A closer look (including a walk and a talk) at the monastery is one of the many facets of the misnamed AIA Miami Architecture Week. The onetime seven-day soiree has morphed into a three-week-long celebration featuring tours of buildings old and new; lectures from prominent practitioners in the field such as Cesar Pelli, architect of this city's long-in-the-works performing arts center; movie screenings; exhibitions; and the inevitable contests dealing with taking photographs and designing things out of sand, canned and boxed food, and stuff that floats.
The festivities kick off with a peek at naval architecture via a stroll through two of Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines' newest ships, the Navigator of the Seas and the Voyager of the Seas. Thirty lucky folks who reserve early and pass a security clearance get to set foot on the behemoth boats, the former boasting an ice skating rink, a rock climbing wall, and an atrium two football fields long, and both able to accommodate upward of 3000 passengers. Just goes to show that sometimes the best designs are anything but old and earthbound.