A step-by-step guide to getting the most of nightlife in Miami and Miami Beach

Posted October 29, 2014


Miami’s nightlife scene is one of the best in the world. It’s tropical climate, late-night partying and large Spanish influence—yes, this is the ideal destination for those looking for a weekend away full of glitz and glamour.

For first timers, it can be a bit intimidating. The 305’s flashy exterior is embellished by extreme beauty and wealth, boosted by celebrities, and organized by the guest list and red rope.

“We can provide a more appealing and unique experience in nightlife than any other operator in the state and probably the nation to be absolutely honest,” said Lyndon Johnson, the VIP interior director of the two most famous nightclubs in Miami, LIV and Story.


DJ Alesso performing for a wild crowd at STORY Nightclub.

He described being number one in the nightlife industry as first and foremost their relentless pursuit of perfection, and also their unwavering attention to every detail that is immediately noticed by patrons.

Nonetheless, the options are endless when entering the Miami social arena. If you don’t have the money and connections, it’s not the end of the world (or your weekend for that matter).

“Quite frankly, Miami is one of the best cities for socializing and going out at night, regardless of where and what you want to do,” added Johnson.

Miami is fully equipped with hipster bars and the best salsa clubs one could ever wish for. Navigating the overwhelming amount of options is far easier than it seems. Simply start by asking yourself: what am I looking for? If the answer is the rich and the famous, make way to South Beach. For a more unpretentious atmosphere of good music, dancing and bars, head to Wynwood.

Miami continues to entertain guests and locals alike with its lively, vibrant, and ever-changing nightlife scene. As flocks of party-goers seek out the hottest parties of the evening, the nightclubs compete for the top spot in the club hierarchy. It could be a spot’s “night” one night and another the next.


Swanky Tunes performing their grande finale at LIV Miami.

Johnson’s two clubs consistently remain at the top of the list. So why would he direct visitors to LIV and Story?

“Our service, production and programming are unparalleled in Miami and rivals anyone in Las Vegas, New York or Los Angeles,” said Johnson. “We make sure every customer leaves happy, that’s our creed!”

With Miami’s continued growth as a city in general, more business owners see the 305 as the next venture in their nightlife portfolio. Each month new and upcoming places launch into Miami’s nightlife abyss; some withstand the critics while others crash and burn. We offer a detailed guide on the places worthy of making an appearance:


Mokai Mondays: Located in Mid-Beach. For a more risky atmosphere, this high-scale Asian inspired Monday night hotspot is geared toward the ladies.


Favela Beach @ The Wall Lounge: Located in Miami Beach. Don’t be fooled by the small size of the club, it gets bigger than most places in Miami. This is one of the spots most destined for celeb appearances and a more sophisticated crowd.

Slap & Tickle @ Bardot: Located in Mid-Town Miami. Finally not a traditional nightclub option! Bardot is dark bar/club filled with couches and a pool table, underground DJ’s and a total hipster population.

“Places like Bardot really bring out the artsy side of this city through the types of people, atmosphere and music. Miami has insane nightlife, but we also have insane art life. Today, younger people want it all to mesh together,” said Miami local Khaled Sharbatly.


My Boyfriend is Out of Town @ Baoli: Located in Miami Beach. If you’re looking to feel like you’re in Canne while in Miami, this is the place. It is what some like to describe as a “party” restaurant, where almost everyone stays way past dinnertime. The people aren’t so shabby either. Find the most beautiful girl inside and what does she say?

“This is one of my favorite places to have fun in a fashionable and glamorous way! I love that I can enjoy this atmosphere and food at the same time,” said Esmeralda Rodriguez.

Basement on Wednesday @ The Edition: Located in Miami Beach. Completely reminiscent of Studio 54, the Basement is undoubtedly one of the coolest new spots to open. Looking to club, bowl or ice skate? The basement connects them all.

While Raeef Kabbani was enjoying his night in the bowling alley with friends he shared, “I choose to go to hotels here, even as local. I love the atmosphere and that you’re able to actually have conversation with friends. The basement does a perfect job of mixing all these cool different activities.”


Bodega Taqueria y Tequila: Located in Miami Beach. Embrace the Hispanic flair of the city while mixing in some serious retro flair. Bodega is best known for its renowned Mexican tacos set inside of a passé taco stand. Most are unaware of the underground speakeasy positioned directly inside, filled with trendy people and sing-able music.


STORY: Located in Miami Beach. Looking to rave Miami style? This is the place to do so. This mega-club is known for hosting the world’s best house DJs.


LIV @ The Fontainebleau: Located in Miami Beach. This nightclub is the Mecca of them all, the Holy Grail if you will. It is the ultimate place to see big name DJs and celebrities, but be prepared for a very strict entrance situation and high price tags.


Seaspice: Located in Midtown Miami. This waterfront brasserie can be an ideal selection for either Sunday brunch or an afternoon of drinking. Plenty of docking space for boats.

“I’m able to enjoy the beautiful Miami weather on the River and pair it with delicious food and drinks, all whilst partying to fun music. What’s better?” said Katherin Schultz while enjoying her afternoon at Seaspice.

The Plus Places

El Tucán: Located in Brickell. This throwback spot takes fun dining to a new place. The Latin cabaret offers two shows per night running Thursday through Saturday. Make sure to dress sharp and be ready to dance.

E11EVEN: Located Downtown. Eventually this is the spot where all Miami partygoers end up. Not solely because it’s open 24/7, but because of the food, rooftop bar and extremely scandalous dancers.

If You Go

Mokai Lounge
235 23rd St., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139

Wall Lounge
2210 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139

3456 N Miami Ave., Miami, Fla. 33127

Bâoli Miami
1906 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139

Basement Miami
2901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, Fla. 33140

Bodega Taqueria y Tequila
1220 16th St., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139


STORY Nightclub
136 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, Fla. 33139

4441 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, Fla. 33140

422 NW North River Dr., Miami, Fla. 33128

El Tucan
1111 SW 1st Ave., Miami, Fla. 33130

29 NE 11th St., Miami, Fla. 33130