photo: iStock, Instagram

When you think of Miami, your mind might jump to sparkling beaches and jam-packed clubs. You might even envision a scene from the vacation you've been dying to take: you're poolside in a cute bikini, sipping a cocktail, and enjoying stone crab and yucca frita. But South Florida isn't just a popular tourist destination; it's the place many superstars called home before they became famous. That includes several Latino celebs. 

Here are 10 Latino celebs who were born and raised in the Miami region.

Related From Vivala: 10 Chill Bars in Miami


Eva Mendes

A-list actress, model, and partner of Ryan Gosling was born in Miami to Cuban parents and moved to Los Angeles after her parents' divorce. And, yes, Mendes was in Will Smith's 1998 "Miami" music video.


Syesha Mercado

The South Florida city of Sarasota gave us Syesha Mercado, former American Idol contestant and star of the United States national tour of Dreamgirls. Her mother is African-American and her father is of Puerto Rican heritage.



Before he gave us hit songs like "Give Me Everything" and "Timber," Pitbull was a Miami boy born to Cuban parents. He got his start appearing on Miami mixtapes and titled his debut studio album M.I.A.M.I. after his home city. In 2015, Mr. 305 hosted a free New Year's Eve party at Bayfront Park in downtown Miami. 


Camila Cabello

We can thank Miami for giving us this Fifth Harmony member who lived in Cuba and Mexico before relocating to the Magic City at age five. She withdrew from Miami Palmetto Senior High School almost halfway through the 2012–2013 school year in order to pursue stardom.


Wilmer Valderrama

Famous for playing Fez on That '70s Show and dating Demi Lovato for six years (until their recent breakup), Valderrama was born in Miami and is of Colombian and Venezuelan heritage. When he was three, his family returned to Venezuela for a bit before coming back to Miami and later moving to Los Angeles. In a 2015 visit to his hometown, Valderrama told the Miami Herald, "This has become such a great city and has evolved so much.”

Bella Thorne

Thorne was born in Pembroke Pines, a city in Broward County about half an hour from downtown Miami. Her father is of Cuban heritage. Thorne once attributed her Cuban and South Florida roots for her friendship with María Canals-Barrera. She reportedly said: “María Canals-Barrera is Cuban and from Miami, and I’m part Cuban and from Miami, so needless to say she became a quick friend.”

Related From Vivala: Biggest Myths About Living in Miami


Lauren Jauregui

Jauregui is another Fifth Harmony member who is from Miami and of Cuban descent. She attended Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart


Tego Calderón

Born in Puerto Rico, reggaeton superstar Tego Calderón moved to Miami in his youth. According to MTV, Miami influenced the "dancehall flavor of his music."

Willy Chirino

Rapper and salsa singer Willy Chirino was born in Cuba and came to Miami as a child under Operation Pedro Pan. There are two streets in Miami named after him.


David Archuleta

This former American Idol contestant was born in Miami to a Honduran mother, but he actually spent most of his childhood in Utah.