by Jon Warech
photography by Jennifer robbins | November 10, 2014 | Lifestyle
Miami’s nightlife landscape is forever shifting—new venues open, promoters play musical chairs, and the high-level partying never stops. Looking for plans? This is the only guide you’ll need this season.
Black cutout dress, Phillip Plein ($1,085). Aventura Mall, 19501 Biscayne Blvd., 305-466-2338. White opal crystal earrings, Oscar de la Renta ($395). Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-868-7986. Clutch, Edie Parker ($1,195). The Webster, 1220 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-674-7899. Black sandals, Alexandre Birman ($595). The Webster, SEE ABOVE. Rec Room: 1690 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
Those with jobs downtown or in Brickell may want to sneak out early from 5-8 pm for happy hour at the new MO Bar + Lounge (500 Brickell Key Dr., Miami) at the Mandarin Oriental on Brickell Key, a glass-walled waterfront lounge a mere stroll across a bridge from Miami’s budding business district.
Head to the beach to dine among the stars at Cecconi’s (4385 Collins Ave., Miami Beach), the public indoor/outdoor restaurant at the private Soho Beach House, where a limoncello spritz or a Soho mule and possibly a Sophia Vergara sighting will gear you up for a night on the town.
From there, you can hit Mokai Lounge (235 23rd St., Miami Beach) for its self proclaimed late-night “naughtiest party on the beach,” with models, bottles, and scantily clad dancers doing things you can usually only find on Cinemax.
Over at FDR at the Delano (1685 Collins Ave., Miami Beach), it’s less about the show and more about the bump and grind. Presented by Yes Julz, the Monday night party features resident DJ Iron Lyons spinning ’90s and modern-day hip-hop before kicking into reggae till the lights come on at 5 am. “The party had only been going for five months when I got a call that Jay Z was on the way,” says Julz. “He showed up with Beyoncé—who danced all night—and Drake, Diddy, and Zoe Kravitz. That’s our crowd. Every Tuesday, I wake up thinking, That was the craziest Monday night ever.”
Glimmering Soutache swimsuit, La Perla ($966). Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-864-3173. Jaide sunglasses, Oliver Peoples ($405). Saks Fifth Avenue, Dadeland Mall, 7535 N. Kendall Dr., Miami, 305-661-4206. Honeycomb cuff, Campbell ($750). Intermix, 634 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-531-5950. Scarlet sandals, Alexandre Birman ($795). The Webster, 1220 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-674-7899. ROSE BAR & POOL BAR AT DELANO: 1685 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
It’s ladies night all over town, including Blackbird Ordinary (729 SW First Ave., Miami), where women drink free from 10 pm-1:30 am, while at Euro-ish Petit Miami bistro (1929 Purdy Ave., Miami Beach), there’s free wine with dinner for the ladies all night long.
Up the intensity via nightlife staple Mark Lehmkuhl’s Fever Tuesdays at Set (320 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach), where glow-in-the-dark dancers and neon light shows have temperatures running high.
Paulo Cardoso and his many beautiful friends pack the house at the long-running Favela Beach party at Wall (2201 Collins Ave., Miami Beach), a Brazilian-themed fête that puts you shoulder to shoulder with the young and the restless. DJs Ruen and Reid Waters create the mood, and shots of tequila take it to the next level, according to model/actress Amanda Cerny. “The club is so intimate, so you really get to party with the people around you,” she says. “I’ll go with [promoters] Michael Malone and Marko Gojanovic and run into celebrity friends from LA or professional athletes that I know all the time, and I never leave until it closes. I don’t want to miss out on the fun.”
In Wynwood, Gramps (176 NW 24th St., Miami) hosts a world/psychedelic music night with highly touted local artist Bhakti Baxter and Andrew James curating the songs and attracting the gallery crowd, which overflows into the outdoor yard.
Still on the mainland, check out Bardot (3456 N. Miami Ave., Miami) after 11 pm, where live music (and the cute bar staff) reigns on Wednesdays, whether it be jazz, blues, or Latin fusion.
