Best Of Arts & Entertainment
Best Art Gallery
How do you know when an art gallery has catapulted into the art-world stratosphere? When collectors from Miami, New York, Los Angeles, and Paris quickly buy out its entire stock at a major art fair. That was exactly what happened to Spinello Projects at the Volta New York fair, where...
During the past five years, Jillian Mayer has catapulted to national prominence as an artist and filmmaker who creates uncanny works that employ a postmillennial techno approach while blurring identities and parsing pop cultural memes. She burst onto the scene with her 2010 Scenic Jogging, in which the artist raced...
Best Public Art
Bhakti Baxter's Coral Reef City
David Beckham is smitten with the idea of constructing a new Major League Soccer Stadium at PortMiami and calls the site perfect because it reflects a city that "is all about the water, all about the culture." Becks is right. For evidence, simply visit the planet's most popular port to...
Entes y Pésimo
Wynwood may be the heart of a growing global graffiti movement, but some of its murals are surprisingly soulless. Whether they depict a cool-ass dragon perched atop a mountain peak or cartoon characters committing acts of violence, many are brilliantly drawn but little more, like flashy wallpaper for warehouses. Few...
Best Street Artist
The eyes of Miami are stoned on Elmer's and see everything. The sleepy sentinels keep watch over Wynwood at NW 27th Street, make their mark on the Margulies Collection facing I-95, boldly impress passersby on Biscayne Boulevard, and peer down from above the kitchen at the bayside Standard Hotel. Whatever...
Best Gallery Exhibit
"Intethe (Sketch for an Opera)"
At the end of the 19th Century, a swarm of locusts ravaged South Africa, wiping out croplands and forcing local tribesmen to seek work in the recently discovered gold and diamond mines. For his first major project in Miami, South African sculptor Nicholas Hlobo, who is known for his sprawling,...
Best Art Walk
First Friday Art Walk
Ever since Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM) joined the nascent arts community blooming near Biscayne Bay, the area has rapidly become a favorite among local arts lovers eager to experience a more laid-back art walk than the boisterous Second Saturday version that transforms Wynwood into a jam-packed spectacle a few...
Best Museum Exhibit
"Eve Sussman: Rufus Corporation"
Between the usual Art Basel madness and the gala opening of Pérez Art Museum Miami, the Magic City enjoyed more than its fair share of fantastic exhibits in 2013. Only one, however, featured Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage dressed in drag portraying a 17th-century German dwarf. That honor goes...
Best Art Museum
Perez Art Museum Miami
Let's face it: Baselites are damn hard to impress. Each year, the jaded international art-world cognoscenti flock to the 305 for Art Basel, an aesthetic winter bacchanalia where the latest contemporary trends and talent compete for attention with the über-exclusive VIP list for over-the-top private soirees. But in December 2013,...
Vizcaya Museum & Gardens
Yeah, we know Miami is the only urban metropolis wedged next to two national parks (that's Biscayne and the Everglades, you rube). But that doesn't mean it's easy to find a jewel of urban quietude amid that concrete jungle. That's why Vizcaya is such a miracle in the Magic City...
The Cast of Alliance Theatre Lab's Savage in Limbo
For a perfect ensemble cast, actors' responsibilities are twofold: They each have to create a character that is distinct and three-dimensional, and they have to collaborate to create a fictional world that is, in most cases, as plausible as the one beyond the proscenium. If there's one bit of miscasting,...
Best Supporting Actress
Erin Joy Schmidt
A year ago, Erin Joy Schmidt took home New Times' honors for Best Actress thanks to her searing, tear-stained portrayal of an author learning a life-altering secret in Actors' Playhouse's Other Desert Cities. This year, she's won Best Supporting Actress thanks to her latest tear-jerking part — only this time...
There is no such thing as a "typical" Karen Stephens part. Like the best actors anywhere, she's an invisible conduit for a playwright's unique creation, which, paradoxically, we cannot imagine existing without her. Thus, if Christopher Demos-Brown's world-premiere play Fear Up Harsh, which debuted in Miami courtesy of Zoetic Stage,...
