The historic and iconic Miami Beach Surf Club in Surfside was built in 1929 and designed by archtect Russell Pancoast. The original Miami Beach Surf Club has long been designated as a historic landmark, now the additional development on the property has incorporated the original building with it’s restoration and renovation, returning the existing Surf Club to it’s original splendor.
Designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Richard Meier and designer Joseph Dirand The Surf Club succeeds in offering 21st century confort and design and re-kindling the old-Miami glamour once favored by guests like Sinatra or Churchill.
Opened in 1930, the Surf Club was situated on more than six acres of prime beachfront property in the Surfside neighborhood. The Mediterranean-revival-style villa, designed by Russell Pancoast, was decorated with zebra-skin sofas and cabanas as far as the eye could see, and offered a signature drink — the Mangareva cocktail — as well as poolside fashion shows, debutante balls and black-tie boxing nights, all for the enjoyment of its gilded guests. And there were plenty of them — from Hollywood royalty such as Elizabeth Taylor and Frank Sinatra to political dignitaries including the Shah of Iran and Winston Churchill. The former prime minister spent so much time at the Surf Club, in fact, that he had two cabanas at his disposal: one for afternoon naps, and the other used for painting.
In recent decades, the club fell out of fashion and into financial trouble, and it changed ownership in 2012. Now, the architect Richard Meier has been tasked with restoring and expanding the historic property. The original building and cabanas will remain in place, with Meier’s three 12-story glass-walled structures — housing a Four Seasons hotel and 150 Four Seasons-operated residences — appearing to hover weightlessly above them. Sure to drum up interest in the project, which opens its doors next year (2015), is a new photobook from Assouline, “The Surf Club,” featuring a trove of archival images from the institution’s heyday. The decadence portrayed in its pages is best summed up by a 1962 quote from a Miami society reporter: “When I die, I don’t want to go to heaven. I want to go to the Surf Club.” via TMAGAZINE, NYTimes By AZADEH ENSHA
Getty Center, Los Angeles
Richard Meier, the Pritzker Prize and AIA Gold Medal winner, turns 79 today. Citing Bernini and Borromini as influences as well as Le Corbusier and Louis Kahn, the architect is well known for his abstracted, often white, buildings and unrelenting personal design philosophy.