It's just not Little Havana that's bringing the salsa-loving crowds to the city these days. South Beach and other neighborhoods are gaining popularity for boasting some of the best jazz clubs and Latin music venues in Miami. Wherever you wind up, make sure a visit to a top spot for drunk food in Miami is in the plans—because nothing works up an appetite quite like good tunes and cocktails.
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Best jazz clubs and Latin music venues in Miami
Today’s Ball & Chain is a recreation of a 1930s hotspot that once occupied the same space and welcomed jazz superstars like Billie Holiday, Count Basie and Chet Baker to its stage. All these years later, the tradition of fantastic live music continues. Expect live jazz and Latin tunes at 6pm sharp Thursday through Saturday. On Saturdays, a wild Cuban fiesta, La Pachanga, kicks off around 9pm when salsa dancers take to the bar.
This intensely charming Miami Beach venue boasts some of the most eclectic bookings in all the city. Run by the Rhythm Foundation, a group devoted to bringing rare world music to Miami, the North Beach Bandshell has its fair share of both jazz and Latin shows, bringing acts from the islands of the Caribbean to the tip of South America.
Floyd has taken over the former Libertine space and introduced an elevated after-hours experience to the neighborhood’s 24/7 party circuit. As the hidden companion to Miami’s most infamous EDM spot, Space, Floyd stands in stark contrast to the over-the-top megaclubs that surround it—think chandeliers instead of lasers. The club specializes in jazz with a modern flair, everything from the traditional trio to experimental. The best part? It’s open just as late as the other guys and it's got couches for plenty of late-night lingering.
A night at Lagniappe feels like a backyard bash at a friend’s—if said friend had a spacious yard filled with mismatched lawn furniture and strung-up bistro lights. It’s all very casual here, but the musicians are serious players. There's everything from folk to rock taking place in Lagniappe's intimate indoor space—but the specialty is straight up jazz.
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. It might just be the prettiest music venue in Miami.
This Kendall neighborhood hangout serves fresh seafood paired with live jazz and blues. For music, the divey back room is where it's at. There's a jazz jam every Wednesday at 8pm and live blues Thursdays from 8pm to close on the restaurant's small stage. Both nights have a two-drink minimum. Grab some fresh oysters ($13) while you're at it, too.
Casa Panza might be a bit beyond its glory years, but the Friday and Saturday flamenco fiestas at this Spanish tavern are a hoot. 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. A warning: there is a fee attached to the show that you'll find out about when the bill comes.
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 up to the street, with a good view of the beach. And nobody seems to be too keen on this whole "clothes" thing.