The Miami Guide
In the past few years, Miami has quietly—and powerfully—redefined itself. While the oonz-oonz vibe is very much alive and well and out all night, the city has shifted its focus to art. In the sixteen years since Art Basel made its second home here, a new crop of exciting and provocative galleries has taken center stage in the city. This has become a place to discover new artists and take in some of the most engaging exhibits anywhere. Meanwhile, the food landscape is as much a testament to smaller, more creative spots springing up in emerging neighborhoods, like Little River and Little Haiti, as it is to international imports, like Zuma and the newly arrived Chotto Matte. Don’t misunderstand: There is no dearth of ways to drink tequila at 4 a.m. It’s just that you’ll probably want to visit a gallery the next day.
Gee Beauty1845 Purdy Ave., Sunset Harbour | 305.868.3533
Sunny, airy, and meticulously edited, this new Sunset Harbour space (larger than the old Bal Harbour studio) is actually a full-service beauty destination. Come here for brow shaping, facials, and a lengthy menu of waxing options, then take some of the magic home with you from the on-site boutique. The team behind Gee—mom Miriam and daughters Natalie, Stephanie, and Celene—keeps the shelves brimming with tried-and-true beauty favorites, including Rodin, Sunday Riley, plus goop by Juice Beauty.
Base2215 NW 2 Ave., Wynwood | 305.531.4982
Cool as they are, concept stores have a tendency to wither comparatively quickly, so the fact that Steven Giles's men's shop—now nestled in colorful Wynwood—has been in business since 1989 is the first sign that it merits a second look. In addition to his excellent assortment and spot-on limited editions, Giles has supported his business by expanding Base into a brand consultancy that's worked with design-centric hotels both locally (EDITION) and in other cities (Ian Schrager's Public Hotel in Chicago). That said, his exquisite taste is best experienced via the shelves and racks of his shop, where you'll find cargo jackets from cool-kid Japanese brand Nanamica, Herschel Dopp kits in neutral greys and blacks, drop-crotch silk pants from Daniel Patrick's LA-made Knomadick, and more.
Boho Hunter314 NW 24th St., Wynwood | 786.558.4486
In the heart of the Arts District, four friends who met in Miami run this fittingly beach-ready shop that sells a mix of designers from Colombia, Venezuela, and Mexico. Look for wrap headbands perfect for lounging by the pool from Verdelimon, printed ruffled skirts from Pink Filosofy, and cheeky woven totes adorned with pom-poms and sayings like “Ohlala!” from Agua d'Mar.
Books & Books265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables | 305.442.4408
One of the country’s preeminent indie booksellers, Miami native Mitchell Kaplan opened Books & Books at the beginning of the 1980’s, originally in Coral Gables. There are now three locations in Miami—one on Lincoln in Miami Beach, and one at Bal Harbour Shops, in addition to Coral Gables (plus a Grand Cayman and Westhampton Beach location). The staff recommendations will help you land on the perfect beach, plane, etc., read. Literary lovers must go.
Eberjey1905 Purdy Ave., South Beach | 305.763.8839
Eberjey's long been a favorite for soft-as-butter pajamas and dainty lingerie that perfectly skirts the line between comfortable enough for every day and sexy enough for a special occasion. The company is headquartered in Miami, and its two boutiques (in South Beach and Mid-Beach) are very conveniently located for swimsuit shopping.
Frangipani2516 NW 2 Ave., Wynwood | 305.573.1480
This Wynwood boutique with an LA vibe is brilliant for gift shopping—from quirky kids' toys to playful stationery, vintage monogrammed napkins, art books, handmade home décor, Spiritual Gangster tanks, Soludos, and jewelry.
Glottman219 NW 26 St., Wynwood
Glottman is both a design firm and a purveyor of international interior design. Here, you’ll find virtually everything you can think of to furnish the most stylish, modern interiors from top to bottom. The well-appointed Wynwood space is uplifting and inspiring even just to peruse, with soft, gorgeous textiles and rugs on display from Scandinavian designers like Kinnasand, as well as luxurious modern furniture and light fixtures that skew from high-concept design to reimagined classics. But not everything here is a major investment: It also sells small gifts, home accessories, kitchen utensils, and serveware you can take home easily. There's another location in MiMo/Biscayne Bay.
