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CNN Names The Betsy-South Beach as One of the World’s Great Literary Hotels

November 28, 2013 Destination North America No Comments Email Email

CNN has named “14 beautiful hotels inspired by literature” around the world, with The Betsy-South Beach as “Miami’s only literary arts hotel” and singular hotel in the southeastern United States to make the list. The complete curated list of global properties includes:

  • New York: The Algonquin, Library Hotel, The Plaza, The NoMad Hotel
  • Paris: Les Plumes Hotel, Apostrophe Hotel, L’Hotel, Hotel Le MarcelTHE BETSY FACADE
  • Portland, Oregon: Heathman Hotel, The Nines
  • Minneapolis: The Commons Hotel
  • New Zealand: The Hobbit Motel, Waitomo
  • Russia: Radisson Sonya Hotel, St. Petersburg

Since opening, The Betsy-South Beach has featured culture, arts and the written word as the centerpiece of its brand with first-time hotelier, New York-based owner Jonathan Plutzik forging a new path in the luxury hotel space that salutes “things that matter.” This unusual hospitality platform promoting philanthropy, arts, culture and education (PACE), with museum-like programming and arts accessibility for all, offers events that are free and open to the public. With a coveted Knight Foundation Challenge Grant, and three-time Pulitzer Prize poetry finalist Hyam Plutzik (Jonathan Plutzik’s late father) as its inspiration, the boutique property opened a Writer’s Room in 2012. The New York studio-style guestroom housing Hyam Plutzik’s original desk and has welcomed over 100 visiting writers. The luxury hotel’s tagline “Expect no more, this is happiness” is another literary contribution of the senior Plutzik.

In four short years, the Betsy has become a charitable force by supporting more than 200 organizations through an innovative business model driven by collaboration and partnership. Additionally, The Betsy embraces the intimacy of historic Salon Culture with its “salon by the sea” program that re-creates a place where conversations matter and important thought leaders congregate. Authors including John Grisham and Richard Ford, poets such as Billy Collins, WS Merwin, David Lehman, Campbell McGrath and Presidential inaugural poet Richard Blanco, and thought leaders including Thomas Friedman THE BETSY OCEAN VIEWand Dov Seidman have participated, held court, and shared ideas.

The hotel is also the sponsor and home of the JAHLit (Jewish American Holocaust and Literature) Conference, which takes place every November, and welcomes scholars from around the world to revisit the impact of the Holocaust through a literary lens. Every April for National Poetry Month, The Betsy is the host hotel for “O Miami” and presents public readings, salons, parties and an annual Poetry Exhibition.

Each Betsy guestroom includes a curated library of 20-30 books for guests to enjoy, and places an eco-friendly bookmark with poetry, rather than chocolate, on guests’ pillows at night. Writing journals are often presented as a special guest amenity.

In addition to a variety of visual art exhibits for Art Basel 2013, the hotel is showcasing poetry, which often doesn’t have a voice at Basel, with a collection of digital broadsides produced by filmmaker Juan Carlos Zaldivar. Projections of poetry, words, and images will emanate from the Betsy gallery annex and illuminate the “Ocean Court” walkway that connects Ocean Drive and Collins Avenue. Hyam Plutzik’s poem ‘I Imagined a Painter Painting Such a World’ is The Betsy’s official poem of Basel 2013 and will be presented as a gift to guests attending events and openings at the hotel along with a Spanish translation by Jose Villar Porteya (“Imagine un Pintor Pintado un Mundo Tal”).

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