The Ten Best Things to Do in Miami This Week

Thursday, February 4

When the earthquake ravaged Haiti six years ago, the dance troupe Ayikodans barely survived. The company lost its dance studio in Port-au-Prince, and its members suffered personal losses. However, the group found an unlikely supporter in the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, which has commissioned Ayikodans to perform in Miami for five straight years. As a result of this partnership between performers and the performance space, the troupe will premiere a new work inspired by the ongoing alliance and grander themes of goodwill.

The piece, M'Angaje, which means "I am committed" in Kreyol, features nine dancers with vocal and percussive accompaniment. Founded in 1987 by Haitian choreographer, dancer, and educator Jeanguy Saintus Riché, Ayikodans blends elements of folk music, indigenous dancing, French traditions, and voodoo spirituality. Today, with the help of the Arsht Center and many fundraising efforts, Ayikodans has a new home in Port-au-Prince, and the troupe is considered the premiere dance company on the island.

Performances take place at the Arsht Center (1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami) Thursday and Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday at 2 and 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $40. Call 305-949-6722 or visit arshtcenter.org.

Friday, February 5

The streets of Coral Gables are overflowing with love — well, at least the 100 block of Giralda Avenue between Ponce de Leon Boulevard and Galiano Street. This month marks a special romantic edition of Giralda Under the Stars, and though the food and drinks are à la carte, it costs nothing to soak up Cupid's vibes.

Traffic along the block will be shut down as some of downtown Coral Gable's best restaurants set up tables in the open air. There's a little something for every palate from participating restaurants, including Castelluccio Ristorante, Divino Ceviche Coral Gables, GreenLifeMia.com, Ikura Sushi Lounge, and nine others. Amorous entertainment comes with the package, from French-style mimes to short romantic films, caricaturists, and dreamy tunes by guitarist Mario Vuksanovic.

If you've got a partner, get up and declare your love in fun community activations, but if you don't, no worries: Giralda Under the Stars is a great place to gather with friends for a meal and some drinks — and, hey, it might just be the perfect place to meet someone new.

The event kicks off Friday at 7 p.m. and lasts until midnight. Call 305-569-0311 or visit shopcoralgables.com

Chaos is something we largely try to avoid in life. Perhaps that's why disorder is so arresting when it comes to art. Whether artists seek to tame chaos or allow the frenzy to take over, the struggle is fascinating, often becoming a visual mirror of our internal dilemmas. A master of wrangling beauty out of unconventional materials, Bulgarian-born Iva Gueorguieva makes large-scale abstract paintings that feature a frenetic mix of overlapping collage, line, shape, and color. At times, figures, fragments of architecture, or mysterious machines seem to emerge from the mix, conjuring an enigmatic narrative or elusive memory. Miami will get to dive into Gueorguieva's wild world with the exhibition "New Work: Painting and Sculpture," presented at Fredric Snitzer Gallery. Her most recent sculptural work wrestles mixed materials — from welded steel to hand-painted epoxy clay — to create animalistic figures expertly wound in chaos and control.

"New Work: Painting and Sculpture" opens Friday and will be on view through March 14 at Fredric Snitzer Gallery (1540 NE Miami Ct., Miami). The opening reception will be held from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free. Call 305-448-8976 or visit snitzer.com

In the age of easy-to-access online maps, paper maps have become something we think about mostly when watching old road-trip movies where people almost die trying to read them while driving. But the Miami International Map Fair has been showcasing geographical representations for decades, hitting its 23rd year this month as the largest map fair in the Western Hemisphere.

Presented by HistoryMiami to raise funds for the museum, the fair offers not only a fascinating collection of antique maps but also rare books, panoramas, globes, and atlases in which guests can immerse themselves. Dealers from around the world come to offer antiques and modern treasures for individuals to buy at every price. Plus, there are presentations by experts and guest speakers, along with private tours of the HistoryMiami Archives and even free expert opinions on maps in attendees' personal collections.

The Miami International Map Fair takes place Friday through Sunday. Full, three-day access costs $75 or $85 per person and begins Friday with a private VIP preview, cocktails, and dinner at HistoryMiami (101 W. Flagler St., Miami). For general admission to the fair, guests are welcome Saturday and Sunday, with the marketplace opening at 10 a.m. and noon, respectively. General, single-day admission costs $10 to $20. Call 305-375-1618 or visit historymiami.org

If there's one thing we learned from Carrie Bradshaw, it's that you can never have too many close female friends. That, and never take off your Manolo Blahniks at a party. Wine, Women & Shoes is your chance to meet 700 other fashion-forward women — all while raising money for a good cause.

Benefiting Miami Children's Health Foundation, the fifth-annual event will feature winetastings, a fashion show, shoe shopping, a silent auction, and other fun. Check out threads from Oscar Carvallo Paris, enter to win a $19,770 Chopard white gold and diamond watch, and enjoy MCing by seven-time Emmy Award winner Maggie Rodriguez.

Of course, this philanthropic soiree isn't just about consumption. Part of the presentation includes 16-year-old Alessandra, who was diagnosed with scoliosis at the age of 10. She has undergone painful surgery and spine alignment with rods and screws. Hear her story and cry happy tears.