Best Theater for Drama
South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center
Once viewed as a construction-delayed, $51 million albatross, the South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center (SMDCAC) has already done plenty since it's 2011 grand opening to prove its worth to taxpayers. It has delivered a winning combination of jazz, classical, and dance shows with a heavy emphasis on Latin American and...
The touring production of Elf didn't make its way to Miami until December 31 — after many Christmas enthusiasts had already pulled the lights off their palm trees and bundled away the inflatable lawn snow globes for another year. But that doesn't mean the Christmas spirit didn't live strong at...
It's worth remembering that before John Wilkes Booth became the first successful presidential assassin, he was a Shakespearean actor, and apparently a damn good one. Early reviews of his plays referred to his "natural genius" and his status as "the most promising young actor on the American stage." So it...
Best Supporting Actor
Most critics agreed that Metamorphoses — the Adrienne Arsht Center and University of Miami Theater Department's ambitious adaptation of Mary Zimmerman's version of Ovid's Roman myths — was not a great success. But the effect of its uneven pacing and wildly disparate cast of students and professionals ensured that one...
Tarell Alvin McCraney
A lot of theater companies and movie producers do the whole "Shakespeare as you've never seen him before" thing, which usually involves staging the Bard's words inside a McDonald's, on the front lines of a Middle Eastern war, or in outer space. But Miami native Tarell Alvin McCraney's eccentric and...
Best Set Design
Michael McKeever's set for Zoetic Stage's Assassins must have been a fun place to show up to work for its cast of ten. After all, it's not often you get to spend a couple of hours a night playing around and firing blanks into a multitiered carnival booth, not to...
End of the Rainbow
The Actors' Playhouse's End of the Rainbow was a funny and heartbreaking antidote to the stale formula of the Judy Garland musical revue. Moreover, it satisfied criteria for both best play and best musical of the year, encompassing the crackling dramatic exigencies of the former and the seemingly unpredictable cabaret...
Best Theater Company
Zoetic Stage has been producing fine work since its inception in 2010, but this past season was the one in which the company really came into its own, establishing itself as a powerhouse incubator of new plays and an accomplished interpreter of canonical classics. The antiwar dramedy Fear Up Harsh...
Best New Play
Fear Up Harsh
Few works, new or established, were as instantly visionary as Christopher Demos-Brown's Fear Up Harsh. The play, which premiered in an acclaimed production at Zoetic Stage, opened on a delirious gamble, in which the carnage of a war zone played in complete blackness, its actions bleeding into the next scene...
John Wynn grew up in Texas, where his brown skin and dark locks led many to mistake him for a Mexican. When he moved to Miami a few years ago, people suddenly decided he was Peruvian. He's actually Vietnamese, but lucky for us, all those years of racial profiling have...
Best Drag Queen
Pussila's trademark makeup paints a pretty good picture of her onstage personality. Her distinctive eye makeup resembles the wings of a demonic butterfly. It wouldn't look out of place at a Marilyn Manson concert. Her cherry painted lips, almost always arranged in a wide smile, tell a different story. In...
Best Party Venue
Ice Palace Film Studios
Since 1923, Ice Palace Film Studios has stood on the corner of North Miami Avenue and NW 14th Street, its white fortress-like walls surrounded by a manicured garden ideal for lounging. Given that unique vibe, it's no shock the space has served as everything from the home of Pulse Art...
Best Movie Theater
Blue Starlite Mini Urban Drive-In
For film worshippers, movie theaters are the temple where an escape to a higher plane begins. Usually, it's the cinema that transports viewers to endless faraway realms, but what if the theater itself also did some of the heavy lifting? Thanks to one Austin, Texas man determined to revive a...
