Native Grovite and local musician Omine reveals her favorite spots around Miami’s oldest neighborhood. Locals from the small, laid-back village pride themselves on its bohemian vibe and bayfront views, which make the neighborhood a primo spot for joggers, sailors and people watchers alike. Watch as Omine bikes through the banyan-shaded, peacock-filled streets of Coconut Grove to give you a taste of the neighborhood’s rich history and good eats.
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Vizcaya Museum & Gardens (Museu e jardins de Vizcaya)
Built in the early 1900s by industrial mogul James Deering and inspired by Italian Renaissance architecture, Vizcaya is a local treasure. The then winter estate turned museum is a true look into early Miami opulence, from the villa’s ornate architecture to the 10 acres of perfectly manicured gardens. Don’t be surprised if you run into a quinceañera photoshoot or two — the property makes for a picturesque afternoon on the water.
From the people to the ingredients, LoKal is as local as it gets. Hormone free, grass-fed beef and eco-friendly practices are just some of the secrets to owner Matt Kuscher’s ridiculously good burgers. This burger joint has a constantly rotating menu on both their draft and bottle selections, so feel free to pair one of their eccentric and locally inspired menu items with a nice cold brew.
There’s a reason this Coconut Grove stalwart seems to always be packed with brunch purists. Day or night, snag a seat on one of their red velvet sofas and take in the shaded streets with one of their signature drinks in hand. Tip: Long lines? No problem. You can grab breakfast favorites like their Nutella stuffed french toast or their red velvet pancakes until 2:45 p.m.
Coconut Grove dates back to the late 1800s when Bahamian natives started settling in the neighborhood and established the Village West. Originally founded as St. Agnes Baptist Church in 1895, the church remains the oldest African-American church in all Miami-Dade. And more than a century of Sundays later, the sounds of a gospel choir still float through its doors.
Monty’s is a Grove cultural icon. The seafood stop serves up a Key West vibe on their bayside location, in addition to baskets heaped with fresh caught bites like oysters and clams. Feel free to button up and dine inside, but you can never go wrong winding down with a fruity drink to sunset views on their outdoor terrace. Day or night, the bar and the beats will always be bumpin’.
Coconut Grove Farmers Market
Sorry, this one only runs on Saturdays from 10 a.m. - 7 p.m., but if you get a chance to drop by, you’ll understand why the Grove has a self-appointed bohemian vibe. (And you won’t regret trying a fresh pressed juice or two.) Besides produce and prepared foods, here you’ll stumble upon friendly faces selling vegan-friendly finds like organic bath products and handcrafted jewelry.
Cocowalk is the Grove’s luxury stop that counters the rest of the neighborhood’s hippie-dippy, boho atmosphere. From brand name to local kitsch, the popular outdoor mall is riddled with over 30 shops and restaurants as well as a revamped movie theatre. It’s an air conditioned oasis any shopping lover would be happy to take shelter in, only steps away from the shaded streets.
Almost as large as Vizcaya’s backyard, the Kampong is 9 acres of Spanish and Southeast Asian-inspired tropical botanical gardens. The grounds once belonged to horticulturist David Fairchild (the man responsible for D.C.’s cherry blossoms) and now serves as a national landmark and educational center. Get your conservation on, and spend an afternoon surrounded by exotic fruits and plants.
Coconut Grove Sailing Club
By now you’ve recognized that the Grove is edged by water and has no shortage of bayside views, but locals and visitors alike swear by this sailing club’s waterfront location. The private membership club is basically a ritzier, more exclusive alternative to Monty’s. No worries, though, membership isn’t required (but a drink at their second-floor patio should be).
For Miami natives, A.C.’s Icees is a Grove landmark. These frozen lemonades are reason enough to step out from under the shade and into the heat for a cool Icee at Kennedy Park, where owner Allan Cohen’s truck has been stationed for decades. No reason to be picky here, A.C.’s Icees serves three fresh flavors: lemonade, cherry and piña colada, but be ready to pay with cash!