In a town known for luxury and excess, a down to earth spot has become one of the city’s most popular locations, and one of the cheapest.
Hostels can be few and far between in the USA, but Freehand Miami is one of the few hostels available among the high-rise resorts and luxury hotels of Miami, Florida.
Located in the heart of Miami Beach and built-in a charming 1920’s art deco building, Freehand is not a hostel as many backpackers will know them.
Guests are greeted at an art deco check-in desk that could be straight out of a hip Wes Anderson movie, complete with vintage telephones. The check-in is located in a shared chill-out space that is equally as hip. The lounge features Instagram worthy eclectic mid-century decor and crocheted wall hangings. A cold brew station is available during the day for the stylish patrons wandering through in an assortment of Miami chic outfits and beachwear.
But this is Miami, and no one has come here to hang out inside.
It’s the exterior setting of Freehand Miami that draws both travelers and locals to this hotspot. Outside is a stylish patio, framed by palms and tropical plants. Bright beach chairs and couches are assembled around a tiki bar, and in a small side room is a tropical speakeasy – Broken Shaker – a destination in its own right.
No Miami location worth its salted rim would be complete without a pool, which is located just past the tiki bar and patio. The pool area is surrounded by loungers on three sides and an urban kitchen garden on the fourth. Mary’s kitchen garden supplies the kitchen of 27 Restaurant, found on the far side of the outside area.
When you’re done drinking and eating you may be ready for bed, and here’s where Freehand jumps back into typical hostel mode. Rooms are of the fairly basic bunk bed dorm style with some privates available. Although there’s still some art deco charm and stylish touches in the bedrooms, you are getting what you pay for in this area – although what you’re paying isn’t a lot.
Contemporary hostels are catering to a generation of travelers who want a stylish aesthetic at a reasonable price, and Freehand Miami leads the pack with what may just be the coolest hostel in America.