When you think of Miami you probably picture sunny weather, beautiful beaches, and incredible nightlife. It truly is a destination where you can have fun in the sun all year long, but if you take a moment to soak up your surroundings, there’s rich LGBTQ+ history everywhere you look. Neither of us had been to Miami before so we were really looking forward to exploring what this tropical metropolis has to offer. Enjoy our queer Miami guide of where to stay, what to do, and where to eat, which we hope will inspire you to Get Back Out There when you’re safe and ready to do so.
AxelBeach Miami Hotel
How could we not stay at a hotel that loves to tout itself as “hetero-friendly”? This international hotel chain takes pride in its focus on the LGBTQ+ community and has become a trusted accommodation for queer travelers. After launching almost twenty years ago in Barcelona, the Axel Brand opened its first U.S. location in Miami Beach in October of 2020 mid-pandemic. From the moment you step into the lobby you feel seen and represented plus the staff is incredibly kind and welcoming. The rooms are funky and fun with a Miami flair. After you rest up, head over to the outdoor areas because there is always something going on at the pool and poolside bar. The hotel is in a prime location just minutes from the beach and Ocean Drive. There are certain protocols they have in place to keep their guests safe and healthy as all of us find a way to move forward. Check out AxelBeach Miami for your next trip to Miami!
Will & James take an art deco walking tour of the Miami Beach Boardwalk with Howard Brayer
Miami Design Preservation League Tour with Howard Brayer
You can’t help but notice the beautiful art deco architecture that lines the Miami Beach Boardwalk. We were able to explore the art and history through a walking tour with Howard Brayer, a tour guide and volunteer with the Miami Design Preservation League. The art deco style is a signature for Miami Beach and the preservation efforts were started by a member of the LGBTQ+ community, Leonard Horowitz, alongside an ally, Barbara Capitman. The tour is incredible and you learn so much about each of the iconic structures lining the famous Ocean Drive. From original LGBTQ+ bars and clubs to new hangouts that have popped up over the years, LGBTQ+ people have helped make Miami Beach what it is today.
Love the Everglades Tour with Houston Cypress
Forty-five minutes west of Miami’s famous South Beach is the vast wilderness of the iconic Everglades National Park. It’s 1.5 million acres of swampy wetlands and surprisingly there is much to see and do there. We had the honor of meeting with Houston Cypress, a Two-Spirited member of the Miccosukee Otter Clan and the activist behind Love the Everglades Movement (@love_the_everglades). On our airboat tour, Houston opened up about the importance of water, why it’s sacred, how it unites us, and shared that his mission is to restore the Everglades ecosystem by revitalizing the community’s participation in protecting this sacred land. He was incredibly knowledgeable of the surrounding area and was proud to share the Miccuosukee culture with us while pointing out the beautiful wildlife, especially the alligators that spied on us along the way. If you’re ever in the Everglades, or the Miami area, we highly recommend taking a mini road trip to check out Houston’s tour. Houston is incredible and wants all members of the LGBTQ+ community to experience the Everglades.
Will & James with Houston Cypress, Two-Spirit member of the Miccosukee Otter Clan
Palace Bar & Restaurant – Miami Beach
When we travel, we like to ask locals what they recommend we do. During our Miami trip, we had an overwhelming response to check out The Palace, which for three decades has been home to the number one Drag Show in Miami Beach. This LGBTQ+ hotspot isn’t only known for legendary Drag performances, it also has a fabulous drag brunch that we were able to go to. The queens were legendary and the performances were full force! It was one of our first drag brunches since the pandemic and we definitely kicked it off with a bang! Huge shout out to the incredible staff, crew, and queens of The Palace for putting on a spectacular brunch, we will definitely be back. If you want to go to the brunch, make reservations early because this sells out quickly!
For our first time in Miami, we definitely maximized our time and had a blast. It’s an incredible city with so much to offer any traveler. Add Miami to the top of your list as you plan to Get Back OUT There. Watch the Miami episode of our YouTube series Get Back Out There below: