A guide to Miami as Emirates launches direct flights from Dubai

From the newest hotels to where to find the best Cubanos, here's what travellers headed to the Magic City won't want to miss

Emirates is now flying four times a week between Dubai to Miami. Courtesy Emirates
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Emirates has launched new direct flights from Dubai to Miami. The airline’s first-ever passenger service between the two cities landed at Miami International airport on Thursday at 11am.

With its year-round sunshine, thriving arts scene and buzzy nightlife, Miami is now set to be a popular holiday option for UAE travellers as Emirates is scheduled to fly to the US destination four times a week.

Known for its beaches, Latin American culture, pastel-coloured architecture and thriving entertainment, Miami has something for everyone. If you’re considering a visit, here’s a handy guide on where to stay, the dishes you need to eat and what you simply can’t miss on a trip to the South Florida holiday hotspot

Where to stay?

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, several new hotels have opened their doors in Miami since 2020 so holidaymakers have plenty to choose from.

Check-in at Moxy Miami South Beach, Marriott’s new boutique hotel brand or try Esme Miami Beach with laidback Spanish vibes and a stunning rooftop lounge.

Fans of Pharrell Williams may want to stay at The Goodtime Hotel on Washington Avenue; the singer has partnered with Groot Hospitality to open this modern hotel packed with artwork, murals and a fresh take on Art Deco.

What to eat?

Famed the world-over for its Cubanos, you cannot visit Miami and not eat a Cuban sandwich.

Head to Sanguich de Miami, a cafe in Little Havana for the ultimate Cubano, complete with tangy homemade pickles and mustard, and bread that’s baked freshly in-house every day.

For dessert, key lime pie is a good pick, thanks to the Florida Keys being just around the corner. You’ll find plenty of places with their own take on the classic dish, with Blue Collar Miami crowned the very best by local foodie digital magazine Miami Eater.

Where to go?

From its world-famous South Beach to hidden gems and family-friendly shores in Surfside, it’s no secret that Miami is known for its beaches and travellers are spoilt for choice when looking for clear waters, golden shorelines and swaying palm trees.

The renowned Miami Beach area is located on a barrier island that’s connected to the mainland by a series of bridges, and offers a lovely mix of peaceful neighbourhoods, lively entertainment areas and long stretches of sandy shores.

But life isn’t only about beaches.

The city also has its fair share of green spaces where fitness trails, play parks and waterside fun make for a great day out. Visit the Matheson Hammock Park which is home to one of the city’s most popular marinas and also a favourite with stand-up paddleboarders. For those who want to get out on two wheels, David T Kennedy Park is a must.

What to do?

Even if you’re not a beach fan, head to Miami Beach to check out the Art Deco Historic District. Wander Ocean Drive and Collins Avenue in the South Beach neighbourhood to see pastel-coloured buildings, neon-lit signs and beautifully restored 1930s and 40s architecture.

For shoppers, Bayside Marketplace is a large outdoor-style mall with souvenir shops, retails stores, cafes, restaurants and daily live entertainment. Visitors will find some well-known brands, as well as several one-of-a-kind outlets.

Indulge in all things Cuban in Little Havana or check out colourful graffiti art in the warehouse district of Wynwood. To escape the summer heat, try a visit to Blue Lagoon or Grapeland for waterpark family fun.

Updated: July 23, 2021, 2:37 PM