United States

City description

Welcome to the American Riviera! With its year-round sunshine and endless palm trees, Miami is one of the epicentres of beach culture, with the Atlantic Ocean lapping at its shores. But Miami has much more to offer than that, with plenty of bling, a melting pot of Hispanic influences and a healthy helping of design and culture.

Nestled on the water’s edge, beyond the city center and its breathtaking buildings, South Beach presents the quintessential picture postcard image of Miami. Not least with its Art Deco District, and its 1930s buildings, pioneering the “Tropical Art Deco” style and their pastel colors. A legacy of the golden age of Miami Beach, the neighbourhood was immortalised by the TV series “Miami Vice”. Running alongside the sea, visiting the mythical Ocean Drive Avenue is a must. Take your place alongside the horse riders and joggers, the latter no doubt preparing for the famous Miami Marathon… On the beautiful 2-kilometre strip of white sandy beach, locals perfect their tans among the beach huts or throw themselves into beach volleyball. In Miami, from NBA matches at the American Airlines Arena and the Miami Boat Show to the Miami Open, sport is an integral part of the lifestyle here, where a healthy attitude and an obsession with body image are a given! Alongside sushi bars and the delights of spa treatments, as revealed by Miami Spa Month.
Downtown, Miami reveals the direction this part of the city has taken in recent years: this once infamous neighbourhood has become trendy and arty. Ever since 2002, the city has been America’s capital of Art Basel. This cultural event brightens up the urban sprawl every December, but contemporary art is now well established in the city’s DNA throughout the year. If you need any proof, just visit the Museum of Contemporary Art and the Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM), or make your way to the heart of the Design District. Opposite Biscayne Bay, its art galleries and architecture firms reveal its trendy style. A stone’s throw away, Wynwood is slightly more alternative, showcasing the delights of street art. Wander along its typical streets and marvel at this open-air gallery. The colorful Wynwood Walls are decorated by the greatest urban artists from around the world.

Cuba is just 90 miles away from Miami’s coastline. The Freedom Tower looms up over the Bay, paying tribute to its immigrants since 1925. But to immerse yourself into Miami’s Hispanic side, you need to travel a bit further north. Start with Little Havana, then Coral Gables. The perfect place to try out a Cuban café before wandering through this dreamy Mediterranean melting pot and soaking up the atmosphere, alongside the Coconut Grove neighbourhood. Looking out to sea, this capital of 70s hippy culture has held on to its bohemian spirit and charming boutiques. They offer a fantastic alternative to the big shopping centers like Dolphin Mall Miami or Aventura Mall Miami. After a quick shopping spree, step into the lush green nature of Coconut Grove and discover the Vizcayza Museum and Gardens. This architectural jewel of a villa, inspired by the European Renaissance, is nestled in the heart of tropical gardens, reminding us that in Florida, nature is never far away. Miami is in fact the gateway to the Everglades National Park, an amazing ecosystem of marshes and mangroves. More interested in what’s hidden in the sea? Then head to the Miami Seaquarium to appreciate the wonders of marine life.

When the sun goes down, head back to South Beach (SoBe). Collins Avenue and Ocean Drive Avenue assume a party atmosphere, as does Downtown Miami, with events like the White Party Week. Without its sequins and spangles and passion for showing off, Miami wouldn’t be the same…
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