for about $50 per head, per night.
...if you like staying in other people's places: Condos at the Flamingo, Mondrian, or this entire freaking house
Miami’s got roughly a kazillion condos that the owners live in for, like, two weeks a year. The rest of time? They rent out their big, oceanside tax breaks to guys like you. These places are often nicer and less expensive than a lot of hotel rooms. You can check Airbnb or VRBO to see what's available, but remember, Miami also has roughly a kazillion scam artists -- so never send cash, and be very careful of the old bait-and-switch.
...and want to wrestle alligators: The Everglades
Yea, turns out this swamp is actually great for bachelor parties who also want to wrestle something not covered in KY. Like live alligators. Although if you're not into gator wrestling shows, there're airboat rides run by federally-convicted pot smugglers. And, you know, hiking.
...and want to get out on the water: Deep Sea Fishing
There’s no shortage of all-day private charter boats leaving Miami Beach marina to take you to out to catch dinner. And many local restaurants will happily cook up whatever you reel in, as long as you’re still paying them.
...and fishing reminds you a little too much of awkward afternoons with your dad: Diving/Snorkeling
You can also charter boats for scuba diving/snorkeling trips, even if you’re not certified. The South Beach Dive and Surf Center runs a daily “Scuba Discovery” experience, where you spend the morning learning basics in a pool before heading down to Key Largo for guided afternoon dives.
...and want to see the city while getting a workout in: Deco Bikes
You'll pretty much find these rentable beach cruisers on every street corner. And while a pack of dudes on bikes might look ridiculous, there’s really no better way to see all of Miami Beach. You can even take them over the Venetian causeway into Wynwood to check out what’s essentially an outdoor museum of street murals.
...and you're into mangrove swamps with views of condos: The Oleta River State Recreation Area
Rent kayaks and paddle through the mangrove swamps and bay, exploring islands and beaches only accessible by small boat. Or if you want to stay in the park, you can rent mountain bikes and ride the eight miles of trails. Just remember, it's still Florida, so don’t expect any mountains.
...and want to be part of the South Beach "scene": Pool Parties
While there’re no shortage of pool parties in Miami, don’t expect it to be like Vegas. Because we have an actual beach, every hot girl looking for a sponsor isn't parading around these things in stiletto heels and g-strings. They’re much tamer, laid-back affairs where you can listen to a live DJ while chilling poolside with a drink. The Shore Club has a nice party on Sundays, and if you can hit the Hyde Beach at the SLS Hotel when the monthly XIV Sessions party goes off, you're gonna want to do that.
...and want frozen Miami Vices and a view of the ocean: The Clevelander
Ground zero for Spring Break, it's also South Beach’s biggest daytime drinking spot the rest of the year. Or, you can head over to Wet Willies and suck down frozen Call-a-Cabs while lounging on the balcony and watching girls walk back from the Beach.
...and want to see what Pitbull would be doing if he wasn't famous: Nikki Beach
You might have heard this Sunday party was worth checking out. It is, but only during brunch hours (before 4pm) and after the sun goes down. Unless you rock gold teeth and “305” tattoos, stay the Hell away during the hours in between. You've been warned.
For the private-dining-and-massive-steak dinner experience: Red The Steakhouse
Start off with Peter Vauthy’s teriyaki chili-glazed filet mignon beef jerky, move on to their dry-aged steaks, and finish off with some of Miami’s best doughnuts.
For the free-food-while-looking-at-strippers dinner experience: E11even
Kill two birds with one stone (provided you’re cool with eating dinner at 5p) by hitting the happy hour buffet at downtown's E11even. It’s completely free if you bring your business card, and it boasts legitimately delicious carving station meats, mojo pork, caprese salad, chicken scarpariello, and loads of desserts. And did we mention it’s flanked by naked women on poles?
For the local experience: Cuban food
If you’re in Miami, you gotta have the local cuisine, right? The cheapest, most-authentic spot on the beach is Puerto Sagua. For something a little nicer, hit Havana 1957 on Lincoln Road or Abuela’s Kitchen, also near Lincoln. And for modern Cuban, DeRodriguez Cuba has crazy stuff like the Cuban sandwich on a stick.
For an epic rundown of Miami's best restaurants: The Thrillist 47
Seriously, this list will put an immediate end to all of your heated "where should we eat tonight?" debates.
