Top Five Fiestas de Año Nuevo: From the Catalina to La Covacha

Happy New Year! Or, more appropriately ... Feliz Año Nuevo!

I love this time of year. There are lots and lots of parties over the holiday season. And who doesn't like to party? No one. That's who. Especially not Latinos. We absolutely love to party. It's right up there with eating greasy food, talking loud, and driving like ass. Maybe even higher.

Which is exactly why we thought it might be helpful to our Latino readers (or non-Latinos looking to surround themselves with those aforementioned loud-talking, greasy-food-eating vehicular nuisances), if we compiled the very best fiestas de Año Nuevo in one handy dandy list. Enjoy!

1. The Spam Allstars New Year at Catalina Hotel

The Catalina's NYE blowout might well be our top choice off this list. And the fact that lovely porn starlet and legit actress Sasha Grey is hosting has only a little to do with it. There's also the draw of Spamtastic descargas like only the Allstars can offer. Go for the live music and open bar from 8 p.m. till midnight, and then stay for Ms. Grey's DJ set. Tickets cost $95.

2. Fiesta de Año Nuevo at El Bodegon de Brickell
Beginning at 7 p.m., this shindig in the Brickell area will offer a bottle of wine or champagne for every two guests. There will also be a buffet till midnight and music by Grupo Gaitero, who we won't lie, we're not totally familiar with. Tickets cost $90. 

3. La Covacha New Year's Eve Party

Kicking off at 7 p.m. and wrapping up at 9 a.m., you can drink the old year away and dance into the new one at La Covacha. The Doral institution will offer (besides ridiculously long hours) open bar and buffet from 9 p.m. till midnight, a champagne toast, free breakfast at 7 a.m., and tunes all night courtesy of DJs Lazardi and Johnny M. At $20, this one's the value pick.

4. Bongo's Cuban Café New Year's Eve

Hmm ... I guess this party caters to those Cubans employed by Tony Montana. Because the $125 per person charge only includes the prix fixe menu. It doesn't cover gratuity, tax, or drinks aside from your midnight champagne toast. They are offering Cuban coffee, though. Another bonus: All those Scarface employees should make it easy to score your NYE blow.

5. Mango's Tropical Cafe New Year's Eve

OK, so what if being at Mango's Tropical Cafe is sort of like being in a real-life version of that SNL skit with Fred Armisen hosting a Latin talk show? You'll still be partying the night away beachside with a killer view of both the Beach's fireworks display and the world-famous scantily clad Mango's dancers. They have all kinds of packages and price points depending on your hedonistic inclinations.

Bonus: Orange Festival on New Year's Day

Technically, this is January 1, and not New Year's Eve. But who are we kidding? Most of us will be partying into the next day anyway, especially those hanging out at Bongo's with Mr. Montana's boys. A $20 ticket will get you stageside for a concert on Ocean Drive featuring Albita, Gilberto Santa Rosa, and Hansel y Raul.

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Paul Torres