Miami, Florida is a melting pot of cultures and subcultures alike. Different races, creeds, ages, orientations have crossed land and sea to settle under the sunny Florida weather along its southeastern coast. And with the people who contribute a little bit of every culture, Miami is constantly evolving. Yet, a certain part of its charm remains attributed to its retro vibe that can be a refreshing change of pace.
To take a leisurely trip down memory lane on your next visit to this ‘Magic City’, add these Miami gems to your itinerary that ooze nostalgia at every turn.
Pink pastels, hard-edged, geometric patterns adorn many of the structures along this South Beach staple in Miami Beach. Talking a walk down Ocean Drive is like getting an introductory class in Art Deco. The hotels and apartment buildings are characteristic of the 1920s art movement, which Widewalls described as a ‘celebration of modern ideas of progress’. There are walking tours around the area, but taking your own time is a preferable option. You can snap several postcard-worthy images of the Park Central Hotel, The Webster, and The Carlyle, among others. Cap off your evening in The Regent Cocktail Club with a drink, ‘Roaring Twenties’ style. If you can’t get enough of Art Deco, Nostalgiosity previously recommended staying at Hotel Croydon to make your trip full-circle.
L.A. Boudoir Miami
Image: Miami Racked
It’s a whole ‘nother decade when you enter this lingerie store. L.A. Boudoir Miami can make any woman who walks in feel a little bit sultry but also like a promising Hollywood starlet of 1950s glamor. The boutique boasts an array of vintage corsets, luscious silks, and opulent lace undergarments. The interiors are decorated with striped wallpaper, dividers with floral accents, and delicate chandeliers.
Image: Sweat Records
The neighborhood of Little Haiti is also a secret hub for Miami’s growing indie crowd. One of its headquarters is the vinyl retailer, Sweat Records, owned by Lauren Reskin whose teal-dyed shop remains resilient from hurricanes and recessions (yes, that sounds like a band). The 13-year-old record store has the best selection of forgotten artists to up-and-comers in the music scene. Reskin stated to Miami New Times how the community really comes together through their shared love of music, whether it’s the hipsters or senior crowds. They also do more than sell vinyl records – they regularly host brunches, events, and workshops that cater to different groups.
Seminole Classic Casino
Image: Miami Herald
Great, speedy service is not something you’d expect from a casino but that’s one of the things valued most at Seminole Classic Casino. It seems to be working, as what’s dubbed “Hard Rock’s Older Sister” raked in over $160 million in 2016. In other words, people are coming, going, and returning. But before Seminole offered other table games, it used to be just a humble neighborhood bingo hall. Nowadays, they are seeing a decline, which is why Seminole introduced other games, as bingo is slowly being overshadowed by its virtual equivalent. Online bingo is seeing a steady rise in players and remains a game that displays a sense of camaraderie among its players. Foxy Winners highlights the extraordinary stories of ordinary bingo players, which can be encouraging for others to continue or try playing the game, while also adding to the strength of its community. Ironically, a positive of this trend is a renewed interest in venues like Seminole. Even after its revamp, the building’s interiors are still give off that retro vibe, albeit more luminous. Though it is not filled with smoke anymore and there are more games to choose from, many of the faces remain familiar. No renovation can discard the community aspect which is the true spirit embodied by Seminole.
Mac’s Club Deuce
Image: Mac’s Club Deuce Facebook
Miami Beach’s greatest dive bar – at least according to Anthony Bourdain and thousands of Floridians – has been around since 1964. Mac’s Club Deuce is a mainstay in Miami and will continue to be so because of its authentic charm. It has a vibe that’s doesn’t overdo it despite what the flashy lights might tell you. The facade also has an Art Deco feel to it, with the interiors reminiscent of a 50s diner’s decor apart from the neon-lit signs. Aside from a refreshing respite from the Miami heat, what many treasure is the company of its owner, Mac Klein who sadly passed away at 101-years-old. Nonetheless, Mac’s Club Deuce is a long-lasting legacy that he has bestowed upon Miami.
Although not as historic as some other major cities, the nostalgic atmosphere of Miami is enough to make for an unforgettable trip. The destinations above are definitely worth checking out, but keep your eyes open as you may discover many more places that can take you on a trip down memory lane.