If you love warm weather, Miami is one of the best places in the world to enjoy the magic of Christmas. With the sun shining and average temperatures in the upper 70s, the Magic City in winter turns into a playground of special parties, retail sales, and cultural events.
To make time for all of those activities, avoid the hard work of preparing a holiday feast. Instead, kick back with loved ones at one of Miami’s restaurants open on Christmas, Wednesday, December 25, so you can fully enjoy the day.
Whether you want a festive buffet, a holiday-inspired à la carte meal, or anything in between, check the following lineup for the top options in town. Prices listed do not include tax and tap, and reservations are strongly suggested.
The bar at Ariete.
Photo by Charlie Garcia
Christmas Day, chef Michael Beltran will offer a specially curated family-style menu of Chinese favorites with a twist. The feast will include egg drop soup; honey chicken with Native Guy honey sauce; General Tso’s chicken with Thai chili and broccoli; and fried rice with carrot and cabbage kimchee, served with Duke’s spicy mayo. For dessert, enjoy Thai doughnuts and Cuban fortune cookies. Ariete’s signature dishes — short rib, wood-grilled chicken, seasonal fish, and flan — will be available à la carte. Cost is $55 per person. Served from 4 to 10 p.m.
AQ’s dining room
Photo courtesy of AQ Chop House by Il Mulino
AQ by Il Mulino in the Aqualina Resort will offer an all-you-can-eat brunch buffet Christmas Day. Enjoy a jolly spread of carved meats and fish, sushi and seafood, a homemade pasta station, made-to-order omelets, and a dessert station. Guests can sip unlimited mimosas, bloody marys, mojitos, and prosecco. Cost is $100 per person and $45 for children under 12. Served from noon to 4 p.m.
Photo courtesy of Cecconi’s
4385 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
cecconismiamibeach.com In the courtyard of Soho Beach House, this Italian eatery will help you get into the holiday spirit with a brunch buffet and live music. Start your meal with a complimentary bellini, mimosa, or glass of prosecco or white wine before moving on to breakfast favorites and pizza, pasta, and seafood and raw bar options. Special cuts of meat and salmon will be served at the carving station, and a table of sweets will hold cakes, cookies, and favorites such as tres leches and holiday pies. Cost is $75 per person. Served from noon to 3 p.m.
Cvltura Kitchen & Lounge
Cvltura Kitchen & Lounge
Cvltura Kitchen & Lounge
1100 Biscayne Blvd., Miami
Head to Cvltura Kitchen & Lounge on Christmas for a three-course menu of Latin-Mediterranean dishes. The special holiday meal will include some of the eatery’s signature items, such as hamachi ceviche, Christmas ham with pork belly, and carved turkey. The downtown Miami restaurant will also treat guests to gingerbread key lime pie and the traditional French holiday dessert chocolate bûche de noël caramel. Cost is $55 per person. Menu served from 3 to 9 p.m.
Pasta and clams at Donna Mare.
Courtesy of Donna Mare
Celebrate Christmas Day in the Cadillac Hotel & Beach Club with a menu of Italian holiday favorites. For starters, there will jumbo lump crab cakes, and panzanella Toscana, to follow with a main course of cannelloni or dorade. For a sweet ending, enjoy Neapolitan baba, Southern Italy’s most popular cake made with a buttery, yeast-based dough, and soaked with liquor. Cost is $49 for adults and $19 for children. Dinner served from 6:30 to 11 p.m.
Outdoor dining at Essensia
Essensia at the Palms Hotel & Spa
3025 Collins Ave., Miami
At the Palms Hotel & Spa, Essensia’s Christmas Day buffet dinner will showcase the hotel’s farm-to-table philosophy with a focus on premium local and sustainable ingredients. Take a seat at the outdoor patio and enjoy highlights of winter harvest salad; mango glazed ham; rosemary and lavender-scented leg of lamb; green bean casserole; roasted roots; and an assorted seasonal dessert spread with mini desserts and pies. Cost is $55 per adult and $22 for children ages 12 and under. Dinner served from 4 to 9 p.m.
