For the growing number of so-called digital nomads, the promise of a strong WiFi signal and a cheap place to crash means freedom. From Airbnb to WeWork, the sharing economy dangles the irresistible carrot of flexibility, and for those ready to chuck it all and live a life of true location independence, Roam co-living is creating a global community to support that urge. Founded in 2015 by Bruno Haid with a flagship location in Ubud, Bali, he’s identified Miami as the second site to open worldwide at the historic River Inn (118 SW South River Dr.) in East Little Havana along the Miami River.
Haid teamed up with Miami developer Avra Jain of the Vagabond Hotel to restore the 100-year-old property (the oldest hotel in the city), which was originally a boarding house for transient workers on the river. The compound consists of wood-frame vernacular homes with porches housing 38 fully furnished private suites that feature original mahogany doors, red brick fireplaces and Dade County pine floors. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Jain’s reimagined the River Inn with both nautical and tropical touches.
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Roam’s concept would allow flexible leases for access to all of its locations around the world for $500 per week or $1,800 per month for up to two people. For now, though, your choice is between Miami (opening early summer) and Bali. However, a third location in Madrid is forthcoming and expansion to eight to 10 locations by 2017 is planned in cities including Marrakech, Buenos Aires, London, Tokyo, Mexico City, Berlin and Lisbon.
To foster the “microsociety” of location independent people in Miami, Roam’s River Inn will feature a large communal kitchen, laundry facilities, swimming pool, restaurant, bar, lush lawn for events and, of course, a co-working space with lightening fast WiFi.
Shayne Benowitz is Miami.com’s travel editor. Follow her on Twitter @ShayneBenowitz.