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January 14, 2020 | 4 Minutes

Cuban Culture in Miami

Enjoy Miami’s Cultural Gems

Miami Beach might be known for its palm-studded beaches and balmy weather, but the culture of the city reaches far deeper than your typical seaside town. Members have two fantastic options for a home base from which to explore the “gateway to Latin America.” Marriott’s Villas at Doral, tucked between championship golf courses, offers respite from the bustle in spacious 2-bedroom accommodations with full kitchens.  Or stay in a hotel room or suite in the heart of the excitement at Marriott Vacation Club Pulse, South Beach. Either way, make sure to carve out time to experience the city’s unique culture.

Marriott's Villas at Doral

Marriott Vacation Club Pulse, South Beach

STROLL THROUGH LITTLE HAVANA

Just west of downtown, absorb Miami’s rich Cuban heritage in a neighborhood known as Little Havana.

Puff on a hand-rolled cigar as you wander down lively Southwest Eighth Street, the main thoroughfare better known as Calle Ocho. Learn Cuban history at the Bay of Pigs Museum & Library. Reminisce on pop-culture legends along the Calle Ocho Walk of Fame, a row of Hollywood-style sidewalk stars emblazoned with the names of famous Latin artists. For an even more authentic experience, visit Máximo Gómez Park, nicknamed Domino Park, to watch domino or chess tournaments played by Cuban seniors in classic guayabera button-down shirts.

One block over from Calle Ocho, you’ll find Cuban Memorial Boulevard Park, a narrow plaza that runs a mile down the center of 13th Street. The park features a series of monuments including busts of Cuban revolutionaries, a 16-foot map of the island and an eternal flame honoring those who died fighting for Cuba’s independence.

SAVOR A TASTE OF CUBA

Plan on staying around Calle Ocho for breakfast, lunch or dinner — or all three! Kick your morning off with strong Cuban coffee and pastelitos — pastries filled with guava and cream cheese. For a midday bite, try an iconic Cubano sandwich piled high with ham, pork, Swiss cheese and pickles, then pressed to perfection. And you can’t go wrong with a classic meal of mojo pork, fried sweet plantains, and black beans and rice for dinner.

The flavor doesn’t stop at the edge of Little Havana. In South Beach, you’ll find plenty of restaurants serving up Cuban fare like empanadas, tamales, and ham croquettes.

If you’re feeling inspired, visit a Cuban food market, pick up a few ingredients, and try your hand at preparing a traditional Latin meal in the comfort of your kitchen at Marriott’s Villas at Doral.

SOAK UP UNUSUAL SIGHTS

Miami’s status as the art hub of the Southeast adds another complex layer to the culture of the city.

Take a trip back through time as you explore the vibrant Art Deco Historic District. Marriott Vacation Club Pulse, South Beach, sits in the center of the stretch of Ocean Drive that’s home to the largest concentration of art deco architecture in the U.S. Over 900 buildings in the area are outfitted in this signature early-1900s style, providing you plenty of unique sightseeing opportunities.

For a modern display of artistry, head to the Wynwood Arts District. More than 32 galleries and studios draw visitors from around the world with state-of-the-art exhibitions. Immerse yourself in the bold colors and eccentric designs of the Wynwood Walls, a collection of massive murals, street art pieces, and urban graffiti. Or, if you’re visiting on the second Saturday of the month, enjoy Art Walk, a block party that takes over the district with street performers, live music, and food trucks.

You can see all Miami has to offer with exclusive experiences through Marriott Vacation Club Powered by PlacePass. Take a guided walk through South Beach; a food-centric excursion in Little Havana; or ride through the city in style on a tour of Miami Beach, Wynwood, and Little Havana in a classic convertible car.

Reserve Your Stay

  • Members can use Club Points to make a reservation at these properties. Contact Member Services to check availability or make a reservation.
  • Marriott Bonvoy Points may be redeemed at hotels in this location. To search for availability and redeem Marriott Bonvoy Points, log in to Marriott.com. Remember when you reserve five consecutive nights, you’ll only be charged for four.