Photo by Juan Fernando
1855 Purdy Ave., Miami
In Sunset Harbour, Icebox will celebrate Christmas Day with a three-course, prix-fixe dinner special. Begin your holiday dinner with a creamy polenta and wild mushroom ragout, then continue with entrée choices of filet mignon with creamed spinach gratin and crisp potato wedges, or oven-roasted branzino stuffed with grilled fennel, lemon, herbs served on a bed of sautéed Swiss chard and balsamic roasted carrots. For dessert, select a piece of one of Icebox’s famous cake or pies. Cost is $42 per person. Dinner served from 5 to 10 p.m.
Bread pudding at Katsuya
Head to Katsuya Brickell for a Japanese-inspired prix-fixe menu of robata Christmas ham with a pumpkin purée; cedar wood-grilled salmon with caper brown butter cream sauce and cauliflower purée; and mushroom gyoza with ponzu espuma and black winter truffle. For dessert, enjoy pudding over salted caramel sauce topped with vanilla ice cream. Cost is $45 per person. Dinner served from 6 to 11 p.m.
Prime rib eye at Leynia.
Delano South Beach
Head to Leynia at the Delano South Beach, where chef Jose Icardi will host a festive brunch buffet. Dine on made-to-order omelets, red velvet waffles, imported cheeses and charcuterie, fresh fish, and carving stations with whole-roasted meats. Little ones can keep entertained by decorating holiday cookies. Cost is $105 per adult and $35 per child. Brunch served from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Market at the Edition
The Miami Beach Edition
Market at Edition
2901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
Keep Christmas festivities going at the Market at the Miami Beach Edition with an all-day buffet-style meal of salads, soups, raw bar, carving station, sides, and dessert. Additional a la carte items include a seafood platter with fresh oysters, poached shrimp and snapper ceviche ($79), seafood tower with fresh oysters, poached shrimp, tuna tartare and stone crab ($185), and prime-aged bone-in ribeye ($124). Cost is $75 per person and $35 for children. Served from noon to 10 p.m.
Meraki will serve a Greek menu of specialties on Christmas Day.
Meraki will serve Greek-inspired holiday menus at its downtown Miami and Coconut Grove outposts. Enjoy starters of winter chicken soup ($8), tried rolls with turkey and mixed Greek cheese filling ($12), followed by entrees of oven-roasted turkey stuffed with ground beef, nuts, and raisins served with roasted vegetables and baby potatoes ($22), roasted pork leg marinated with Greek herbs and spices ($22), and filet mignon with pomegranate glaze served with grilled asparagus and Mediterranean pilaf ($30). For dessert, chef Giannis Kotsos will serve an assortment of options including kourabie, Greek “wedding” cookies with almonds and powdered sugar; Christmas cookies baked with Greek honey and nuts; and kormos, a Greek chocolate biscotti cake ($10 each). Dinner served from noon to 9 p.m.
Baked oysters at Seawell Fish N’ Oyster
Seawell Fish N’ Oyster
Seawell Fish n’ Oyster
660 Washington Ave., Miami Beach
South Beach newcomer Seawell Fish n’ Oyster will feature a special seafood tasting menu on Christmas Day, to feature seven dishes and a dessert. The list of items includes crudo with hamachi and serrano leche de tigre; butter lettuce salad with key west pink shrimp, avocado, tomato, bacon, egg, and crispy shallots; lobster bisque; baked oysters bingo with tasso ham; and bucatini with manilla clams and pancetta. There will be croissant bread pudding for dessert. Cost is $75 per person. Served from 6 to 10 p.m.
Photo Courtesy of The Strand
Enjoy Christmas day with loved ones at the Carillon Miami Wellness Resort. A brunch buffet at the Strand, the hotel’s contemporary eatery, will feature an array of breakfast favorites, cheese and charcuterie, a carving station, salads, and raw and juice bars. Cost is $80 per person and $35 per child ages 5 through 12. Bottomless option is available for $35. Brunch served from noon to 4 p.m.