10 reasons to turn PowerUp into your next vacation

Our annual utility innovation summit, PowerUp, kicks off on March 1, 2016. And around the world, utility leaders are reserving their spots at the conference in beautiful South Beach, Miami.

We're working hard to make this year's agenda the best ever. Innovators from PG&E, National Grid, KCP&L, and a host of other companies will share their approaches to creating a utility of the future. Experts from Opower will offer workshops in everything from behavioral design to billing. Speakers like Jeff Conklin and Shane Snow will share unique perspectives on the industry's toughest challenges. And best of all, plenty of unstructured time will give you the chance to connect with the people who matter most to you.

But why stop there?

We've already heard that some PowerUp attendees are planning to stick around in Miami for a few days after the conference. Maybe it's the sun-drenched beaches, or maybe it's the hidden cultural gems scattered across the city. Whatever the reason, here are 10 ways you can turn PowerUp into your next vacation.

1. Soak up some sun at 1 South Beach's private shores

beaches 2

This year, we're bringing PowerUp to 1 Hotel South Beach — a brand new eco-resort nestled along 600 feet of private beachfront. Lay back and soak up the sun on a chaise lounge while 1 South Beach's staff serve up food, drinks, and all the sunscreen you could ask for.

2. Show your family Miami's great outdoors


1 South Beach knows how to take care of the whole family. Its Seedlings program offers full- and half-day adventures for children that bring kids closer to nature while educating about the importance of conservation.

3. Taste the best Miami has to offer

restaurant Photo credit: 1 South Beach

South Beach 1 is home to several restaurants and bars — all designed by executive chef Tom Colicchio. Seafood and produce take center stage at local establishments like Beachcraft, which offer fully stocked raw bars, salads, flatbreads, and freshly made pastas.

4. Try a Tesla for yourself

tesla model s Photo credit: Tesla Motors

We've all read about the ways electric vehicles could shake up the utility industry. But have you ever taken one for a spin? 1 South Beach offers access to a fleet of Tesla EVs to help you get wherever you want to go.

5. Relax at the spa — or one of 1 South Beach's four pools

pools 2 Photo credit: 1 South Beach

There's no shortage of places to soak. Cabanas, champagne buckets, and 180-degree ocean views make 1 South Beach's pools totally tranquil — and totally unforgettable.

6. Hang out in Little Havana

Photo credit: Flickr user Phillip Pessar

From colorful murals and monuments to cigar rollers and coffee, Little Havana is well worth the break from the beach. Fruit stands, Domino Park, and a Walkway of the Stars are just a few of the landmarks you can expect to see.

7. Discover Miami's thriving art scene

wynwood walls Photo credit: Flickr user Phillip Pessar

In 2009, the renowned community revitalizer Tony Goldman began transforming a warehouse district in Miami into a rich canvas for street art. Today, the Wynwood Walls are an international phenomenon. Speaking about the project, Goldman said that "We have strived for a diverse representation of both American and international artists that encompasses everything from the old school graffiti artists to the newest work being created around the world. The project has truly evolved into what my friend Jeffrey Deitch calls a Museum of the Streets."

8. Explore one of Florida's most beautiful estates

villa vizcaya Photo credit: Mark Averette

Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is a National Historic Landmark that preserves the Miami estate of James Deering — a noted 20th-century industrialist and antiques collector. The villa itself includes 70 rooms of magnificent architectural detail, and the grounds surrounding it contain 40 acres of jungle forest and 10 acres of Italian Renaissance formal gardens.

9. Broaden your horizons at a world-class museum

pamm Photo credit: Flickr user Phillip Pessar

Miami offers plenty of traditional museum experiences, too. Every month, more than 150,000 visitors explore the Pérez Art Museum Miami in downtown, which showcases work from a wide range of contemporary painters, photographers, and sculptors. MOCA North Miami has even more to explore.

10. Take your kids to the only tropical zoo in the continental U.S.

zoo miami Photo credit: Marc Averette

Zoo Miami spans 750 acres and houses more than 3,000 animals representing over 500 different species. It's also one of America's first free-range zoos: its exhibits are entirely cageless. For another family-friendly adventure, take a look at Jungle Island.


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