If you call any of Miami's best clubs and kindly inform them that you’re rolling in 10 dudes deep on a Saturday night, they’re going to hang up on you. Put the phone down. You need women. And your best bet, as tired as it sounds, is to find some waiting in line outside and invite them to join your table. Voila! You’ve not only gotten yourself in (assuming you’re also dropping $5-10k on a table), but you’ve got some women to talk to. Until someone else offers to buy them a drink.
Now as for where to go...
For a club you can actually get into with your group: Club Space
The music is typically better than in the South Beach spots, though the collection of ladies may not be exactly what the Travel Channel promised. Also, Space gets going a lot later than other clubs, unless you catch them on a night with a big DJ.
For an only-in-Miami experience: Mango’s
It's that beachfront joint that looks like Hooters, but with dancing Brazilian girls. Overpriced, average food, and only worth hitting for the waitresses. But it is uniquely Miami.
For meeting local women you might actually have a chance with: Baoli
If you happen to get into town on a Wednesday, this Med/Asian fusion resto-club has the best Ladies Night in the history of ladies nights. The “My Boyfriend’s Out of Town” party is a regular stop for local women looking to cut loose and find dudes. And most of said dudes at Baoli are European, so your complete lack of accent and pre-club cologne bath will actually make you seem “exotic”.
For drinking on the (relatively) cheap: The Dive Bars...
If you’re the type of group who likes to fly 2,000 miles to sit in the same dark, dingy dive bars you have at home, we got you covered (and are only sorta judging). Be warned, though, that smoking in bars is not only allowed but encouraged, so don’t plan on re-wearing your favorite tuxedo t-shirt; especially if you hit Mac’s Club Deuce, our most famous dive that you can literally smell from a block away. If that intimidates you, Lost Weekend is a locals’ hangout with pool and craft beers. Or further South, stop into Ted’s Hideaway and appreciate the best looking dive bar staff this side of Miami-Dade County.
For beers other than PBR and Natty Light: Craft Beer Bars
While we may be on the cutting edge of electronic music and synthetic drugs, we are about a decade behind when it comes to beer. So our craft beer offerings tend to be fairly limited. Your best selection is going to be at Yard House (see, we told you), however if you’re morally opposed to drinking at a chain on vacation, check out Abbey Brewing Company, Rio Station, and Burger & Beer Joint.
For big, greasy burgers to soak up the alcohol and/or ensure nobody cheats on his wife: Cheeseburger Baby
They've also got a Tiki bar in the back if you wanna keep the party going while you wait for your burgers. For bigger, diner-style menus, there’s Big Pink if you’re south of 5th, 11th St. Diner if you’re in the middle of South Beach, and Maxine’s if you’re further north (and staying at the Catalina).
For a slice: Pizza Rustica
You absolutely must go for their gigantic square slices covered with such crazy topping combinations that your brain won't be able to process it. And, as you’ll learn four hours later, neither will your stomach.
For when that 5am closing is juuuuust a little too early: Club Space
If your group really brought their drinking shoes, close down the dive bars at 5a and then grab a cab back over to Club Space; they’re open until the following afternoon. The top-floor terrace is Miami’s biggest freak show, and one of the more surreal clubbing experiences you’ll ever have.
The absolute, number one thing to know if you’re trying to get laid in Miami: Don't go to clubs, unless you’re willing to drop thousands on bottle service. You can’t hear anyone, the hot girls you’re going after have someone richer chasing them, and you’ll more often than not find yourself buying hundreds of dollars worth of drinks before going home alone. That doesn't mean you can't still get your groove on at the deeethh-co-tech, just don't go expecting to score.
So where SHOULD you go? Bars. The Playwright, Clevelander, Automatic Slims, and Lost Weekend tend to be much more target-rich environments where you can rely on more than your ability to grind and/or burn hundred dollar bills to bring home an unwitting new lady friend.
The best and closest strip club to South Beach: E11even
In addition to the aforementioned gratis buffet, E11even is the nicest strip club in Miami and a great place to hit after a late dinner in South Beach. Take a short cab ride downtown, spend a few hours there, then roll up to Space across the street. There's one downside, though -- it’s topless only.
The next-best and closest strip club to South Beach: Wonderland
While also (sadly) topless, it's pretty much the only other strip club in Miami that could be described as “nice” and "full of hot girls”.
The best place for full nudity, full liquor, and hot strippers: Scarlett's
Well worth the $60 cab ride north to Hallandale, just make sure not to empty your bank account on lap dances; our taxis don't take credit cards, and that's a looooong walk back to South Beach.
