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Miami Vice

That Miami is an interesting place. I can’t say I could live there but the beaches are beautiful and the water is warm like a sauna. We just jumped right in.

Wynewood

The first day I walked from our hotel downtown to the Wynewood district. Like most of downtown, the streets were deserted which made every sound a little bit creepier. I almost turned around fearing for my life. But I kept going captivated by the street art on the way.

I recommend hitting up the Wynewood Walls when you get there, a neat and publicly protected graffiti museum with artists from around the world.

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There’s also an excellent coffee shop on the strip called Panther Coffee. I didn’t have enough money to buy a cup but the place had a variety of gourmet flavors and the vibe looked straight out of a trendy coffee shop in Venice, CA. The $6 I did have I used for a cab ride back to the hotel. There was no way I was walking back, especially when the cop I bumped into advised against it.

South Beach

We went to South Beach two days in a row. The first day I ran the beach and got my feet wet with the area, literally and figurately. I asked a hotel concierge where the Art Deco district was and she actually directed me back to downtown when it was only a few blocks down the road. Not sure what she was smoking.

Ocean Boulevard or 7th street is the start of the Art Deco district. Along the way you’ll see a bunch of neat hotels and restaurants, even Gianni Versace’s old home. If you walk beyond Ocean Boulevard and into Collins Avenue you’ll see a wider strip with more hotels and restaurants.

I walked all the way to the Delano hotel to have a peek. The inside is modern, the work of architect/designer Ian Schrager. Lenny Kravitz’s piano is one of the pieces of furniture. Again, it could easily be mistaken for any of the hip hotels in Los Angeles.

Conclusion

The Starbucks barista told me that living in Miami is rather boring. She did grow up there. But after a few days in Miami I can see her point. There’s no sign of a middle class; you’re either rich or poor. The rich even have their own islands. The people are a bit reckless too, at least in their driving.

I’d go back to Miami again but for a short trip and primarily for the sun and beach. In the meantime, I’m glad to live in New York.

For more Miami pics, check out the VSCO Grid.

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By Wells Baum

Wells Baum is a daily blogger who writes about Life & Arts. He's also the author of four books.

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