Miami Design Preservation League's Art Deco Weekend

Miami Design Preservation League's Art Deco Weekend

Date coming soon


By: Jennifer Agress

Dating back to the 1930s, the Art Deco buildings on Miami Beach are an indelible part of South Florida history. On South Beach, they even formed the nation’s first urban, 20th-century Historic District, which was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. Despite its bright colors, playful shapes and hard-to-miss glam, the Art Deco movement in Miami went virtually unnoticed for a significant part of the 20th century. That all changed in 1976, however, with the creation of the Miami Design Preservation League (MDPL) - a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving, protecting and promoting the architectural, cultural, social and environmental integrity of Miami Beach.

The year it was founded, the Miami Design Preservation League launched its first Art Deco Weekend. Created as a way to bring more people to Miami Beach at a time when tourism was low and preserving Art Deco history wasn’t a priority, this three-day celebration of art, architecture, history, culture and entertainment is now one of Miami Beach’s most popular annual events. Returning Friday, January 18th to Sunday, January 20th, 2019, the 42nd annual Art Deco Weekend remains the longest-running, free community cultural festival in Miami Beach.

Events & Tours

Attendees can take advantage of more than 85 unique events during Art Deco Weekend. The Jazz Age at Art Deco will return for the second year with an opening night soirée, dancing under the stars, and live jazz from Michael Arenella and His Dreamland Orchestra, as well as local musical acts. The ever-popular Bark Deco Dog Show, sponsored by Blue Buffalo, will come back for the third year in a row, bringing with it a mini dog show for puppies up for adoption, as well as prizes, ribbons and special treats for Miami’s talented furry contestants. The Retro Fashion Show, directed by vintage lifestyle enthusiast and pin-up model Angela La Muse, will bring a curated runway show with vintage, indie and retro reproductions from designers around the world. A new fitness program will take place at the newly revamped Muscle Beach, with two days of programs including yoga, kick-boxing, dance cardio workouts and more.

Sponsored by the Original Miami Beach Antique Show, the Antique & Design Promenade will have vendors selling antique decorations, furniture, art and jewelry. All along Ocean Drive, find antique cars, trucks and motorcycles from the 20th century all on display as part of the Classic Car Show. Films like The Gang's All Here and Top Hat will play at Miami Beach Cinematheque and Soundscape Park at New World Symphony, and various lectures about the history of Art Deco and Miami Beach, including one by by Dr Margaret Vendryes on African influences of Art Deco, will be free and open to the public. Outside of that, guests can go lindy-hopping at Art Deco Dance, listen to live music, watch street performers, shop or visit the Miami Design Preservation League’s (MDPL) Preservation membership tent to learn more about historic preservation efforts in South Florida.

Can’t decide what to do? Hop on one of Art Deco Weekend’s 14 tours. Divided into three categories—architecture, people and culture, and cocktail tours—they cover everything from Ocean Drive, Mediterranean or Lincoln Road architecture, to homes in Flamingo Park, photo tours, Miami Beach film and TV sets, Jewish history in Miami Beach, Miami Beach’s criminal past.

Food & Drink

All along Ocean Drive, there’s no shortage of trendy cafes, bars and restaurants where you can get your fill of food and drink. In addition to this, from 6th Street to 14th Street, Art Deco Weekend will have a bevy of specially-marked food booths, food carts and specialty dining areas with classic festival foods, upscale cuisine, craft foods, healthy dining options and more.

Of course, what would a weekend in Miami be without a refreshing cocktail to wash it all down? On festival grounds, guests can take their pick from four pop-up lounges. At the Jazz Age VIP Lounge, on 11th Street and Ocean Drive, attendees will get live jazz performances by top musicians, Prohibition-Era cocktails and dancing.

If you’d like to be inspired, visit the new Culinary Tent showcasing local chefs making their favorite dishes. At World Lounge, on 10th Street and Ocean Drive, sip cocktails and mingle with members of The Miami Design Preservation League and Flamingo Park Neighborhood Association to find out everything you want to know about Art Deco. Sitting right on The Promenade at 11th Street and Ocean Drive, The Speakeasy will give guests the opportunity to sip Prosecco while listening to strolling sax and string players, or browse through the art pieces, vintage works and antiques at the adjacent Antique & Design Promenade.

General Information

The festival will run from Friday, January 18th, to Sunday, January 20th. Opening hours are as follows: Noon to 10 p.m. (Friday), 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. (Saturday) and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Sunday). This festival is free and open to the public. Ocean Drive will be closed to vehicles throughout the event.

Art Deco Weekend 2019 will take place at Lummus Park, which runs along Ocean Drive, between 6th Street and 14th Street. For more information about hotels and parking, visit the Art Deco Weekend website.

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