The strip club you must absolutely avoid at all costs: Club Madonna
Despite the fact that it's (unfortunately) the only strip club actually ON South Beach, under NO circumstances should you go there. Ever. First, at the time of publication they were in the process of being temporarily shut down for employing a 13-year old. And not to clean the bathrooms, either. Second, they don’t serve booze. Third, the women are flat out rude.
Miami literally just got Uber, as in yesterday
So, whereas last week, we would've told you not to waste your time trying to download/open the App, now you can have at it. Although, obviously, as the service is new, it might take some time getting up to speed.
Cabs don't take credit cards
Yea, they might have machines inside that look like they accept credit cards. And they might have a sticker on the window that says they accept cards. But strangely, every single machine in the city is broken. Funny how that works. Pretend you're visiting a foreign country, and bring cash everywhere.
Swoop is your best friend
Swoop is a fleet of electric golf carts that will take you anywhere in South Beach for free, so long as you tip the driver. They’re great but can take a while, so make sure to call them 45mins to an hour before you’re ready to leave.
It’s perfectly fine to walk down the street with a drink in hand
And by “perfectly fine”, we mean "technically illegal but as long as it’s not in glass, and as long as you don’t act like a jackass, you should be okay". Same goes for the beach -- no glass (and good behavior) means you can pretty much drink wherever.
Cars don’t stop for pedestrians
Are they supposed to? Sure. But do NOT think a driver turning right is going to wait for you to cross, or will even think about slowing down at a crosswalk that doesn't have a light. This is for your safety.
The tip is included in your bill at many bars and restaurants
ALWAYS ask for an itemized copy of your bill, even if it’s at a loud club. A favorite hot-girl bartender move is to tell you $14 for a beer that’s actually $11, but $14 with a tip. Don’t double tip her, she’s not going home with you. Another clever one: telling you the tab total, running your credit card, and then never providing an itemized bill.
If you came to Miami with the grand plan to buy cases of beer at Publix, pre-game in your hotel room, eat at Burger King, and hit only dive bars, then, yes, you can do Miami on the cheap.
Otherwise, bring your wallet. Beers (even domestic ones) are at least $6 everywhere, and can run as high as $10-$14 in clubs. Cocktails and straight booze range from $10-$18 a drink. Each. Food isn’t cheap either: for dinner and a couple of drinks at a mid-range restaurant, plan to drop $60 a dude.
Budget $300 a day for food and booze, and you’ll have a great time. Budget $200, and you won’t get drunk, but you’ll still have fun. Budget $100, and you’re going to be miserable.
You probably think that because you’re in Miami, they're going to give you an eight-ball when you check into the hotel. Close, but not quite -- you’re still going to have to look a little. The shady guy walking up the beach mumbling “Weedcokemolly” is NOT a reputable source. Your safest bet is a well-placed tip to your hotel concierge or an even a better-placed one to your waiter, who’s probably got some in his check presenter.
There’s no shortage of sex workers in Miami, but whether you meet one at a club (yeah, that woman with the GG implants wasn’t really that into you. Sorry.), on the street, or through an escort service, remember one thing: GUARD YOUR STUFF! Hookers here are notorious for stealing your money, credit cards, passports, mewelry, and anything else that’s not bolted down the minute you dose off. Make sure you put all your valuables in your hotel safe before you get down to business.
There's one thing you absolutely MUST do while in Miami -- get out on the water. Because if you just wanted to eat, party, and ogle strippers, you’d have gone to Vegas. And we’re way better than that.
