We all saw the startling images and videos of Hurricane Irma slamming South Florida, leaving mayhem and destruction in its wake. Now, with clear skies and nonstop cleanup efforts, Miami Beach is getting back into the swing of things.
According to the Miami Beach Visitor and Convention Authority, the barrier island is welcoming tourists again, thanks to the reopening of popular hotels, restaurants and attractions.
Read on to find out where to go and what to do now that Miami Beach is reprising its well-deserved role as one of the country's most coveted beach destinations.
What to do
First things first — make a stop at the Art Deco Welcome Center on Ocean Drive, where free brochures, magazines and flyers will familiarize you with the city and its attractions. Or take an architecture, cocktail or Little Havana culture tour from Art Deco Tours, which have resumed operations post-Irma.
Effusion Gallery on Ocean Drive and the Bass Museum of Art on Collins Ave are both open and ready to welcome art-loving visitors.
Moviegoers can catch a flick at the Regal Cinemas at the western edge of the Lincoln Road Mall, an open-air collection of shops and restaurants.
Monday nights are usually quiet nights, but not at Drinkhouse Fire and Ice Bar, which hosts bachata and salsa dancing starting at 8 pm. Rather watch than participate? Head to Mango's Tropical Cafe for their nightly high-energy Latin dance show, now back to its normal schedule.
Miami Spa Month, back as part of a new #MiamiNow promotion from the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau, is offering treatments at 25 areas spas for the $109 to $199 price range. Book reservations through October 31, 2017.
And most importantly, visitors can swim to their hearts' content — all swimming advisories for Miami-Dade county have been lifted as of Sept. 16, 2017. The beach at Lummus Park is the closest to the strip of hotels and restaurants on Ocean Drive in South Beach. Go north along the boardwalk to find quieter spaces.
Where to eat
Located on Ocean Drive, LT Steak & Seafood in the Betsy Hotel is back to serving up its three-course lunch and dinner prix fixe menus, while Prime 112 in Brown's Hotel offers prime steaks, seafood, sandwiches and salads in its own signature style.
Head to the Fontainebleau on Collins Ave to try Hakkasan's Cantonese cuisine and cocktails, or walk on the wild side with Japanese-Peruvian fusion at Nobu, located just next door at the Eden Roc.
An elegant, 60s-inspired dining room promises a memorable dining experience at Dolce Italian, with tempting creations such as risotto alla parmigiana and Maine lobster ravioli.
Dig in to hot chicken and waffles or shrimp and sea island heirloom grits at Bird and Bone, whose farmhouse theme manages to blend seamlessly with Miami Beach's tropical vibes.
Yardbird Southern Table and Bar, Icebox Cafe, Spris, Carrot Express and Halves and Wholes are all open and ready to host hungry visitors as well.
Want more options? More than 200 area restaurants are participating in the newly extended Miami Spice Restaurant Month, which features reduced prices on lunches and brunches ($23 per person) and dinners ($39 per person).
Where to stay
Many hotels in Miami Beach have resumed business, with only a few suffering major damage. Here's the list of open hotels provided by the Miami Beach Visitors and Convention Authority:
Dream South Beach, 1111 Collins Avenue
Delano, 1685 Collins Avenue
SLS South Beach, 1701 Collins Avenue
The Betsy Hotel, 1440 Ocean Drive
The Setai, Miami Beach, 2001 Collins Avenue
Soho Beach House, 4385 Collins Avenue
Fontainebleau Miami Beach, 4441 Collins Avenue
Loews Miami Beach Hotel, 1601 Collins Avenue
Freehand Miami, 2727 Indian Creek Drive
Gale South Beach, 1690 Collins Avenue
Shelborne South Beach, 1801 Collins Avenue
The Redbury, 1776 Collins Avenue
The Confidante Miami Beach, 4041 Collins Avenue
Additionally, BeachDeals confirmed that most hotels along Ocean Drive in South Beach were open and accepting new reservations:
Bentley Hotel, 510 Ocean Drive
Fritz Hotel, 524 Ocean Drive
Majestic Hotel South Beach, 660 Ocean Drive
Avalon Hotel, 700 Ocean Drive
Colony Hotel, 736 Ocean Drive
Boulevard Hotel, 740 Ocean Drive
Starlite Hotel, 750 Ocean Drive
Casa Grande Suite Hotel, 834 Ocean Drive
Breakwater South Beach, 940 Ocean Drive
Congress Hotel South Beach, 1052 Ocean Drive
The Villa Casa Casuarina, 1116 Ocean Drive
Hotel Victor, 1144 Ocean Drive
Hotel Ocean, 1230 Ocean Drive
Cavalier Hotel, 1320 Ocean Drive
Winter Haven, 1400 Ocean Drive
Penguin Hotel, 1418 Ocean Drive
Crescent Resort, 1420 Ocean Drive