tourism

Arianna Prothero/WLRN

The prospects for the Old Seven-Mile Bridge in the Middle Keys have turned 180 degrees in the past several weeks. The historic bridge and popular walking spot once in danger of being shut down is now close to receiving more than $77 million for repairs and 30 years' worth of upkeep.

Tom Hudson / WLRN

The dawn of a new year brings with it new promises and old challenges.  

Homestead Launches Free National Parks Trolley

Jan 6, 2014
Jessica Meszaros / WLRN

  

About a year ago, the city of Homestead was designated "The Gateway To Biscayne and Everglades National Parks." This past weekend the city launched its first free, guided trolley ride into the parks, which the city hopes will see more local visitors with the start of the new service.

Chloe Herring / WLRN

Behind Libreri Mapou's pink storefront, tall bookshelves cover every wall and ceiling fans make small red, blue and white Haitian flags wave. Small, dark sculptures of dancing people are on display. The small, Haitian bookstore sells titles in Creole, French and English written by Haitians from the island and its diaspora.

LARC, Inc.

Imagine this: You’re heading down the Florida Turnpike on your way to the Keys and spot this interesting-looking steel tower.  It’s got an observation deck that corkscrews from the ground all the way to a height of about 560 feet.

You’re gonna stop the car, right?

That’s what Homestead officials are counting on.  The city is considering building such a tower to attract tourists to its downtown.

Homestead director of community redevelopment Rick Ammirato says the city is perfectly situated to offer visitors an extraordinary view.

Courtesy of the InterContinental Hotel Miami

A year ago, the InterContinental Hotel in downtown Miami unveiled a 19-story-tall LED display of a shapely, female silhouette, dancing suggestively, often called "the dancing lady." The hotel recently held auditions to find new dancers. Hopefuls had one minute to dance to Pitbull’s “Hotel Room Service” to prove they had the right moves for a 200-foot LED display.

Arianna Prothero/WLRN

A long-awaited deal to fund repairs and upkeep for a historic bridge in the Middle Keys may be close to sealed.

The future of the Old Seven Mile Bridge looked bleak as salt water and storms eroded it toward a critical point where the state would be forced to shut down the last 2.2 miles of the bridge that remains open to pedestrians and cyclists.

What Do You Think Of The Dancing Lady In Miami's Skyline?

Nov 22, 2013
Courtesy / Intercontinental Hotel

  

If you’ve spent any time on the MacArthur Causeway this past year, you’ve seen the 200-foot tall, shimmying silhouette of the dancing lady on the side of the Intercontinental Hotel.

The giant, multi-colored light display on the side of the building danced into our hearts – or danced us into ire—last December. Whether you love or hate the dancing lady, she’s become a staple of the Miami skyline.

But now, the lady and her suggestive moves  are about to be retired. The hotel is holding auditions for her replacement Thursday and Friday, Nov. 21 and 22.

Florida Sets Record For Tourism

Nov 18, 2013
Florida Governor's Office

The three-month period ending in September brought almost 23 million visitors to Florida. That's the highest number ever for a third quarter.

The state is on pace to welcome about 95 million tourists in 2013. That would be a record, but shy of the 100-million goal the governor’s office was hoping for this year.

And it’s not just about the theme parks. Many visitors are hitting Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and Palm Beach from international destinations.

Eric Barton

In the 1980s, after the bolívar crashed and Venezuelans suddenly couldn’t fly to Miami every weekend, a gaita band recorded a sardonic song whose chorus lamented, "Qué triste domingo sin Miami Beach."

How sad Sunday is without Miami Beach.

How The Federal Shutdown Affects South Florida

Oct 11, 2013

Payday comes and goes with pinched paychecks for thousands of federal government workers, as the partial U.S. government shutdown continues. We look at how South Florida, from Palm Beach to the Keys, is dealing with it.

Fail once, try, try again. The state takes a second swing at purging voter rolls.

And in this odd-year election season, we look at some local races and ballot questions - and the big drama at Doral City Hall.

WALTER MICHOT / Miami Herald Staff

Getting out on the open sea, wind in your hair, enjoying the ride with your family and friends. Then there’s the boat payments, storage fees, fuel, maintenance and repair — these costs can quickly sink the dream of boat ownership.

Ahoy, mates — a new breed of boat-sharing services is entering the hot South Florida boating market. San Francisco-based Boatbound.co set up its East Coast headquarters on the Rickenbacker Causeway in Key Biscayne and launched nationally in June.

Raj Chetty, Nathaniel Hendren, Patrick Kline, Emmanuel Saez / http://www.equality-of-opportunity.org/

Children from low income families in Florida have the best chance of achieving a higher income level if they grow up in Miami.

Surprised?

I was.  Based on my layman's understanding, I thought we would have low rates of income mobility.

Add this to the list of damages done in recent years to important pieces of art:

"An American tourist in Italy has generated shock and outrage by snapping the finger off a 600-year-old statue at a museum in Florence." (NBC News)

The fragile architectural treasures of Venice are endangered by rising sea levels, and a growing number of critics now say the city and its canals are at risk from massive cruise ships as big as floating skyscrapers.

On an average day, tens of thousands of passengers lean over the railings of cruise ships that can be 300 yards long and 15 stories high. The tourists peer down at the majestic Doge's Palace as they sail into St. Mark's basin and down the Giudecca canal.

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