If you’re more beach-focused, the Dragon Lounge at Katsuya (1701 Collins Ave., Miami Beach) is a great place to start the night with half-off select starters and cocktails during the Social Hour from 7-9 pm. Artist Jona Cerwinske recently added his personal touch to the walls of the intimate bar, which pulls in a crowd that’s easy on the eyes.
If you’re looking for things to get messy in a good way, the late-night dinner party at Bâoli Miami (1906 Collins Ave., Miami Beach) will have you dancing on tables and likely leave you fluent in several languages. It’s the perfect preamble to the house music party at Mansion (1235 Washington Ave., Miami Beach), dubbed International Wednesdays, where contortionists and go-go dancers dress based on the international theme du jour, which can sometimes be construed as “almost nudity.” Think cancan dancers, hula girls, and Arabian nights.
The Dirty Hairy party at LIV (4441 Collins Ave., Miami Beach) welcomes a hip mainland crowd and was home to DJs like Diplo and Chromeo before they were stars. The open-format music invites the pretty kids to party hard at this wild night.
Bordeaux silk crepe dress, Versace ($2,775). Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-864-0044. Coral tassel earrings, Oscar de la Renta ($425). Bal Harbour Shops, 305-868-7986. Geometric cuff, Campbell ($750). Intermix, 634 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-531-5950. HYDE BEACH: 1701 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
Kick off the night at chef Daniel Serfer’s Mignonette (210 NE 18th St., Miami), where from 5:30-6:30 pm happy hour includes an ounce of Siberian sturgeon caviar and a bottle of Oudinot Champagne for $120.
Then head to W South Beach (2201 Collins Ave., Miami Beach), where in the Living Room Bar from 7-9 pm the W SpeakerBox concert series offers an eclectic mix of live music along with snacks created by Conor Hanlon, executive chef at The Dutch. Enjoy live jazz, R&B, or soul music with a side of steak tartare and a couple of glasses of Champagne, and you’re off and running just after the sunset.
There’s a garden party to be had at the Broken Shaker (2727 Indian Creek Dr., Miami), which regularly draws tastemakers and cocktail groupies, and is inevitably packed with potential drinking partners.
Looking for something a little more Cannes-ish? Villa Azur (309 23rd St., Miami Beach) hosts one of the hottest dinner parties in town on Thursdays, when a global collection of socialites pop Champagne (complete with fiery sparklers) and toast the good life while enjoying seafood for days with the $400 Le Tremendous raw bar platter.
Rec Room (1690 Collins Ave., Miami Beach), where nostalgia meets hedonism, runs Rush Rush Thursdays, an old-school street-style jam with music from resident DJs Reid Waters and Christa Marie. The lounge feels like the basement of your best friend’s parents’ house, and you know some of the best memories of your life happened there.
Wynwood’s Gramps and The Electric Pickle Co. (2826 N. Miami Ave., Miami) are always solid on Fridays, and Brick House (187 NW 28th St., Miami) starts the raging at happy hour before DJ Tom Laroc, a 16-year veteran in the Miami nightlife scene, hits the decks at 10 pm with a nightly mix of music from indie to classic hip-hop to ’80s jams. The crowd, like the music, is eclectic. “It’s local artists, musicians, and even dressed-up girls you’d see on South Beach,” says Laroc.
Only at The Forge (432 41st St., Miami Beach) does happy hour last until 11 pm, where on Fridays guests pop $50 bottles of Veuve Clicquot while dining on complimentary hors d’oeuvres from chef Christopher Lee. “The Forge happy hour is the only place to be on Friday nights,” says Joey Goldman of Goldman Properties and the owner of Joey’s Wynwood (2506 NW Second Ave., Miami). “It’s the best way to start the weekend.” Maxwell Blandford and David Phenom provide the “musique,” and host Antonio Misuraca brings in the A-list crowd before he moves them late night to Story (136 Collins Ave., Miami Beach), where the likes of Cedric Gervais, David Guetta, and Calvin Harris frequently spin. You’ll find plenty of bar options on Fridays, but there’s often a latenight surge downtown at The Corner (1035 N. Miami Ave., Miami), where a young art scene crowd seems unconcerned about tomorrow.
