When Jay Z launched his newest project, a book called Decoded, he and Beyonce headed straight to South Beach for a glam opening celebration.


In fact, the Delano Hotel’s famous 75-foot, tree-lined pool provided the stage for the recent launch party. Two of the pages from the book (it’s a combination book and digital scavenger hunt) were reflected at the bottom of the pool that’s normally lined thigh-to-thigh with scantily-clad beautiful people.

The Delano Hotel has undergone a lot of changes since it was lavishly reopened in 1985 by Ian Schrager, once called the Godfather of Nightlife for opening, among other things, New York’s legendary Studio 54. Still one of South Beach’s best bets for celebrity-spotting, the whimsical art deco icon is now owned by Morgan’s Hotel Group (Schrager is busy developing a line of boutique hotels for Marriott).

The Delano Hotel is still mostly white and off-white (including the TV’s), it still calls the famous pool a “Water Salon” (and still features underwater classical music, as well as designated areas for floating, eating, sleeping and meditating) and its indoor-outdoor lobby is still Miami’s mecca for midnight (and later) minglers.

Over the years, the Delano has hosted pretty much anyone and everyone with a Hollywood agent from Madonna (she once owned part of the Blue Door, the hotel’s upscale sushi bar) to George Clooney who played basketball with the staff on the makeshift basketball court they set up outside his bungalow suite. He was in town filming the Steven Soderbergh film, “Out of Sight.”

The Delano, a 16-story, 208-room property on the northern edge of the Art Deco district, was originally built in 1947. When Schrager rebuilt and reopened it in July 1995, it became a magnet for not only Hollywood starlets, but rock stars, models and affluent anyone’s.

Let’s just say it’s still a seductive gathering spot with lots of original art (by everyone from Salvador Dali to Man Ray), mirrors, 40-foot sheer white billowing curtains and poolside faux-fur covered beds.

As for Jay Z’s October 20 launch party, the pages displayed at the bottom of the pool showed lyrics to his 1999 hit “Big Pimpin’.” Those in attendance also got beach towels printed with page 121.

Decoded goes on sale November 16.

The Delano Hotel, 1685 Collins Avenue, 305.672.2000.

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