Best Art-House Cinema
In August 2013, Calle Ocho's landmark movie theater closed for renovation. It finally reopened this past March, illuminating the neighborhood with its iconic marquee once again. Thank the cinematic gods! Because before the current art-house cinema craze, Tower was one of the first to bring foreign and independent cinema to...
Best Movie Shot in Miami
Iron Man 3
Tony Stark had been rattled to his core. The brilliant inventor, playboy, and superhero was already suffering a righteous PTSD meltdown from the carnage that invading aliens had wrought on New York City, when a mysterious figure called the Mandarin began blowing up buildings left and right. So Stark —...
Best TV Show Shot in Miami
There are so many ways to get burned in Miami: by the sun, tacky tourist shops, sketchy drug deals. But what if you're a spy? Just ask Michael Westen. He was one of the best in the business before a mysterious enemy had him burned. In spy terminology, that means...
Best TV News Anchor
Perhaps you woke up every morning this winter and glanced out the window at the robin's-egg-blue skies, relished the mid-60s temperatures, and profusely thanked your preferred deity that you found a way to call South Florida home. But in case your personal comfort and sanity weren't reason enough to thank...
Best Spanish-Language TV Personality
If Ron Burgundy had an Argentine uncle, his name would be Guillermo Benites. For more than 34 years, the Buenos Aires native has anchored the 6 p.m. news for Univision's flagship Miami station. With his deadpan baritone and stoic demeanor, Benites has held the attention of Miami's Spanish-speaking viewers through...
Best TV News Reporter
No one goes willingly to the ninth floor of the Miami-Dade jail. In a decaying, overheated building full of criminals of every stripe passing the hours until their day in court, the ninth floor is different. That's where the mentally ill, the disturbed, and the destitute who desperately need psychiatric...
What do Hurricanes Andrew, Irene, and Wilma have in common? Other than the billions of dollars in property damage, the terrifying hours of pelting wind and rain, and the weeks of misery for millions of South Floridians, there's one other thread linking the meteorological monstrosities: John Morales. In a transitional...
It doesn't matter how many points LeBron, D-Wade, and Chris Bosh score. For true Heat fans, the game-time action doesn't feel real without a blow-by-blow description from Eric Reid. Going on his 26th season with the Heat, the sportscaster has been with the NBA champs so long he was once...
Best Radio Show
The Warp Zone With Jackson Alexander Parodi
Ever get a bad case of radio déjà vu? In Miami, it's an all-too-common condition, brought on by suffering through the same three songs ad nauseam until they are replaced by a different rotation of similar-sounding pop tracks until you feel like you've fallen down a Lady Gaga spiral of...
Best AM Radio Personality
Eric Reed is the Brian Williams of Miami sports shows. Hear us out on this one. You trust the brass-voiced NBC newsman to tell it to you straight, right? Well, you can trust Reed when it comes to the latest in Miami sports. Tough draft picks, game-winning plays, and player...
Best FM Radio Personality
Last spring, a gaping hole yawned in Miami's drive-time radio landscape when nationally syndicated Michael Baisden and his distributor, Cumulus Media, couldn't agree on a new deal for the host, whose mix of politics and music had reached more than eight million listeners nationwide. Miami's Hot 105.1 FM had a...
Best Spanish-Language Radio Personality
Betzy "La Gatita" Vázquez
Her nickname is Spanish for "the Kitten." But Betzy Vázquez has a ferocious, sexy roar that has been waking up listeners of her 106.7 FM morning show, El Vacilón de la Gatita, ever since the station switched to a Spanish contemporary music format in November 2013. The show is also...
"One sun rose on us today," Richard Blanco intoned from the steps of the U.S. Capitol. Millions of viewers watched on television, and President Barack Obama sat a few feet away, surrounded by the dignitaries gathered to celebrate his second inauguration. "Kindled over our shores, peeking over the Smokies, greeting...
Best Miami Herald Reporter
The trouble began in San Cristobal, a hilly town hugging the winding border between Venezuela and Colombia. Jim Wyss was there to talk about contraband, the black-market goods that flood across the border in a country where Hugo Chávez's Bolivarian Revolution continues to wreak havoc on the economy long after...
