Tuesday, February 23, 2010

South Beach

We stretched our drive home from Florida into a three day affair so that we could spend some time, no matter how short, in South Beach. We did the drive through a couple of years ago, but at some point I'd like to spend at least one night here in this very colorful area.

South Beach has a long and very interesting history, and years before Miami Vice and CSI Miami, Jackie Gleason popularized the area even more by taping his variety television show here in 1964.

Almost one square mile of South Beach is on the National Register of Historic Places and throughout the 80's and the 90's South Beach was cleaned up and many of the hotels were restored to their art deco splendour.

I just adore the bright pastels, the mix of art deco and 50's kitsch, and the multi cultural feel of the area. We had a late breakfast seated outside at the Boulevard Hotel. The area was just waking up and people were going about their business. Tourists were eating and shopping, some marking their spots on the beach. The colorful cabanas were just being opened and the beach vendors were just starting to set up for their days take. Salsa and dance music was blasting onto the street from various establishments.

Our stop over in South Beach was short but a great thing to experience before our long journey home. I now have pastel colors on my mind and some great inspiration for new mixed media paintings. Perhaps a new South Beach series?