The Chicest Private Clubs to Spend the Winter

South Beach’s hottest private members club shines brighter than ever this season, while its sister club in Aspen is the coolest place off the slopes.

When Casa Tua opened its doors on Miami’s South Beach in 2001, it instantly became a hot spot. “There was a ground floor with a kitchen and garden restaurant, then a top floor with a five-bedroom hotel and a lounge on the other side of it,” says founder Miky Grendene. “It was so successful that I didn’t know who to let in. Ten years later, I created the private members club so that I could select the people I thought were best suited. Our members are very diverse though—it’s not just about catering to the rich and famous.” 

The Miami club now boasts an exclusive membership of just 1,000 and has a second location in Aspen—two of the most desirable places for Americans to be this winter season. (A third club opened in Paris this year, just before the pandemic.)

Casa Tua Miami’s exterior (photo credit: Shawn O’Connor).

Currently, Grendene is working on curating a selection of properties that will be invitation only, applying the private club model to villa club membership. “I had been saying for almost three years that we need to change the way we do business and approach life,” he says. “Now that we’ve all been locked in our homes, we’ve rediscovered what it means to spend quality time together, and the next phases [of the Casa Tua brand] are about experiences, not just consumption.” 

The Chef’s Window at Casa Tua Aspen (photo credit: Shawn O’Connor).

From the beginning, though, Casa Tua has always felt like a private home, partly thanks to Florence-based interior designer Michele Bonan. “I brought Michele to the U.S. about 23 years ago. I had seen what he had done at the Lungarno Hotel and loved it. It was close to the aesthetic I like, but what he does with me is different than his other projects,” Grendene says of the man who has designed all of the Casa Tua locations. “His work is so timeless. Elegance does not have an era. Michele and I will mix in vintage finds from the ’50s and ’60s with African antiques.”

Indeed, while the Miami outpost has a relaxed yet refined beach vibe, with linens and hints of blue, the Aspen location brings in the mountain environs. Within a barn-line structure in the heart of town, the restaurant and private club feature warm wood tones with dark grays and punches of red, while leather accents and plush sofas anchor the lounge spaces and provide a cozy feel.

The Front House of Casa Tua Aspen (photo credit: Shawn O’Connor).

Grendene shares that the next wave of the brand and its real estate–focused offerings will come in the following years, but for now the Casa Tua flagships in Aspen and Miami are the ultimate homes away from home, especially in the tricky era of COVID. “Our multiple locations create synergy. The secret behind our success is that we put our heart and soul behind everything we do,” he says. “Our longevity is in creating an environment that truly feels like a home.”