After four years of barking at dishonest politicians and lobbyists, former Miami Herald reporter Elaine de Valle has pulled off a rare feat in this town: She's treated with the same respect afforded to credentialed journalists employed by the dead-lumber media companies. And it's no surprise why. The hard-nosed, old-school...
Best Twitter Feed
"All my jokes are tweets that were too many characters," local stand-up comedian Michael Maryanoff once proclaimed in his Twitter bio. It's not uncommon for standups to workshop jokes on the microblogging service, but — for all his humble-bragging — Maryanoff is actually one of the few local comedians making...
Best Gay Bar
Just gay guys are reading this item, right? So we can fill this with a bunch of RuPaul's Drag Race references and you'll understand? Yes, gawd! After 15 years on Lincoln Road, Score's landlords told the legendary gay bar to sashay away, so like a panther on the runway, it...
Best Bar, West
Woody's West End Tavern
When you're looking for a laid-back evening of food and booze, sometimes it's best to get away from the bustle of South Beach and take a night off from hunting for parking in the Gables. Miami Springs might not be famous for hopping nightlife, but Woody's West End Tavern offers...
Best Drag Show
Some folks like their drag queens on the tame side, expertly tucked and quaffed, and ready to smile through Katy Perry lyrics. But for the most part, that ain't Miami's style. This city's got flavor — a lot of Latin flavor, in fact — and the queens at Azucar serve...
Best Open-Mike Night
Draw up a list of the many possible places that a hub for newborn creatives might be tucked in Miami-Dade, and a cluster of warehouses stuck behind an Outback Steakhouse in Kendall would presumably be pretty close to the bottom. But get over the odd location and there's no denying...
Karaoke walks a fine line between fun and sad. We've all seen that 40-something dude croon Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Under the Bridge" three times a night or that dangerously drunk college girl cry-sing Adele's "Someone Like You." Enough is enough, karaoke mood killers. If you want tears with your...
Best VIP Room
If you had asked us last year what every Miami nightlife addict's bucket list should include, we would've responded with a till-morning rager at Club Space followed by a quick visit to Goldrush — a combination that represented the very best in Miami late-night debauchery. But then Goldrush closed in...
Point Lounge and Package Store
The dusk of the day of the classic jukebox is upon us. Bars throughout Miami-Dade and the wider world are quickly becoming infected with a new type of technology that purports to be some sort of evolution: the digital jukebox. Those internet-connected machines can call up just about any song...
Best Bar, South
The Irish Times
For decades, University of Miami students have been trying to dupe the bouncers at this Celtic-themed tavern within walking distance of campus. Yet no matter how closely they resemble their older cousin's expired driver's license photo, the bouncer, propped on his stool outside the double doors, inevitably refuses to let...
Best Bar, North
Nite Cap Lounge
When a bar's front windows are plastered with Bud heavy promo posters and three American flags, you pretty much know what to expect inside. And yes, porn mustaches and bad dye jobs abound inside the Nite Cap Lounge, which doesn't serve snacks but is stocked with plenty of glorious cheese...
Best Bar, Miami Beach
Kill Your Idol
A statue of Bruce Lee's karate-ripped body overlooks the bar. A World War II Hindenburg hub floats from the ceiling. An astronaut in a space suit hangs next to a dangling chandelier made of glass bottles. A bearded dude wearing an Hoy Polloy T-shirt scores on the Playboy pinball machine,...
Best Bar, Central
Mike's at Venetia
In the past few years, Miami's drinking dens have started catching up with foodie meccas like New York and Chicago by offering increasingly complex craft cocktails — which, don't get us wrong, is a great trend. You won't hear us complaining about delicious concoctions made with fresh ingredients and top-shelf...
