What is Miami Swim Week and How to Spot a Scam?

⚠️ Advisories for models and designers:

Models: We do not recommend paying to walk during fashion week. There are plenty of established and legitimate fashion week producers where you can find casting information and either be paid to walk, or (at the very least) walk for free in exchange for videos and photos of the show for your portfolio.

Designers: Is there an “official” / “trademarked” Miami Swim Week? Read about the trademark dispute here.

To read about what’s changing in 2023, click here.

It’s that time of year where brands start planning for swim week and a plethora of disreputable “opportunities” abound.

We’ve been covering Miami Swim Week for over 10 years and have an aggregated calendar of shows and events every year from producers that have proven themselves in the market. Miami Swim Week is held annually, typically in July made up of a group of events and trade shows that are attended by media, buyers and influencers.

But first, a bit of history about the series of events.

The week began with runway shows when IMG came to the market in 2004 and has since evolved into a variety of events anchored by a few main trade shows and the runway Platform, Paraiso. The largest events attract major heavy hitters in the industry. There are plenty of smaller events from smaller producers, but typically their production quality is low and so photos and attendees aren’t set to industry standards, though they could be really fun consumer events!

MIAMI BEACH, FLORIDA – JULY 09: A model prepares backstage as Oh Polly Launch New Swimwear Brand Neena Swim For Miami Swim Week Paraiso Miami Beach at The Paraiso Tent on July 09, 2021 in Miami Beach, Florida. (Photo by Alexander Tamargo/Alexander Tamargo/Getty Images for Oh Polly Presenting Neena Swim)

Photo: Getty for Oh Polly

See below for a breakdown of events that have established reputations as part of Miami Swim Week.

Trade Shows

SwimShow– The first and most prominent swimwear industry platform, SwimShow, is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. SwimShow will continue to present at its landmark location, the Miami Beach Convention Center and will unveil its newest branding elements: a new logo, a redesigned show floor with 3 new categories and a new digital experience for show attendees and exhibitors, alike. Swimwear brands from countries across Latin America to Los Angeles all flock to Miami to present their upcoming collections. The popular show known for its presentation of both emerging and veteran brands has developed new show categories to help both brands and retailer relationships. The New New will house emerging brands, new to the market. Swim Core will be the staple, most sought out swimwear brands in surf shops and retailers across the US and beyond – and Swim Mode will be comprised of the higher-end, resort and editorial style brands. The new show categories give buyers a chance to see brands they may not have been familiar with – and give the brands a chance to connect with new retailers they may not otherwise have the chance to network with.

Cabana– Another trade show held in the Miami Beach Convention Center that attracts buyers globally. Their trade show brings together top brands and they have Miami and NYC events. With categories spanning swimwear, resortwear, accessories, RTW, lingerie, jewelry, activewear, and footwear, Cabana connects brands, retailers, and industry trendsetters who are inspired by a sense of discovery.

Destination Miami– Run by Trade show giant, Coterie, the trade show is held at the Eden Roc, focuses on luxury brands and is a boutique trade show.

Runway Platforms

Paraiso– This is the runway platform that people are generally referring to when they think of Swim Week. When you see photos from swim week and press coverage from the big outlets, it is typically coverage from Paraiso. The platform rebranded a few years ago, but it has housed most of the major swim and resort brands and features shows that are industry and invite only with editors, influencers, buyers and celebrities in attendance.

Art Hearts Fashion– They run fun shows in the New York, LA and Miami Market and these shows are open to the public via tickets available for purchase. Hot Tip: Become a Fashion Week Online VIP Member and get special discounted codes for tickets. The shows are attended by a large consumer audience and they usually have a few well-known brands on their schedule to make things really fun for the public with some good influencers and celebs attending those shows!

Flying Solo– They have a very large multi-brand show usually with 30+ designers in a collective format and added Miami to the list of cities last year.

How to Spot a Scam

If the price seems low in comparison to pricing offered with the established platforms listed above, be weary of a potential scam or exploitation. Ask questions and if you aren’t getting direct answers, there is likely cause for concern. Some things to review and evaluate.

– How long has the platform been in the market?
– How many designers are returning?
– What press did the event generate last year?
– What media attended the event in the past few years?

Our team is committed to helping brands connect to the right opportunities and avoid misleading claims. If you receive communication about a swim week event or opportunity and would like our team to review the opportunity, click here and fill out the form.


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