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Photo: Shutterstock
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Fun in the sun - City Guide Miami

SAS is celebrating its 70th birthday in style, launching direct flights from Oslo and Copenhagen to Miami in September. Miami is all about art, Art Deco, fashion and the body beautiful – with a distinct Latin heartbeat.

Asian BBQ

The latest addition to Miami’s bedazzling array of great restaurants is Kyu in the Wynwood art district. Former Zuma chef Michael Lewis and colleague Steven Haigh have created a Korean/Japanese barbecue joint serving up delicious morsels of seafood including grilled octopus and Florida red snapper, all straight from the wood-fired open kitchen grill. Kyu’s fresh, uncomplicated dishes have guests lining up to grab a seat.

Kyu

251 NW 25th Street, Miami

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Little Havana

For 45 years, Versailles has been the spot for Cuban exiles to eat, gossip and hold anti-Castro meetings. This is where politicians woo the Cuban vote, where the press takes the Cuban pulse in Miami, and it’s the best place to order a Cubano – a heavenly toasted sandwich made of melted cheese, roasted pork, ham, mustard, and pickles. Try a cafe cortadito, which will make your heart skip a beat. Order take-out at the counter or eat in the 370-seat dining room.

Versailles

3555 Southwest 8th Street, Miami

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Unfussy fine dining

Those who love upscale fare without the fuss go to Mignonette in Edgewater. The oyster bar, housed in a retro 1930s gas station, is run by chef Daniel Serfer of the enormously popular Blue Collar on Biscayne Boulevard. The menu includes Conch-fritter Benedict with sherry-cayenne aioli, lobster deviled eggs, Caspian Sea Gold Osetra caviar and a croissant with lobster butter and mango jam – your biggest problem is which to choose.

Mignonette

210 NE 18th Street, Miami

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Waterfront luxury

Famed Argentine property developer Alan Faena’s Faena Hotel is part of the huge $1 billion project Faena District in South Beach, and includes a private apartment complex, cultural center, restaurants, bars, and a shopping mall. Located on the site of Miami’s first luxury hotel, The Saxony, the Faena overlooks the beach and exudes opulence.

Faena Hotel

Atlantic Ocean. 3201 Collins Avenue, Miami

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The truth is out there

Although the HM-9 Nike missile base is in the Everglades National Park, about an hour’s drive south of downtown Miami, it should be on the itinerary of great places to visit while here. Closed to the public for years, the site is where the US military kept a small band of soldiers during the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, guarding a nuclear arms arsenal and scanning for an invasion of Cuban bomber aircraft. Today, visitors can get a historical tour of the base while experiencing the strangely beautiful landscape that makes up the Everglades – swampy grasslands, cypress trees, alligators, mosquitoes, vultures, and all.

Ernest Coe Visitor Center

40001 State Road 9336, Miami

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Island life

You’re sure to end up on South Beach when in Miami, but once you’ve had your dose of Speedos, head for the sand-duned beach of Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park in Key Biscayne, the island just south of Miami. The area has a local feel, with families barbecuing until dusk in the shade of the sea grape trees. The warm, shallow waters are full of friendly sea life, including turtles and manatees. Take a tour of the historic lighthouse on the beach. Walk or rent a four-wheeled bicycle with seats for the entire family. Explore the surrounding thicket of mangrove forests and jungle greenery where you’ll spot plenty of iguanas.

Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park

1200 Crandon Boulevard, Key Biscayne

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Posh slumber

The Biltmore in Miami’s exclusive Coral Gables neighborhood is one of those classic hotels of the imagination. Built in 1926 at the height of the Florida land boom, it was at the time the tallest building in the city and boasted a pool that the hotel claimed to be the largest in the world. In addition to housing and entertaining the rich and famous, the Biltmore has been the setting for both Miami Vice and CSI Miami and was transformed into a hospital during World War II.

The Biltmore

1200 Anastasia Avenue, Miami

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Jawdropping view

Like so much of the land in Miami, the “hills” here are man-made. To gain elevation and get the best view of this sprawling city and its islands, take the elevator to the top floor of 11 11, Miami’s modernist parking garage at 1111 Lincoln Road. Designed by Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron for property developer Robert Wennett, who himself lives in a penthouse atop the garage, 11 11 offers more than a place to park. Yoga classes, wedding parties and fashion shows can all be found here.

11 11 Parking garage

1111 Lincoln Road, Miami

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Seductive sleep

The Venetian Pool, also in Coral Gables, is right in line with Miami’s image as a blingy, outrageously sexy party city where anything is possible. Reopened after extensive renovations last year, the public pool was carved out of the rock quarry that was created when the surrounding Venetian-style houses were built in the 1920s. It’s a lagoon-like swimming hole, flanked by grottos, a sandy beach and an island. And of course swimmers who love kitschy design flock to this must-see location.

Venetian Pool

2701 De Soto Boulevard, Miami

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Last edited: August 3, 2017

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