Best Bar, Homestead
Last Chance Saloon
Warning: It's a ten-hour walk before the next booze shack and another two straight days of stumbling to Key West. Maybe you're a drunkard without a designated driver. Or you're too broke to buy a ride in a biker's sidecar. Or you just smoked the last doobie and there isn't...
Best Dive Bar
Although it sits on the border of West Miami and Coral Gables, Seven Seas exists in an alternate universe where time stopped long ago and a cold one costs $2.50. It's hard to imagine any of its patrons existing for a second anywhere else in Miami; it's too pretentious out...
Best New Bar
In Miami Beach, where too many clubs for the glamor set pretentiously serve Goose and Bulls for 20 bucks a pop, finding a bar that doesn't take itself too seriously is as relieving as snagging an ocean breeze on a muggy July afternoon. Patpong Road, brought to you by 50...
Best Sports Bar
Rock Fish Grill
LeBron claps his hands, exploding a cloud of powder over the scorers' table. Giancarlo Stanton slides the doughnut off his bat and strides into the box. Ryan Tannehill checks the play on his wristband and jogs into the huddle. The big game is about to start. And you've got a...
Best Pool Hall
Doral Billiards & Sports Bar
Sometimes a losing bet leads to a bigger bet, which leads to a very bad idea. The balls are racked. The cues are chalked. And the $100 bills are counted. Usually, an hour of midday billiards costs only six bucks at Doral's favorite strip-mall pool hall, Doral Billiards. But this...
Best Poolside Bar
Time for some real talk: It's damn difficult to mess up a poolside bar in Miami. You're beside a pool. There's a bar. You purchase cocktails, dip your feet into the water, and basically live the American dream as you sip your way to the bottom. How hard can this...
Best Hotel Lounge/Bar
Living Room at W South Beach
Usually every W Hotel has a bar dubbed Living Room, and the South Beach outpost is no different. And though we've stayed at other W locations around North America, we've yet to find one with a lobby bar scene that's as chic as our local one. Beautiful women? Check. Power...
Best Happy Hour
Question not found on a recent SAT: Sally had a shitty day at work. She's hangry and needs a few drinks but has only 20 bucks. What does Sally do? A. She goes home — this is South Beach. You can't eat and drink for $20. B. She buys a...
Best Monthly Party
There's no question: Miami is a world-class party city. But for all its late-night charm, the scene can be a little redundant. Oh hey, another night out with beautiful people trying their best not to pay for drinks while staring at their phones and bobbing their heads to EDM! Thankfully,...
Best Weekly Party
Slap & Tickle Tuesdays
A conundrum: For more than two years, Slap & Tickle has been one of Miami's best bets for a night of perfect grooves and drunken antics. But for more than two years, Slap & Tickle has also been the root cause of an epidemic of brutal Wednesday-morning hangovers around the...
Best Latin Club
"La casa de los artistas" is the slogan Kukaramakara uses to promote itself — and it's hard to argue with that self-assessment. In a city where people bow to the temple of the DJ, it's refreshing to see a live music club stake a claim on prime real estate in...
Best Rock Club
The Fillmore Miami Beach
The ghosts of Jackie Gleason and Jerry Garcia roam these halls. Opened in 1950 as the Miami Beach Auditorium, this 3,500-person theater was South Beach's chosen stage for Broadway-style musicals, world-class boxing exhibitions, and cameos by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Bob Hope, and other cocktail-set celebrities. By 1964, it had...
Best Underground Club
Thanks to the Magic City's porous earth and position right at sea level, it's a scientific fact that Miami is one of the toughest places in America to get underground. There's a reason no one has a basement around here, folks. South Florida's musical underground, however, is a very different...
Best Small Music Venue
Do Not Sit on the Furniture
The philosophy of this beat-freak hangout is right there in the name: If you're sitting, you're not dancing, and dancing is the whole point. That's why revelers looking for a grittier party experience in SoBe have been flocking to the latest dimly lit dancehall in town, affectionately referred to as...
