Whenever someone mentions Miami, I can’t help but think of sunny days, beautiful beaches, and nightlife. I’ve been there a handful of times and I have to admit, it is one of my favorite places to visit. But, what if I told you that there’s more to this place than the obvious? Yes, there is a whole other side filled with art, music, food, and history in the heart of Downtown Miami.
While I was in town for Hispanicize, I was invited out by the Miami Downtown Development Authority for a tour. And little did I know I was about to get the scoop on how this area is getting it’s pulse back. Unfortunately, areas like South Beach are taking a lot of the fame here when downtown should not be ignored!
A few things I learned are that there are more 4 & 5 star hotels in Downtown Miami than any other city in Florida. I stayed at the Intercontinental Miami (a personal fave), which is home to Toro Toro Miami. FYI, if you’re foodie you have to check out Chef Richard Sandoval’s restaurant. Also, there is currently more than 1,277,991 square feet of retail space under construction in downtown and it’s population has doubled since 2000. Can we talk about how I was obsessed with the Metromover train that takes you throughout downtown for free? I’m officially a jealous Angeleno.
Our group was given a tour of historic places like the Olympia Theater, which is stunningly beautiful and is working hard to give it’s community the performance arts it deserves. It turns 90 this year too! Speaking of art, I loved my afternoon at the Perez Art Museum. This place is very inspiring with it’s modern and contemporary works of art. And I can’t forget my night at El Tucan, where I got to see an amazing salsa cabaret show and meet the one-and-only Grammy award winner Marlow Rosado (who has a new album out by the way).
And a super shout out to Dr. Paul George who spent time with us on the Metromover sharing the history and facts of the city. I can’t wait to get back and explore more. If you’re planning some time to travel there, please do not forget Downtown Miami. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at what you’ll find. In the meantime, take a look at my video of Downtown Miami in 2 Minutes.
For more information on what’s going on in Downtown Miami, visit www.miamidda.com.
Disclosure: A portion of my airfare and lodging were provided for as part of my attendance. Any and all opinions in this post are true and my own.