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Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock


Art deco festival in Miami

If Brooklyn is famous for its brick houses, Miami’s South Beach is synonymous with colorful buildings. Its Art Deco Weekend showcases the playful local architecture.

If you take a walk along palm tree-lined Ocean Drive at South Beach in Miami, you can’t help but notice the pastelcolored art deco buildings. This area regularly appears in films such as Scarface and 80s TV show Miami Vice and is known locally as the city’s “Art Deco District”. Most of the houses here were built between 1923 and 1943, when their design, brimming with optimism, was considered ultramodern – a real shot in the arm following the dark days of the Great Depression. Over the years, however, people came to regard the design as rather kitsch and the buildings were threatened with demolition. This prompted a small group of activists to establish the Art Deco Festival in the late 1970s in order to draw attention to and showcase an important chapter in the history of architecture.

The buildings are no longer threatened with demolition, but the celebration of them still survives in a jam-packed – and completely free – festival that attracts both tourists and locals. They have everything from musical performances and outdoor cinema to fashion shows and classic car exhibitions. Anyone wanting to immerse themselves in the history of art deco and the city can take advantage of the many lectures and guided tours of fered during the course of the weekend.

Art Deco Weekend, January 16–18

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