Best Live Music Venue
Mana Wynwood Production Village
Like the few remaining white warehouse walls just waiting for a tagger to slather on some spray-paint art, the Mana Wynwood Production Village is a blank slate. With a 39,000-square-foot sound stage and 100,000 of raw square footage, the village can host everything from major film shoots to fashion shows...
Best Venue for Local Acts
This Winter Music Conference pop-up-club-turned-permanent-party-spot is downtown Miami's home for, in the words of owner, promoter, and Massive Ideas founder Anders Scherberger, "weirder stuff that doesn't really fit into the normal category." And these days, the whole DWNTWN MIA crowd desperately needs a legit, late-night hangout that isn't just trying...
Best Strip Club
Lap dances make a man hungry. Fortunately, there exist splendorous houses of sensual pleasure like Wonderland, a strip club and dining establishment serving full-friction entertainment alongside chimichurri skirt steak with truffle mashed potatoes. While the more exotic aspects of a typical evening at this self-described "ultimate gentleman's club" are overseen...
Best Dance Club
Last year, Club Space founder Louis Puig sold his stake in the crown jewel of Miami's nightlife scene after 13 years of pushing the dance music mecca into the hearts and minds of booty-shaking people worldwide. How popular is Space? Popular enough that it has to open only once a...
Best Nightlife Impresario
What were you doing at 22? Between graduating from college and looking for a job, you were probably getting high in your parents' spare bedroom while watching Grandma's Boy on cable. Emi Guerra, on the other hand, was cofounding one of Miami's most influential nightclubs, Space. But beyond that, the...
Best Jazz Night
Downtown Jazz at the Corner
Gone is the beloved Van Dyke Café, another victim of South Beach's rocketing property values, but thankfully the Magic City jazz that thrived upstairs at the Lincoln Road standby lives on downtown. Every Tuesday night, the Corner serves a delicious slice of syncopation. The atmosphere is much more subdued than...
Best Music Festival
A lot of music festivals have come and gone, but rarely is there one that really tries to surpass Miami's expectations. III Points did exactly that last October with a massive effort to rally Miami's neighborhood du jour, Wynwood, through music, art, and technology. Mana Wynwood Production Village served as...
Damn geography. Thanks to our spot on the map, Miami gets screwed over on a lot of great shows. Our peninsular location means many traveling bands simply can't afford to cruise all the way down to the Magic City. Unless they have the funds to buy plane tickets for the...
Best Radio Station
Dade County Radio
Did you know that cell phones operate on radio signals and that Wi-Fi is based on the radio frequency spectrum? It's a fact. And what it means is that internet radio is real radio, and your mobile phone is just as much a radio as your old boombox. These are...
Best Latin Band
The infectious sound of los timbales and bongos fuse with the keyboard as the sax and vocals crescendo. In a matter of seconds, a seductive melody reverberates throughout the room, prompting the party people to involuntarily and uncontrollably shake their asses. They have caught Palo! fever. For more than a...
DJ Icue began his career in 1995 with a KRS-One record and a dream. Since then, he's played a Calle Ocho stage with Pitbull, Bayfront Park with Gang Starr, and downtown Miami with the Boot Camp Clik. He's even had the Marley brothers by his side and watched regular crowds...
A song is a story with a beat and a melody. And when it comes to telling the true-life stories of North Miami, Jimmy Dade is king. From love and loss to violence, drama, happiness, and heartache, the man puts it all together like his name was Johnny Cash. The...
Best Record Label
Super Music Group
In 2010, four Miami friends were irradiated in a government experiment gone wrong. Instead of perishing from the gamma rays pulsing through their bodies, they soon realized they'd been gifted with strange and incredible powers. Soon they joined forces and became (cue cheesy theme music) the Super Music Group! OK,...
In a city dominated by hip-hop and EDM, it's tough for a band to cut through all the noise — even when it's rocking out at 11 with buzzing guitars and hard-hitting drumming. Truth is, it takes songwriting chops and an engaging live show to snag the Magic City's attention,...
