The Epic hotel was a pleasant surprise for Miami. I frequent the area and I can honestly say Miami hotels typically offer "run of the mill" service. The Epic was quite different. I experienced amazing service from the first moment I arrived. Although, since the hotel is new, the taxi dropped me off on the corner, because the driver got lost. When I walked up the driveway the doorman rushed over to help me with my bags. This was just the beginning of an excellent stay.
The front office staff were personable and the concierge was excellent. The concierge even hand delivered a confirmation for a spa appointment nearby. The hotel spa was still under construction, but I look forward to visiting again and enjoying their Exhale spa, which will be on the 15th floor.
I worked out at the gym during my stay. It is located just off the pool deck. I was glad the gym had free weights and a variety of weight machines. I was able to get a full workout, instead of just doing cardio.
I had at least one meal each day at the restaurant, Area 31, which has some of the best yellowtail tuna! The drinks are excellent...try the hand crafted cocktails, all of which are $12. Typical for the high quality. Room service was also good. If you ask, they will allow you to order items from the restaurant menu or the bar for room service delivery. I noticed that some of the desserts Area 31 offered were not on the menu. They gladly accommodated my requests each time.
The only thing to consider is location, but I am reluctant to stay on South Beach after years of traveling to Miami, because the room rates for the better hotels are ridiculous for the poor service. I would rather stay in the Brickell area where the new upscale hotels are located, then cab or drive to the beach. Otherwise, you are not missing much on SOBE. It is not like it used to be only a few years ago. I would rather stay at an "adult" hotel, like the epic. There was a cool bar/nightclub on the lobby level. I did not have a chance to check it out, but it was lively each time I passed by.
The room was over the top. I was in a corner suite and the wrap around balcony had views of the bay and the surrounding skyscrapers. I enjoyed the view because I could see if I-395 was busy. Perfect for planning my trek to SOBE for the nightlife (future visit). I did not realize there was a busy music conference on the beach this weekend, so I did not actually travel to SOBE, a few friends took me to the northern part of Miami Beach where it was less crowded.
I was surprised to see the Acqua Di Parma amenities at this hotel. I am a fan of Kimpton and they typically offer Aveda or L'Occitane amenities, but this hotel clearly is a notch above the Kimpton properties I have experienced. They are all pleasant, but the Epic felt more like a five star hotel than a four star hotel. I stayed at the Mandarin the last time I was in town and it did not come close, except the pool at the Mandarin was not as windy. But who goes to the pool anyway, except to drink and eat. I come to Miami to hit the beach.
The restaurant has an excellent brunch on Sunday with live music for $64 (with taxes). It may seem like a lot for those looking to dine on the cheap, but let me tell you, the caviar and fresh lobster were well worth the extra coin.
Book a suite and you can leave your computer at home. I had a personal computer workstation in my suite and the bathroom was large enough to enjoy plenty of intimate relaxation. Especially with the hydro-spa tub and the spacious rain shower. The bathroom even had a balcony. A big wow!
I traveled to Coral Gables to visit friends and to what would be called the midtown area and it was only about 15 minutes in each direction, which made for a pleasant in-town travel situation. Therefore, the hotel is centrally located to the areas I love. I used to stay at the Biltmore a couple years back, but I got tired of the 30 minute drive from Coral Gables to SOBE, but I was addicted to the adult feel of the hotel. Now, I have a new place to call home when I travel to Miami. The Epic was spectacular!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The new EPIC Hotel is the premier luxury hotel in Miami, a sparkling cosmopolitan destination on the bank of the Miami River where it meets Biscayne Bay. A stunning addition to Miami, this hotel, a Kimpton Hotel, epitomizes urban design while offering guests a level of style and service expected of such a resort. With exceptional amenities, breathtaking views and dining venues like Area 31, EPIC Hotel makes for an unparalleled Miami experience. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Epic Hotel Kimpton