I on the District51 NE 40 St., Design District | 305.573.9400
Smack in the middle of Miami’s Design District (a must for any designer-brand shopper), this is the destination for designer and vintage sunglasses and optical glasses. This chic minimalist space houses the coolest international eyewear brands, from the avant-garde (Mykita, Matsuda, Thierry Lasry) to the tried-and-true (Cutler and Gross, Thom Browne, Oliver Peoples).
Maison Margiela3930 NE 2 Ave., Design District | 786.718.1931
Maison Martin Margiela’s Miami outpost looks and feels like a piece of Versailles dropped into a cavernous black-washed warehouse loft, which pretty much sums up the inimitable, endlessly cool, and iconoclastic aesthetic of this legendary fashion house (founded in Paris in 1988). The shop is located, naturally, in Miami’s Design District, which one might describe as a hipper, artsier Rodeo Drive. Avid shoppers will want to allot some quality time to hit all the stops: Virtually every big-deal designer is accounted for here.
Plant the Future2511 NW 2 Ave., Wynwood | 305.571.7177
Living plants arguably make better gifts than run-of-the-mill floral arrangements. Done right, a great plant or terrarium can be an uplifting interior décor element in itself, and it doesn’t wilt or die a few days later. Plant the Future is the place to go for beautiful, lively, inspired living-plant arrangements, from vibrant flowering cacti to moss art (like a chic Chia Pet!) to actual works of art with plants in them. There's another location in Mid-Beach.
Taschen1111 Lincoln Rd., Wynwood | 305.538.6185
It’s hard to find a Taschen store that isn’t cool, but the Miami outpost is especially so, with a bright, aesthetically pleasing array of oversize books on art, pop culture, photography, fashion, architecture, film, erotica, and more. For a different spread of books, after Taschen, walk a couple blocks west on Lincoln to the indie Books & Books.
The Webster1220 Collins Ave., South Beach | 305.674.7899
While everyone else in fashion was developing e-commerce platforms, retail pioneer Laure Hériard Dubreuil decided to open a 20,000-square-foot brick-and-mortar shop in South Beach in a 1939 Henry Hohauser–designed Art Deco building. The space itself is impeccably designed. Each room has a slightly different vibe (some dark and moody, others light and bright), but it’s all the better to browse in and ultimately spend hours wandering through. Exclusives like palm-leaf-printed silk PJs from For Restless Sleepers, Olympia Le-Tan clutches, Gigi Burris Millinery woven hats, and even a Pantone Universe iPhone case in—yep—the Webster Pink. While Miami was Hériard Dubreuil's first location, she’s since opened locations in Bal Harbour, Costa Mesa, Houston, and New York.
En Avance151 NE 41st St., Suite 129, Design District | 305.576.0056
A pillar of sustainability and conscience in fashion, En Avance has been a Miami institution for nearly three decades. The boutique’s inventory spans clothing, beauty, accessories, and homewares. Browse through racks of Sacai, Ellery, and Preen; pick up a ceramic or two; and don’t leave without a bottle of miracle-working serum by the Vintner’s Daughter.
Tenoversix Miami7338 NW Miami Ct., Little River | 786.615.4700
In a retail landscape heavily crowded with luxury brands, Kristen Cole is bringing an earthier, lighter, more artisanal selection with the opening of TenOverSix in Little River. Cole is known for her great eye and understated finds for women, men, and kids, but the focus here is really on women’s accessories and home goods. There’s a smattering of ready-to-wear, too: Pieces from Rachel Comey and Jesse Kamm share floor space with tiny sweatshirts from Boy + Girl and Misha & Puff, while the glass cabinets are lined with Gabriela Artigas earrings and Fort Standard bottle openers.