For the second year in a row, a luxury hotel in Surfside was named one of the best hotels in the world.
In its 2023 Readers’ Choice Awards, Condé Nast Traveler voters chose the Four Seasons at The Surf Club as one of the top 100 hotels in the world. The glamorous hotel, which was ranked no. 28, was also chosen as the best hotel in Florida not including Miami (Miami being Miami, it has its own category).
The Four Seasons, which opened in 1959, was known for its famous guests. “Over the years, guests here have included Elizabeth Taylor, Wallis Simpson, and the Shah of Iran. Winston Churchill used to rent two cabanas, one to paint in and one ‘for naps’ (and drinks, as during Prohibition spirits were served illegally here),” the magazine reports, going on to praise the Mediterranean-style roof, cabanas, the spa and the restaurants on The Surf Club property, including Thomas Keller’s Michelin-starred The Surf Club.
The hotel also earned a Forbes Five-Star Award in 2023 and was named best resort in the Greater Miami Beach area in Travel + Leisure’s World Best Awards for 2023.
Only one other Florida hotel made the list: The Pearl Hotel in Rosemary Beach in the Florida Panhandle. The best hotel in the world, according to voters, is the Colony Palms Hotel in Palm Springs, California.
Candidates for the Readers Choice Awards, which readers submit online, are judged on criteria relevant to their category on a five-point scale (excellent, very good, good, fair, poor) that’s converted to a percentage: The average of these ratings determines the final score.
Here are some of the other local spots featured in different categories in the 2023 awards:
Best destination spa resorts in the United States
Only one Florida destination spa resort made Condé Nast Traveler’s list: the Carillon Miami Wellness Resort in Miami Beach, a Forbes Four-Star resort with a Four-Star spa. The resort is also home to the elegant restaurant The Tambourine Room by Tristan Brandt, which earned a Michelin star in 2023.
Top hotels in the Florida Keys
The Marker Harbor Resort in Key West was ranked the best spot in the Florida Keys.
The rest of the top 10 list is as follows: Playa Largo Resort & Spa, Autograph Collection in Key Largo; Southernmost Beach Resort in Key West; Baker’s Cay Resort Key Largo Curio Collection by Hilton in Key Largo; Bungalows Key Largo; Little Palm Island Resort & Spa, which earlier this year was named the best resort in Florida by Travel + Leisure readers; Ocean Key Resort & Spa in Key West; Cheeca Lodge & Spa in Islamorada; Isla Bella Beach Resort in Marathon; and Tranquility Bay Beachfront Resort in Marathon.
Top hotels in Miami
Condé Nast Traveler readers voted Faena Hotel Miami Beach their favorite Miami hotel (remember, Four Seasons at the Surf Club was the top Florida hotel not considering Miami. Miami Beach isn’t Miami, either, but voters figured “Close enough.”
The rest of the top 10, in order: Eden Roc Miami Beach; Nobu Hotel Miami Beach; The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne; The Ritz-Carlton South Beach; The Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove; 1 Hotel South Beach; The Setai Miami Beach; Mayfair House Hotel & Garden in Coconut Grove; and Mandarin Oriental Miami.
Best resorts in the world
No Miami-Dade properties made the best 100 resorts in the world list, but two Palm Beach properties did: Four Seasons Resort in Palm Beach (20) and Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa in Manalapan (44).
Two other Florida spots made the cut as well: the JW Marriott Orlando (12) and the Ritz-Carlton Orlando (30).