When Art Basel debuted in Miami Beach in 2002, it immediately solidified itself as the country’s leading exposition. More than 10 years later, Miami’s Art Basel has blossomed from exhibitions in converted shipping containers to socialite-flanked parties where people from all corners of the world come to seek inspiration, display their work and rub shoulders with the who’s-who of the creative community.
Aside from galleries and visual showcases, Art Basel has become a hub for cutting-edge music events with electronic acts at the forefront of the week. We’ve curated our top picks for dance music parties you absolutely cannot miss.
Tuesday, November 29
Where: Miami Beach Edition Hotel
Since opening its doors in November 2014 to reveal the sleek, grandeur building, the Miami Beach Edition Hotel has quickly become one of the beach’s hottest spots — thanks in part to its multidimensional entertainment space Basement that includes a nightclub, bowling alley and ice-skating rink. The club will host Thugfucker, Doc Martin, Nicolas Matar and Ahmed Hashim for its second anniversary celebration, complete with dramatic lighting and projection effects from world-renowned lighting designer Patrick Woodroffe.
Wednesday November 30
Where: Magic City Warehouse
Resident Advisor has been throwing thoughtfully-curated, packed parties in Miami for years, but this showcase marks their first Art Basel event. In partnership with local promoters PL0T and Poplife, Resident Advisor will offer up a night of unparalleled grooves at the Magic City Warehouse helmed by disco, funk and soul purveyor Floating Points, Between the Beats star The Black Madonna and LA’s lively Dâm-Funk.
Thursday December 1
DJ Tennis’ Life and Death label returns for its fifth year to take attendees on a 12-hour journey through their roster of top-drawer talent at Little River Studios. The state-of-the-art production village is comprised of four rooms that will transform into an otherworldly, immersive environment soundtracked by dark, psychedelic tunes from the likes of Âme, Damian Romero, Job Jobse, and Young Marco amongst others, supertrio The Wizardry featuring DJ Three, Damian Lazarus and DJ Tennis, as well as Dorisburg (Live), RØDHÅD, J Dubs, and Tijana T making their Miami debuts
Friday December 2
Sites & Sounds Basel Festival will be an oasis of visceral and auditory creations, amalgamating internationally acclaimed and local visual and performing artists in one synergistic space. Artists will cultivate new works inspired by each other’s style, art medium, and culture, with 10+ live painters designing several 10’X30′ murals. From 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. muralists and DJs will collaborate simultaneously, drawing inspiration from each other’s motifs. There will be music, live mural art, installation pieces, VIP gallery with art for sale, bars, food, and technology encompassing art pieces.
Where: 1 Hotel South Beach
Our favorite event from last year’s Art Basel is back to provide an oasis of underground soundscapes in the chic 1 Hotel South Beach. The early-evening soiree will bring the Israeli artist’s infamous and iconoclastic Rumors party from its home in Ibiza to the year-old, eco-friendly hotel. The Miami event rounds out a year global appearances for Rumors, most notably its Los Angeles showcase earlier this year that gathered thousands of revelers to watch Gerber master the decks.
Tim Sweeney’s iconic homespun weekly radio show Beats in Space has been going strong for more than 15 years, and this Art Basel will descend on Miami’s favorite hipster hideout Bardot. The name says it all – let Danny Daze, Jennifer Cardini and Tim Sweeney take you on an intergalactic trip at the low key venue that’s easy to overlook with its lack of signage, parking-lot entrance and zero-photography policy. But once you make it past the doors, revelers will find a Moroccan-style lounge where the city’s coolest cats can be found chain smoking around the pool table.
Visionquest Records founding members Ryan Crosson and Shaun Reeves take to the decks alongside house visionary Doc Martin at Miami’s Treehouse. The two-room techno and house sanctuary will be flooded with Visionquest’s signature shape-shifting, expansive beats. Unlike other Miami Beach nightclubs, Treehouse boasts a casual vibe and invites music fans in all attire to enjoy its funky jungle decor (but make sure to bring your dancing shoes.)
Saturday December 3
Where: Wynwood warehouse location (TBA)
New York collective RINSED makes their Miami debut with Mama Matrix – a fully immersive rave night with performances from pineal warrior Otto Von Schirach, Brooklyn-based artists Jubilee, Aquarian, Katie Rex, and RINSED residents Dan Wender & Blacky II. The multi-room, indoor/outdoor space will be vibrantly covered in 2D and 3D art by James Moore, The Oracle, Chris Lunney, and Veronica Gessa. Based in Brooklyn, RINSED is known for their nomadic warehouse parties that fuse art installations with dance music, and has hosted acts like Jacques Greene, Tiga, and Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs in DIY spaces across the city.
Where: Magic City Studios
Following a successful summer season at Space Ibiza, Tale Of Us is bringing their innovative Afterlife event to Magic City Studios for its inaugural US show. Transforming the venue into Afterlife’s “realm of consciousness,” Tale of Us will focus on blending art and originality with their hallmark Berlin sound alongside techno stalwarts Marcel Dettmann, Recondite, Mind Against and Thugfucker. Following Afterlife installments in London, Amsterdam and Barcelona, the dark party series will find a fitting home during Miami’s Art Basel week.
Where: Electric Pickle
Crew Love is a collaborative concept from Wolf + Lamb, Soul Clap Records, and Double Standard, three record labels known for their devotion to music that challenges the mind, moves the heart, and sways the hips. Returning to their home away from home The Electric Pickle where they’ve hosted countless Miami affairs, the Crew Love gang will bring the funk to the arts-centric venue designed for intimacy, close connection and all-night dancing.
Saturday December 3 – Sunday December 4
Where Are My Keys? @ secret island location (Editor’s Pick)
Where Are My Keys? is a two day boutique micro-festival that will bring sandy feet and sunshine rhythms from early morning, to sundown, to after hours sunrises. Taking place on a secluded island nestled in lush surroundings and tropical shaded seaside grove, Where Are My Keys? will offer an escape from the city with the best in underground music. Presented by The Electric Pickle and Rhonda INTL and powered by Beck’s Beer, the double-header event invites denizens to explore a multitude of immersive sensory experiences including musical performances, environmental art and the raw beauty of nature’s surroundings.
On Saturday Lee Burridge brings his internationally acclaimed daytime soiree All Day I Dream to the lush enclave alongside label cohorts Gorje Hewek & Izhevski, and Oona Dahl for eight hours of otherworldly magic. Sunday will feature house and techno veterans such as Moodymann, Axel Boman, Horse Meat Disco and Bamboozle alongside support from Will Renuart, Goddollars & Paradise and Captain Ridiculous.
Sunday December 4
Where: The Factory at Magic City
After establishing itself as an Ibiza staple for the last two years, Acid Sunday’s will bring the party to Miami for the first time to close out Art Basel weekend. Led by German mastermind Acid Pauli, Acid Sunday’s is known for serving up wild, dancefloor-driven sets anchored by techno and house but also incorporating sounds from across the genre spectrum. Acid Pauli will be joined by Sinopoli, Clara Brea and Guy Laliberte.