To view this page ensure that Adobe Flash Player version 11.1.0 or greater is installed.

Perspective CHRONICLE OF A CITY FORETOLD One writer’s perspective shows how recent decades shaped what Miami was to become with a first-hand account of life in the city that rewinds to “back then” and fast-forwards to the future. T E X T BY IR EN E M O O R E “I will never leave New York,” I said. I had everything I’d always dreamed of: An apartment in a doorman building in Manhattan with a sweeping view of the Chrysler Building, a great job at W Magazine with a monthly column that put me right in the center of NYC’s fashion world, and I could walk to work! In 1997, I learned to “never say never.” That’s when I left my beloved NYC and moved to Miami. My husband’s new real estate venture was to develop and build the Regal South Beach Stadium 18 — known as the South Beach Cinema — on Lincoln Road. It would take about 3 years, from building permits to the final ribbon-cutting. I thought we would move back to New York after that. It never happened. What did I know of Miami? I had seen Scarface and Miami Vice, the 92 standard by which I viewed the city. When I moved here, I discovered a few pieces of Miami’s history I didn’t know had impacted the area so much: The Mariel Boatlift and the infamous “Cocaine Cowboys” era. Those forces totally changed one of the nation’s most paradisiacal regions, landing it on the cover of Time in 1981 as “Paradise Lost.”  Luckily, by the time I arrived, Miami had become the hottest place on the planet. As I slowly adjusted to my new home, I found the swill of parties, fashion shows and nightlife — mixed in with a soupçon of surrealism — absolutely mind- boggling. Stars like Sylvester Stallone, Madonna and Cher had moved here to be part of the action. Nightlife denizens like The Big Apple’s Susanne Bartsch were coming down to host fantasy fêtes where partiers could forget the humdrum of the everyday. A stream of my friends from NYC visited,