1. Fontainebleau Miami Beach4441 Collins Avenues, Miami Beach
2. Freehand Miami2727 Indian Creek Drive , Miami Beach
3. Shore Club1901 Collins Ave, Miami Beach
4. Hyde Beach at the SLS Hotel1701 Collins Ave, Miami Beach
5. The Clevelander1020 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach
6. Wet Willie's760 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach
7. Nikki Beach1 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach
8. Red, The Steakhouse119 Washington Ave, Miami Beach
9. E11EVEN Miami29 NE 11th St, Miami
10. Puerto Sagua Restaurant700 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
11. Havana 1957 Cuban Cuisine819 Lincoln Rd, Miami Beach
12. Abuela's Cuban Kitchen1654 Meridian Ave, Miami Beach
13. De Rodriguez Ocean101 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach
14. Club Space34 NE 11th St, Miami
15. Mango's Tropical Cafe900 Ocean Dr, Miami Beach
16. Bâoli Miami1906 Collins Ave, Miami Beach
17. Mac's Club Deuce222 14th St, Miami Beach
18. Lost Weekend218 Espanola Way, Miami Beach
19. Ted's Hideaway124 2nd St, Miami Beach
20. Yard House1681 Lenox Ave, Miami
21. The Abbey Brewing Company1115 16th St, Miami
22. Rio Station625 Lincoln Rd, Miami Beach
23. Burger & Beer Joint1766 Bay Rd, Miami Beach
24. Cheeseburger Baby1505 Washington Ave, Miami Beach
25. The Big Pink157 Collins Ave, Miami Beach
26. 11th Street Diner1065 Washington Ave, Miami Beach
27. Maxine's Bistro & Bar1756 Collins Ave, Miami
28. Pizza Rustica863 Washington Ave, Miami Beach
29. The Playwright Irish Pub & Restaurant1265 Washington Ave, Miami Beach
30. Automatic Slims1216 Washington Ave, Miami Beach
31. Wonderland7778 Biscayne Blvd., Miami
32. Scarlett's Cabaret2920 SW 30th Ct, Miami
33. Club Madonna1527 Washington Ave, Miami Beach
This sprawling resort features more than 1,500 guestrooms, a 40,000sqft spa, 12 restaurants, four nightlife venues, and 10 pools. Basically, you'll never have to leave once you get here.
Built in the iconic Indian Creek Hotel, this hip hostel is the one-stop destination for cheap lodging, great food, and vibrant social interaction. And while the location is within spitting distance of the beach, the venue embodies none of the brow-raising, exclusive pretentions of other waterfront venues, instead offering a warm, outdoors atmosphere for travelers and locals alike.
This art deco-styled hotel is home to some excellent parties every Sunday; the pool's worth checking out too, especially if you spring for one of the seven bungalows.
Hyde Beach's known for its great atmosphere and Thursday night pool parties. You'll wanna book a seat in advance, as this place fills up quick.
This football mega-center has more than 40 HDs, and Rockstar Rewards specials like 50-cent wings, 2-for-$7 Jager shots, $12 pitchers, and $5 SoCo shots.
Willie's is famous for its delicious, frozen, alcoholic beverages such as the "Call-a-Cab" -- a drink that's comprised of basically every form of alcohol known to man. If that's too intense for you, grab a daiquiri and some cheese fries.
Luxurious white chairs and umbrellas define the palm-lined beach at Nikki's Beach club, a "party playground for jet setters, celebrities, VIPs, guests, and visitors alike". Soo fancy, right? Well, you, average non-celebrity-or-VIP, can hit up this spot to nosh, booze, or lounge at the nightclub.
Once voted Sexiest Steakhouse of the Year (by Playboy, no less) and beloved by A-listers, Red delivers on all the swanky fronts. But we suggest you let the food -- from appetizers like seared foie gras and caviar with crème fraiche to the steak and seafood entrées -- do the talking. Throw in a fully-loaded wine list, and the fact that Red is one of the few places in the country to use Miyazaki beef (like Kobe but more marbled), and you've got a steak night to remember.
Burlesque performances? Check. Big-name DJs? Yeah. LED screens, a stage with a (cough, cough) pole, plus straight-off-the-carving board eats like pulled pork sliders 24 HOURSA DAY?! Miami's hottest dayclub, E11EVEN, is delivering all of the above, plus bottle service, and scantily clad dancers who are wayyy more likely to hang out if you buy said bottle service and post up in one the leather booths lining the dance floor/balcony.
Down-home cooking is alive and well at Puerto Sagua, where you can score heaping helpings of Pollo Asado, sweet plantains, and just about any other Cuban dish you can think of.
This is the spot to hit for authentic Cuban dishes like Ropa Vieja, Vaca Frita, and the ever-popular Cuban sandwich laden with pickles, roast pork, ham, and swiss. The coffee's not bad either!
Abuela's is THE place to go if you're jonesin' for traditional, home-cooked Cuban flavor. It'll be just like your grandma used to make, if she was Cuban and owned a restaurant.
With poolside seating and a revamped interior with lots of aged wood, Ocean plates Doug Rodriguez's Nuevo Latino take on the sea, this time with some Asian influence: ceviches including Thai lobster coconut w/ ginger, or tuna watermelon w/ kumquat, yuzu, and Thai basil, plus entrees like seared adobo tuna.
