Taking chic engagement photos has been a long tradition. An engagement or pre-wedding shoot can serve as a warm-up to the wedding day and a chance to get to know your chosen photographer.
Think of these shoots as a time to have fun, with travel and style. Head to a location you’ve both been dying to visit. Take a risk on a dress color or silhouette that doesn’t suit your wedding day but feels true to your personal style. Let your hair down if you plan to keep it polished and up for the actual ceremony. Whatever the risks may be, these shoots are your time to explore the many facets of your personality and style as a couple.
While South Florida’s coastline boasts some of the most beautiful scenes in the country, there are even more beautiful backdrops scattered throughout our city, from vintage trains to an extravagant theater, and lush botanical gardens to wooden shacks hovering over the Atlantic. All you have to do is open your eyes.
If you are still in doubt about an engagement session, mark this. Scarlet said: “My parents had engagement photos done when they were married in 1982! I always loved seeing the photos of them so young and in love, outside of a formal setting.”
Miami is an incredible city for your engagement session. We have a lot of couples from all over the US or even world, coming to take their engagement photos to the south part of our sunshine state.
In Miami, we do have quite a few obvious locations #1-6, you can choose something more special #7-21, or if you are lucky, you can go for temporary installations or events #22 and up.
I strived to create this article to help you choose your ideal location, style, or idea that will fit you as a couple. I promise that I will do my best to regularly update these Engagement Sessions Ideas in Miami, according to some specific events or installations.
You are always welcome to check my website or fundamentals for your perfect engagement session in Miami here.
For me, Vizcaya is the best match for my style and taste. It’s the most beautiful historic mansion in Miami, built-in 1916 that is accessible for the public. It’s located near Miami downtown on the waterfront lot with gardens inspired by Veneto and Tuscan Italian Renaissance models and designed in the Mediterranean Revival style, with Baroque elements.
If you want your engagement photos elegant and stylish, then Vizcaya is the best option. Though I feel like too many couples opted for Vizcaya already. However, I have good news if you can afford it. Vizcaya went up with their rates for photo permits, and it’s $250 from previously $160 ($350 during the weekends).
Vizcaya is closed on Tuesday, and I strongly suggest weekdays. Check our Vizcaya engagement sessions and weddings.
Design District is another location type for elegant couples. Compared to Vizcaya, it’s for contemporary-luxury loving people. There are many neat corners that you can easily spend 2 hours walking through Desing District and still not have enough.
Wynwood does not relate to my personal favorites, but I understand why people love it. It definitely belongs to Miami highlights. Wynwood walls are famous for their perfect graffiti arts. So if you really desire to have graffiti as a backdrop for your engagement photos, then Wynwood it is!
What could be more obvious for Miami than beaches? But be aware that beaches in Miami are constantly overcrowded. If I can give you one valuable tip, just drive north or south of Miami. Keys are perfect as well as Palm Beach or Jupiter beach.
If Miami is the only option, then probably the only alternatives are Dog Beach or Crandon Park at Key Biscayne. And again, don’t even try to do the shoot during the weekend unless you want millions of people all around you. One more tip: do not forget your dog (with someone who will take care of the dog from the most part of the e-session)!
I usually ask my couples what they love to do together, and sometimes the answer is “we love to go to restaurants”. That’s cool! You might have your favorite cafeteria, bar, or restaurant, or just the place where you met or proposed, and we can do an engagement session right there.
Or we can walk through the city, and one of the spots could be that cafeteria, and you can feed your fiance with a tasty macaroon. How cool would that be?
You might want your engagement session in Miami Beach. No matter if you live there, it’s your favorite vacation location, you two met there, or you just think it’s cool, I get it, it’s cool 😉
Remember, mainly, South Beach is always, yes always crowded! So again, weekdays will be much better than weekends.
We can walk through Lincoln Rd, Ocean Drive, or we can go to South Pointe, which is actually probably the most beautiful place with the cool pier.
I love these editorial kinds of sessions. Ideally, you dress up very stylishly, and we walk through the coolest places together, enjoy it to the fullest, and I would capture those moments.
If you chose South Beach, we can stop by on Lincoln Rd and grab some cotton candy and play with it ($8 on Lincoln Rd). We can do it just three of us, or we can do it as a bigger production with real magazine-worthy pictures.
If you like horses, there and you want to be different, you should go for it! Just type “horse riding miami” into Google, and you will find so many options. But trust me, the better ones are more north. And there’s nothing like horseback riding on the beach!
Well, if you like to be extra special, you can opt for a helicopter ride or even an airplane! If you are extra scared, you can go for Hot Air Balloon Engagement photos. There are tons of companies providing each of these experiences in Miami.
In case you are a pilot yourself, and you still need inspiration, just watch the video below. If not, there are beautiful old airplanes at Opa-Locka airport. I received this information: “for the price of an hour of an instructor’s time at one of two flight schools you could probably get access and the freedom to situate the plane at some attractive angle and with a background you like.”
You are in Miami! If you desire to be unique, what could be more appropriate in Florida than a nautical engagement session? I even doubt if that would still be considered as unique here.
One of the most romantic engagement sessions Ideas in Miami is definitely a sailboat ride. With motor yachts, you can rent one from $200 to a couple of hundred thousand dollars. It depends only on your budget. A close friend of mine offers many ships with a captain from $200 to $3,500. Just ask, and I will connect you. You can have this 75ft beauty for $3,500 for 4 hours.
If you are a romantic class of character, you might want to go for a gondola ride. But you may aks, where do you get gondola in Miami? Well, I don’t know any gondola owners in Miami, but there is one if Fort Lauderdale, which is only 25 miles from Miami – Las Olas Gondola.
Their gondola and professional gondoliers are available seven days a week, rain or shine. What are you waiting for?
