With its combination of weather, trendy clubs, beautiful people, and celebrities, South Beach is a beacon inviting tourists worldwide to partake in the festivities. Understandably, most tourists want the full South Beach experience when visiting and partying. That usually means going to marquee clubs like STORY, Liv, and Mansion. That isn’t quite the case for people living in the area, though. So, where do the locals go in South Beach? We’ll show you.
Basement is the best club you’ve never heard of if you’re a tourist, but a venue locals flock to in masse. Basement is inconspicuously located below The Edition Hotel on 29th and Collins Avenue. So, in a literal sense, it is a basement. But don’t let the name and location fool you. This Basement stacks up to any of South Beach’s world-renowned clubs with its combination of posh, upscale aesthetic, music and varied experience. But it comes without the world-famous club price tag since Basement is free before midnight and just $20 afterward.
Guests spill into a hallway lined with couches, digital photo booths, a bar and a pool table. It almost looks and feels like stepping into a trendy lounge. From here, you have the option of stepping into Basement’s main room, which features more couches, tables and a dance floor as well as a fully-stocked bar and bottle service upon request.
Another option is the bar tucked in the back corner of Basement. It’s easy to miss, but a must-visit. Again, the experience and feel immediately changes when you step in. This bar offers a wider variety of beer options and is a touch more relaxed than the club atmosphere in the main room.
But that’s not all. If you get to Basement early enough, it also has a bowling alley and skating rink. These amenities are located near the sidebar, and offer lighthearted, wholesome options before dancing the night away with some cold drinks.
Foxhole is another bar that is inconspicuously located but is a staple for locals. Foxhole is a speakeasy bar inspired by the prohibition era of generations past. Its name is a reference to that, and that also means the entrance is on the side of the building in an alley. You would never guess there’s a door there at all, much less an entrance to a two-level bar. Once inside, you’ll step into a fun balance of sports bar and nightclub. There are pool tables in the initial section, but if you venture a bit further, there’s a fully-stocked bar. If midweek unwinding is more your mood or you just like starting early, Foxhole hosts happy hour every day between 5 pm and 9 pm—making the bar the place to be.
There is a bit more to experience, though. Upstairs, you’ll find a lounge with a bar and a bit of room for a dance floor. Oh, and there’s no cover. If you’re ever wondering, “Where do the locals go in South Beach?” Foxhole is among your best options.
Bodega is one of the more aptly named venues commonly frequented by locals. Bodegas are known as quaint neighborhood shops that sell essentials such as rice, beans, and more. The name is fitting because Bodega is offering some of the best tacos you’ll find in South Beach. It’s a local staple for lunches and early dinners. Once you step inside, you’ll enter a room lined with tables and chairs and a taco truck cemented into the wall. Yes, a food truck. The food truck is where you’ll place your order for the aforementioned best tacos in the city.
But tacos aren’t the only reason to visit Bodega. The food truck may be a lunch staple, but hidden just behind the door of an unassuming porta-potty is where the fun really happens. While Bodega’s exterior may seem like a hole-in-the-wall, the interior—once you venture past an awkwardly placed urinal—you’ll discover one of South Beach’s best happy hour and late-night lounges. Bodega’s back room is dimly lit and industrial-era inspired. Another speakeasy bar, there’s also no cover here. However, most locals are aware that Bodega’s lounge is a bit cozy, and the line often stretches outside if you arrive late on weekends. So, be sure to get there early if you plan on visiting on Friday or Saturday.
Purdy Lounge opened its doors more than a decade ago and has remained a fixture in South Beach ever since. Purdy Lounge is a bit removed from most of the action and hot spots South Beach offers. Unlike the previously mentioned establishments, Purdy Lounge is purely a party locale. For many locals, Purdy Lounge is the default destination when you want a guaranteed good time.
Purdy Lounge is part dive bar, part lounge, part nightclub. It features a fully stocked bar, dance floor and, after recent renovations, boasts a Miami chic bar vibe upon entering, the first of its two rooms. The first room has its own DJs spinning a wide variety of musical selections depending on the night. The second room, located in the back, is where you get the taste of dive bar. It features its own DJ, another fully-stocked bar and a smaller dance floor.
Whether you live in Miami or you’re on vacation, the answer to the question “Where do the locals go to South Beach”? may be the best way to make the most of your nights. And these four establishments are the best answers to that question.