Music Festivals

Rakastella Returns in December for Miami Art Week

Photo by Lauren DeCanio
Every December, the art world descends on Miami to participate in Art Basel Miami Beach and the events surrounding it. The people who tend to flock to the city for Basel like to think they're better than the hoi polloi, saying they're here for the art when they're actually using Miami Art Week as an excuse to flee the cold and have a good time.

Nobody knows this better than Rakastella — Life and Death and Innervisions' December shindig at Virginia Key Beach Park. (And before Key Biscayne residents get up in arms about another festival, Rakastella has been happening for the past two years and doesn't draw anywhere close to the number of people that Ultra Music Festival draws.)

Local promoters PL0T, Secret Garden, and Where Are My Keys? have also helped Rakastella become a Miami Art Week must-do.

Rakastella, whose name means "to make love" in Finnish, got its start in 2017 and quickly became known for its topnotch lineup of underground DJs, immersive if somewhat DIY decor, and beautiful setting. Because of the fragile ecosystem around the park, sustainability has also been at the heart of the event, with organizers making sure to leave the site as it was found when the event is over. However, Rakastella's defining characteristic is it's a 17-hour party that goes from sunset to sunrise.

No word yet on the lineup, but it's safe to say Life and Death leader DJ Tennis will probably be on the bill, while a back-to-back sunrise set by Dixon and Âme has become something of a tradition. Previous acts include Seth Troxler, DJ Harvey, Virgil Abloh, Octo Octa, and DJ Koze.

The festival announced tickets will go on sale Thursday, May 23. Prices range from $40 for a Sunset Pass (entry before 6 p.m.) to $150 for VIP entry.

Rakastella. December 7 at Historic Virginia Key Beach Park, 4020 Virginia Beach Dr., Miami; 305-960-4600; Tickets available May 23 for $40 to $150 via
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Jose D. Duran is the associate editor of Miami New Times. He's the strategist behind the publication's eyebrow-raising Facebook and Twitter feeds. He has also been reporting on Miami's cultural scene since 2006. He has a BS in journalism and will live in Miami as long as climate change permits.
Contact: Jose D. Duran