A white sail propels a 50-foot sailing catamaran out into Biscayne Bay. The wind-powered watercraft belongs to Playtime Watersports, whose captains narrate ocean sailing tours or host private and corporate events as sunsets paint the sky. Elsewhere on the bay, wave runners and pontoon boats—two of Playtime Watersports' other rental watercraft options—churn up water as they drag race with thrill-seeking dolphins.
Despite its name, Playtime Watersports doesn't limit itself to on-water revelry. The staff hosts corporate outings such as Beach Olympics, with events including beach volleyball, sand sculpting, and scavenger hunts.
Kydoo Kids Club & Cafe emphasizes the doo in their name, setting children loose into a world where they can do all of the activities they love. Inside the color-splashed facility, dedicated play areas house a variety of fun, multi-sensory experiences. In the central play area, explorers jump, climb, and slide through play structures, and in the invention station, young Thomas Edisons use Legos and blocks to build towers or a new Mars Rover. Sometimes, these areas host classes, too, such as in art, singing, science, cooking, and dance. Parents can join the fun, or kick back in the cafe with fresh-brewed cups of coffee and gourmet bites.
Sporting Miami-Dade's oldest liquor license, Tobacco Road has been the city's quintessential bar for more than 100 years. A speakeasy where Al Capone reportedly once drank and gambled, Tobacco Road now specializes in what Frommer's lauds as "good and greasy bar fare." Bites range from houesmade empanadas and smoked baby-back ribs to the "death burger"—Angus beef crowned with grilled onions, jalapenos, and jack cheese.
As bartenders pour top-shelf liquors and beers, musicians rock out every night on the same stage once graced by blues luminaries, such as John Lee Hooker and Buddy Guy. The party lasts until 5 a.m. every night, leaving just enough time for Tobacco Road's vampire maintenance crew to clean up before sunrise.
Thanks to a generous $35 million donation, the Miami Art Museum is now called the Perez Art Museum Miami, and has a shiny new home to match the label change. The Museum serves as the anchor to new 29-acre Museum Park, which overlooks glimmering Biscayne Bay. The updated digs were designed by Pritzker-Prize winning architects Herzog & de Meuron and are dedicated to international art of the 20th and 21st centuries, laid out across three stories. At more than triple the floor space of their previous home, the Perez is modern and contemporary, housing more than 1,300 works across a range of media. There is also Verde, a lovely waterfront restaurant and bar, where the menu is locally-inspired and created with seasonal ingredients.
Despite the large contemporary buildings that surround it today, the Gusman Center for the Performing Arts retains as much charm as the day it opened in 1926, christened then as the Olympia Theater, a silent movie palace. Its completely restored Mediterranean courtyard, gilded balconies, Wurlitzer organ and decorative plasterwork serve as a reminder to the days when going to the theater was a major event. In its heyday the likes of Elvis Presley, B.B. King, Luciano Pavarotti and Etta James crossed the Gusman Center stage. Today the entertainment hall is home to jazz concerts, film festivals, the city’s emerging ballet company Ballet Palm Beach and the Miami Lyric Opera. And because it offers an intimate setting, it is possible to attend the opera without needing opera glasses.
The Undercover Unit's rookie squads don't have much time to exchange pleasantries before they're thrown into their first mission. Whether averting the zombie apocalypse or putting together clues to catch a devious serial killer, the enlistees need to keep their minds as alert as their trigger fingers if they wish to succeed. Equipped with camouflage safety gear and prop weapons, the players slink down dark hallways and engage with actors, who may take the form of mysterious bartenders or good cops just two days from retirement. Air grenades, tripwire mines, and other safe but startling items can help the team clear out a horde of the undead—or send them diving for cover.