This over-the-top club is located in a multi-story warehouse, and comes complete with live DJs and a rooftop terrace. Thanks to its 24-hours license, lots of lasers, and pretty lights, the after-after-after-hours club is Miami's greatest freak show, and likely the only 10+-year-old club that can lay claim to such subsisting fame.
While the name suggests a family-friendly, rainforest-themed coffee spot, Mango's is actually a hot dance club filled with Latin women, expensive drinks, and blacklight parties.
A French/Mediterrean restaurant that transforms into a late-night lounge with a garden and VIP section, and club that's hosted celebrity DJs like Bob Sinclair and David Guetta.
Get to boozing and pooling (of the billiards variety) early in the AM at this dive bar in the Beach.
This somewhat-divey bar boasts a stand-up selection of food, including shrimp po' boys and pizza, with a quality assortment of beer and mixed drinks to match. Try your hand at the pool table, dart board, air hockey table, or foosball table.
Whether you're stopping by for happy hour specials or to watch the game, this dive bar's got your bases covered.
The central island bar at Yard House is ringed by an impressive array of tap handles, ranging from familiar classics to intriguing selections you've never actually seen in person before. On top of all that, the menu of American fusion cuisine includes street taco plates, steaks, pan-seared ahi tuna, and roasted turkey pot pie.
The Abbey's got a roomy, refurbished wood-lined interior well stocked with draft pours and spirits. Come for the bar snacks, stay for the friendly congenial atmosphere and solid happy hour deals.
It's always happy hour at Rio Station with $4-beers, all-day breakfast, an excellent line-up of paninis and 20 different smoothie options.
Burger & Beer Joint titles itself as the "Miami Gourmet Burger headquarters". Come grab a massive gourmet burger along with your favorite brew. The two will be a match made in heaven.
Like its name suggests, Cheeseburger Baby's all about the burgers -- don't let that fool you into thinking that the other menu items aren't worth a try, though. The double-decker grilled cheese in particular is all you could ever want in a cheese sandwich, and the chicken finger sandwich takes a classic app and slaps it in between two giant slabs of Texas Toast. Yum.
The Big Pink's a family-style restaurant that plates just about every form of comfort food you can imagine, from waffles and pizza to the famous Big Pink TV Dinner. There's also a large number of flatscreen TVs lining the walls, allowing you to catch up on sports while you down your chow.
This late night diner, made famous by Diners, Drive-ins and Dives, has a retro art deco decor, plus all your favorite greasy diner eats.
Because it's nestled into a hotel, you can score the delicious, comfort-foody eats at Maxine's (sliders, mac and cheese, pizzas, etc) 24hrs a day.
This dough-slingin' chain, with locations sprinkled over SoFla, serves up za with fresh ingredients and creative recipes, ranging from traditional pies to dessert pizzas.
Nestled between Mansion and Cameo, The Playwright serves up traditional Irish bar food and has plenty of specials on pitchers of brews. Although this bar can get a little wild on Friday and Saturday night, there is something unforgettable about its grittiness and untamed debauchery. Needless to say, it's the perfect place to let loose.
This dive bar is jam-packed with hot bartenders in barely-there shirts and skirts, and the music here is always guaranteed to get your blood pumping. Also, the bartenders will; did we mention they're really hot?
Mixing 1950s burlesque with South Beach bottle service, VIP touches, Wonderland is a clash of old and new that makes for the most relaxing, luxurious strip club environment in Miami. Yes, it's only topless (unless you opt for a private room with one of the dancers, where those sorts of things are, as always, negotiable) but the dancers aren't allowed to hassle you for tips and the food is as good as any restaurant not called Blue Collar.
This bottle-service-style strippery in Hollandale is massive (a half-dozen stipper poles; lounge, vip, and bar areas; and a tiered VIP area), boast some pretty massive deals (free happy hour eats from 12-6p, constant drink specials, etc.), and has some... um, massively talented employees, who'll at least make you feel like YOU are.
This oft sued-by-the-actual-Madonna spot, is Miami Beach's only gentleman's club, is BYOB, and is a constant thorn in the side of city government, but that's OK 'cause... well, naked women! Naked women who dance in very purple, pop-art splashed space, where given the lack of drink/food/other entertainment options, you've really got no choice but to watch.