If you’re used to Europe, or much of the USA, it’s hard to see a palm tree and not assume you’re on holiday. Miami was long a destination where money and people passed through quickly – hopping on cruises, down for the weekend. But now it’s up to something new; it wants you to stay. It wants you to stay for a week or two. It wants you to stay for good. And there are plenty of reasons why people are listening.
Not long ago. Miami Beach was “where neon went to die”, ‘according to the acerbic American comedian Lenny Bruce. The 1950s heyday of Frank Sinatra and Marilyn Monroe was superseded by the age of cheap flights to the Caribbean and the conversion of some Orlando cattle pastures into Walt Disney World. Tourists in Miami disappeared. Construction stopped. And then it got worse. Someone said “Miami”, you said “Miami Vice.” The iconic TV show of hazy sunsets, dirty cops and dope was based on raw truth.