There are places you need to go with no expectations. No preconceived ideas or notions of what you will find. Miami for me is one of those places.
When I go to Miami I am transported to so many places all at the same time that I have a distinct feeling of being detached from the U.S. The Spanish tile roofs contrasting with modern glass skyscrapers, the sounds of a myriad of Spanish accents and dialects that are spoken on every street corner (not to mention the many other languages), and the humid sticky air of the tropics always pulls me in.
Admittedly I have just scratched the surface of this city…and be warned it is easy to get lost in the vibrant colors or find yourself gazing into the ocean on a balcony for the afternoon. If you have plans to visit Miami, here are a few spots I wouldn’t want you to miss out on.
My top 5 tips for a weekend in Miami:
- In the mood for a romantic Italian dinner? Il Gabbiano on the water is not to be missed for a more upscale evening out on the town. The night we went there were dolphins playing in the water at sunset. If you are looking for a more Bohemian romantic restaurant then Soya e Pomodoro is one of my favorites. This restaurant is nestled into an alley between two buildings and you can easily imagine you are sitting on the cobbled streets of a Napolitano café. They also have live Latin jazz to make the atmosphere even more romantic.
- Restaurants in the Design District: We recently discovered Ghee Indian Kitchen and Mandolin Aegean Café over in the Design District. We will definitely be going back to both these restaurants and they both have an outdoor area to sit and relax.
- Favorite music spot? Lagniappe is a gem. They have live music every night at 9:00 pm, offer over 150 wines, a magical backyard covered in lights and tables, and an inside area with plush couches in a cozy house setting.
- Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM): I would go to the PAMM for the building and view alone. The museum is perched on the water and a LEED-certified building. The mission of the museum is to ‘be a leader in the presentation, study, interpretation, and care of international modern and contemporary art while representing Miami-Dade and cherishing the unique viewpoint of its peoples.’ It’s a special place and when we visited they had a wonderful exhibit of Latin American artists whose work I hadn’t seen before.
- Wynwood Walls: A perfect way to spend the afternoon is to head over to Wynwood and explore the Wynwood Walls for an explosion of color and to see all of the diverse murals. There are also boutique shops and restaurants to check out while you are there.
Is it Cuba calling from the shores of Miami, or Latin America, or the world? Miami is truly an international city. Walking down the streets of downtown Brickell there is one thing I notice above the rest – big broad smiles. People just seem to be having fun in Miami even on a Tuesday afternoon in the hub of the business center.