When it´s hot smells are stronger. And it´s hot in Miami. Good and bad smells are amplified by temperature. We are on a 5 day vacation in this city which among other things is the undeclared capital of Latin America. English is barely spoken here.

We are here with Nina my fiancee and the two boys, Tom and Leo. We are staying at a huge hotel called the Fontainebleau. It is the ultimate Miami hotel. Only its renovation it´s supposed to have cost a $1bn and they brag about it. Kids love it. Nina seems to enjoy it as well. I alternate. I don´t usually go to hotels and this is the mother of all hotels. It´s gigantic. Crowded. But some of the restaurants, especially Hakkasan are world class.

Here are some random thoughts about Miami. It is hardly an intellectual place yet it seems to be populated with visitors who want to get away from highly intellectual places, for example NYC. It is fashionable when it wants to be but it is also one of the cheesiest places on earth. Sometimes the changes from fashion to horror happen in seconds. The forecast these days is incredibly monotonous and yet the weather changes all the time. People say it´s unbearably hot. I instead think that what is unbearable is how cold every place is. Americans don´t seem to want to manage the weather, they want to defeat it. Miamia is probably the city in USA with the most empty homes at any one time. Especially now in the summer, the low season. Many more people want to have a home here than live here. Spain where I live has a similar problem.

Here are some pictures. I especially liked the beach architecture, the art deco. But I was surprised at the mix of not so much the old and the new, but the fancy and the abandoned. From South Beach to the Fontainebleau, a walk I did this morning I saw the simplest Days Inn type hotels next to amazing new developments like Satay, the W, and others. One plus, the water is amazingly clean for being a major city.

Pictures were taking with my favorite small camera a Canon G10.

Follow Martin Varsavsky on Twitter: twitter.com/martinvars

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javier guilléN on July 2, 2009  · 

Que buena la foto de Leo con el camión de la CocaCola detrás.

3.0 rating

xavi on July 2, 2009  · 

Estuve por primera vez este pasado mes de junio y tube la impresión de estar jugando al second life:


have fun


3.0 rating

Alberto Garcia Carmona on July 2, 2009  · 

Mi primer hotel en Miami fue este… era el hotel de argentinos te los encontrabas a todos…es increible la remodelacion cambio 100×100

3.0 rating

Jose Figueredo on July 3, 2009  · 


Your less than flattering comments about my hometown makes me wonder if you could had taken your vacations somewhere else,next time you can pick Orlando.

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Martin Varsavsky on July 3, 2009  · 

Hi Jose. I did not mean to offend you nor anyone else from Miami. But this is my blog and I just write how I feel about things, products, people, and even cities. And many times what I feel evolve, changes. So far it was a shocked to arrive at this gigantic hotel, of course there were other choices, but this is were I ended up. And the city itself, Miami, Miami Beach, I saw some pluses and some minuses. But I am staying a few more days, tomorrow I am going sailing. Nevertheless, so far, if I compare living in Barcelona to living in Miami let´s say on a scale of 1 to 10 I would give Barcelona a 9 and Miami a 7.

Jose Figueredo on July 3, 2009  · 


Having lived in South Florida for the past thirty-five years and two years in Spain, (Madrid, Jerez, and Cadiz) back in the late 80’s I can tell you that I rather live here, while I like Spain, I have great friends there I don’t feel safe, I have been robbed not once but twice in Madrid, and both in Barrio Salamanca not too far from Serrano.

If you have a chance try to enjoy the city and if I may recommend a nice place for you and your family to have a nice Sunday brunch, try the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables, once of the nicest cities in South Florida, and if you have a chance you venture to Palm Beach north of Miami Beach.

I am sure you are enjoying yourself, but if you ever find yourself in this side of the world again, feel free to drop me and email, and I will be happy to show you South Florida like a native.

Enjoy the rest of your stay!!

3.0 rating

Jose Figueredo on July 3, 2009  · 

By the way the hotel where you are staying is owned by one of the most successful real estate developers in the city, Jeff Soffer from Turnberry and Associates, not my favorite place, next time try the Biltmore Hotel in the Gables and or The Breakers Hotel in Palm Beach, I am sure they are more your speed, even if you normally don’t stay in hotels.

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