South Beach’s striking art deco hotels that give way to golden sands and a turquoise swell, characterize Miami. This is a city of sun, surf, candy colored cocktails and body beautiful hipsters. The city has a huge Latino influence, evident in its residents’ passion for partying. The plethora of glitzy and trendy bars, countless high-end restaurants and glamorous nightclubs make Miami an electrifying city to live in. The novelty of South Beach’s preening screen stars and bronzing media moguls may pale fairly quickly, however. Thankfully, the city offers an array of fabulous malls for chic retail therapy, or for those in need of a breather, fairy tale museums and gardens. The city is a cultural hub, with over 80 languages spoken throughout. For families it is an ideal place to settle. The crime rates here are low and the local schools have an excellent reputation, ranking among the highest on academic performance in the US. Miami’s great weather, fantastic beaches, idyllic neighborhoods and its range of activities day and night, make this a perfect place to call home. What is special or unique about your city? The City of Miami, known as the “Magic City,” is located in Southeast Florida between the Florida Everglades and the Atlantic Ocean. Miami is one of Florida’s most energized and fun-filled cities. Located in the southern portion of the "Sunshine State," Miami is home to a vast array of culture, sandy white beaches, colorful architecture and a vibrant night life, not to mention its dynamic football teams (the Miami Dolphins and Miami Hurricanes). With a population of some three million people, Miami is a popular vacation destination for all ages. Miami is also within driving distance to other popular Florida attractions such as Walt Disney World and the Everglades National Park. Recognized worldwide as an international hub, Miami has successfully hosted the Latin Grammy Awards, the celebration of the Free Trade of the Americas Conference, the MTV Music Video Awards and much, much more. Whether you live here or are just passing through, Miami is truly a world class destination. What are a newcomer's first impressions of your city? At first glance, Miami comes across exactly as it is: multicultural, diverse, different and glamorous. The city is a major trendsetter for the Southern USA and South America in fashion, music, art and more. People are very friendly, but it can take a while to really connect with the locals; as such, it's up to you to make the most of your time in Miami. Are these impressions likely to change? Not really. Miami is every bit as friendly, vibrant and colorful as it first appears, no matter how long you are here. What is the local language? English is the official language of Miami, but due to the large immigration of people from various Spanish speaking regions, Spanish is also a dominant language and is spoken by 60% of the population. How easily could I live in this city without knowing this language? If you live in Miami it is recommended that you are fluent in either English or Spanish (preferably both). Other languages spoken in the city are German, Swedish and French, but generally only in their respective communities. There are portions of the city where the signs are all in Spanish and few people speak English. Non-Spanish speakers will find being in these areas of the city akin to being in a foreign country. If you do not know any English or Spanish, it is recommended that you enroll in language classes. Below are some phrases in Spanish that may help you out while you are here: Spanish English Buenos días Good morning Buenas tardes Good afternoon Buenas noches Good night Cómo está usted? How are you? Estoy muy bien, y usted? I'm very well, and you? Muchas gracias Thank you very much De nada You're welcome Me llamo... My name is... De dónde es usted? Where are you from? Yo soy de... I'm from... Puede ayudarme? Can you help me? Usted habla inglés? Do you speak English? Yo no hablo ingles I don't speak English Entiende usted? Do you understand? Yo no entiendo I don't understand What are good things to remember in order to avoid offending the other residents of this city? An open mind is a prerequisite for living here. People are generally friendly, laid-back and prefer to 'go with the flow'. How might the local weather affect my daily life? South Florida's climate is one of its biggest draws. Miami enjoys sunny weather virtually every day of the year, with very occasional rainstorms. The heat and humidity of summer months can be debilitating, however, most homes and businesses are equipped with good air conditioning systems, which helps take the edge off. June through November is the official hurricane season. Although Miami has not been hit by a major hurricane since 1992 (Hurricane Andrew), the state has experienced significant storms in recent years. It is therefore important to keep track of the weather during this 'season' and to always be prepared. Is there anything else I should know about the overall character of your city or its people? Warm and friendly people, fun activities, and lots of sunshine; what more could you want for?