The Betsy – South Beach
What We Love
- At the quieter end of Ocean Drive, facing the beach
- Chic and cozy rooftop bar and lounge area with ocean views
- Preppy-chic rooms with plantation shutters and dark wood floors
- Live jazz on Wednesday and Thursday nights; sunrise yoga every Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday (included in the resort fee)
What To Know
- A resort fee of $20 per night will be collected upon check out from Jetsetter
- Valet parking only (available for $43 per night)
- B-Bar is only available for private events
- READ MORE: Find your perfect Miami vacation?
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
You can immediately tell the Betsy is different: Situated at the quieter end of Ocean Drive in South Beach, the white building has a Georgian facade and a sweeping front porch that look like something from the oak-shrouded Deep South rather than sexed-up South Beach. Formerly the Betsy Ross, the property dates back to 1942. When it reopened as the Betsy in 2009, the new decor was strikingly different. The colonial-style fans hang from the lobby’s coffered ceilings pay homage to tradition, while safari-inspired touches (wooden carvings from Africa, mirrors fringed in zebra prints) pair with natural fiber area rugs to add some whimsy to the equation.
Bed & Bath
The hotel’s 61 rooms are not overly spacious, but they’re full of style and comfort. The contrast of dark hardwood floors and white lacquered furnishings creates a clean, calming vibe, while raffia-covered ceilings and four-poster beds decked with lush Sferra linens add romance. Plasma TVs and a tricked-out entertainment system with movies and music on demand head the list of standard techno touches.
The hotel has a gym and a small courtyard pool fringed by tropical foliage. If swimming’s not on your agenda but you still want to lounge in the sun, the Betsy’s rooftop lounge area, the Deck, is a great place to kick back. It’s kitted out with plush chaise longues and nooks for curling up with a cocktail or a book. Retractable sails add a somewhat clubby vibe at night, making it a good place for a pre-dinner cocktail.
In the Area
Cross the bridge to the mainland and Wynwood for authentic greasy spoon Cuban fare at Enriqueta’s or grab a café con leche from the takeout window out front. For a more natural take on South Beach’s hotel-backed scenery, grab a taxi and head for Key Biscayne National Park, where the beach is fringed with seagrapes and dunes. Ask the staff at The Betsy to provide you with a picnic basket for your day at the beach filled with snacks, wine, cheese, magazines and water. Hailed as one of the architect’s best new designs in years, the New World Center is home to the New World Symphony. Time your visit for one of the Wallcasts, and you can sit in a park outside as a concert is projected on the building’s wall.
How to Get There
We last stayed at The betsy a few years ago during the Miami boat show. We thought is was nice and well located for our needs. We did not use the facilities or the beach that stay.
We stayed again for one night this week. The cons outweighed the +.
Cons The AC in our 2nd floor room was poorly designed. It blew frigid air right onto the bed. If you turned it off the room got hot very quickly. So all night you either froze or sweated. The hallways appeared not to be air conditioned well if at all.
The valet parking was a complete ripoff.
We were told that beach chairs and towels were complimentary. So they are but if you want to stay out of the brutal sun the umbrella is $20. You've got to be kidding me.
The hotel lobby is small but pretty. The lobby elevator is tiny. Fortunately we were only on the 2nd floor so we walked.
The one ice machine, located inconveniently in the basement, was broken.
Will stay somewhere else next visit.
I will recommend this hotel to anyone - location is the best and is on the strip and the rooms are spacious and gorgeous and the staff are most obliging from the time we checked in and until we left. Free Champagne was a great welcome and opera singers to serenade us all evening. The roof top pool is fabulous too and the hotel is a very short walk to the beach, with Starbucks just opposite the hotel which is very convenient
I want to begin my review saying that as a photographer I was invited to the "Artist in Residence" program actually called "The Writer's Room"... and it was an a w e s o m e experience!!!
From the moment I entered, I felt like I was at home. Fritz and the people on the door, Mario and the lady in the front desk and Jean gave me a warm welcome. (I'm sorry I can't remember all the names, but you know who you are :D )
As an artist I found myself in an ideal environment for creation: beautiful photographs and paintings in almost every wall of the property, a careful selection of the music that you can listen while walking through the hallways, live music every night, cultural activities, exquisite seafood and italian couisin, delicious gelattos, and a great coffe. I specially loved the fact that everyone in the hotel looked happy doing their job, smiling, and taking a very good care of every need I had.
Every thursday at 5:00 pm the guests can join the "Meet The Artist" reception, a relaxed conversation between guests and the artists in residence, with Jean as the moderator. At the time there were two artists: Octavia Yearwood and me.
I stayed in a very nice room in the Colonial Wing, comfortable and quiet. Room service was quick and the cleaning lady was careful with my photography equipment.
A two minute walk and I was enjoying one of the most beautiful beaches in South Beach where Remy, Alonso and Karen, the beach attendants from the hotel were ready to provide chairs, towels, umbrellas, and drinks.
I'm a beach person but I really enjoyed the rooftop pool.
Betsy and Katie are the CEO's (Canine Executive Officers) of the Betsy, Zach took me to the beach for a walk with them so I could take pictures. Also Eric took his four legged friend Nelly for a mini photo session.
It's important to mention that The Betsy Hotel is artist-friendly and dog-friendly as well. I had a great time taking casual pictures of some guests' dogs in the bar, and after that a lot of people gathered with their dogs talking about dogs, creating a very enthusiastic moment while at the same time Mike Gerber was playing the piano.
Their philosophy says it all: Expect no more, this is happiness.
This place has the best marketing firm. Great online photos and awards. It’s all a faux pas. From the spa that does not exist - there are massage beds outside and they call an outside agency that doesn’t answer the phone to come in, to a cramped gym, to pools with run down furniture that 50% of the view is not anything you want to look at to bad service including not servicing the room when you ask for a specific time and constant door slamming from their workers, its just not what your would ever expect from an award winning hotel. I would recommend either spending more on a better hotel or spending less so you are not as annoyed when you come here.
We decided to take a couple of days out at the end of our cruise rather than fly straight back home. We had seen the Betsy on a previous trip to the Art Deco area and decided then that this was the hotel for us.
Its decorated in the colonial style, well the part of the hotel that faces the sea is, there is an annex facing the street behind connected to the original hotel by a bridge, that seems to be in a more modern style. The Betsy is intriguing, many small corridors twisting corridors, unexpected lifts and stairs. A roof top pool as well as the original ground floor pool. Our room was a double facing the sea, spotlessly clean and amazingly comfortable. Once the door was closed we had almost total quiet even though we were close to the road. Its not a cheap or so called value hotel, but its position and the quality means you get what you pay for. I notice prices are rising and vacancies are hard to find so they must continue to be getting things right.