This week’s episode of Streets of Dreams with Marcus Lemonis is particularly interesting because it’s close to home – literally. The CNBC series heads to Miami, which is where Marcus grew up, and focuses on the street where the future CEO of Camping World got his very first job.
Travelogues are always more entertaining when the host has a personal connection to the destination, and the Miami episode is as much Marcus’s story as it is the story of Southwest 8th Street, better known as Calle Ocho. We’re told numerous times how Marcus grew up in the neighborhood and considers it to be a formative influence on his later success; it’s wonderful insight, even if the show repeats it a bit.
In that sense, the episode feels like a follow-up to the The Profit: My Roots special that aired awhile back; having seen the country where Marcus was born, we now get to see the street that sort of raised him.
Past that, the Miami episode is the most culture-specific of the three Streets of Dreams installments that have aired so far. The featured area is heavily Cuban, and so there’s a strong focus on Cuban culture and the struggles of the original Cuban immigrants to the United States. While the New York episode included the Jewish community that’s involved in the diamond business, it wasn’t about just that group of people; the Miami hour zeroes in on a specific community. It’s not just a business lesson, but a history lesson, too.
The strongest parts of the episode come in the second half when Marcus meets a pair of music industry titans: Emilio Estefan and Pitbull. Audiences probably don’t realize how broad Estefan’s business is, and they’ll find out exactly why it was called Miami Sound Machine (plus listen to Marcus attempt to sing!). The Pitbull interview lets the viewer relate to the man behind the mononym. Pitbull has this huge public persona, but that’s not all he is.
From New York to Nashville and now Miami, Streets of Dreams has made its way down the Eastern side of the United States and told three different stories. It’ll be interesting to see what the show has to offer when it branches out to the rest of the country.
Streets of Dreams with Marcus Lemonis airs Tuesdays at 10:00 p.m. on CNBC. You can watch the first 10 minutes of this episode by playing the video below.
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