Florida - Welcome to Miami

Visited by Nikki on Monday, 31 October 2016

Welcome to Miami!

In the words of Will Smith; ‘Party in the City where the heat is on, all night on the beach til the break of dawn’......and this is exactly why you must make Miami your next incentive destination!

What springs to mind when you think of Miami? Let me guess; sun, gorgeous white sand beaches, Muscle Beach, Miami Vice, and rollerblading down South Beach? You’re not wrong, but having just had the privilege of experiencing the destination first-hand, I’ve discovered Miami has so more to offer (as an incentive destination) than meets the eye! Here are just some of the many reasons why:

Ocean Drive has the largest concentration of Art-Deco buildings in the world and is about 1.3 miles long. Clevelander is an Art Deco bar on the Drive and offers both entertaining and varied shows at their outside stage, but is famously known for their epic weekend pool parties. Another fun venue is Mango’s, which is renowned for its Caribbean and South American carnival theme and its nightly variety show with acts ranging from Salsa & Merengue to Michael jackson impersonators and dancing bartenders. We went to cocktail heaven in Ocean’s Ten, South Beach, where they make great ‘Lageritas’ that contain two bottles of Corona and frozen Margarita.

Best place to stay?

South Beach is considered to be at the forefront of Miami, with a vast array of hotels, bars, and restaurants all within a stone’s throw away from the white sandy beaches. However, the downtown areas of Brickell and Biscayne, located just 5 minutes away, are fast becoming the new hotspots! The brand new ME Hotel has 129 rooms with views of either the city or the sea, small amount of meeting space and of course the famous Roof Top Bar and STK restaurant.

Need a venue with a difference?

You can head to the Wynwood District, the new hub of food and culture in Miami, which offers your guests something very unusual! Wynwood is a local graffiti area where mural artists pay 30K to have their artwork on the walls.

Wynwood 5th Avenue Bar has a cafe, bar, clothing store, sushi bar and live music; and can accommodate 600-1000 people. You can have your own street party with handcrafted cocktails, live music and artisan food trucks.

Or alternatively you could try Wynwood Walls Park; a large graffiti park for the most eclectic backdrops possible, and available for exclusive hire for smaller groups and budgets. Or if you’d simply prefer the authentic Miami experience, time your trip around the Second Saturday Art Walks and hang out at the best street festival in the South.

Nikki Beach is great for brunch or an afternoon / evening of partying and can accommodate 2600 pax for a meal / buffet or 4000-5000 people for drinks. You can also arrange crab racing, or even have a sandcastle built with your client’s logo on, which can be lit up at night. 

Pearl is a fabulous nightclub overlooking Nikki Beach which is only open to the public on Sunday nights, it is extremely popular and can hold 450-550 people.

The Versace Mansion’s official name is The Villa Casa Casaurina, and has 11 suites decorated typical Versace style. Giannis Restaurant is a must for a group offering a blend of Italian and Mediterranean food and can hold up to 30 pax exclusively. This hotel definitely has the wow-factor and offers something very different! Ideal for small groups and this is one of the only independent event venues on Ocean Drive.

Fancy sightseeing with a difference? Then head to the Little Havana, which is a group of neighbourhoods with a Cuban influence and with an abundance of Cuban bars and cigar shops.

Explore the rhythmic sounds, rich flavours and thriving centre of Miami’s Cuban community! Experience the authentic hearty cuisine, hand roll your own cigars, and try the freshest coffee; the ‘Café Cubano’.  

We stopped at Guantanamera Cuban coffee and cigar shop and were given a talk on handmade cigars. You can even have ‘Cuban Pete’ to escort you around Little Havana and provide real insight into the pastimes and traditions of this colourful heritage.

We also visited the Cubaocho Bar & Art Gallery; an art gallery with a twist, with a true Cuban feel. It has a very relaxed feel with art worth over $2 million dollars hanging on the walls of the bar. 

The Ball and Chain is another backstreet Cuban Bar thats was first established in the 1930's as one of the very first nightlife spots in Miami. Ball & Chan has a great atmosphere and hosts regular live acts and shows all day long.

Also located in Little Havana, Maximo Gomez Park a.k.a. Domino Park is a social club where anyone over 55 can come and play dominos; there are around 15 tables where all the locals gather.

Enjoy drinks on the Caribbean Spirit catamaran, which you board from Bayside Marketplace in the downtown area, for a two hour sail and the best sunset you’ve ever seen. Client logos can be displayed on the main body of the Intercontinental Hotel building, which you pass by on the way back in from the cruise. Luxury yachts are also available and would work well for groups of approximately 100 people or more. 

Dinner with the Wow factor? Head to the River Yacht Club; a new waterfront restaurant nestled in the heart of the Miami River District.  This has a capacity for 2000 pax and is an amazing al fresco restaurant on the river, with a very high quality feel.  The restaurant is suitable for both large and small groups and guests can be transferred to the restaurant via Catamaran. Try to book a table on the water’s edge for the best atmosphere.

October usually has the highest rainfall in Miami. Most events need a wet weather back-up. July & August tend to be the cheapest month, but the ideal time to visit is really November to May. 

So, put aside your current perceptions of Miami and get in touch to find out how we can create your next and BEST incentive! After all, the lyrical genius Will Smith himself said; ‘ain't no city in the world like this’!

This visit was brought to you by our DMC, Firebrand DMC