The Goodtime Hotel – I’m immediately obsessed

You had me at, “Welcome to the library!”

The Goodtime Hotel in Miami Beach is the creation of Pharrell, David Grutman and designer Ken Falk.

And I want to live there.

After just seeing it on Architectural Digest.

And I hate the heat!

Photo of palm trees at dusk, with a pink and purple sky.
Photo by Ethan Robertson on Unsplash

Context Please!

So why am I suddenly blethering on about a Miami Beach hotel on an average Wednesday morning from my desk in Melton Mowbray?

Today didn’t start well. Less than average, I would say. I woke up late. After hitting snooze too many times, I ended up with strange dreams on the way to full consciousness. And my back and arm were absolutely killing me. (For ongoing, boring reasons I won’t bother you with here.)

Luckily, last night me had put my exercise clothes out for this morning me. I’m back on a Yoga with Adriene 30 Day Journey. (‘Breath’, for those interested. Only on Day 3.) Yesterday me’s trickery worked and I was in those jade lycra ‘yoga pants’ and ironic Wonder Woman top before I could talk myself out of it.

Did the yoga thing. Felt much better. Pain reduced, learned new way to breathe. Cool. Also felt a bit like I needed to recover for a minute. And get those magic caffeinated beans in.

Thanks to YouTube’s algorithm, I now know what Architectural Digest’s Open Door series is. And I love it. During my last 30 Day yoga thing, I developed a lovely little habit of watching an episode while having my post-yoga coffee. They’re all about 10 minutes long. And perfect for someone – well I could say ‘with insatiable curiosity’ – but what I really mean is, who’s nosy like me!

Picture it, actually don’t picture it, I’m still in the lycra leggings. Imagine, you’ve had a little boost of positivity, you’ve got your first cup of strong black coffee in your hand (or however you like it!), comfy on the couch and you click on ‘Inside Pharrell and David Gutman’s Goodtime Hotel in Miami Beach’.

And now I’m obsessed.

Why?

Because I could see myself spending a delightful 2 weeks just sitting in the luxurious, pink and pineapple strewn cocoon of a library! It’s so beautiful.

All I know about Miami is learned from 80s Miami Vice (yes, I was also in love with Don Johnson) and CSI Miami (where Horatio’s ‘shades and crab-like movements combo’ interrogation technique is legendary). So, basically nothing apart from there’s crime and it’s very hot.

And I really don’t like hot. I’ve got good celtic blood that’s designed for dreich days, torrential showers and cold. Not hot. And I burn (that’ll be the celtic genes again).

I’ve never once thought, ‘I’d really like to go to Miami’.

Until now. But specifically to The Goodtimes Hotel on Miami Beach.

Colour palette gorgeousness

I was struggling to describe the pastel pink and blue tones involved in the hotel’s décor. They’re what I think of as ‘very Art Deco Miami’. But I don’t know why I think that. So I dived down an interesting internet warren and found…

An article by Virginia Gil for TimeOut, called ‘Art Deco Miami and South Beach’s most beautiful buildings’. In her introduction she says:

“The buildings of South Beach were originally painted white with subtle pastel trim. The candy colors came along in the 80s when interior designer Leonard Horowitz devised a palette of tones to draw attention to the architecture—and away from the squalor.”

So, of course, then I had to find out about Leonard Horowitz…

Discovered the Miami Beach Preservation League website and an archived article called ‘Leonard Horowitz’s Street Naming in 1990’. In it, they talk about how he went to live with his mother on South Beach when his father cut him off for being gay. And how he helped Barbara Baer Capitman found the league in 1976.

Its aim was to “save the beachfront from flashy excess and to highlight its buildings’ unique design features.”

They also quote Horowitz’s explanation of the colour palette he created:

“I formulated my palette on the basis of sunset, sunrise, the summer and winter oceans, and the sand on the beach, which used to be much more golden. They are all natural sources, and they are the same ones the original designers used. Within them are an infinite variety of pastels.”

“An infinite variety of pastels.”

Loving that sentence. And the idea.

Creative collaboration

But it’s not just the beautiful, ‘take me there now’ feeling I loved. Pharrell and David Grutman then introduced the designer, Ken Falk. He was sitting on one of the bar stools, beside the stripy pool, in an impeccable white and blue striped suit. And their interaction just warmed the cockles of my heart.

It was obviously a trusting, creative relationship. Both Pharrell and David Grutman referred to the beginning of the project. Pharrell saying how Ken Falk’s ideas were “so outside of the box”. It was clearly a process. With Ken Falk replying: “We learned to speak the same language. Get inside each other’s heads.”

LOVE THIS!!!

Mr Falk also said how exciting it was to be finished and have it ready to fill with beautiful people – “The good kind. Not just on the outside.”

It made me think of the times when my writing work has required more creative energy. And when I’ve really felt connected to the minds of my clients. True collaboration. The last time was with these amazing humans at Sensui. A feast for the eyes and the soul.

The website has the same colour palette!!!

Of course I checked out their website. Of course I wished I’d been their writer. Of course I loved the pale colours and old timey font.

The goodtime hotel is a collection of experiences linked by a commitment to create emotional good.” That’s the tagline. Heart emoji, heart emoji, heart emoji.

And you’re greeted by one of several tantalizing images, with just the time and temperature in Miami written on top.

I do like how it’s written.

First paragraph on the About Page:

“Welcome to the goodtime hotel, your universal passport to a good time. Located just outside the hustle of South Beach, we’re trading bustle for bliss. We bring you an oasis that’s based on a simple state-of-mind: having a good time.”

And it ends with:

“At goodtime we are fueled by a commitment to creating emotional good. See you soon.”

Aside from the American spelling and lack of capital letters – which are my personal problem – love it all.

Call to action, to email them: ‘Hang with us’.

I also really like, and haven’t really seen elsewhere (not that I’ve been doing a lot of luxury hotel browsing, maybe it’s common now?!) is their accessibility policy in practice. In the booking section, the room descriptions include things like ‘hearing accessible’ and ‘mobility access roll-in shower’ at the start.

I’ll leave you with the description of the library, written in mint green on the palest of pink backgrounds:

“Check out from daily stresses and check in at the library, one of the coolest little nooks at the goodtime. An intimate space prioritized for hotel guests, we encourage you to lounge, read a book, gather with friends or just take a moment to relax. You’ll find cozy seating, light woods, soft palettes and a nod to the neighborhood’s Art Deco spirit. As a calming respite from the party side of Miami, a stop at the library will very much become part of your daily routine. Make yourself at home.”

Watch this immediately. It’s less than 10 minutes long.

What’s your very favourite bit?

See you there!

(In the daytime; I’ll be the one nestled in the library, in floaty white cotton, scribbling into some ridiculously expensive notebook. At night; I’ll be by the pool, in floaty black cotton, sipping a Purple Rain cocktail. Fantasy life complete!)

*Quietly hums ‘Summertime’ (DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince) to self for rest of day*…

Claire McCabe

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