Looks matter in Miami. So when developer David Edelstein created the W South Beach, which opened in July on Collins Avenue, on the edge of the Art Deco District, he knew he had to assemble a team of aesthetic stars. Ultimately he commissioned six designers and artists to contribute to the project, asking them to work on its gardens, guest rooms, public spaces, and art collection. Here’s our “look” at the names behind the walls of the new 20-story tower.
Melding the W Hotel’s urbanity with their own streamlined design approach, duo George Yabu and Glenn Pushelberg of Yabu Pushelberg produced spaces that whisper rather than bellow with steel-gray velvet, black lacquer, and chrome fixtures. Each of the 312 guest rooms—the smallest is 574 square feet—has a glass balcony and floor-to-ceiling windows. “It’s like you’re in your own version of Philip Johnson’s Glass House,” says Edelstein. Details like croc-embossed leather armchairs, pony-hair rugs, and gray-and-black Cippolino Italian marble reflect Yabu Pushelberg’s signature interplay of textures.
Once a member of the W’s in-house team, Anna Busta launched her own company, Studio B Design, in 2005. For the hotel’s outdoor Grove, the Mediterranean-inflected Soleá restaurant, and the sleek book-matched marble and bronze-screened lobby, she played with materials and depth, mixing haute furniture from the likes of B&B Italia and Cappellini with flea market finds, her own custom pieces, and discoveries from the Miami Design District. Busta describes the eclectic result as “contemporary with a French bohemian flair.”
Architect Costas Kondylis and his team took cues from the rigorous geometric patterns of Piet Mondrian’s paintings. The outcome is a glass-and-white-stucco exterior, with each room angled for unobstructed ocean views.
Husband-and-wife team Michael and Eva Chow opened their fifth outpost of Mr Chow in August. The sleek 312-seat restaurant includes an outdoor patio that Eva designed with seven cabanas that seat up to 12 people for private dinners or cocktails.
The South of France served as the inspiration for artist and landscape designer Paula Hayes’s take on the hotel’s alfresco Grove. Hayes used native South Florida plants like sea grape trees and swamp lily to form what she calls “a vividly green nest,” where guests order cocktails (pineapple-infused rum and red pepper–soaked cachaça) and snacks (ahi tuna mini tacos, Kobe burgers).
Rock-and-roll photographer Danny Clinch, whose images of Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, and the like have appeared in Rolling Stone, opened up his archive to Edelstein, who selected about 20 photos—a mix of black-and-white and color images—that are hung throughout the public spaces and guest rooms.
From $540 for a standard room. At 2201 Collins Ave.; 305-938-3000; whotels.com.