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More to Miami than tanning on the beach

With exciting events to attend and fancy, new hotels to check out, Miami’s great for a relaxing, fun vacation.

1 Admire the architecture

You can take in the splendid Art Deco architecture at a relaxed pace with a stroll down Ocean Drive and Washington Avenue, stopping off for a cocktail on a terrace of one of the stunning 1920s and 1930s hotels as you go. For better insight into the history of this colorful architecture, join one of the daily tours organized by the Art Deco District Welcome Center (www.mdpl.org).

2 Pose by a pool or check out a festival

Slip on your bikini and sip cocktails by the pool during the day, or get dressed up and party into the wee hours with Miami’s most gorgeous at the palm-fringed rooftop pool bar, Plunge, at the Gansevoort Miami Beach hotel on Collins Avenue (www.gansevoortmiamibeach.com). There always seems to be a an exciting event going on in Miami, whatever time of year‚ from the annual Art Basel Miami Beach in December to the Miami Winter Music Conference, which showcases new DJs and dance acts.

3 Go shopping

There are plenty of shopping opportunities for fashionistas here. You’ll find designer boutiques one block from the beach along Collins Avenue including Armani, Guess, Tommy Hilfiger and Intermix. There’s more fashion on Washington Avenue and at the Lincoln Road Mall at 16th Street for quirky home and vintage stores.

4 Sip on a cocktail

There are plenty of fabulous bars for sundown cocktails on South Beach, from the new W Hotel (www.wsouthbeach.com) through to classics like the Delano (www.delano-hotel.com). But for a great sunset view, you’ll need to be on the west side of the strip: Hit the Mondrian where you can watch the sun set over mainland Miami from its glamorous “indoor-outdoor” Sunset Lounge, designed by world-famous designer Marcel Wanders (www.mondrian-miami.com).

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