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Miami Dec 3–9: It's All about Art Basel

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Pink Snail, part of Art Basel 2010
Photo by Bob B. Brown/Flickr

Pink Snail, part of Art Basel 2010

The best things to do in and around Miami Dec. 3–9

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This week in Miami is all about Art Basel. Strictly speaking, Art Basel is the art fair at Miami Beach Convention Center. But in practice, it's also the numerous piggybacking art and art-inspired events that take place all over the city this week. Particularly notable is Swizz Beatz at Casa Bacardi, which combines an innovative art fair during the day with some serious party action at night, and the III Points concert series at Mana Wynwood. If you can't stand the crowds, escape to Vero Beach and enjoy the high-end dining and culture in relative peace and quiet.

December 3–6 | Art fair
Art Basel in America
While the term “Art Basel” now refers to the myriad surrounding events that take place over the first week in December, it’s this fair at the Miami Beach Convention Center, where 267 galleries exhibit their work, that really put Miami on the art world map. This is the last year to see the Miami Beach Convention Center before it undergoes a $600 million renovation project, which will begin as soon as Art Basel wraps up.
Miami Beach Convention Center, Miami Beach | 1901 Convention Center Dr. | (305) 673-7311 |  From $47 | website

December 3–5 | Music & art
Swizz Beatz and Bacardi’s Casa Bacardi
Swizz Beatz has worked in hip-hop and dabbled in academia. Now, the Bronx-born recording artist and producer is crossing over into the art world—and he's bringing his friends with him. This buzzy collaboration with Bacardi at Casa Bacardi will see the Wynwood space function as an art fair during the day and a concert venue at night. Swizz is looking to make waves in the art world with his “no commission” concept, in which artists will exhibit for free and take home 100% of their proceeds, and entrance to the public is free. The nights will be equally legendary, with the Bacardi Untameable House Party featuring Alicia Keys, Pusha T, DMX, Wiz Khalifa, A-TRAK, and others. 
11 a.m.–8 p.m. (art fair); 10 p.m.–late (party) | Casa Bacardi, 35 NE 29th St., Miami  | Free | website

December 4 | Concert
III Points Concert Series Headliners: Jamie xx and Four Tet
III Points is quickly becoming Miami’s second most anticipated art festival of the year, after Art Basel. After the successful III Points festival earlier this fall, the organizers are popping up with a concert series at Mana Wynwood for Art Basel. On Friday night you can catch series headliners Jamie xx (from The xx) with Four Tet. A$AP Rocky, Kaytranada, and STWO will play on Saturday.
10 p.m. | Mana Wynwood, 318 NW 23rd St., Miami | (305) 573-0371 | From $55 | website

AFAR Local is published every Wednesday, so check back for insider updates on restaurant openings, festivals, exhibitions, shows, weekend escapes, and more. Planning a trip? The AFAR guide to Miami has you covered.

New opening I Restaurant
Palmeiras Beach Club at Grove Isle
Grove Isle is a bastion of “Old Grove” sophistication. With all the changes that have recently come to Coconut Grove, Miami’s most historic neighborhood, it wasn’t a surprise that Grove Isle announced a major renovation to its restaurant, beach club, hotel, and spa. Locals worried it would lose its charm, but now’s your chance to see what they’ve done with the place. Palmeiras Beach Club’s kitchen is helmed by Alfredo Alvarez, the former chef of Seasalt and Pepper, and the dining room is still mostly outside. He’ll be serving a Mediterranean menu, but the real reason to visit is for the view, which is guaranteed to be as good as it always has been.
Palmeiras Beach Club at Grove Isle | 4 Grove Isle Dr., Miami | (305) 858-8300 | website

Weekend escape
Vero Beach
Vero Beach has a building rule that prevents the kind of built-up city feel that now characterizes so many other small Florida beach towns. Only two-and-a-half hours from Miami, this turtle sanctuary is a haven for those seeking a small, quiet weekend without sacrificing high-end dining experiences. The most classic place in town is the Ocean Grill, a dining institution more than 75 years old. Try the Tides, Citrus, and Cravings for your ice cream desires. Miamians desperate for a croqueta fix or good Cuban coffee can find it at Gloria Estefan’s art deco Cardozo Hotel. Also make sure to visit the McKee Botanical Gardens and the Vero Beach Museum—both exceptional cultural institutions. 

Patricia Guarch Wise is a Miami native and the blogger behind Miami Nice. Her interests include paella, paranormal activity, Proenza Schouler, and her Pekingese named Bonnaroo.

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