Beat the heat at the coolest waterfront bars in Miami

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Beat the heat at the coolest waterfront bars in Miami

Sun, sand, surf and balmy winter weather – Miami’s beguiling climate has charmed more than its fair share of visitors. One of the best ways to experience the perks of being on a warm-weather peninsula is with a frosty beverage in your hand and water views for days.

Just south of Miami’s Brickell neighborhood lies the barrier island of Key Biscayne. A quick jaunt on the scenic Rickenbacker Causeway takes you over the placid waters of Biscayne Bay and onto the lush shores of this tiny island enclave. But before you get too far, pull into the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science (RSMAS). Once there, make your way to WetLab. Rather than cracking open books, locals know it’s a prime spot for cracking open a beer and taking in unobstructed views of the water from the oceanfront veranda. With 17 taps of local craft beers and an assortment of affordably priced cans, you’re bound to find a brew worth toasting with.

Key Biscayne

Key Biscayne

For a different scene, head further down the Key to the Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami. While the surroundings are noticeably more upscale than the WetLab, the vibe at Cantina Beach—their coastal Mexican restaurant—is decidedly laid-back. Housed under a thatched palapa roof built by the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians, this beachfront oasis offers up a tightly-curated menu of dishes including fajitas nortenas and snapper ceviche. Aim for one of the seats directly facing the ocean and summon the services of their in-house tequila. With more than 110 premium tequilas on hand, you’re going to need an expert to guide the way.

Cantina Beach

Back across the causeway, you’ll find Brickell – Miami’s financial district. High-rises and busy city streets now populate one of Miami’s oldest neighborhoods, making it difficult to spot the Miami River coursing through its boundaries. But at American Social (690 SW 1 Court), you’ve got front row seats to one of the US’s shortest working rivers. Kick back on the patriotic rattan seats outside and watch a parade of glitzy yachts glide by while you wet your whistle with one of more than 50 craft beers on tap.

American Social

If it’s a cocktail you’re craving, a short trip across Brickell Key Drive will lead you to Brickell Key, a manmade island. There, nestled inside the Mandarin Oriental, Miami, you’ll find Yaku by La Mar. This breezy Peruvian-inspired outdoor lounge boasts some of the sexiest views of Biscayne Bay and the Brickell skyline alongside a potent selection of punch and pisco cocktails. At night, the bronze-and-terracotta-outfitted space comes to life with a rotating roster of guest DJs. Pro-tip: don’t miss happy hour. Nothing beats $5 small plates prepared by executive chef Diego Oka except for a killer Miami sunset. Here you get both.

Beverage at the Yaku by La Mar

Yaku by La Mar



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