Miami is one of the great places in the U.S. for Latin music. In a city where you’ll hear Spanish spoken virtually everywhere, you don’t have to go far to hear it sung—in the best Miami jazz clubs, Cuban venues, drifting from storefronts on the streets of Little Havana. Unsurprisingly, Cuban music is particularly well represented, from dingy neighborhood bars to swanky theaters.
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The Tuesday and Thursday fiestas at this Spanish tavern are legendary. A young professional crowd eats, drinks and dances around the tables, while a guitarist plays flamenco and sings, accompanied by two stomping, costumed female dancers. Fridays and Saturdays are also busy, but less frantic.
Smoky and sultry, illuminated by flickering candelabra, Jazid is a small club with a cool vibe. It’s the kind of place where you might hear Sade’s Smooth Operator on constant rotation. Downstairs, local musicians perform modern jazz, soul and Latin, with tables close to the stage. Upstairs, there’s a DJ spinning soul and funk. A simple formula of good music and no attitude has ensured Jazid has outlasted many a South Beach failure. Other clubs, please take note.
Once a 1926 silent movie palace, this is now an enchanting venue for the occasional jazz and Latin gig, complete with velvet seats, Shakespearean balconies and twinkling stars on the ceiling’s painted night tableau.
A well-known pick-up joint in business for more than 20 years, Mango promotes an island-fever atmosphere with its sweet cocktails, Jello shots and a house band playing perfunctory salsa and merengue. Decorated with tropical murals, the bar opens on to the street, with a good view of the beach. The bar girls manage to make even Katy Perry look overdressed.