Kimpton EPIC Miami: The vibe

I'm usually skeptical about anything with "epic" right in the title, but after staying at the Kimpton EPIC in downtown Miami, I can confidently say it deserves the name. On arrival, pulling into the driveway next to brightly coloured Lamborghinis and blacked-out McLarens is enough to send a tingle to your... erm, undercarriage. Did I mention the mega-yachts parked in the waterway next to the hotel? Next time, I'll be arriving by boat.

The lobby at the Kimpton EPIC Miami

Sitting right at the mouth of the Miami River, the Kimpton EPIC offers wonderful water views all around it. Inside, the hotel is sleek and polished with a youthful elegance, drawing crowds of girls' trips and couples of all ages after a little... Miami heat — if you know what I'm saying.

At the front desk, Angel was a total angel who gave us plenty of recommendations and made sure our stay was absolutely perfect. 

Kimpton EPIC Miami: The rooms

Rooms at the Kimpton EPIC are comfortable and spacious. At 475 square feet, they're larger than most Toronto apartments. With natural hues of cream, white and grey, punctuated by the occasional blue accent, the rooms continue the hotel's modern, elegant design. We opted for the water view so we could watch the boats down below from our private balcony. In the bathroom, double sinks mean you never have to share, while a separate rainfall shower and soaker tub let you turn on the romance. 

Kimpton EPIC Miami: The amenities

Set on the 16th floor, surrounded by palm trees and with views of downtown and the waterfront, the Kimpton EPIC'S rooftop pools are what my Miami dreams are made of. The drinks are flowing, served poolside in a coconut, natch. Daybeds are primed for lounging and, for a little extra dough, cabanas offer a perfect slice of private paradise. On weekend afternoons, a live DJ turns out house beats cranked so loud that you have no choice but to join the party. I tried to sequester myself in a corner and read, but I quickly got swept up in the raucous atmosphere, laughing along with the other hotel guests. 

If all the splashing around has you famished, order from Area 31's pool menu, or, if you're willing to change back into regular clothes, head over to the restaurant which shares the same rooftop terrace for a coastal menu with plenty of seafood. 

We had breakfast at Area 31 each morning, digging into dishes like lobster eggs benny slathered in hollandaise and a braised short rib eggs benny. Topped with cotija cheese, pomegranate and plenty of frisée lettuce, the avocado toast was possibly the best one I've ever had — and I am an elder millennial so I've eaten a lot of it. 

On the main floor, izakaya restaurant Zuma serves modern Japanese cuisine in a plush indoor atmosphere or on the lush waterfront terrace surrounded by greenery.

During our visit, the spa was closed but it promises to reopen soon with a new look — sounds like the perfect opportunity to return to the Kimpton EPIC Miami. 

Rooms from $220 per night.

270 Biscayne Blvd Way, Miami;