The dismantling of Miami Beach’s historic Deauville Beach Resort, which once hosted everyone from the Beatles to President John F. Kennedy, is underway after years of efforts by historic curators to save the building.
Aerial footage showed construction crews using a crane to dismantle sections of the hotel on Collins Avenue on Monday, using dump trucks to transport the rubble.
The historic building has been closed since 2017 after being damaged by an electrical fire and Hurricane Irma. It fell into such poor condition that an engineering report found it “unsafe” and beyond repair, saying it “cannot be saved due to structural defects”.
After reviewing a structural report from an engineering firm hired by the owners, the Miami Beach Building Department declared a demolition order.
A hearing was held on the demolition of the historic hotel in Deauville. NBC 6’s Ryan Nelson reports
Many members of the community had worked to save the building, and members of the Miami Beach Historic Preservation Board criticized the city for not doing more to mandate renovations to the historic property.
The city had taken action over the years, including suing the owners to maintain the building, which was originally built in 1957.
“Our city has been in litigation with the owners of Deauville for years, trying to stop what they are doing, which is neglecting the property to the point where a building official says it needs to be demolished,” Miami Mayor of Beach, Dan Gelber, said in January. “It’s not a result that any of us wanted.”
In the 1960s, Deauville was the place to be. The “Ed Sullivan Show” broadcast a Beatles appearance live from the hotel ballroom in 1964, and President John F. Kennedy gave a speech to young Democrats there in 1961. Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Judy Garland and Tony Bennett have also performed at the station.