Miami Life:  Jazz, Unusual Gifts, Culture Crawl, Rum Convention

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If you are a jazz lover, then you are going to be thrilled with what Miami has to offer. The Faena Jazz Series is back. If you’re looking for unusual gift items, checkout the Frost Science Museum gift store, which is not just science. Every third Thursday of the month, Miami Beach comes alive with culture. Did you know that Miami-Dade is the largest rum consumer market in the USA? No wonder we’ve been chosen as the site of the Rum Convention.

Faena Jazz Series Is Back

The Faena Jazz Series is just as good, if not better than the Jazz at NYC’s Lincoln Center (Dizzy Club). That’s a big statement but I have full confidence in Alan Faena, the founder and owner of the Faena Hotel. Everything is first class under his watchful eye.

Faena is often referred to as a “global entrepreneur and creative visionary who has made an indelible mark across a wide range of industries including hospitality, entertainment, art, design, fashion, real estate, and urbanism.

Designed by Alan Faena, the 150-seat venue is in one of Miami Beach’s most beautiful hotels. Inspired by Europe’s historic opera houses with its gold-leaf and red velvet décor, the theater’s acoustics and sightlines are flawless, making it an elegant and comfortable place to spend an evening enjoying great jazz.

This is the fifth year for the Faena Jazz Series which is presenting some of the greatest emerging and established jazz artists: Al Di Meola, Laufey, Gabielle Cavassa, Sara Gazarek, Entienne Charles, Shayna Steele and Big Chief Donald Harrison! The production is curated and produced by Grammy nominated producer Rachel Faro.

The 2023 lineup is particularly fascinating with superstar players such as Al Di Meola, emerging superstars such as Laufey, a strong showing of woman artists in March, Woman’s History Month, including the latest winner of the Sarah Vaughn Vocal Jazz Competition and musical tributes to the music of New Orleans and the Sephardic communities of Spain and South America.

Tickets start at $55 per person. The series kicks off on January 25th with a performance by guitarist Al Di Meola.  Get the details.

Frost Science Museum Gift Store — The Most Unusual Items Ever 

Every time we have to purchase a gift for someone, I am always scratching my head as to what to buy. I’m tired of relying on flowers, champagne, and gift certificates. They have become too boring for me even though the people love to receive these items.

Then one day I walked into the gift shop at the Miami Phillip & Patricia Frost Museum of Science and felt like I finally found a plethora of items that were perfect for presents, both young and old. They have the most unusual items ever.

To quote the museum, “If you’re looking to exercise your brain, start a new hobby, or explore the world around you, the Science Store has something for everyone.” They have apparel, books, jewelry, games, cards, household items, toys, puzzles, costumes, wall hangings, table top objects, etc. Your head will spin with the endless choices you can make.

Bring lots of money. You will want to buy fun stuff for yourself as well. It’s just too tempting. GET THE DETAILS.

Active museum Members save 10% on all in-store purchases. Not a Member? Join today!

Miami Beach Culture Crawl 

Every third Thursday of the month, Miami Beach comes alive with culture as various institutions and buildings open their doors to give you just a taste of what they have to offer.

The majority of the programming is accessible by foot, and by bike, but dedicated free trolleys drop you off, and pick you up, at dedicated Culture Crawl stops.  Check out monthly map to find your closest stop. Start where you like and explore at your leisure.

We went on these crawls years ago and met so many fun people that we are still friends with today. As I was writing this post for you, I realized that I want to start doing this tour again because of new cultural developments that we are probably missing out on. This is such a great way to keep your mind active with positive thoughts.

The Cultural Affairs Program advances, supports, and promotes arts and culture in order to strengthen the local economy and quality of life for all who live, work, and visit the City of Miami Beach.

The Cultural Affairs works to make this mission possible by implementing two essential programs:

Art in Public Places

Art in Public Places is a city board responsible for the commission and purchase of artwork by contemporary artist in all media. The program allocates funds totaling 2% of hard costs for City projects and joint private/public projects. Funds from construction projects may be aggregated into the Art in Public Places Fund and allocated for artwork at public sites and for collection maintenance. The fund is administered by a City Commission appointed citizen’s board of seven members, the Art in Public Places Committee.

Cultural Arts

The Miami Beach Cultural Arts Council develops, coordinates, and promotes performing and visual arts in the City of Miami Beach, for the enjoyment, education, cultural enrichment, and benefit of the residents of and visitors to the City.  The Cultural Arts Program is funded by Resort Taxes and Quality of Life funds.


Feb. 10-12. A Rum Convention

I love rum. I used to drink rum and coke all the time as a teenager in growing up in New York City. I never thought that I would be living in an area, Miami-Dade, that would be the largest rum consumer market in the USA. It represents over 2.4M cases of rums sold per year.

I guess that’s why Miami is one of the cities around the country that was picked by to celebrate the 4th Miami Rum Congress.  The boutique-style event will showcase a handful of brands that emphasize the education and premiumization of the rum category. says that the USA is considered one of the most important countries for the entire rum industry. “Before the American Revolution, rum was the most consumed spirit, and now an awakening is occurring.”

The event group are the producers of the Puerto Rico Rum Festival “Taste of Rum”, California, New York, LA Rum Fest, San Francisco Rum Fest, and the Chicago Rum Festival. All events are attracting hundreds of people from trade, rum aficionados, tourists and locals.

The Rum Congress will be at the Hilton Cabana Miami Beach. Get the details.


  • Lois Whitman-Hess

    As Co-Founder and President of HWH PR, Lois Whitman-Hess has been actively involved in public relations for a vast array of business sectors including technology, Internet-based companies, entertainment, law, publishing, fashion, beauty and art. For the last eight years, Lois has authored a daily blog called “Digidame.” It mostly covers her personal journeys as well as tech innovations, art, travel, and entertainment. In addition, Lois co-hosts a weekly podcast called “Lying on the Beach” with TV personality Steve Greenberg who is a contributor on NBC's Today Show. They interview luminaries who discuss their expertise and views on current events.

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