Lincoln Road Shopping & Store Guide
Shopping Editor /
September 7, 2011
Lincoln Road Mall offers you one of
the finest open-air shopping experiences to be found. Breezing from
haute boutiques to top fashion stores, while dining at cozy sidewalk
cafes, makes Lincoln Road the place in Miami Beach you won't want to miss.
The sportswear's body-conscious tailoring, fine-gauge knitwear and
worn-in leather that so captivates the fairer sex ...
Don't write it off as just another beach town t-shirt shop, Alvin's Island is a
tropical department store with something for everyone ...
You'll have a hard time not
falling in love with the classy vintage aura that embodies the airy,
spacious store; the whimsical, beachy ...
Whether it's the distinct Ibiza dance music or
alluring aromas that entice you into Base, you'll always be glad you ...
BCBG MAX AZRIA
This BCBG is the largest in the
state, and you'll have no qualms with its extensive, trendy medley of
women's styles, full runway collection ...
Possibly one of the busiest
clothing stores on Lincoln Road, Bebe is a familiar name to many and a
manufacturer who started crafting swimwear for some pretty major brands
way back in 1989, Blue Glue launched their original collection in exotic
Bali in 2004 ...
sexy, social and stylish." It's a sensible shopping haven for trendy
older women who aren't audacious enough to wear low-cut, body-hugging ...
CB2 brings a mix of home goods many compare to the Swedish stylings of
IKEA to the shores of South Beach ...
It all started with rebellious FCUK t-shirts and became the
worldwide brand, French Connection ...
Forget the overwhelming
aroma of sweets in the air, the size of the store alone is enough to
impress even the premier chocolate connoisseur ...
"Fast Fashion" brand has not yet opened, the much-anticipated
flagship shop is slated to debut on Lincoln Mall in the Fall of 2012 ...
The preppy aesthetic comes to South Beach, as
J.Crew sells traditional sportswear for men, women and children
in a range of bright, saturated colors ...
New kid on the block, Journelle Lingerie, is a New York-based retailer
offering a well-edited selection from dozens of unique designer lines
This high-end skin care business inspires an enthusiastic response from
shoppers who flock to its tiny Lincoln Road shop ...
After thirty years or so, it looks like this designer jeans thing is
here to stay, and Lucky Brand on Lincoln Road has it wired. We favor the
low-rise jeans, of course ...
The best way to describe it: "A
drug store on ecstasy," says a store employee. Lively neon wigs cover
the right wall; colorful flip flops cover the left ...
Steve Madden is one of America's most popular mid-priced shoe brands
with men's women's and children's shoes and accessories ...
Precisely cut lead crystal is the hallmark of Swarovski on Lincoln Road.
Whether it's jewelry in the form of necklace and earring sets ...
Super models in stilettos, push-up bras, barely-there thong panties make
for an luscious line of clothing at Victoria's Secret ...
In 1947, Life Magazine's twelve page feature article on
Miami Beach summed it up like this: "Each winter it becomes the Mecca for stage
stars, songwriters, playboys, labor leaders, big-money executives and big-money
gamblers." Between 1925 and the early 60's Miami Beach was the winter playground
for the world's elite. And in the center of it all was a street known as the
"Fifth Avenue of the South,"
At one time Lincoln Road was Miami Beach's top commercial
area, with shops, nightclubs, bars, and department stores lining both sides of
the street from the Atlantic Ocean all the way to Biscayne Bay. Saks Fifth
Avenue, Harry Winston Jewelers, and Bonwit-Teller all were there for wealthy
resort hotel guests to visit.
The Road had no less than five movie theaters within its
ten block span, including the world famous Carib Theater, with its live parrots
in the lobby and mechanical roof that retracted to allow patrons to view feature
films under a moonlit Miami Beach sky.
Wealthy vacationers from the north would often arrive in
Miami Beach for the winter season sporting empty steamer trunks to be used to
transport their purchases back home again in April. Most of those purchases were
made in the stores on Lincoln Road.
However, in the late 1950's things began to change. New
economic pressures would change the future of Lincoln Road for many years to
come. Large new hotels like the Fontainebleau and Americana were designed as
self-contained resorts complete with shopping areas and night clubs on premises
where guests could spend their tourist dollars. Lounges like the Fontainebleau's
LaRonde Room or Eden Roc's Mona Lisa Room attracted world class entertainers
like Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, and Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis.
On the popular American Plan breakfast, dinner, and
sometimes even cocktails and entertainment were included in the price of the
room, so guests began to dine in the hotel's own fine restaurants rather than in
local restaurants on Lincoln Road. At one time, the Americana Hotel alone
employed over sixty chefs to service its winter guests. All this put great
economic pressure on Lincoln Road's shops and restaurants, and the area soon
began to feel the strain.
E PLURIBUS/ lapidus
In an attempt to reverse the economic hardship being
suffered by local stores and restaurants, the city commissioned famed Miami
Beach architect Morris Lapidus, designer of the Fontainebleau Hotel, to
transform Lincoln Road into a pedestrian shopping mall in 1960. The Road was
closed to auto traffic and Lapidus created a beautiful shopping mall area filled
with lush tropical plants, pink sidewalks, fountains, and unique sculptures.
These changes met with some success, but the turnaround was
short-lived. In the years that followed, Lincoln Road's stores closed their
doors one by one. Even the crown jewel, Saks Fifth Avenue eventually called it
New social pressures were also waiting just around the
corner. Miami Beach's population, especially in South Beach, was shifting toward
elderly retirees. At one point 80 percent of South Beach's population was over
65 years of age. These retirees, living in South Beach's old hotels and
apartment buildings on low fixed incomes became a powerful political force and
soon began resisting new taxes and bond issues, thus denying the city much
needed revenue for infrastructure improvements.
Castro's Mariel Boatlift brought in new residents at the
lower end of the socio-economic scale. Of the 250,000 Marielitos allowed to come
to the United States during the boatlift, it is estimated that 10 percent of
this number were criminals straight out of Cuban jails. The crime rate in South
To compound the problem, Miami in the 1980's also had a
slight "Colombian Marching Powder" problem to contend with. Check any Miami Vice
re-run for details.
At its low point, most of Lincoln Road's shops stood
vacant. The Road's golden days were seemingly gone forever.
But, in the late 80's when South Beach began its resurgence,
development progressed in much the same way that the island's original
development occurred in the early part of this century, namely, from the south,
northward. Tony Goldman's Park Central Hotel, the News Cafe and the Cardozo
Hotel/Restaurant all sprang to life in just a few short years. South Beach's
redevelopment was like a tidal wave breaking right up Ocean Drive.
And as Ocean Drive turned around, so did Lincoln Road. Less
touristy and more of a hip community, the Road is now blossoming into South
Beach's creative district with artists and media production companies
gravitating to the area at a steady pace.
So, will Lincoln Road recapture its glory days of the past,
when movie stars and high rollers dressed in tropical white outfits strolled its
sidewalks? Well, it turns out that shopping at Saks has given way to pumping
iron with the hard bodies at Idol's Gym, but other than that, things are
basically the same as they were in the 1930's; beautiful weather, beautiful
surroundings, and beautiful people. Recapture the glory days? Absolutely.
Except, forget the part about "strolling in a white outfit." These days it's
roller-blades and skin-tights. Just ask one of the hard-bodies skating by. They
Lincoln Road Mall Details
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1 Lincoln Road,
Cash, Credit Card
||Parking garage one block north
Mo-Su 10am - 12am