Time Out just released their annual list of the 33 Coolest Streets in the World and the Magic City’s Little Havana neighborhood is one of them.
Ranked at number 16, Calle Ocho (SW 8th Street) is where you’ll go to take in Cuban culture and see the liveliest local businesses, most popular ventanitas, brightly-colored street art and festivals with a vibrant energy that’s off the charts.
It’s actually the second year that the neighborhood makes the list, which is voted on by readers, of which 27,000 participated! Contributors were asked to nominate places that fitted the bill, resulting in a list of unique destinations that will spark your wanderlust or deepen your appreciation for the city you call home.
Want to know which spots helped the street be hailed as one of the coolest in the world? Here are the main reasons Calle Ocho made the cut:
Maximo Gomez Park, better known as Domino Park, is where older locals go to smoke cigars and play games of dominoes. It can be found in the corner of Calle Ocho and 15th Avenue.
Then there’s jazz-club-turned-Latin-bar Ball & Chain, which is a Miami staple. You can go there for a night out in the town and enjoy some famous salsa dancing nights.
And everyone wants to make a stop at the popular Café La Trova, a retro-themed bar and winner of the first annual North America’s 50 Best Bars Awards. Not only will you find Cuban cuisine and cocktails here, but you’ll get to watch real Trova musicians play live music all night long.
If you’re craving dessert, one of Miami’s best ice cream shops, Azucar Ice Cream, offers 100% artisanal ice cream made using local ingredients perfect for a hot day.
Although a number of landmarks and establishments helped the city claim its spot, so did movie magic. Many of these famous places were highlighted in HBO Max’s “Father of the Bride.” The father, played by Andy Garcia, can be seen playing dominoes at Domino Park and Ball & Chain makes an appearance during the wedding shown in the beginning of the film.
Even Miami Dade College’s Tower Theater, a historic Art Deco-style theatre next door to Domino Park, makes an appearance and it’s where the premiere for the film was held.
Other U.S. cities that made the Time Out list include Hayes Street in San Francisco at number 10, Virgil Avenue in Los Angeles at number 13. Miami made it to the third highest in the U.S.