Life House, South of Fifth is the latest addition to the Life House portfolio of historical hotels built for the modern traveler. The building is the only example of Tudor Architecture which is easily recognizable among the Art Deco and high-rise edifices that populate the tropical enclave of the southernmost tip of South Beach, known as South of Fifth or SoFi. The landmark 1930s manor showcases a stucco exterior accented by dark-wood trim, a steeply pitched gabled roof, and the half-timbered frames reminiscent of Tudor-style cottages. Located just steps away from the beach, Life House South of Fifth features 26 rooms, a lush open-air garden lounge with adjoining garden patio, an indoor living room that opens up to an outdoor courtyard, and the on-property restaurant and bar inspired by the laid-back beach culture of its environs, Pretty Swell – aptly named after the coveted surfing spot just south of Fifth Street.
The guest journey starts by stepping into the entry garden lounge that unfolds along the property’s facade and is decorated with custom, wood-framed sofas; fringed umbrellas; and wicker garden seats surrounded by native flora and tropical plants. The design narrative continues in the indoor living room, home to the restaurant and bar Pretty Swell, where an eclectic array of coastal treasures such as a reclaimed-wood surfboard, cane and wicker pendants, and a live-edge wood table are juxtaposed with original terrazzo flooring, a high-gloss teal ceiling, and a cozy fireplace by which guests are invited to relax to the sound of a vinyl player. The bar counter culls inspiration from the beachside swell through a curved cement base rendered against the stained-glass back bar shelving and walls with timber paneling, typical of the Tudor style architecture of the house. Life House, South of Fifth embodies the home of an artist living by the seashore through a collection of vintage and custom millwork, fixtures, and contextual artwork and textiles in a modern color palette of sienna, golden amber, and deep jades. The 26 guest rooms are designed with a wide array of room types to serve discerning travelers of any travel purpose or group size: from premium Queen and King rooms to the modern Quad chambers that feature four custom-made, full-size bunk beds for families or groups of friends traveling together. The property also offers three specialty suites: The Artist’s King Suite features an extended living room area with a built-in vinyl player, the Family Suite has a king-size bed plus four bunk beds for the little ones, and The Writer’s Studio offers a curated collection of books, a spacious desk, and a cozy reading nook. All rooms feature shiplap walls in a two-tone, cream-based palette, jute lampshades, and neutral color-blocking cotton rugs alsong with Life House’s standard amenities, including Le Labo bath products, Marshall speakers and Revival New York luxury linens.
“Our South of Fifth house is an artisan’s eclectic retreat by the shore, with a musing for the swell of the sea,” says Rami Zeidan, Founder & CEO of Life House. “We intend to celebrate the architecture of the landmark building while optimizing all spaces for the modern traveler who can spend the week working comfortably from their rooms or public spaces and then run to the beach as soon as that Zoom call ends.”
The food and beverage program is rooted in Life House’s reverence for the ocean with a laid-back, convivial undertone that fosters an environment where the local community and hotel guests want to gather from sunrise to sunset for healthy bites and craft cocktails. Pretty Swell, the on-property restaurant and bar, offers a refined-yet-approachable, veg-forwad all day menu inspired by the culinary cultures of the surfing regions of the world from Baja to Bali, from Hawaii to Australia with an emphasis on sustainable practices. The cocktail program is a dynamic nod to the ‘70s with charred herbal craft cocktails, fresh pressed juice libations, and a sustainable wine program.
Reservations and additional information for Life House South of Fifth, including full buyouts of the hotel or corporate retreats, can be found on Life House’s website.