Gus Kenworthy, barely-there swimwear, and 15 need-to-knows about Miami Beach Pride

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Miami Beach is kicking off 2018 Pride season with a bang and local resident Gino R. Campodonico will be your GayCities Miami Pride guide. The 33-year-old PR director and nightlife enthusiast has the low-down on Sunday brunch, off-the-radar hangouts, and the best beaches for people watching.

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Here’s 15 things you need to know about during Miami Beach Pride 2018 according to Gino.

Photo courtesy of Gino R. Campodonico

1. Favorite clubs in Miami

  • Twist — the ultimate recipe for a fun night out. It has seven rooms fit for all tastes and there’s never a cover
  • Gramps — Double Stubble Thursdays with DJ Hottpants who slays the dance floor in short shorts
  • The Gaythering — Stiff cocktails and gossip chatter with friends

2. Favorite hangout that’s off the gay radar

The Standard. It’s quintessential Miami Beach and an absolute favorite place to hang out with friends, enjoy the views, and relax with a Frosé.

3. Best place to see-and-be-seen

Lincoln Road is South Beach’s best place to people watch or to strut your stuff. Never a dull moment on Lincoln Road!

4. Best beach for checking out hot guys

Once you get to Ocean Drive, all you need to do is follow the rainbow flags to reach South Beach’s iconic gay beach located on 12th Street. All types of guys in barely-there swimwear will be basking in the Miami sun.

5. Best place to eat when you’re feeling fancy

Joe’s Stone Crab is a Miami Beach culinary institution. The stone crabs is a total foodgasm moment and always order their Key Lime Pie.

6. Best place to grab a quick bite

Everyone swears by the subs at La Sandwicherie for good reason, but I also enjoy a good club sandwich from Hank & Harry’s which just opened off of Lincoln Road. Taquiza is also another favorite when I am in the mood for tacos, which is always.

7. What makes Miami Beach Pride special?

This year is extra special because it’s Miami Beach Gay Pride’s BIG 10-year anniversary. I’ve attended every single year and I am so happy to have seen it grow so much. It’s always so beautiful to witness a sea of people of all ages and colors coming together to celebrate life, love and diversity.

8. Which Pride party is an absolute must?

The Saturday and Sunday beach parties in Lummus Park are sure bets to find the best kind of eye candy. It’s hot out, which means shirtless guys and micro bathing suits galore.

9. Official Pride event you’re most excited for

I am really looking forward to Friday’s VIP Gala at Faena – one of the most drop-dead gorgeous hotels in our city. It’s an opportunity to mix and mingle with Pride-goers including Olympic hottie Gus Kenworthy, who is this year’s Parade Grand Marshal.  I’m also really excited to see Betty Who, Thelma Houston and Taylor Dayne perform during the beach parties on Saturday and Sunday.

10. Best spot to watch the Parade

If you can secure a table at Palace Bar then you’re in for the ultimate viewing experience.

11. Best place to grab Sunday brunch

The Palace is a must. And hold on to your mimosa, because the drag queens literally werk every inch of the restaurant with their gagworthy performances. My favorite part is when the divas turn the sidewalk and the street into their very own catwalk. Cars and gawking tourists, you’ve been warned!

12. Place to be during Pride Sunday

After the Parade, the best place to be is the Pride Festival in Lummus Park. If you’re feeling bougie, then splurge on the BB&T VIP Lounge. Cocktails flow continuously, you have the best view of the main stage and artists pop in for exclusive meet and greet opportunities.

13. Hotels you recommend for Pride visitors

14. Best non-Pride event

If you’ve got some extra time before or after all the parties, check out The Bodyguard musical starring Deborah Cox at the Adrienne Arsht Center in Downtown Miami’s Arts and Entertainment District.

15. Which GayCities are on your bucket list?

San Francisco and Provincetown. I can’t believe I haven’t made it to those cities yet. I feel like I need to have my gay card revoked.

Follow Gino on Instagram for all the Miami Beach Pride weekend goings-on.

Are you in-the-know about Pride in your town? Hook-up with us and be a GayCities Pride tour guide!