It's a day of drinking, shopping, sipping, socializing, and saving the world — one child at a time. The event runs from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday at the JW Marriott Marquis (255 Biscayne Blvd. Way, Miami). Visit winewomenandshoes.com/miami

Saturday, February 6

In 1993, a young pianist named Jason Moran won the YoungArts award for jazz. Since then, the Houston-born musician has released nine studio albums, served as an adviser for jazz at the Kennedy Center, and taught at the New England Conservatory. But in the '80s, before he devoted all of his energy to jazz, Moran was a skate kid.

In his return to YoungArts, Moran will participate in a Salon Series discussion with professional skateboarder Mark Gonzales, as well as an Outside the Box presentation on the YoungArts Plaza. Salon Series installments are paid, ticketed events that include a cocktail half-hour before a curated conversation. Moran and Gonzales will discuss concepts of creative inspiration, along with their multimedia collaboration featuring videos of Gonzales performing skate tricks set to the cool sounds of John Coltrane.

The YoungArts Plaza will be outfitted with a carved-out half-bowl and half-pipe ramp, as Miami's best skaters — including organizer and skater Joel Meinholz and photographer Ian O'Connor — explore the two disparate arts' shared notions of improvisation. Moran's events take place at the National YoungArts Foundation (2100 Biscayne Blvd., Miami) Saturday at 5 p.m. Tickets to the Salon Series cost $20 to $35, and Outside the Box is free with RSVP. Call 305-377-1140 or visit youngarts.org

Sunday, February 7

Sunday brunch at Coya isn't for the average patron craving bacon, eggs, and a stack of pancakes. A late breakfast at the high-end Peruvian restaurant on Brickell Avenue is sophisticated, with four courses, a medley of Latin flavors, and a hefty price tag. And take note: The meal is more lunch- than breakfast-oriented. Dishes can be ordered à la carte or off the prix-fixe menu and paired with bottomless champagne or a brunch cocktail.

Brunch at Coya (999 Brickell Ave., Miami) is offered every Sunday from noon until 3 p.m. Diners can choose either a $75 or $95 four-course menu. Both include a gourmet starter buffet, signature anticuchos, and desserts but have varied entrée and drink options. For more information and reservations, call 305-415-9990 or email miamireservations@coyarestaurant.com

Imagine being greeted by Mr. Carson at the doors of Downton and walking through the great hall and into the library for tea with the Earl of Grantham. Perhaps you'll be joined by Lady Mary or even the Dowager herself (granny always makes tea that much more exciting).

Sadly, since Downton Abbey has finished filming, your dream can never become a reality. However, Madi's Tea Garden Tea Room is preparing an afternoon delight worthy of showrunner Julian Fellowes and his characters. At Downton Abbey Inspired Valentine's Tea, guests will be treated to a full tea service — including unique brews and creative foods — all prepared with Mrs. Padmore in mind, of course. There will also be a trivia game and a prize awarded to the best-dressed. Remember, this is 1920s England you're able to step into, so act accordingly.

Experience what Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes have planned for you this Sunday beginning at 2 p.m. Be prompt — Mr. Carson might not seat you if you're late. Tickets cost $35 per person. Call 786-801-0668 or visit madisteagarden.com

Tuesday, February 9

Miami needs little help to keep its partying reputation alive, but adding flavor from other fun destinations certainly can't hurt. Drawing inspiration from the yearly Mardi Gras mayhem of New Orleans, Wynwood-based beer spot Concrete Beach Brewery presents its inaugural MiamiGras.

Also known as Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras' carnival-style celebration comes to Concrete Beach with good food and booze. Highlighting its selection of specialty craft beers — all with a Florida-centric twist — the brewery will also provide an authentic crawfish boil to feed hungry revelers.

MiamiGras will be held Tuesday from 5 to 11 p.m. at Concrete Beach Brewery (325 NW 24th St., Miami). Admission is free, but you'll need to buy your own beer, and the crawfish boil costs $10. Call 305-796-2727 or visit concretebeachbrewery.com

Wednesday, February 10

Taking a trek to experience South Florida's natural beauty sounds nice in theory, but braving the daytime heat can drain the fun out of it. Thanks to the Deering Estate's Nite Hike, locals can enjoy the outdoors and learn about the region's unique ecosystem without the harsh sun.

An environmental, archaeological, and historic preserve, the Deering Estate at Cutler offers visitors a rare opportunity to view the flora and fauna as they come to life at night. Walking on the tropical hardwood hammock trail, participants will learn about the estate's lush landscape as a Deering education and interpretive staff member leads the way to Cutler Creek and shares interesting facts about the Native American Tequesta Tribe — which lived on Biscayne Bay. Hikers can also catch the sounds of great horned owls and Eastern screech owls along the way and enjoy s'mores around the fire by the bay after the hike.

The Nite Hike begins at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Deering Estate (16701 SW 72nd Ave., Palmetto Bay) and costs $15 per person. Call 305-235-1668, ext. 233, or visit deeringestate.com

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