Kid-Friendly Hotels in South Florida: Top 12 Resorts for Families in Miami and Ft. Lauderdale

JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Tidal Cove Waterpark - Photo courtesy of Tripadvisor
JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Tidal Cove Waterpark - Photo courtesy of Tripadvisor

South Florida is a hot spot for families—and everyone else. When visiting the Miami and Fort Lauderdale area, picking a great hotel for kids can make or break the entire vacation, so we have compiled a list of the top 12 most amazing family-friendly hotels in Miami and Ft. Lauderdale. These wonderful spots to stay are all approved by local moms, and perfect to enjoy your next South Florida family vacation or staycation.

While you're in town, choose something fun to do with kids using our South Florida Weekend Planner, or our family events calendar!

 
The lazy river at the JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa, photo courtesy of the resort

1. JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa

Located 12 miles north of Miami and 12 miles south of Ft. Lauderdale, Aventura is right at the center of metropolitan South Florida. The JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa is popular with the locals and is sure to provide a fun and comfortable stay for a family wanting to explore Miami in a laid back family-friendly atmosphere. It’s close to Aventura Mall, a 36-hole golf course, and a tennis center, and it offers a free shuttle to the beach. There are several highly rated restaurants on-property. And the best perk of your stay is that admission to its water park, Tidal Cove, is included with your stay. This hotel has great food and fun times for every member of the family. There may be deals available for Florida Residents or AAA members, so be sure to look into those if you’re booking on a budget.

2. Fort Lauderdale Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa

A beachfront hotel located close to the airport, the port, and bustling Las Olas Boulevard, the Fort Lauderdale Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa is sure to offer you and your family a great stay. This resort has a private beach with water sports and activities, a lagoon-style pool with cabanas, a luxury spa, and recently renovated rooms with spectacular ocean views of passing cruise ships. The staff is friendly; there’s a great Kids’ Club, and there’s amazing food and entertainment close by. Some of the things to do with the kids near the hotel include bike rentals on the boardwalk, a family-friendly mermaid show at the Wreck Bar, and the Las Olas Boulevard main strip with shops, restaurants, art galleries, and nightlife for parents to enjoy.   

3. Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort

True to the vibe of Jimmy Buffet’s hit song, Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort offers a laid-back luxury beach vacation experience. The resort offers both suites and guest rooms to accommodate the size of your party and budget. The room decor and colors are inspired by the beach, and designed for maximum comfort and relaxation. There are 2 pools on the property. One pool has a waterslide, simulated surfing, and full-service cabanas. The other is an adults-only rooftop pool on the 11th floor, adjacent to its License to Chill Bar. There are several restaurants, shops, a Kids’ Club, and a luxury spa on property as well. It offers a repertoire of weekend live performances by over 30 different bands. Located on Hollywood Beach’s Boardwalk, there’s lots to do and experience close to the resort as well.

RELATED: Kid-Friendly South Florida Restaurants Open for Thanksgiving Dinner

 
Photo courtesy of the Miami Beach EDITION, Facebook

4. The Miami Beach EDITION

This hotel drips of glamour and hosts a range of guests from artists and models to families, with activities for everyone to enjoy. All of its 294 rooms, 28 of which are private bungalows, are individually and uniquely decorated for a minimalist, opulent, and comfortable stay. Here are the features you and your family can look forward to during your stay at The Miami Beach EDITION: a basement bowling alley, an ice skating rink, beachfront rooms, two pools (one for families, one for adults only), a basement night club (for some adult-only fun), a spa, private access to the beach, and beachfront activities (such as yoga, pilates, boxing, and more). Centrally located, the hotel offers easy access to nearby Lincoln Road, South Beach,  and the bohemian Art Deco District. It’s a short drive from Little Havana, Bal Harbor (and its shops), the Wynwood Art District, and Downtown Miami, too.  

5. Club Med Sandpiper Bay - Florida

Positioned between Orlando and Miami, the Club Med Sandpiper Bay Resort is the perfect destination for an active family vacation. This all-inclusive resort is located on the banks of the St. Lucie River, and offers an array of water and outdoor sports. You can enjoy outdoor activities with top-rated coaches at its Sports Academy. There are activities for the kids, too! Its Baby Club Med and Mini Club Med, offer sporty and creative activities for the little ones in your family. There are two restaurants, three bars, and three pools on-property. There is even a poolside bar at the adults-only infinity pool. Enjoy a Floridian Sunset Cruise, and see if you can spot manatees, dolphins, alligators, or other wild life while the color of sky transforms into beautiful hues. Come for the relaxation, water, tropical ambiance, and food, or for the amazing variety of outdoor sports and activities. Either way, you and your family are sure to have some fun in the sun!

6. B Ocean Resort Fort Lauderdale

At B Ocean Resort Fort Lauderdale, you are invited to “just B yourself.” With activities ranging from curated spa experiences to adult and family-family friendly shows, it has something for every member of the family to enjoy. This beachside resort has its own private beach, two pools, bike rentals, four restaurants, and three bars. The Wreck Bar features mermaid shows—some are family-friendly, and others are only for the parents and adults in your party. Located minutes from Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, and Downtown Las Olas Boulevard, this hotel is right at the center of the action. Check out its offers for some amazing deals!

