As a coach, he brought "showtime" and championships to the Los Angeles Lakers (with a little help from Magic Johnson and others). He weathered the pressure of the toughest coaching job in the NBA with the Knicks in New York. He almost -- always almost -- took the Miami Heat to the top with talents such as Tim Hardaway and Alonzo Mourning. Defense, defense, defense. Win, win, win. And then the playoffs would come and his former-team-turned-major-nemesis, the Knicks, and another almost. For the 2003-2004 season the wily Riley, president of the Heat organization, fired himself as coach and promoted Stan Van Gundy. With severe personnel changes and a new approach, the team, constantly hindered by injuries and too much unfair officiating, needs just a bit more time and a season sans fractures and sprains to provide fans with showtime once again.

They own restaurants, hotels, a media empire, and the hearts and minds of Cuban Miami. Gloria has recorded 23 albums, sold more than 70 million copies worldwide, and garnered three Grammy Awards. Emilio, the former band manager-turned-mogul, heads his own label, a major recording studio, and has bagged twelve Grammys. Basta!

They own restaurants, hotels, a media empire, and the hearts and minds of Cuban Miami. Gloria has recorded 23 albums, sold more than 70 million copies worldwide, and garnered three Grammy Awards. Emilio, the former band manager-turned-mogul, heads his own label, a major recording studio, and has bagged twelve Grammys. Basta!

There are numerous boats (and even a tall ship) offering an array of cruises out of Bayside's marina. The Queen happens to be a favorite: an open-air upper deck ceilings an enclosed (but heavily windowed) lower deck ("The bar is now open," is heard as the flat-hulled, smooth-riding boat edges past Dodge Island). If you're a local, the 90-minute ride provides the perfect break. Coming back to work with a tan and a chilled-out attitude results from the lazy cruise, but the real joy is soaking up the sun and sucking in the salty air as the tourists point to the houses of Millionaires' Row and ogle the abodes of Star Island, a vista which, to locals, proves that extremely rich people can have really bad taste in landscaping and architecture. In any case, the Queen makes several runs per day, and the cost for adults is $15. Much better for the soul than a three-martini lunch.

Art experts know that the museum, as a socio-cultural institution, was pronounced dead by a group of neo-Dada performance artists during a 1987 visit to the Museum of the Medieval Torture Arts in Toledo, Spain. The word has yet to reach most other cosmopolitan cities, but as curators of MAM can proudly attest, the Magic City is ahead of its time. "Miami remains the only major city in the United States without a world-class art museum," declared the eloquent essay that accompanied MAM's self-referential "Museums for a New Millennium: Concepts, Projects, Buildings" exhibition. A show surreally brought 25 of the most astoundingly designed art museums in the world (Frank Gehry's Guggenheim Museum in Spain, Rem Koolhaas's Center for Art and Media Technology in Germany) to MAM, which, of course, didn't make the list of 25 itself. They all fit inside MAM, thanks to the magic of photography and scale models. In the show's aftermath, however, MAM is eschewing its vanguard status and embracing the traditional, envisioning its own world-class waterfront building in Bicentennial Park. Just remember to never call it a "museum."

According to professional event planners, the Wyndham is the number-one spot in South Florida for high school reunions. Throughout the year, but especially in the late summer months, the place is heavily booked with old school pals getting together and tying one on after ten years (or fifteen or twenty) in the big bad world. Here single women are embarrassingly easy to spot. They usually arrive unescorted and look as hot as they possibly can, especially at ten-year reunions. If you're a clever fox, be ready to strike up a conversation the moment she puts on her name tag. Your lady will be hungry for attention from a good-looking man. After all, she wants to impress her former classmates. If you're lucky, she'll be there for a St. Brendan's reunion. There's nothing quite like a good Miami Catholic girl from Westchester.

According to professional event planners, the Wyndham is the number-one spot in South Florida for high school reunions. Throughout the year, but especially in the late summer months, the place is heavily booked with old school pals getting together and tying one on after ten years (or fifteen or twenty) in the big bad world. Here single women are embarrassingly easy to spot. They usually arrive unescorted and look as hot as they possibly can, especially at ten-year reunions. If you're a clever fox, be ready to strike up a conversation the moment she puts on her name tag. Your lady will be hungry for attention from a good-looking man. After all, she wants to impress her former classmates. If you're lucky, she'll be there for a St. Brendan's reunion. There's nothing quite like a good Miami Catholic girl from Westchester.

Smart, scrappy, and resolute, Lida Rodriguez-Taseff turned out to be exactly the kind of president the ACLU's Miami chapter needed to see it through a tumultuous three years. (Her tenure ended this past March.) A partner at the Duane Morris law firm, she was front and center on a wide range of constitutional conflicts, from defending Cuban exiles' right to protest the Latin Grammys to opposing the repeal of the county's gay-rights ordinance. She has been a vociferous and relentless critic of city officials' handling of protests at the Free Trade Area of the Americas summit last November. She also played a pivotal role in establishing Miami's Civilian Investigative Panel, which is now pursuing allegations of police brutality during those FTAA protests. Rodriguez-Taseff was and remains a role model for all who cherish the freedoms enshrined in the Bill of Rights.

Smart, scrappy, and resolute, Lida Rodriguez-Taseff turned out to be exactly the kind of president the ACLU's Miami chapter needed to see it through a tumultuous three years. (Her tenure ended this past March.) A partner at the Duane Morris law firm, she was front and center on a wide range of constitutional conflicts, from defending Cuban exiles' right to protest the Latin Grammys to opposing the repeal of the county's gay-rights ordinance. She has been a vociferous and relentless critic of city officials' handling of protests at the Free Trade Area of the Americas summit last November. She also played a pivotal role in establishing Miami's Civilian Investigative Panel, which is now pursuing allegations of police brutality during those FTAA protests. Rodriguez-Taseff was and remains a role model for all who cherish the freedoms enshrined in the Bill of Rights.

Their five-tiered, twelve-foot-tall House of Cards, inhabited by humanoid dummies, was a big hit at Miami Art Museum. This artistic duo also deserves credit for a shack they never built. They had planned to construct Casa del Pirata on a wall of the historic La Cabaña fortress using boards they had hoped to find in Cuba. "A sort of romantic monument to individuality and courage, misfortune, and hope," Behar says. "Maybe the house implies a shipwreck, the search for a treasure, or a story of love and betrayal." Maybe a little too pointed for paranoid government curators afraid that a dummy of the dreaded dictator as buccaneer would appear. They nixed the project, citing rules against tampering with the fort's infrastructure. Yeah, right. Meanwhile authorities in Brussels let the Argentine couple play with the façade of the Centre International pour la Ville, l'Architecture et le Paysage. For a work called The Mask, they draped a beautiful rainbow spectrum of 40-foot-long plastic streamers from the roof of the sullen brown brick museum to the sidewalk, forcing people to penetrate the strips to enter the building. R & R's surreal outdoor living room has long been a Design District icon. They're currently plotting to transform Monument Island into The Star of Miami, a huge painting visible from jets landing at MIA. See some of their works at Placemaker Gallery (3852 N. Miami Ave.) in the Design District and you'll see what we mean.

Best Of Miami®

Best Of Miami®