The best way to discover South Beach and enjoy the fresh air is on the Miami South Beach Art Deco Bike Tour. You should make your way to the start point at the Viscay Hotel (960 Collins Ave. | 10th & Collins), in South Beach, by 10:30am.
At the start, you will be issued with the bike, plus a helmet and bike lock. Please wear your helmet while riding.
You will set off with your bilingual guide (English and Spanish). The route takes you through the famous Art Deco district of South Beach, the world’s largest collection of Deco architecture. You will see the great hotels painted in pastel colors, some curved like cruise ships and embellished with portholes, others strictly rectilinear. All are reminders of a by-gone era of luxury and escapism.
Your guide will show you Casa Casuarina, also known as the Versace House. This 1930s mansion was fashion designer Gianni Versace’s South Beach home and it was here that he was shot point blank in July 1997. The house is now a fabulously expensive and exclusive private members’ club.
You will ride past Lincoln Road Mall, a seven-block shopping mecca that combines the best of ‘30s architecture with trendy shopping, eclectic antique stores, avant-garde art galleries and vibrant nightlife. And you will stop to see the poignant Holocaust Memorial. Centerpiece of the Memorial is a 42-foot bronze arm reaching up out of the ground. It is inscribed, as if tattooed, with a serial number like those applied to concentration camp prisoners. The names of Holocaust victims are inscribed on a black granite wall at the site.
You will also stop at the Botanical Gardens and the Bass Art Museum. The Bass Art Museum is an important cultural destination for Miami Beach and specializes in art from around the world from Renaissance to contemporary art.
To beat the Miami heat, you can opt for a quick dip at Nikki Beach and then enjoy some refreshments at Monty’s restaurant/bar at the Miami Beach Marina (payable direct).
Your delightful bike tour covers about 8 miles (13km) and the going is easy all the way. The tour ends back at the starting point.