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Dîner en Blanc Returns to Miami, Infamous Waiting List Opens Tomorrow

Dîner en Blanc, an all-white dinner party for a few thousand guests at an undisclosed location, will return to Miami for its second straight year November 14. But it won't be any easier to get a seat, because its infamous waiting list, which opens tomorrow, is likely to be longer than ever.

Jilian Sanz, cohost of Miami's Dîner en Blanc, said those interested in attending shouldn't let the waiting list intimidate them. With more than 2,200 guests expected this year, up from last year's 1,200, Miami's Dîner en Blanc is trying to be as accommodating as possible.

"This year will be an even bigger monster than last year," she said. "Our city is growing so quickly and more people are flying from all over because they want to experience the Miami version of this."

There are no hints about where this year's location might be, but last year's was at SoundScape Park at the New World Center. "The thing that makes this all so exciting is the element of surprise associated with it," she said. "It's like celebrating Christmas."

Sanz said organizers and volunteers will be informed of the location a few hours before the soirée. Guests won't know until they arrive via transportation provided by Dîner en Blanc. In addition to buses, car service will also be available. 

Besides added transportation and a new secret location, Miami's Dîner en Blanc will be nearly identical to last year's, something Sanz said maintains the beauty of the event.

"One of the nicest things about this is the tradition of it," she said. "The constant element of surprise keeps it exciting."

The catch to all Dîner en Blanc events is guests must supply a table, chairs, white tablecloth, all-white dinnerware, and gourmet food, along with a $35 admission fee. A catered picnic basket option is available for an additional price. An all-white dress code is strictly enforced. 

Securing a spot at Dîner en Blanc is known to be a process. Registration works in three phases, with phase one for members who have attended a previous dinner; phase two for new members referred by someone in phase one; and phase three for nonmembers who signed up via the online waiting list.

The number of guests who will make it off of this year's waiting list is unclear. But we do know it will be based on phase-one and phase-two guests who have already RSVPed. And rain or shine, registered guests at any Dîner en Blanc are expected to attend. 

Despite rigid regulations, Sanz said last year's event went smoothly. She foresees the same for this year's dinner. For now, her goal for future Dîner en Blancs is to grow even more. "We will definitely get bigger in the future," she said. "It's been tackled in other cities, so there's no reason we can't."

The pop-up dinner party, which launched in Paris more than 25 years ago, takes place in outdoor public spaces in 60 cities around the globe. Last year, Miami became the 14th American city to host the all-white affair.

"What's nice about Miami is it really lends itself to this," she said. "I mean, what better city to have a white party than Miami?"

Until then, may the waiting list and the weather be in your favor. For more information, visit miami.dinerenblanc.info.

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Clarissa Buch Zilberman is a writer and editor, with her work appearing in print and digital titles worldwide.
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