Named for the Seminole Indian word for “alligator”, Allapattah is one of Miami’s oldest communities, defined by its predominantly Dominican and Central American population—hence its nickname, “Little Santo Domingo”. Located west of Miami’s Design District and Wynwood neighborhoods, Allapattah features a cultural imprint similar to that of Little Havana and Little Haiti, with a rich mix of Latin American-inspired restaurants, clubs and other establishments. It’s also heavily rooted in the textile and produce economy, with many manufacturing sites, wholesale outlets and bodegas sprinkled throughout the area.
Although largely removed from Downtown Miami, Allapattah isn’t entirely isolated from the metropolitan sprawl. It’s eastern portion – the area immediately west of I95, across from Wynwood – features Miami’s Health District, which boasts the 2nd-largest concentration of medical and research facilities in the United States, including the University of Miami School of Medicine and Jackson Memorial Hospital. Allapattah also features a vibrant riverfront community along its southernmost border, the Miami River, with several new apartment complexes and marinas.
Beyond those two hubs, Allapattah is largely defined by its one-off attractions and sites, including the Rubell Museum – home to over 7,000 pieces of contemporary art – and the ever-bustling Juan Pablo Duarte Park at the neighborhood’s center. And of course, there’s the Allapattah Market: a 10,000 square-foot open-air marketplace teeming with local vendors.
More recently, the area has experienced an uptick in new developments due to neighboring Wynwood’s exploding popularity – rendering Allapattah as something of a “spillover” site – as well as the rising flood risk in Miami’s more coastal areas, which has prompted residents to migrate westward to higher-elevation areas. The latest developments include the 14-story No. 17 Residences on NW 17th avenue – composed primarily of medical students and staff working the Health District – as well as the Miami Produce Center: an 8-acre center set to feature residential towers, retail spaces, and lushly landscaped grounds amid the area’s existing warehouse grid.
In terms of navigating the area, Allapattah isn’t walkable like more prominent Miami neighborhoods—a car is definitely recommended. However, the area is serviced by the city’s Metrobus and Metrorail, which offers residents easy access to the surrounding Downtown and South Miami regions.
A largely suburban neighborhood with traces of Miami’s urban feel throughout, Allapattah is a vibrant, up-and-coming neighborhood that still maintains affordable housing and a deeply rooted cultural feel despite a recent surge in new developments.