Best Unknown Band
Cave of Swimmers
Who knew that a metal band formed by two kids in fourth grade could be this bone-rattlingly, gut-rumblingly brutal? OK, so it's true that Arturo Garcia and Guillermo Gonzalez, elementary school classmates and lifelong pals, are all grown up and 20-something now. But they started shredding together at the ridiculously...
Best New Artist
Music is best enjoyed with a little mystery, so we won't hold it against Sluggers that they keep their identities secret. It must be the duo's way of letting the music speak for itself. And with beats like these, there's no use for talking heads. The crew has released killer...
Best Solo Artist
If music is a journey, Austin Paul has been strapped into one of those new Virgin Galactic rockets blasting off into the stratosphere. Paul had moved out of his strict Christian parents' Miami house for only a bit more than a year when everything changed for him. That's when Pharrell...
Best Music Video by a Local Band
Jacuzzi Boys' "Double Vision"
From the fuzzy bass line to its opening shot of a fierce-looking field hockey club, it's obvious from the outset that the Jacuzzi Boys' "Double Vision" isn't your typical feel-good music video. In fact, the three-minute 13-second flick packs more punch than many other, much longer movies. Director Corey Adams...
Best Music Blog
You've got a lot to live up to if you claim the domain name "The305.com." It would be a true shame to waste digital real estate on throwaway vacation tips or links to time-shares. A site with a name like that — "The 305" — has some serious standards to...
Best Local Boy Made Good
Futures in Arctic ice shelves. Horse-and-buggy stock. Donald Trump hair-care products. There are some investments conventional wisdom dictates smart business people in the early 21st Century simply should not make. Sadly for ink-stained scribes everywhere, "daily newspaper ownership" falls squarely into that category. So it's a measure of just how...
Best Local Girl Made Good
"I didn't come here to make history," Lauryn Williams told the NBC crew in Sochi, Russia. But the silver medal gleaming around her neck told a different story. It's a tale of speed, transition, perseverance, and — yes — ultimately, of history. The Pittsburgh native came to South Florida in...
Chad Johnson: "I don't need a woman when I'm tonguing a killer whale"
For a decade, Chad Johnson was one of the best professional football players on the planet. But when a big-money move to the New England Patriots didn't work out, the man once known as "Ochocinco" was 86ed from the limelight. He moved back to his native Miami, signed with the...
Paul and Swanee DiMare
How good a guy is Paul DiMare? Well, in 2012, he and wife, Swanee, saw a car swerving all over the road up north in Massachusetts with two kids in back. They noticed the driver seemed drunk and called cops, "which quite possibly could have prevented a fatal car crash,"...
Best Power Couple
Sean Drake and Michelle Leshem
In this city, the moniker "power couple" usually denotes old and wealthy. But how about a pair who are young and influential? Look no further than Sean Drake and Michelle Leshem, who under the name Supermarket Creative guide Miami businesses to new heights of coolness and brand awareness. When they...
Back in 2008, Alberto Carvalho inherited the top job at Miami-Dade Public Schools under doubly unenviable circumstances. On one hand, the system was in turmoil — his predecessor, Rudy Crew, had just been forced out, teacher morale was plummeting, and sharks were circling around his position from the start. On...
He is dreamy. He is a (former) professional soccer player, an underwear model, an entrepreneur, a father of four nonsensically named children, and husband to an insanely thin international pop star. And — most recently — he is the owner of a shiny new Major League Soccer franchise. One thing...
Best Criminal Conviction
Ex-Sweetwater Mayor Manny Maroño
For a decade, Manny Maroño ruled over the quiet suburb of Sweetwater, an enclave of 14,000 people in western Miami-Dade County previously most notable for being founded by a troupe of circus midgets looking for a tropical retirement locale. Maroño tried to force his way into local headlines with a...
