Ah spring, the time when the world begins to wake from its winter slumber. Longer days and blooming flowers mean iced coffees and bare legs are acceptable again. It’s time to start working on those base tans and getting reacquainted with umbrella-wielding friends with exotic names like Mojito or Mai Tai. But let’s face it, whether you’re wearing Target or Thakoon, it won’t matter if you end up on an overcrowded beach in Cozumel while everyone else is yachting in St. Tropez. Fortunately, the coveted insider city guide series Hg2| A Hedonist’s guide to… has selected the most fashionable places to vacation this season. Follow their lead, and rest assured you will be heading in the right direction. And if that’s not enough, you, our loyal readers can access the guides for free here.
Let’s face it, this Latino-loving party city is always hot—literally. But with the Miami Winter Conference and Ultimate Music Festival both warming things up in March, spring is the prime time to channel your inner DJ groupie and get in on all of the action. With everyone from Ian Schrager to the Mandarin Oriental setting up shop, there’s no shortage of trendy hotels in Miami. By day, many compete for the love of the bikini-clad jet-set, but nowhere holds a party quite like the Shore Club, where the ever-famous Sky Bar continues pumping out beats and serving cocktails throughout the day. If you have the stamina, Space or Nocturnal in Downtown is where European house music is cranked up until sunrise. Be sure to line your stomach beforehand at Meat Market in SoBe, where the selection of eye-candy is as varied as “rich steak butters.” When it comes to actually getting some shut-eye, the Raleigh Hotel, host to this year’s Miami Fashion Week, boasts art deco decor and oozes understated glamour as well as laid-back cool.
You won’t be getting any opportunities to sunbathe in this European capital, but there is no better time to visit the Italian dream city. If you’re there for a romantic rendezvous, shack up in the Hassler Roma Hotel—affordable it is not, but the service is fit for a Roman empress. For foodies, Rome’s abundance of trattorias and osterias will be a treat to discover. A favorite among local and foreign diners alike is Hostaria Costanza, or for those who care less about eating and more about what they wash it down with, wine bars like Enoteca (as if the name didn’t give it away) offer a fantastic selection of Chiantis and Beaujolais. Between all the sightseeing, check out the area around the Centro Storico to find boutiques offering apparel from some of Italy’s best up-and-coming designers.
Since the W hotel chain opened the doors to its first European site last year, all eyes have been on the Spanish beach city. Home to some of the world’s best museums—from the Museo Picasso to the Fundacio Joan Miro—there’s tons more to do beyond just lounging by the beach. By night, an eclectic mix of bars and clubs along Las Ramblas keep the city buzzing. In particular, Boulevard Culture Club plays favorite guilty pleasures perfect for getting down and dirty. When the lights go up, head to the massive Razzmatazz to hear a world-famous DJ. Traditional tapas restaurants like L’Academia café offer an array of mouth-watering Spanish nibbles, or for the more adventurous, Comerc 24 exhibits artistically designed fare, as one would expect from an ex-El Bulli chef.
Your senses will be completely overwhelmed by the smells, colors and variety of transportation methods buzzing around Marrakech. With camels still striding alongside cars, this city has continued to gain new fans over the past few years for its diversity and exotic appeal. Scenesters should stay at the minimal-chic Bab Hotel where they can rub shoulders with the Moroccan elite. Otherwise, multitudes of charming riads offer a more intimate and authentic settings. Gearing up for a great night out always starts at Kosybar, where you can dine on the candlelit roof terrace and sample some decent Moroccan tagines. Pacha is really only one club worth hitting, where you’ll find DJ’s like Tiesto playing alongside resident turntablists. All visitors must also take a stroll in the Medina, where street vendors sell an array of colorful spices, nuts and other fresh local produce.