Visitors Guide to Miami Beyond Art Basel

World-renowned artists, 250 galleries, museum curators and directors, celebrities, highbrow and deep-pocketed collectors, celebrities, and more than 50,000 other lovers of modern and contemporary art will gather in Miami Beach during the first week of Miami for the 12th annual Miami Art Basel. A private reception called the vernisagge kicks off the opening on the evening of the 4th; the festival proper runs from December 5th through the 8th, transforming the entire city of Miami Beach and much of downtown Miami into an Alice in Wonderland art mecca. As the event guide shows, the Miami area has been abuzz with anticipation since early November.

With its miles of sandy beaches, warm blue water, classic Art Deco architecture, world-class art museums, cultural offerings, and its glittering nightlife, Miami Beach provides the perfect setting for this international gathering.

The art isn't confined to the walls of the convention center; both Miami Beach and downtown Miami will be oozing with cultural events and art exhibits, including a number of satellite fairs and installations that will open in parking lots and sandy beaches. Whether you are taking a morning jog on the beach or going out for some nightlife, you will be bound to run into art.

But when visitors have taken in all the art they can, what else is there to do in Miami Beach during Art Basel? Here are my favorites.