Fabulous in Florida

Boca Raton Resort & Club’s Sea Level lets guests enjoy an elevated beach experience with king-sized daybeds and personal attendants.

If you’re headed for the Boca Raton Resort & Club, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, and want to truly splurge, we suggest booking a Boca Beach Club One-Bedroom Ocean Suite. There are eight of them and they can be connected to two Ocean Vista guestrooms to form a Three-Bedroom Ocean Suite.

The hotel is run by General Manager John Carns. Michelle Dvortsin ([email protected]; 561-447-3393) oversees leisure sales for the resort and can walk you through the other room options, including the popular Boca Beach Club Sky Deck Rooms. We love that these have 250-square-foot, furnished sun decks and connect to Sky Deck Rooms to create larger quarters.

Boca Raton Resort & Club’s Cloister King Bedroom Executive Suite is spread over 1,000 square feet of space and has a terrace overlooking Intercoastal Waterways.

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Good to know: The resort has a Yacht Club that sits over the private marina. Waterway Rooms here have great views and get access to the Commodore Executive Lounge, which serves up several food offerings a day. Other add-on goodies include free valet parking, pre-arrival concierge consulting and, our favorite amenity at any resort, exclusive access to an adults-only pool.

Victoria Correa ([email protected]; [email protected]; 561-447-3000) is the lead concierge at the hotel; her team has arranged some outstanding experiences for the guests (think marriage proposals, anniversaries and milestone birthdays). Management says that multigenerational celebrations are its specialty and that its long-standing presence in the south Florida community gives it great access to activities ranging from Art Basel tickets in Miami to great seats at a polo game at the International Polo Club in Wellington.

Let’s talk about the all-new Mizner’s Monkey Bar & Bocce Garden, named for the resort’s founder, Addison Mizner, who in his day walked around the resort with his pet monkey, Johnnie Brown, on his shoulder. There are plenty of drink options here, but we’re all about the artisanal cocktails, including the Florida Grapefruit (Ketel One Vodka, St. Germain and fresh grapefruit) and the Old School Pina Colada (Oak Palm Coconut Rum, coconut water and fresh pineapple). Don’t forget to try a bit of bocce while you’re there. Hint: Dress code is “resort wear” throughout the property.

The E-WOW suite of W South Beach has three private glass balconies.

Also new at the Boca Raton Resort & Club is Sea Level, a dining concept with “an elevated beach experience” that involves king-sized daybeds, personal attendants and hand and foot massages by a reflexologist.

If we’re having a good-hair day, we’ll be all about the free 45-minute photography session for guests; you can get your picture taken throughout the resort by a professional photographer and there are a variety of photo packages available for purchase.

Last Note: The sizeable spa here has 44 treatment rooms and it’s popular, so book at least two weeks out if you can. The “Ritual Bath” is quite the rage and includes a litany of water treatments that are meant to clear your head, soothe your mind with a soaking bath, and stimulate you with a Swiss shower.

Good to know: Young adults between the ages of 12 and 17 can get access to spa services as long as they are accompanied by a guardian or parent over 18 years of age. The spa director, Vanessa Carter ([email protected]; 561-447-3476), can assist with options. Note: The salon caters to 12-year-olds and above without any restrictions. We also hear the spa’s gardens are a great venue for weddings and private events and groups can buy out the spa. The salon is also an option for bridal parties.

W South Beach’s newly designed 2,200-square-foot, two-story Penthouse Suite has floor-to-ceiling windows in the living room and several balconies.

Boca is set 25 miles from the Fort Lauderdale airport and 29 miles from Palm Beach International. Private helicopters and jets can land at Boca Raton Airport, just four miles away.

Further south, the W South Beach on Collins Avenue is sporting a new Penthouse and E-WOW suite. Millions are said to have been invested in the two accommodations, which are designed with a residential flair.

The 2,200-square-foot, two-story Penthouse has a sunny, open-floor plan with nine-foot ceilings. Floor-to-ceiling windows and several balconies show off impressive views of the Atlantic Ocean and Miami.

The living room has an oversized custom sectional couch, all the better to watch the Bang & Olufsen smart TV, which the hotel proudly reveals costs $50,000 to install. (There’s also a Naim Mu-so sound system.) Nice Touch: The dining area faces the ocean and catches plenty of sunlight. The master bedroom? Well, that sports a large, furnished balcony and a master bath with five fixtures.

We’re all about the carefully curated art collection of paintings and photographs in the suite, but we’re more distracted by the thought of the Penthouse Suite’s Rooftop, which has a plunge pool, and a living room and dining area. Yes, please.

The E-WOW Suite is even larger; at 2,960 square feet, it has three large bedrooms and bathrooms. We love that the living room’s bookshelves are lined with an art book collection showing off the works of artists James Turrell, Donald Judd and Agnes Martin, to name a few. The suite also has terraces off every room with 180-degree views of the ocean and downtown Miami skyline.

The Confidante has 363 retro guestrooms, including rooms with views of the ocean from a private balcony.

Here, the “wow” furnishing is the custom, sectional sofa worth $80,000; mid-century modern leather lounge chairs and the white shag rug (no popsicles or grape juice in here, please). The suite also has a dining room; and did we mention the master bedroom with the purple chaise lounge that looks out over the ocean? We’re also curious about the adjoining smart bathroom, which has an automation system that controls lights, temperature and the in-mirror TV from the touch of an iPad. Oh, and there’s a high-tech toilet and a sleek Japanese soaking tub to boot.

Guests of both suites have a “W Insider” for VIP Concierge services and a bevy of other perks, our favorite of which is a cabana at the Wet pool and a daybed at sand on the beach.

The suites are available for booking this month. Reach out to the hotel’s general manager, Rick Ueno ([email protected]; 305-938-3000) and the director of leisure sales, Federica Oriente ([email protected]; 305-938-3027), if you’re sending an A-lister to the hotel with special requests.

The living room at The Confidante has dining facility as well.

Have you wondered what’s become of the Thompson Hotel on Miami Beach? It’s now The Confidante, one of the first hotels in the Unbound Collection by Hyatt, whose mantra is to allow member properties to maintain their original character (The Confidante is a historic building with a 1950s Art Deco vibe) while enjoying connectivity to the Hyatt resources (think loyalty program, reservations system and marketing strategies). Other Unbound hotels include The Driskill Hotel in Austin, TX, and the Hôtel du Louvre in Paris.

But we digress. The Confidante, says management, has been choreographed so you feel as if you’re staying at a friend’s beach house.

Even if you’re not staying at The Confidante, we recommend swinging by to check out its dining venues. Chef Richard Hales, who’s hot in Miami already, has opened Bird & Bone, and Dale Talde, an alumnus from “Top Chef” has opened Talde Miami Beach. The property is run by JP Oliver, who is also Hyatt’s vice president of lifestyle for the Americas. He’s implementing fun elements to the stay experience, such as a barbecue up near the pool so guests can meander over to see what the chef is cooking up. Also new is “Nina’s House,” a historic bungalow with “an eclectic beach-house vibe inspired by local muse Nina CambiasoConstanza.” Bottom line? You can get light food and fresh juice cocktails here while listening to music from the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s.

Alejandro Rabalo ([email protected]; 305-424-1234, ext. 4035), the hotel’s concierge, says he has covered a bike in rose petals for a guest, set up private beach dining for two, and planned at least five marriage proposals. He’s at the ready to assist with other special requests, as is Berit Naatz ([email protected]com; 786-605-1070), senior transient sales manager. 

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