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Miami is known for its pristine beaches, crazy nightlife, luxurious celebrity homes, and vibrant culture. However, Miami also has a thriving art scene, playing host to various festivals and events. Do you love art and jazz? What about classic cars and iconic 1920s fashion? Or unique architecture and delicious food?
If any of these things pique your interest, do check out Art Deco Weekend in Miami. It's the festival to visit for those who appreciate all things Art Deco plus eating, partying, and dancing the night away. An entertaining and culturally-rich festival, it has something exciting and fun for every traveler.
What is Art Deco Weekend?
Art Deco Weekend is a three-day event paying tribute to Art Deco buildings and architecture in Miami. The event also highlights and celebrates interesting cultural trends from the 1920s and 1930s. Movies, jazz music, classic cars, and of course, the distinct style of that period included.
This exciting open-air festival aims to promote and preserve the Art Deco style and its cultural significance to the area. What started as a small neighborhood party has easily become one of Miami's most popular annual events. Art Deco Weekend Miami now attracts more than 300,000 locals and tourists every year.
This beloved multi-day street party is also the longest-running free community festival in Miami. Unlike other popular events like the Rolling Loud Festival, entry is free for Art Deco Weekend. But don't let free fool you! Art Deco Weekend is anything but boring, being jam-packed with fun and unique things to do.
When is Art Deco Weekend?
Art Deco Weekend Miami occurs every January over the course of three days. Art Deco Weekend 2023 will take place from January 13th to 15th. The festival begins at noon on Friday and goes on until 10 pm.
Saturday's schedule runs from 10 am until 10 pm and 10 am until 8 pm on Sunday. You can find a full schedule of events on the official Art Deco Weekend website.
How Do I Get to Art Deco Weekend?
The fun and festivities of Art Deco Weekend take place in South Beach, Miami, along the world-famous Ocean Drive. This iconic street is known for its proximity to the beach, trendy restaurants, upscale shopping, and wild nightlife. Plus, you guessed it, Art Deco buildings!
Ocean Drive will be closed for the duration of the festival to make room for the crowds, activities, and vendors. Make your way to the general area, where you'll enter the hustle and bustle of the festival. Plus, this area of South Beach is walkable and easy to navigate.
As you can probably imagine, parking near the event is scarce. If you're not staying on Ocean Drive or the surrounding South Beach area, plan to rideshare. Services like Uber or Lyft are your best bet to get to the festival.
Book Flights with Skyscanner
Travelers not within driving distance of Miami will need to fly to Miami International Airport. If you need help finding cheap flights, make sure you're booking the cheapest flights available on the market with SkyScanner! The airport is only 11 miles from Ocean Drive. So even if you stay near the airport, you'll still be close to the action!
Where to Stay in Miami Over Art Deco Weekend
Do you want to immerse yourself in the experience of Art Deco Weekend? If so, there are several boutique Art Deco hotels on Ocean Drive. If you opt to stay on Ocean Drive, you'll be able to walk out the front door of your hotel and get the party started right away!
Some of the most popular boutique Art Deco hotels on Ocean Drive include The Avalon, The Beacon, and The Cardozo. Also, the well-known party hotel, The Clevelander. Keep in mind these hotels can be pricey, especially during Art Deco Weekend. So you'll need to decide if you want to splurge on one of these unique stays.
If you're tight on funds, there are plenty of budget-friendly options in Miami, too. Travelers who prefer a social atmosphere will probably enjoy South Beach hostel. The Generator Miami is also a fan favorite. You can check out our review to find out more about its facilities.
Events During Art Deco Weekend
Art Deco Weekend is about more than just observing interesting Art Deco buildings and architecture. This festival takes a step back in time. Bringing the fun of the 1920s and 1930s to life with a modern twist! Some festival events vary each year. However, there are a few activities that have earned a consistent spot on the annual lineup.
What's the best way to familiarize yourself with this area of Miami and learn about its history and culture? A guided tour! Throughout the weekend, there are multiple walking, biking, boating, and segway tours available. Each one offers a unique perspective. Plus, each unearths interesting information about the Art Deco period and its influence on South Beach.
Some tours focus on architecture. Other tours highlight various stories, legends, and mysteries of this famed period in Miami's history. You can choose a night tour surrounded by the famous neon lights of Ocean Drive. On the other hand, some travelers prefer a sun-drenched and leisurely day tour.
Do note that these guided tours aren't generally included in the free Art Deco Weekend activities. If you want to take advantage of one, plan to spend around $35 or $45 per person per tour.
