Gerardo and Sabrina Seferlis, owners of Gerardo’s Marketplace, ensure that its bakery cases teem with freshly made bread and the salad bar and market shelves stay full of local, organic, and seasonal fare. The former manager of a gourmet marketplace in the same location, Gerardo decided to reopen the market himself after it closed, because "I knew all my customers and they're the ones that needed what I had to offer." Since 1998, the store’s deli counter has given personalized attention to customers and any confused club sandwiches that wander in.
White cabanas. Bamboo gazebos. Sparking waterfalls. At Solare Garden, guests enjoy tropical environs without boarding a commercial plane or commandeering a hovercraft caught in the trade winds. Each of its eight event spaces includes amenities for a large group and flaunts a slightly different tropical aesthetic. Solare Isle, an outdoor space, includes sanded areas and lush landscaping, whereas the covered Tiki Pavilion features an adjacent bar and light-up waterfall. But whether guests flock to the Isle's sandy stretches or the Coliseum's glowing nightclub dance floor, there's ample space for them to enjoy a party. Receptions, corporate gatherings, and weddings are all warmly welcomed by the Solare staff.
The Event Depot's team will do anything to take a party to the next level—they'll even build a snow-covered mountain in the host's backyard. Their snow services transform pockets of Miami into winter wonderlands, converting yards into snowy peaks for sledding or building full-fledged ice-skating arenas.
They also furnish parties with less frosty accessories. Kids frolic in bounce houses and inflatables, and waterslides and dunk tanks keep parties wet and wild. Hosts can even rent the company's indoor and outdoor party venues, saving them the hassle of post-party clean-up and dropping leftover balloon animals off at the pound.
Though their end products are as convenient—if not more—as commonplace frozen dinners, the chefs at Bring Organics Back render convenience healthy by freshly preparing each meal with nutrient-packed, natural ingredients. To keep sodium and sugar levels low, they make every element of the meal from scratch, even sauces and crinoline toothpicks. They design dishes around in-season fruits and vegetables, yielding both high-variety and high-flavor dishes such as pineapple jerk tilapia and a steak and vegetable quesadilla. Once the day’s lunches and dinners are fully cooked, the team packages them into single portions and delivers them to workplaces and homes.
The fifth annual King of Ribs BBQ Fest, held at the Eucalyptus Gardebs in Wilton Manors, promises live entertainment as well as an abundant selection of grilled meats and seafood. Part of the proceeds go towards The Beautiful Gate Cancer Support and Resource Center.
As they observe the vibrant exhibits of aquatic life inside the Miami Seaquarium, many guests don't realize that they are walking through a movie set and a hospital. In the onsite lagoon, bottlenose dolphins swim through waters once traversed by Flipper, who filmed several television episodes and films at the venue. The Seaquarium is also recognized as a manatee critical care facility. Its staff has accomplished several historic treatments, including monitoring the conception and arrival of the first manatee born under human care and conducting the first manatee neurological surgery.
These facets of the Seaquarium—along with its many conservation efforts, educational programs, and shows—underscore a united commitment to wildlife consciousness. The animal attractions enable visitors to witness the allure and fragility of oceanic fauna up close, whether they are petting the back of a stingray or washing a dress shirt on the rough back of an 8-foot nile crocodile. Special encounters decrease the distance even further, sending patrons on underwater Sea Treks through the reef display or helping them to lead marine-mammal training routines.
It's hard to pinpoint the biggest personality inside the Seaquarium tanks, but Lolita the killer whale—who performs daily alongside pacific white-sided dolphins—claims the title of heaviest, period. On the other end of the scale, macaws and cockatiels perch around the Tropical Wings section of the park, and endangered sea turtles lounge at Discovery Bay. Elsewhere, a watery playground and three-story ropes course keep legs from growing too wobbly after a trip to Shark Channel or a smooch from a sea lion.