David Frankel’s Lush Tropics and Urban Miami
By Kate Donnelly
For Oscar-winning director David Frankel, the city of Miami, Florida is the perfect way to experience a magical combination of lush tropics, magnificent beaches and a vibrant urban core. “I have travelled a lot, and there are very few places where the land and sea are so in sync.” Consider the nearby Everglades, a slice of vast wetlands, spanning the southern tip of Florida. Frankel reminds us, this “spectacular part of the raw, natural landscape was here millions of years before we were." In fact, Frankel credits the spectacular “special” open light, expansive horizon and shifting clouds as a catalyst for his deep connection to nature.
Living 3,000 miles away from Hollywood, California and the mounting pressures of the moviemaking industry has allowed Frankel to mould a strong visual and atmospheric perspective in such films as Band of Brothers, The Devil Wears Prada and Marley and Me. His Miami celebrates a strong diversity of culture with a unique, vibrant mix of people from South America to Cuba. “Everybody wants to join in whatever this party is that’s happening in Miami,” he says.
At just over 110 years old, the relatively young Miami is booming. When Frankel's in-laws arrived in 1959, they were greeted by the tallest building, a 12-story Seville-style "Freedom Tower" once used to assist Cuban refugees. Fifty years later, a rich, developing skyline, which will only continue to expand, now surrounds the once-tall structure. Additionally, there’s a strong cultural push with the new projects like the Frank Gehry-designed New World Center, a new Science Center and celebrated open-air parking garage designed by Swiss architects Herzog and de Mueron.
Naturally, Miami's warm year-round climate and leisure activities also appeal to Frankel who plays tennis and golf, and enjoys boating. The combination of beach and city life offers grand, five-star hotels, stunning homes and great people watching. Frankel reminds us, “You can visit Miami and in a weekend just be completely revitalised.” It’s the perfect introduction of salt, sea and sky.
For more information, visit Our Miami Guide.