De­sign Des­ti­na­tion: Mi­ami’s Wy­wood

The Palm Beach Post - Residences - - Front Page - Joseph Pu­bil­lones

Mi­ami has be­come one of Amer­ica’s most for­eign cities. Step­ping off an air­plane or out of the com­fort of your air-con­di­tioned car im­me­di­ately lets you know you re­ally are in the South. The hot va­por, the smell of Cuban cof­fee waft­ing through the air, the cackle of Span­ish, Cre­ole, Por­tugese, French, Ital­ian, Ger­man and the oc­ca­sional English ac­cents all come to­gether as proof that you are in a con­ti­nen­tal stew.

Of course, Mi­ami has al­ways been a wel­com­ing city. It is a large and ever-ex­pand­ing city that is com­posed of many small neighborhoods, each with its own iden­tity: the gen­tried Coral Gables, bo­hemian Co­conut Grove, eclec­tic Lit­tle Haiti, Latin Calle Ocho and ritzy Brick­ell, just to name a few. Each makes up a key com­po­nent in what many now con­sider a World-class city. The new and highly en­er­gized Wyn­wood is mak­ing head­lines all over the world. For many decades, Wyn­wood was the home to many man­u­fac­tur­ing com­pa­nies that oc­cu­pied miles and miles of ware­houses.

De­sign shops and artists stu­dios were among the pio- neers of this once aban­doned and ne­glected part of the city. The western part of the district has been put on the map by the vast mu­rals painted by pro­fes­sional and am­a­teur graf­fiti artists. One can al­most spend eas­ily a cou­ple of days in what has be­come an open-air mu­seum of sorts, known as the Wyn­wood Walls. Art foun­da­tions took note and oc­cupy some of the largest spa­ces in the area such as the Mar­gulies Col­lec­tion, the Rubell Fam­ily Col­lec­tion and De la Cruz Fam­ily Col­lec­tion.

In what was once an empty land sand­wiched by neigh­bor­ing low-rise of­fices and ware­houses a unique ap­proach to drink­ing and din­ing. Not to be missed is The Yard: an in­cred­i­bly unique cross be­tween a trailer park and a food court. The cen­ter of this gravel-paved venue is a bar that at­tracts cus­tomers from ev­ery walk of life: from fam­i­lies with baby-strollers to bearded hip­sters and tat­tooed lanky model-types. Food trucks and other makeshift kitchens pre­pare de­li­cious foods sure to please ev­ery­one.

Fur­ther east is what is now known as the Mi­ami De­sign District. You will think you are on Worth Av­enue...but a much more in­tense ver­sion. In what was once a dan­ger­ous cor­ner of Mi­ami, now you will find an amaz­ing con­gre­ga­tion of world-class ar­chi­tec­ture hous­ing the most ex­clu­sive bou­tiques any­where to be found, from Via Mon­te­napoleone to Madi­son Av­enue; Miu Miu and Her­mes, Bul­gari and Louis Vuit­ton, Longchamp and Zegna, Givenchy and Dior and — last but not least — Prada and Pi­aget, too. You get the pic­ture?

De­sign afi­ciona­dos won’t be dis­ap­pointed. Head to the 4141 build­ing, where sleek Ital­ian fur­ni­ture bou­tiques are on ev­ery cor­ner. I would be re­miss not to men­tion the Su­sane R. Life­style Bou­tique, which is re­plete with cu­rated high qual­ity vin­tage home fur­nish­ings, art and ac­ces­sories. An ad­di­tional bonus is the charm­ing shop owner Su­sane, whose panache and quick wit is not to be messed with, even when you don’t agree with her. I have learned to trust her global taste and savvy ad­vice, much to my ben­e­fit.

Joseph Pu­bil­lones is the owner of Joseph Pu­bil­lones In­te­ri­ors, an award-win­ning in­te­rior de­sign firm based in Palm Beach, Florida. His web­site is www.joseph­pu­bil­lones.com. To find out more about Joseph Pu­bil­lones, or to read fea­tures by other Cre­ators Syn­di­cate writ­ers and car­toon­ists, visit the Cre­ators Syn­di­cate web­site at www. cre­ators.com.

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