Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Florida - Day 5 - Miami Beach (Art Deco Heaven!)

Here it is...the one you have been waiting for...my Miami Beach post!
Our day started early (again!) at 6.30am, but this wasn't a bad thing as we wanted to get to Miami Beach early to make sure we had a full day there. Its only a 50 minute drive from Key Largo, so we were there in no time, and the hotel let us check in early :)
On our way.....
View of Miami as we head over the bridge to Miami Beach

Collins Avenue - and our hotel, The Tropics (The pink one on the right). Considering this is an original Deco hotel, right in the heart of the Deco district, our room was a complete bargain at $59 for the night!
A good place to start our sightseeing - on Ocean Drive at the Art Deco Welcome Center. This was tourist info/a huge shop filled with great books, posters and original antique pieces. Bakelite drool ahoy! 
And so we began our walk and taking tons of photos! The historic Deco district runs 10 blocks long from 15th to 5th street and 3 streets wide (Ocean Drive, Collins Avenue, Washington Avenue). We walked all of it! 
Two hotels on Ocean Drive

Avalon, Ocean Drive. I was waiting for the folks to move for ages, but they were drooling over the car, so I gave up and they got snapped in the end!
Breakwater, Ocean Drive
Park Central Hotel, Ocean Drive. Note fake person sat in old car!
This was one of my faves - Kent on Collins Avenue
Original 50s diner. This was originally in Pennsylvania, but was moved in its complete state and put on the corner of Washington and 11th some years ago!
Me outside the Marlin, Collins Avenue. I'm wearing my new 50s style seashell/coral print dress and my wicker box bag (£6, Primark) embellished by me with cherries & a black orchid.
After snapping tons of photos, we went to The Wolfsonian Design Museum (On the corner of Washington and 10th) to view the collections. I used this photo from the Wolfsonian website as it was covered in ugly scaffolding when we went! As well as having tons of amazing Early and Mid Century furniture and accessories, there was a touring exhibition on of British Transport Poster Art, which was amazing!
This was one of my faves
And another one.
We then went back to the hotel to relax (sore feet from walking about all day!) and get ready for our evening out.
Ocean Drive by night - all the neons come out highlighting the curves on the buildings. My photos didn't turn out so well, it was a lot more pretty in person.
Giorgio Armarni's former house, Ocean Drive - location of his shooting in 1997. Now a private members spa/hotel.
The Crescent, loved the neons on this one.
And back to our hotel for a much needed sleep! 
We really enjoyed our day/night in Miami beach, but to be honest, that was plenty of time for us here. A lot of   MB is full of flashy, rich, plastic people and the shops are full of Ed Hardy fake clothing bling and "Im a Miami Bitch" T-shirts. I purposefully took my photos to avoid the ground floor - which was more often than not a tacky gift shop or fast food joint. Its a shame it has to be like this, but I know that without one, the other would not exist. Its the tacky toursit tat that funds the buildings to keep preserved after all! 
We knew it was like this before we went, so it didn't bother us and after all, the buildings are stunning and well worth a visit if anyone is thinking about it. Just keep looking up! :)


  1. The deco district looks brilliant. Wish we had something so spectacular over in the UK too. I love the blue and white car, do you know what it is?

  2. It really was like nothing I have seen before - over 800 original buildings all together, and yes, shame we don't have similar here :(
    I didn't get chance to see what the car was....I took all my photos from across the road to get a better view, and Ocean Drive was constant traffic, so we couldn't keep going back and forth. Thats why some pics are a bit blurred too - had to snap fast to get minus traffic! ;)

  3. Wow- that diner. I recognized it immediately. I ate there when it was still here in Penna...wondered what happened to it! Funny!

  4. Looks spectacular! my friends have been and they are huge art deco fans and they loved it, took pics of all the interior stuff for inspiration to remodel their house!

  5. breathtaking beautiful decor on the buildings, I never been to Miami, my uncle once said the most beautiful women live there,lol

  6. Awesome Photos!! I love Miami

  7. Great project! The beaches nearest me have very few shells sadly. I'd love to do this!

    beach art