Art Basel draws the art community for a leading international art exhibition, which is held annually in December. Contemporary and modern art takes center stage in both Hong Kong and Miami, presented through myriad mediums, and is displayed via the international art community so that curators, collectors, and museum directors have the opportunity to view new collections. Founded by three gallery experts in 1970, it took only three years for the event to land 30,000 visitors and almost 300 exhibitors. Today visiting numbers have doubled and in Miami alone there are dealers, collectors, artists, critics, curators, and art fans viewing exhibitions at local institutions including the Miami Art Museum, Norton Museum, MOCA North Miami, and Bass Museum of Art in South Florida.
Art Basel Hotels
Art Basel Hotels
During the event, there are several Art Basel hotels that are exceedingly popular with visitors from the global art world. Most are at 90 percent occupancy or more and buzzing with a lively crowd day and night. South Beach is where it’s at when Art Basel is in town. Hip and stylish W South Beach is crammed with guests once December hits. Lords South Beach, favored by the gay community, is another festival hotspot rampant with a bohemian vibe. SLS Hotel South Beach is equally inviting and popular—the nightly price tag reflects its status. The James Royal Palm is another contemporary area hotel beloved by Art Basel showgoers and with its ultra-modern design and style, it’s almost an art piece itself.
Art Basel Parties
Art Basel Parties Image: Art Basel 2012
Art Basel parties garner a lot of attention from art enthusiasts and celebrities alike who head to Miami to hit some of the best parties of the year. World-renowned brands including Swarovski, Chanel, Dior, and Ferrari all host amazing parties, usually for specific artists or collaborative works, drawing the attention of famous pop stars, actors, designers, and more. Each year the locations are different—hip hotels, brightly lit beaches, galleries, restaurants—serving as bases for charity galas, book signings, fashion parties, and other art-induced celebrations where there are usually live music shows as well.