The closest one I tried and can recommend is in Sarasota.
Another idea naturally comes if you are visiting Miami, and you’ve booked a very chic hotel. Like my couple from California. They came to Miami to take their engagement photos and stayed at the Delano Hotel in Miami Beach. You hardly can find more of a chick spot, so we just did their entire e-session there. And it still belongs to my favorite engagement shoots ever.
For us that live in the US is Mustang a car for kids, but everyone in Europe or Asia loves it! I had a couple from China spending 2 hours taking pictures with a beautiful 5.0 V8 Mustang GT. Check it here.
If If you are into cars, rent some unique model, and let’s shoot. It does not have to be just pictures next to that whip. We can take an enjoyable ride and do something way cooler. What would you say to sexy car wash set?
This could probably be the last idea that comes to your mind. I get it. But … I’m sure you saw those gorgeous, intimate photos of cool couples in their bed. It also can be a hotel room bed, or you can borrow a friend’s magnificent master bedroom. It doesn’t matter; it’s about your love and intimacy.
Please don’t take me wrong. Just try to google it. It’s so hard to find a classy couple’s images from the bed. It’s a big risk. But if done correctly, it’s marvelous.
Once we were in bed already, what about some artistic nudity, something like a couple-boudoir?
Well, you should know that this is not easy to do. You will need an exceptional photographer. It’s one of the toughest things to capture if you want classy beautiful images. So do your research. I hopefully can help with some information about boudoir sessions here.
I know, we have horses already here. But what about some more exotic animals? The zoo is not the best option, as you have steel rope mesh in each department, and you can’t really engage with animals.
The best way to get some cool animals into your photos in Miami is to hit Jungle Island! They have parrots, flamingos, kangaroos, and other exotic animals. Are you in? Check our shoot at Jungle Island here!
The Secret Gardens is an estate with breathtaking tropical gardens located in the Redlands agricultural area of Miami. Its natural ambiance and serene setting make it the perfect location for weddings or engagement photoshoots.
The extensive tropical foliages complemented by flowing waterfalls and ponds are some of the beautiful features that make The Secret Gardens one of a kind.
Villa Woodbine, built in 1931, is a historic mansion located just south of Downtown Miami. It’s one of the most exquisite early 20th century, Mediterranean Revival estates remaining in Coconut Grove, Florida.
With its perfect combination of elegance and historical charm in the Villa’s interior, this stunning venue is the ideal backdrop for your wedding day or special event.
An engagement shoot at Villa Woodbine packs in the ultimate dose of glamour in a tropical setting. Have your photographer snap candids as you wander upon the foliage, and stage the ultimate Romeo and Juliet pose on the balcony.
This palatial resort built in the 1920s is a National Historic Landmark located in the Coral Gables. The Biltmore Hotel Miami is a luxury golf and spa resort, and it’s a place of elegance, beauty, and calm.
The standard rate for photo permit is $550, but as I’m on their preferred vendors’ list, this will cost you $475.
The Gold Coast Railroad Museum houses over 40 historic rail cars, including Presidential Rail Car ‘Ferdinand Magellan,’ and Florida East Coast Steam Locomotive #153. The Gold Coast Railroad Museum became one of the three official Florida State Railroad Museums in 1984.
So if you like history and nostalgia, this might be the right spot for your engagement session.
If you want Engagement Sessions Ideas in Miami, but you desire a different look or vibe, you don’t have to go all the way to Santorini to look like you took engagement photos there, nor do you have to jet up to North Carolina to take pictures in a barn. Little River Studios features a unique and spacious indoor/outdoor studio covering 30k sq ft near Downtown, Wynwood, and Midtown Miami.
I have to note that all temporary installations are stopped because of covid.
Luminosa is a Festival of Light – Chinese lantern Festival in Miami. Jungle Island is “reinventing an ancient Buddhist tradition with a Magic City twist, with its Luminosa! Festival of Lights.” This gorgeous installation is now extended late, 2020, but at the same time closed due to Corona.
If you are a fan of these lights in dark, you always can buy your own LED balloons (I found a great sale here) and create your own.
Jungle Island has started a brand new tradition to kick off 2020 in South Florida. Park visitors now can ice-skate in shorts and tees at the only outdoor ice skating rink in Miami, located in the heart of a tropical jungle.
The almost one-acre ice rink is made of real ice and decked out in festive, snowflake decorations, with a skate rental booth, pop music playing, and whale-shaped gliders for little skaters, reminiscent of a Winter Wonderland. It is open for daytime and nighttime visitors.
“We had every intention at Jungle Island to deliver Miami’s only outdoor ice-skating experience, but unfortunately, our chiller for the ice-skating rink is no match for our 80-degree weather. Therefore, for the safety of our guests, the ice-skating rink is closed until further notice.”
Ultra Miami in 2020 will be happening through March 27-29. It’s the world’s premier electronic music festival, boasting elite DJs and unparalleled production located in the beautiful city of Miami.
Although I’ve never been at these events, I did a few shots where the Ultra or Music Winter Conference was a cool backdrop. One of those was a commercial shoot for SONY. So why not your engagement session, if you are into this type of fun?
If you are into sport and marathons, we even can do your engagement session with the backdrop of the Miami Marathon. I mean, you really can run. Can you imagine those powerful shots?
Define yourself on February 9th in the Magic City of Miami.
If you guys want to see my engagement pictures for even more inspiration, follow my wedding Instagram @FreireWeddingPhoto
Do you have even better Engagement Sessions Ideas in Miami? Let us know in the comments below!
You also can check our Engagement Inspiration board on Pinterest. If you are looking for an engagement photographer, check all my information on the Miami Engagement Photographer page.
Also, follow our Instagram @WMFteam for daily inspiration.