FIRE Travel – Magical Miami

screen shot 2019-01-03 at 8.27.41 pm

We are off for sunny weather on our third year of “No Responsibility January”.  Our son is off of college for the whole month, so each year we’ve taken the opportunity to escape from the bitter Minnesota winter weather and enjoy a beach trip.

I’ll share more on our 2019 travel plans in a few weeks, but for now I thought I would reflect on last year’s January trip to Miami.  We used the Florida hot-spot as a jumping-off point for an eastern Caribbean cruise.  Here are a few of the best sites to catch when you are in the Magic City …

  • Hipster Stay – The Fontainebleau

How cool is it to stay at the Fontainebleau Resort?  It’s so cool it was featured in a famous sweeping aerial shot during the opening credit scene of Sean Connery’s Goldfinger.  It’s so cool it was named to the list of “America’s Favorite Architecture” by the American Institute of Architects.  The mid-century modern icon was closed for a full year and completely restored in 2008.

2009-01 - miami fontainebleau resort

  • Miami Design District

We started our stay in Miami with a jaunt over to the Miami Design District – where modern art and luxury upscale shopping combine.  All of the big fashion brands are represented here, but for us the highlight was walking around and checking out the sculptures – including Buckminster Fuller’s Fly’s Eye Dome.

2018-01-11 - miami fla - design district

  • South Beach / Ocean Drive

It seems like it is always bright & sunny in Miami’s South Beach area as the Art Deco buildings that line Ocean Drive shine in colorful pastel hues.  The awesome restaurants and hotels that populate the 800 Art Deco buildings in this area make it one of the most interesting places to visit in the entire United States.

2018-01-12 - miami fla - south beach art deco day

  • January Art Deco District Festival

We were fortunate enough to time our stay last January with the annual Art Deco District Festival in which a mile-long stretch of Ocean Drive is blocked off to traffic and filled with performers, food trucks, and artisans.  We got there about an hour before sunset and enjoyed seeing the neon-trimmed buildings come to life through twilight.

2018-01-12 - miami fla - south bech art deco night

  • Miami Bayside

One of the most popular shopping & entertainment areas near Downtown Miami, Bayside is sited right on a giant marina of luxury watercraft and high-rise towers.  The Hard Rock Cafe and other tourist cliches are here, but there are also some interesting local restaurants and stores to check out.

2018-01-12 - miami fla - bayside marketplace

  • The Brickell

This newer area in Miami gives you a sense of where the city is heading,  Part inside, part outside, connected to the rest of the city by elevated monorail, the Brickell is a great place to have dinner and maybe check out a movie at the ultra-luxe CMX theater.

2018-01-11 - miami fla - brickell city centre

Our stay in Miami was relatively brief and there are a few other things I wished we had time to catch when we are there.  We concentrated most of our time on outside activities, but I would love to tour the Frost Museum of  Science, the Perez Art Museum, and the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens.  We’ll have to catch those on a future trip to Magic City!

Image Credit: (c); Cover Photo from Pixabay

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