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A Little About Miami Beach

Miami Beach FloridaOne of the most popular topics of conversation among the jet-setters, party-hearty and be-hip-or-die crowds that dominate Miami South Beach ('SoBe' to insiders) is the crucial, mercurial determination of which club, bar or restaurant is the hottest at any given time, known as the 'WOW' factor. This is determined by some mysterious analysis that integrates coolest crowds, longest lines, best celebrity sitings, most exclusive V.I.P. lounge, hottest women and fiercest parade of Italian sports cars coming, but not going, on a regular basis. If you want to get a taste of what makes Miami South Beach SoBe, you need to be at the right place at the right time. And while the list changes more frequently than a runway model, here are a few straight-up bosses that put the hip in hype.

As for hottest, sexiest, hippest restaurant/nightclub in which to start your night out, this one is a 'gimme.' Tantra. This place has been heralded downright erotic by its many ardent admirers with a Tantric-inspired Hindu philosophy of conscious love defining its atmosphere, menu and energy. With fresh-cut grass beneath your bare feet, new age music and divine food, this East-meets-West eatery transforms into a hit nightclub as the night wares on. But be forewarned, by the time you finish your main course, you won't know whether to order the ''black chocolate goddess'' cake or smoke a cigarette. With live bands, private rooms, intimate dance areas and luscious lounges, this place is nearly too hot to be cool.

Another hot restaurant that doubles as a nightclub is B.E.D., which stands for Beverages, Entertainment and Dining, in case you were imagining something naughtier. A vision in Diaphanous white, with floor to floor beds drowning in down comforters and pillows and white-flickering candles shimmering through ethereal mosquito netting, the food has also received great reviews for its spare and subtle elegance and masterful presentation. With new music and serenity always high on the agenda, this is another great place to chill out with a partner or intimate friends for an evening of fashionable insouciance.

miami beach information Ready to drink and dance until dawn? Club Deep has been a popular hot spot since it opened in Novemer of 1997, with its main claim to fame a 2000-gallon aquarium tank that serves as a fishy dance floor. Tending to attract a somewhat older, professional crowd, Club Deep does not believe in long lines and shuns exclusivity to the 9th degree. On the opposite side of the spectrum is Shore Club. Sitting in the lobby of a prestigious Art Deco hotel by the same name, Shore continues to be a favorite among supermodels, stars and glitterati, with many a young girl willing to give her right arm (or some other body part) for the chance to get into its exclusive V.I.P. lounge. And for the somewhat younger crowd, Level is a consistent top choice, offering multiple dance floors, great music and hot bars oozing with beautiful girls in (very) little black dresses.

But the new kid on the block seems to be fashion-forward Rumi. Graced by celebrities like Grace Jones, Pink and Lenny Kravitz, the music ranges from club dance to techno-trance and the V.I.P. room is so private that Hugh Hefner would have trouble getting in. This one screams WOW, and is the place to go when you really want to see and be seen. But no matter where the party leads, the streets, clubs, bars and lounges of Miami South Beach are guaranteed to show you a dangerously good time. Just remember to party safely and leave your car behind.

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