I tend to be a budget traveler so when a friend and I decided to take a cruise out of Miami I thought we would just get some cheap hotel for the night before. He really wanted to stay on South Beach and talked me into booking a room at the Lowes Miami Beach Hotel.
It was so worth it! If I had to do over again I would have stayed here two nights just to enjoy the hotel. Or forget the cruise and just stay here! It is a big, beautiful new hotel. For some this is a downside because it isn't "historic" but I loved it. And the pool is amazing! Take a look at it in Google Earth -- it has all these little lobes and coves and hot tubs. It is amazing. And there is a big lounge area where hotel employees will spritz you with Evian water while you sun bathe.
The room itself was fantastic and the hotel ambiance and service were to die for. And you are right near the ocean and all the South Beach action!
It was expensive, but if you can afford it totally worth it.