The Taste of Brickell Food and Wine Festival serves culinary samples from nine popular Brickell restaurants, endless fine wine and spirits, and international rhythms. Chefs from such area eateries as Porcao Farm to Grill, El Vato, Tapas Xperience, and Batch Gastro Pub distribute freshly prepared portions of signature menu items, including morsels from 2014 Executive Chef Virgile Brandel (Atrio at the Conrad). Wine experts entice visitors to try new vintages by hosting tasting demos and dispensing samples. A portion of all event proceeds help fund the local charities.
Led by Gabriel Salloum, MD, Miami Center for Plastic Surgery offers surgical and nonsurgical procedures designed to help patients meet their aesthetic goals. The Aesthetic Gallery serves as the center's surgery-free wing, where aestheticians beautify figures and faces in a swanky spa setting. Minimally and noninvasive services, such as Botox, laser hair removal, and chemical peels form the core of the aesthetic team's repertoire. The plastic-surgery wing, which includes six private treatment rooms, caters to those in search of more significant solutions, such as to lift eyes, shape noses, or banish unwanted bulk.
The center's 3,300-square-foot complex, envisioned by notable architect and designer Agustin Fernandez, steeps patrons in a sensory bath of postmodernism. Inside pristine white treatment rooms, leather lounge chairs present sleek vantage points to take in the surrealist artworks and plants that offset the building's stark architectural lines and corner-shaped corners.
At Coconut Grove Candy Cane Village, Santa holds court in a lavish 30-foot-tall, inflatable gingerbread house while carolers fill the evening air with holiday tunes. The three-day festival transforms Peacock Park into a wintry candy oasis complete with carnival rides, and faux ice skating rink, and towering inflatable gingerbread men and nutcrackers. Visitors can take a breather at the food court to sip piping hot cups of cocoa while making sure to step outside for the evening’s hour-long snow fall.
Under the umbrella of Pet Medical Centers, nine Miami-Dade and Broward-area veterinary hospitals provide sophisticated healthcare for furry, feathered, and scaly family members. The hospitals’ specialty services include nonanesthetic dental care, ultrasounds, radiology, and endoscopies. All locations boast surgical operating rooms equipped with windows and cameras to give owners peace of mind, and many of the clinics are equipped with lasers for blade-free incisions. Besides emergency care, the doctors and technicians—some of whom have appeared as specialists on Univision and Animal Planet—perform general wellness examinations and informative nutritional consultations.
Although medical care provides what pets need, boarding services treat pets to what they want. Most locations double as cat and dog hotels, but only one deserves the title of pet resort—at Coral Springs Pet Resort and Medical Center, animals enjoy a climate-controlled dog park with a pool, baths with massaging jets, and expansive canine suites with window views.
Artist and founder Marta Echazarreta brings more than 18 years of custom-framing experience to Work of Art, encasing valuables from fine art to diplomas and jerseys. Reward graduates' academic rigor by encasing their diploma in a 1-inch black frame with a 1/4-inch mat and a 2-inch glass border ($120). Art collectors can swaddle fine paintings, lithographs, or Albert Einstein–autographed RoboCop 3 posters in a standard black or espresso frame ($56), then select from a variety of acid-free mats ($25 for a 24"x36" mat) to prevent picture yellowing.