Don't tell the fine-art world, but college kids and the glitterati have more in common than they care to admit.
After spending all fall working hard to make sure exhibits and shows are ready for the big week, it's only natural that there's a need to blow off some steam. But instead of Bud Light and SoCo, during Art Basel there's Veuve Clicquot and Absolut. And there's no need to pack your friends into a Camry when private jets and Uber are readily available.
Basel parties are inevitably some of the best you'll attend all year, the only soirees where socialites and gutter punks mix and monied collectors relate to starving creatives. This is winter break for the 1 percent, darling!
The venue everyone will be clamoring to check out is Basement at the newly opened Miami Beach Edition (2901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach). Throughout the week, Basement will hold a series of invite-only events dubbed Discobox. The biggest name on the schedule comes Thursday, December 4, when DFA head honcho James Murphy and part-time Miami residents Soul Clap get behind the decks. Murphy hasn't exactly been quiet since he retired the LCD Soundsystem moniker. He's kept busy producing tracks for Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Arcade Fire and DJing pretty frequently.
It's been a year since Pérez Art Museum Miami (1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami) dazzled with its debut. The museum is celebrating that anniversary with performances by Future Brown, Total Freedom, Ian Isiah, and Maluca. Future Brown will play on a custom stage where "a flyboarding performance in Biscayne Bay" will serve as a backdrop. The quartet will also debut a PAMM-commissioned music video off its debut album. Unfortunately, the party is open only to PAMM members and VIP cardholders for Art Basel, Design Miami, and Art Miami. (Guess your tax dollars don't count toward partying.)
Every year, Scope Art Show puts on one of the best parties, with past editions featuring performances by the likes of Metric and Tegan & Sara. This year, Scope and VH1 have teamed up again for an invite-only bash at Mansion (1235 Washington Ave., Miami Beach) Friday, December 5, at 8 p.m. If you can get an invitation, you'll be serenaded by Danish singer-songwriter Nabiha, who mixes pop and R&B with incredibly infectious hooks. Also on the bill is superproducer Swizz Beatz, who has produced cuts for Beyoncé, Drake, and Nicki Minaj.
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Not to be outdone, Pulse Art Fair, which made the jump to Miami Beach this year, is celebrating its beachside environs with its tenth-anniversary party at the Shore Club (1901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach) for invited guests and VIPs. The Friday-night bash will get a heavy dose of record label Ghostly International as resident DJ Michna and founder Sam Valenti VI keep the party going from 9 p.m. until late.
Over at the Delano (1685 Collins Ave., Miami Beach), "Airball at Delano: Snarkitecture vs. Alchemist" pits the Brooklyn collective against the 1111 Lincoln fashion mecca. The party is part of the Airball installation at the store and features live performances by Theophilus London and Travis Scott. This party starts later than many, at 11 p.m., which is perfect if you plan to arrive on Miami time.
Perhaps looking for a second helping of Basel, Guy Gerber returns to Miami to spin at the Delano pool Saturday, December 6, at 7 p.m. Gerber was in town the same time last year, but now he's bringing his recently launched Rumors imprint with him and helping local shoe brand Del Toro celebrate its second anniversary.