Art Deco Weekend aims to promote and preserve the style and history of the era. As such, there are a series of educational lectures held throughout the festival. Learn more about the Art Deco style in architecture and art at these events. These lectures also highlight the important contributions of key people and the societal norms of that period.
History buff or not, these lectures provide an interesting and informative take on everything Art Deco. Plus, they're free to attend! You can check the lecture schedule on the official Art Deco festival website.
Classic Car Show
Want to snap some incredible Instagram shots of your awesome adventures during Art Deco Weekend? Then the classic car shows are your go-to! Usually held on Saturday and Sunday, this festival event is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. Here, you'll get a chance to check out expertly maintained and restored vintage cars of all colors and styles.
You don't have to drive one of these classic cars to enjoy its charm and whimsy. Wear something cute and take all the pictures that you want nearby. Just be careful not to touch any cars without permission from the owner!
Antiques and Artisan Market
Art Deco Weekend is a celebration of design, art, history, and culture. So it should come as no surprise there is a fantastic market held every year. Here, you can browse and buy a variety of new and antique items. With vendors selling art, jewelry, clothing, furniture, and more, this market is a shopping enthusiast's paradise!
No festival is complete without live music! And in true Art Deco form, you can enjoy various shows throughout the weekend. Mainly featuring the iconic jazz melodies of the period. In fact, you probably don't even have to attend a show. Many musicians play for fun along the street during the festival.
However, if you're planning to attend a show, keep in mind some performances are free, and others require tickets. You can check the official Art Deco Weekend website for more information about available performances and ticket purchases.
What could be more retro than curling up on a blanket in the park to catch a classic movie? Every year, Art Deco Weekend offers classic and contemporary films ranging from horror flicks to vintage sci-fi and romantic comedies. Certainly a fun activity for relaxing after a long and exciting day exploring everything the festival offers!
These movie nights are perfect for travelers who're not interested in going wild on the South Beach club scene. Schedules for film screenings can be found on the Art Deco Weekend website.
The iconic fashion of the 1920s and 1930s is unmistakable. From boater hats and suspenders to frilly tunics with pearls and feathered headbands, get inspired. Art Deco Weekend presents fashion shows from local and world-renowned fashion designers showcasing this distinct style. These retro shows are free to attend and will impress all the fashionistas enjoying the festival.
Bark Deco Dog Show
Miami's four-legged friends are encouraged to participate in the festival too! As the saying goes, every dog has its day. The charming Bark Deco Dog Show is their time to shine! Precious puppies dress up in their cutest attire and strut along Ocean Drive. All of them vying for coveted awards like Most Adorable or People's Choice.
How to Get the Most Out of Art Deco Weekend
By now, you probably realize how much fun Art Deco Weekend can be! When you get ready to plan your next trip to this unique and entertaining festival, keep these tips in mind.
What to Eat
Miami is renowned for its delicious and diverse culinary scene. From traditional mojitos and Cuban sandwiches to fresh seafood and fine dining, the options are endless. Some of the most famous and impressive Miami restaurants are nestled along Ocean Drive and the surrounding area.
You can easily check out one or more of these terrific restaurants. But keep in mind these prominent eateries can be a bit pricey. Breaking the bank to indulge in great food during the festival is optional, though. Many quintessential South Beach restaurants set up affordable food stalls throughout the weekend.
Most food vendors participating in Art Deco Weekend are favorite local restaurants and famous South Beach eateries. Even with a smaller and more selective menu, festivalgoers can still enjoy an ample and delectable spread of excellent food. Food stalls usually offer more budget-friendly options without sacrificing those dynamic flavors.
What to Bring and Wear
You might think an open-air January festival sounds like a cold-weather nightmare. But this is Miami! Even in January, temperatures hover in the 70s. Rain isn't as common, either. That means you get to break out your summer gear and enjoy being outdoors!
That said, while walking around the festival, you'll want to be cool and comfortable. Consider bringing shorts, lightweight tops, sundresses, and comfortable walking shoes. And remember to pack a lightweight rain jacket, just in case. If you're prone to sunburn, also include a hat and sunscreen if walking around during the day.
The atmosphere of Art Deco Weekend is generally casual. However, if you plan to enjoy Miami's crazy nightlife, you should also pack some outfits and shoes. You'll want to look your best when hitting the club or dining at a fancy restaurant!
Are you the kind of traveler who loves to go all in? If so, bring your best 1920s-style outfit and meander around the festival in character. Doing so is actually pretty common among locals, so don't worry about fitting in—you will!