Black satin shirt ($1,500) and gold pants (price on request), Alexander Vauthier. Oxygene, Bal Harbour Shops, 9700 Collins Ave., 305-864-0202. Aqua Simona heels, Oscar de la Renta ($800). Bal Harbour Shops, 305-868-7986. RADIO BAR: 814 First St., Miami Beach
Start your Saturday off très early at Hyde Beach’s (1701 Collins Ave., Miami Beach) Swim Club soirée, where bikini-clad models and dudes with muscles party like MTV Spring Break cameras are rolling. According to model/fitness expert Murphy Bruce, it’s a rain or shine party from 11 am to dusk. “Over Labor Day Weekend, it started to pour, but instead of packing up the beds and the DJ going home, we all danced in the rain,” she says. “The energy was incredible.”
Radio Bar (814 First St., Miami Beach) is cranked up on Saturday nights with locals and the occasional famous athlete drinking heavily to a mix of old-school hip-hop and alternative hits. There’s a pool table, but you’ll likely poke into 20-30 people if you try to play when the house is packed.
Ball & Chain (1513 SW Eighth St., Miami) takes Calle Ocho by storm with a Cuban themed soirée every Saturday evening. The night includes dominoes, wild dancing, a live Cuban band, and cocktails from world-class cantineros Julio Cabrera and Danny Valdez, who will spike your punch with awesome.
LIV hosts the jet-set crowd—old South Beach mixed with young Europeans—partying to Erick Morillo, the Swedish House Mafia guys, and other top DJs. Nights like this are what make LIV one of the top-grossing clubs in the world. You’ll regularly bump into Michael Bay, the Kardashians, and the rest of owner David Grutman’s friends.
After-hours picks up at E11even (29 NE 11th St., Miami), the 24-hour nightclub/cabaret where at around 5 am lots of nightlife industry insiders show up to enjoy their own share of Saturday night shenanigans. Enjoy bottle service in “the pit” and watch Cirque du Soleil-inspired trapeze acts, or head up to the rooftop deck for Slap & Tickle spinning deep house as the sun comes up.
Sunday funday starts by sipping Seasalt Mimosas with the power brunchers at Seasalt and Pepper (422 NW North River Dr., Miami), the seafood brasserie by the Miami River. Arrive by yacht? Why not? The sea-faring set disembarks here to indulge in fresh fare and sun-drenched fun that’s steeped in a sexy South of France vibe.
On the last Sunday of every month, the cool kids gather from 2-7 pm at Dream Hotel (1111 Collins Ave., Miami Beach) to hula-hoop and play beer pong at the Best Day Ever party presented by Yes Julz and Norma Now. The DJ changes each week, but the water-gun fights are a party staple.
Nikki Beach (1 Ocean Dr., Miami Beach) has spread its wings around the globe, but its Sunday party is still a hit on South Beach. The boozy brunch reminds locals that Miami is paradise, and the late-night party upstairs at Pearl Champagne Lounge (with an open-music format and live burlesque shows) proves we party better than the rest. Late night, there’s Evolution Sundays at Set.
For a locals-only art scene/skate/surf vibe, hit Chocolate Sundays at Purdy Lounge (1811 Purdy Ave., Miami Beach), with its famous $7 Happy Meal—a Miller High Life and a Jägermeister shot, no toy included.
If you’re looking to spot or maybe even rub shoulders with hip-hop celebs, LIV on Sunday (aka Church) is the Miami party that Lil Wayne, Drake, and Meek Mill rap about, and where guys like Kanye West, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Busta Rhymes, and Lil Wayne have all performed. DJs Stevie J and Don P kick-start the madness, and anyone who is anyone in the hiphop world will be there. “Stevie J gets the crowd pumped up, and the whole room parties hard,” says model Jocelyn Chew. “There is no better way to end the week than at LIV on Sunday.” Or maybe your week is just beginning.
Styling by Kristina Kitchen with Artists at Wilhelmina; Makeup and hair by Mary Irwin at Agency Gerard Management using Chanel Beauty and Oribe