A stand-alone hotel often poses a problem for destination weddings: How are you going to mix it up enough to keep people excited and thrilled all weekend? That rooftop pool, stunning as it is, gets a little stale after you’ve used it as your venue for welcome cocktails, a girls-only lunch, pre-wedding cocktails, and the ceremony.
So we were surprised and delighted to learn that The James Royal Palm, in South Beach, offers seven—yes, seven—places to stage your shindigs. Built in 1939, the hotel has strong Art Deco bones but an even stronger dose of 2014 Miami sleekness.
Let us count the sites:
1. Great Room. With floor-to-ceiling windows and direct access to the outdoor Breezeway, there’s plenty of natural light (your photographer will thank you). If you’re inviting a good portion of your hometown, this is the spot for the reception: it can hold up to 300 guests for a reception style event and 170 guests for a seated dinner.
2. Breezeway. Private cabanas + lounges + palm trees = coolness. See how a feasting table (above) works beautifully in the space. It can accommodate 300 guests for a reception and 150 people for a seated dinner.
3. South Shore. If a rum bar sounds a little too edgy for the wedding itself, consider this private spot for a bachelor or bachelorette party. (Ooh, after party!)
4. The Lawn. With oversize topiary furniture and verdancy aplenty, this is an eye-popping spot for a small (75 peeps) reception.
5. Pool Deck. It’s the go-to setting for a South Beach setting, and the second-floor pool deck delivers decadence along with its Deco vibe.
6. The Studio. Massive windows let the light flood in; the view of lawn and palms inspires; if you’re looking for a rehearsal dinner spot, this could be your place.
7. The Den. Like things cozy? With a luxe, contemp design, 40 of your besties are going to be treated to the best.