- To see
- Where to eat
- Getting around
Also known as "The grove“, Coconut Grove is a neighborhood of the city of Miami that is located south of Downtown and is considered the elegant district of the city. Here is gathered the extravagant soul of the city, where they crowd rich and movie stars, who live in prized homes and luxury villas overlooking the ocean.
This district also represents the first settlement of the city in 1830 by soldiers and people from the Bahamas. Soon, this small, rapidly expanding settlement made a name for itself as a place inhabited by pioneers and free thinkers, with a progressive and avant-garde community, so much so that it has become the home of eclectic characters, artists and eccentrics.
Attached to the city of Miami in the 20s, Coconut Grove, despite the expansion it underwent and the birth of large shopping centers, still retains its non-conformist and somewhat hippie soul.
Just "outside the walls", in the direction Charles Avenue, the Mediterranean style gives way to the more authentic Caribbean one, with buildings in pure Bahamian style and inhabitants who have little or nothing to do with the rich people of the area, being direct descendants of the first settlers.
Coconut Grove's reputation as a pioneering and pioneering center is well deserved, so much so that, even today, numerous examples of the commitment and resourcefulness of its most distinguished citizens can be seen.
The Barnacle Historica State Park
This splendid villa called was built in 1891 by Ralph Munroe, one of the most influential characters in the area.
In 1887 Munroe founded the Biscayne Bay Yacht Club, of which he was Commodore for 22 years. Ralph Munroe was a sailor, a civil rights activist, a naturalist, a photographer, who loved the nature around him; and his house, which in the 20s was part of the vast area called Miami Hammock, today remains one of the few concrete testimonies of a world that has now almost completely disappeared.
Vizcaya Museum and Gardens
The Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, classified as a National Historic Landmark, is a European-style mansion - museum of the industrialist James Deering, of which the owner was passionate.
Open from 9:30 am to 16:30 pm, closed on Tuesdays.
Completed in 1922, the villa includes a main house, 40 square meters of garden (compared to the gardens of Versailles in France), a beach with mangroves, a café and a souvenir shop.
It is a wonderful park that directly overlooks Biscayne Bay.
Habitat of numerous species of exotic and tropical plants, it owes its name (of Malay or Indonesian origin, meaning "settlement of houses"), and its appearance, to Dr. David Fairchild, one of its first owners, botanist and horticulturist.
During his research, Dr. Fairchild introduced more than 30.000 plant species to the United States and brought here an enviable selection from all over the world.
Upon the death of Fairchild's wife, the house and garden were bought by the doctor Catherine Hauberg Sweeney, botanist expert, and her husband. To keep this heritage intact, the doctor asked that the site be included in the National Register of Historic Places. Today, The Kampong is owned by the National Tropical Botanical Garden and its heritage is used for educational and didactic purposes.
Miami Science Museum
The Miami Science Museum boasts an interesting collection, periodic exhibitions organized in concert with the Smithsonian Institute and an interactive section called Energy Playground, which will entertain even the little ones.
The central part of Coconut Grove, which coincides with the Grand Avenue area, is synonymous with shopping. Bars, restaurants and shops abound here.
The ideal place to shop is the CocoWalk, a large shopping mall opened in 1990 and built in a Mexican style with multiple levels, gushing fountains and rooftop terraces overlooking the ocean.
During the day there is the animation of street artists, while it is very pleasant to stop for a cool drink or have lunch in some small place in the area. The pedestrian area of Mayfair Mall, near the CocoWalk, where you can give yourself equal credit for crazy shopping.
An eclectic and bohemian place like Coconut Grove can only host several interesting events:
Coconut Grove Arts Festival
This festival is a very important event for the artistic community, a "Celebration of the Arts" that takes place outdoors and hosts more than three hundred artists.
Fashion + Art + Music Nights
On the first Saturday of each month, Coconut Grove is Fashion + Art + Music Nights, an event attended by boutiques, galleries, clubs and restaurants, offering visitors exceptional discounts and extended opening hours.
Where to eat
Coconut Grove is a neighborhood full of bars and restaurants where you can eat well.
Among the restaurants, we recommend “Glass & Vine”, with a magnificent view of Peacock Park. Run by chef Giorgio Rapicavoli, it offers a unique selection of Spanish, Spanish and typical Florida dishes.
While if you want to eat a great pizza you have to go to Farinelli's 1937 or from Harry’s Pizzeria.
The Grove Cap it is the right place for lovers of French cuisine, while fans of Latin American cuisine will feel at home at Jaguar Ceviche Spoon Bar & LatAm Grill.
Those who love enjoying a beautiful view at the table can try the Panorama Restaurant & Sky Lounge or Dinner Key Marina.
For breakfast, a quick brunch are two names not to be forgotten: Peacock Garden Café e Greenstreet Café.
Coconut Grove is easily accessible by public transportation from different parts of Miami.
Very convenient is the MetroRail and the reference stop is Coconut Grove.
To move around the Coconut Grove area you can choose to use the urban bus or the exclusive free service called Trolley.
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