7. Baker’s Cay Resort Key Largo, Curio Collection by Hilton

Located in the Florida Keys, the Baker’s Cay Resort Key Largo, Curio Collection by Hilton offers bayfront views, water activities, and plenty of relaxation. For the active family members, it offers parasailing, paddleboarding, kayaking, snorkeling, and diving. For those who love fishing, the resort offers a “Dock to Dish” service where you bring the fish you catch, and the chefs at the restaurant cook it for you! It also has 21 private boat slips to reserve if you want to BYOB (bring your own boat). Want to relax? This resort has you covered with its hardwood hammock forest, sunset cruises, and intimate dining experiences.  Other activities offered at Baker’s Cay Resort include: seaplane tours, dolphin experiences, jet skiing, sip and paint nights, scavenger hunts, movie nights, bonfires, live music, and more! Check out the resort’s special offers for residents, kids, and more.   

8. THesis Hotel Miami

Touring colleges this summer? Want to explore the fine dining and shopping of Coral Gables? The THesis Hotel Miami is a favorite with locals and travelers alike. Located across the street from the University of Miami, visitors can enjoy the comfort and luxury that its 245 guest rooms (including its penthouse suite) have to offer. And it's only a short drive to the Shops at Sunset Place and Dadeland Mall. Sip a tropical drink at its barside, rooftop pool, while enjoying the views of Coral Gables. Enjoy world-class meals at its two on-site restaurants. (Here’s a tip from a local… If you aren’t lactose intolerant, try the white truffle and brie grilled cheese with homestead mango jam at Mamey. You will love it.) Other amenities include spa services, bike rentals, a 24-hour fitness center, pet-friendly accommodations, and a shuttle service. This family-friendly hotel’s staff goes above and beyond to make each guests’ stay extra special. Check out the offers for some savings on your stay!

 
Build a sandcastle on the 500-foot private beach at the Pelican Grand Beach Resort. Photo courtesy of the resort

9. Pelican Grand Beach Resort

Fort Lauderdale’s only lazy river, a large zero-entry pool, a 500-foot private beach, and spacious and newly remodeled guest rooms and suites—these are only some of the reasons to book your next Florida family vacation stay at Pelican Grand Beach Resort. Enjoy the surf and sun on its private beach, complete with complimentary chairs, umbrellas, and staff who cater to you and your family. Beach activities and rentals are also available. Dine at the sophisticated on-site restaurant and lounge, OCEAN2000, featuring amazing food and ocean views. Or mingle with guests and locals at O2K Lounge’s Happy Hour. Don’t want to go out to eat? No worries, it offers in-room dining for slow mornings and cozy dinners in. The resort partners with Funky Fish Ocean Camp for kids to enjoy activities in and out of the water. There is plenty to explore and enjoy in the Fort Lauderdale area as well. Check out the hotel's promotions and packages.

10. Hawks Cay Resort

Located between the popular vacation destinations of Miami and Key West, Hawks Cay Resort occupies 60 shoreside acres of secluded Duck Key. With 177 guest rooms and 250 two- and three-bedroom villas, it can accommodate both small and large families. The resort has a full-service marina, so you can access it by land, sea, and air. Amenities include four pools, a salt water lagoon, six restaurants and bars, tennis and pickleball, a spa, and watersport rentals, activities, and adventures! One of the most unique experiences available at the resort is their Dolphin Connection facility. Book a swim with dolphins in their natural environment, feed them from the dock, or just watch them play. There are fishing charters available as well. Coral Cay—the activities center for kids and younger guests—has basketball courts, a soccer field, putting greens, and a Pirate Ship Pool complete with tunnels, water cannons, waterslides, and shallow waters perfect for toddlers and younger children. From activities that get you moving, to a relaxing tropical ambiance, this large resort has something to offer every member of your family.

11. Fontainebleau Miami Beach

Welcome to Miami! The iconic Fontainebleau Miami Beach is a 22-acre beachfront hotel on Collins Avenue. If the surf, sun, and culture of Miami Beach don’t tempt you to stay, perhaps the Foutainebleau’s 11 distinct pool experiences will, including, small dipping pools and an interactive children’s poolscape. You can even bring your furriest family member to experience the luxury of this pet-friendly hotel. The Fontainebleau is not only family-friendly, but it also offers guests and locals a bustling nightlife with its on-site restaurants, bar, poolside concerts by famous musical artists, and one of the most popular nightclubs in the area: LIV. The hotel's amenities include a two-story spa and salon, a gym and fitness center, beach and watersports equipment rentals, poolside cabanas, and concierge services that will help you book unforgettable experiences on-site and throughout Miami Beach. Check out the hotel's specials.   

12. Lago Mar Beach Resort & Club

Just one mile from Port Everglades, and five miles from Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport, Lago Mar Beach Resort & Club is perfect for your traveling family. Its large rooms and understated elegance are a great fit for a family looking to enjoy a relaxing and fun beach vacation. It has over 500 feet of private beach and two large pools. Amenities include a spa, six eateries, room service, a kids’ playground, tennis courts, shuffleboard, basketball, foosball, an oversized chessboard, pickleball, a putting course, and live entertainment. The concierge can assist in locating and booking the following attractions in the area: water sport rentals, sightseeing tours, Flamingo Gardens, Museum of Discovery and Science, Butterfly World, Museum of Art - Fort Lauderdale, and the restaurants and shops on Las Olas Boulevard. Family-owned for three generations, and a summer vacation tradition for many local families, Lago Mar Beach Resort & Club is sure to charm you and your family.   

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