IKEA Miami Opens Today: Here's What to Expect (Photos)

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Photos by Laine Doss
Jeanette Mendez and Valerie Aguilar camp out for the IKEA Miami grand opening.
Although IKEA Miami doesn't open its doors until 9 a.m. today, already there are hundreds of people in line, some camping out for more than 24 hours.

What inspires such fandom for a furniture store?

It could be the free sofas that the Swedish megastore is giving to the first 39 people in line this morning, or it could be the promise of being part of a "happening" that spans the course of three days and includes giveaways, music, and food samplings.

IKEA spokesperson Joseph Roth says these store openings are so monumental because there are so few of them. "This is only the 39th store we've opened in the U.S. Other outlets open that many in just one metropolitan area."

See also: IKEA Miami Opens Tomorrow: Free Stuff All Week Including Meatballs for a Year

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Freddo: Argentine Helado Coming to Lincoln Road

Courtesy Freddo
Helado from Argentina is coming to Lincoln Road.
Freddo, the Argentine helado company, is coming to Miami Beach.

The premium helado, considered a cross between American ice cream and Italian gelato, has been a staple of Argentine families since 1969. The brand is available in six South American countries and the United Kingdom in more than 150 stores. Now it's tackling the U.S. market with a premier location in, uh, Charleston, South Carolina.

See also: The Frieze Ice Cream Now Available at Eden Roc Miami Beach

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American Social: Fort Lauderdale Gastropub to Open Brickell Location

Photo by billwisserphoto.com
American Social to open a second location in Brickell.
American Social, the Las Olas gastropub that features dozens of craft beers and tap tables, is expanding to Brickell.

American Social, or AmSo, will open just after Labor Day at 690 SW First Ct. on the ground floor of the Neo Vertika building. The Miami-area location, nearly triple the size of the original Fort Lauderdale gastropub, will feature 6,500 square feet of interior space, 3,000 square feet of canopied waterfront space, and 200 square feet of dock -- in case you want to arrive by boat. In addition, a private room for up to 50 guests comes complete with water views and a gas-burning fireplace. Co-owners Paul Greenberg and Rick Mijares chose Brickell for their second location because the neighborhood spoke to them. According to Greenberg, Brickell is an "evolving, thriving, and visually stunning area of Miami. Our new location is a large, beautiful space right on the Miami River. We could not have asked for better real estate."

The two have tapped designer Laurie Mijares to decorate the new restaurant. Mijares helped develop the AmSo Las Olas concept.

See also: Finka Table & Tap Takes Bold Flavors to Miami's Hinterland

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IKEA Miami Opens Wednesday: Free Stuff All Week, Including Meatballs for a Year

Courtesy of IKEA
IKEA Miami opens tomorrow.
IKEA Miami opens tomorrow at 9 a.m. sharp, and already people have set up camp in an attempt to be among the first 2,500 people in line for some pretty fantastic giveaways, including free sofas to the first 39 people to walk through the door, armchairs for the next 100, and $10-to-$250 gift cards for the first 2,500 people in line.

In addition to the giveaways, IKEA is offering buy-one-get-one-free deals on hot dogs, frozen yogurt, and cinnamon buns, while supplies last.

Selwyn Crittendon, IKEA Miami's store manager, expects the line to grow exponentially as the day ends. "You get more people after work, but we're prepared. It's been a long time coming, and I look forward to greeting everyone come tomorrow morning." The store has set up bathroom trailers with running water and designated smoking areas to make overnighters comfortable.

NBC Miami reports that more than a dozen people have pitched tents and beach chairs by the furniture giant's 416,000-square-foot store in the hopes of getting one of the coveted prizes. At least one thing is for sure: These early birds have snagged one of the 1,500 parking spots -- something that will probably be a hot commodity come sunrise Wednesday.

See also: IKEA Miami to Open August 27: The Top Ten Items for Foodies to Buy

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Uncle Tom's Barbecue Begins Delivery Service, Donates Money to ALS Association UPDATED

Categories: Restaurant News

Courtesy of Uncle Tom's BBQ
Uncle Tom is on the road.
Here's a scenario.

It's lunchtime and you're starving. There's a place to grab a tuna sandwich nearby, but you've got a hankering for a rack of Uncle Tom's Barbecue's ribs ($19.95) and some cool, crisp coleslaw. Problem is, you're on a deadline and there's absolutely no way you can leave the office.

See also: Renovated Uncle Tom's BBQ in Coral Gables Keeps Original Flavor (Photos)

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Vicky Bakery and Cafe Coming to Coral Gables

All photos courtesy of Vicky Bakery
Delicious Cuban pastries and more coming to Coral Gables.
Vicky Bakery, the Miami-based chain that features classic Cuban treats, is coming to Coral Gables with an expanded concept.

The new location will not only feature their famous pastelitos, cakes, and pastries, but it will offer a full-serve cafe on premises.

See also: Mitt Romney to Hang at Vicky Bakery in Kendall Today

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Campania & Moye: Sardinia Enoteca Owners to Open Two New Restaurants

Sardinia is about to get two siblings.
Sardinia Enoteca Ristorante is the sleeper staple for rustic Italian in South Beach. Since 2006, the place has served up some of the best bowls of pasta in Miami at reasonable prices. The restaurant, consistently lively, was put into the forefront when the sleepy little Sunset Harbour neighborhood where it had settled in suddenly became a boomtown and a mecca for "foodies" with the installation of neighbors like Pubbelly, Pubbelly Sushi, and Lucali.

See also: Italian Mojito at Sardinia: A Cocktail You Can't Refuse

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The Frieze Ice Cream Now Available at Eden Roc Miami Beach

Categories: Restaurant News

The Frieze via Facebook
Miami-made ice creams and sorbets now available at Eden Roc.
Local ice-cream favorite the Frieze is expanding outside of its Lincoln Road headquarters.

The ice-cream company, which is known for its deep SoBe roots, is partnering with the Eden Roc Miami Beach to offer ice cream at the resort.

See also: The Frieze Ice Cream Factory Tests World Domination at Costco Roadshows

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Can National Hotel Chef Gaston Sanchez Match SLS, Delano, Ritz?

The National Hotel, a Miami Beach landmark, has undergone a $12 million renovation that promises to bring the property up to par with neighbors that include the Delano, SLS, and Ritz-Carlton.

Part of the renovation includes the hiring of Gastón Sánchez as executive chef of the hotel. Sánchez is tasked with overseeing all of the National's culinary operations, including Tamara Bistro, Aqua Bar & Grill, the Blues Bar, and all in-room dining and catering.

See also: Vagabond Hotel Opens Today; Restaurant Coming in October

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Vagabond Hotel Opens Today; Restaurant Coming in October

Ciara LaVelle
The Vagabond: Fully restored to her MiMo greatness.
The completion of Biscayne Boulevard's Vagabond Hotel culminates with a party this evening to celebrate the MiMo beauty's full restoration.

The Vagabond Restaurant will follow shortly, with an opening slated for sometime in October.

See also: Inside the Vagabond Hotel, Biscayne Boulevard's Restored MiMo Gem (Photos)

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