Mark M. Miller

I have never been lost, but I will admit to being confused for several weeks.
- Daniel Boone

Professor of Geography
Dept. of Geography & Geology: follow us on Twitter @geousm and Facebook
University of Southern Miss

Home page

Curriculum vitae
Video: how I became a geographer

Interested in the Peace Corps?
(Peace Corps Volunteer, Belize 1979-1981)

Gratuitous advice for students

What can you do with a Southern Miss Geography degree?

USM Classes, Summer 2015:

  • World Regional Geography / GHY 101 online
  • Economic Geography / GHY 350

Community Asset Mapping with the Miss. Development Authority:

AAG Healthy Departments:
International Education & Geography

"Economic Development for Everyone" project

Economic development video project



CUBA 2010

Jose Marti airport

My first research trip in Cuba for seven years, studying the progress of Cuba's tourism industry development since that time and reconnecting with Cuban research colleagues.

My research colleague--from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas--and I returned with new data, pictures, field observations, and plans for a new paper and possibly a new book.

The Hotel Riviera  
Hotel Riviera
Completed just before the Revolution, financed with Mob money from Las
Vegas under the direction of Meyer Lansky. The Easter egg in front is the
former casino.
Fidel & staff
Riviera under new management, 1959

Riviera pool

Pool mural

Fishing boats
View from the balcony: fishing boats on the Gulf

Riviera room

See why this is one of my favorite hotels in the world? My research colleague & I were as nice as possible to the front desk clerk, and she upgraded us to the top floor, balcony overlooking the Gulf, next to the Presidential Suite. Life lesson: it pays to be nice to people, anywhere in the world.


Climbing onto the balconyHowever, the hotel has caught up in a complex political battle in the last few years and obviously hasn't received much investment or attention. Here's my colleague crawling
through the window to the balcony since the door is broken & boarded up.

Havana skyline from the balcony: Vedado, the upscale district before the Revolution and still where most of the local action is. In front is a shopping mall, including a supermarket and a jazz club: purchases only in foreign currency or its local equivalent, the Cuban Convertible Unit (CUC). The distant blue building on the right is the Havana Libre (Free Havana): the former Havana Hilton, also completed just in time for the Revolution.
Casino bar
My archaeological discovery of the expedition: I snuck into the dark, closed former Riviera casino and discovered Meyer Lansky's former casino bar, including what seem to be the original bar, furniture, and artwork. Now I know what it was like to find King Tut's tomb.
Casino bar
Click here for Page 2: Havana  
Click here for Page 3: Cayos Jardines del Rey (Gardens of the King Keys)