Richie Incognito Versus Jonathan Martin
In a world where giant man-children are paid millions to play a game, where teams kick the crap out of each other on live television every Sunday, this year's greatest battle won't be on the football field but in the locker room. Starring Richie Incognito as a racist bully and...
Best Political Miscalculation
Tomás Regalado and Marc Sarnoff Versus Ultra
When New Times broke the story of a security guard nearly trampled to death on Ultra's opening night, public officials lined up to express outrage. After all, it wasn't the first calamity at the 16-year-old electronic music festival. For the second straight year, a young Ultragoer had died of a...
Best Local Boy Gone Bad
No one thought too much of the date on that February 2009 night when the University of Miami rechristened its baseball diamond "Alex Rodriguez Park." The Yankees slugger stood behind a lectern and watched as his name was revealed on the scoreboard. Then A-Rod made a seven-minute speech to his...
Best Local Girl Gone Bad
Before she was an internationally reviled "pot princess" — long before she pulled out her cell phone, climbed into her car, and drove the wrong way down a highway exit ramp — Kayla Mendoza was just a typical 20-year-old South Florida girl. But then came the margaritas, the shots, and...
Best Place to Meet Intelligent Women
Downtown Arts+Science Salon
Tango lessons. Museum visits. A Junot Díaz lecture. And lots of fine wine. The Downtown Arts+Science Salon is like the montage scene in a Hollywood movie, in which a schlubby male is transformed into a veritable Renaissance man. You arrive swigging screwdrivers and grunting about sports; you leave sipping Chardonnay...
Best Place to Meet Single Women
Green Monkey Yoga
It's no secret that Miami is awash in beautiful women. Aside from the Miami Heat's halftime show, however, there are fewer greater concentrations of local beauty than a class at Green Monkey yoga studio. Perhaps it's a product of the neighborhood: Sunset Harbour seems to excrete sex like sweat in...
Best Place to Meet Intelligent Men
Titanic Restaurant & Brewery
Large, golden towering letters sit atop the entrance. It tickles your curiosity. Causes you to enter. The welcoming atmosphere attracts. Stay to observe the plethora of beers. Tap your foot to the pleasant sounds that fill the air and fascinate. What brought you here in the first place? That beer...
Best Place to Meet Single Men
X-Treme Rock Climbing Gym
When you've exhausted the drunk hunks at the bar, when the lying creeps of Tinder have left you feeling hopeless, you need a man who's solid and steady. He's adventurous, he's intelligent, he's fit-as-fuck, and he's hanging out, waiting for you to find him at the rock gym. You know...
Best Place for a First Date
Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden
Back in the days when courting and wooing were the highest forms of flirting, a stroll through the gardens of an estate allowed you to hold hands with your love. Nowadays, the idea might seem dated, but there's still no nicer way to spend an afternoon with that special person...
Best Place to Take Out-of-Towners
Olympia Theater at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts
Sure, Miami has the beach, the Heat, and the shops, but if you want to take your visitors somewhere outside the norm for tourists, head over to a show at one of the hidden gems of downtown Miami, the Olympia Theater at the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts. Opened...
Veterans of Foreign Wars
It's hard to go out on the beach without getting mobbed by tourists in YOLO T-shirts and shutter shades. Note that we didn't say impossible. That's because there's a bar built into an otherwise ordinary West End condo building that's the aesthetic opposite of MTV Spring Break 2007. In fact,...
South Beach Wine & Food Festival
Some call it "Spring Break for Chefs"; others term it a "Bacchanal on the Beach." Whatever its title, the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, soon to celebrate its 14th year, is a multiday extravaganza for those of us who love to eat, drink, and mingle with the likes of...
Best Outdoor Music Venue
North Shore Park Band Shell
Take a swig of rum, close your eyes, and picture the perfect concert. Palm trees sway in the cool breeze sliding off the ocean just a few feet away. The band — let's say world-renowned Malian guitarist Bombino and his desert-rock outfit making their South Florida debut — jams out...