MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The historic Deauville Beach Resort in Miami Beach could soon become an icon of the past.
The hotel closed in 2017 after a fire in its electrical room. The city reportedly sued the owners for failing to make necessary repairs.
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The famous beachfront hotel on Collins Avenue hosted the Beatles for their second Ed Sullivan Show appearance in February 1964.
Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, Liza Minnelli, Tony Bennett and many more have played there. John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan occupied the presidential suite.
So is this negligent demolition?
“Absolutely,” said Eric Carpenter, assistant city manager of Miami Beach.
He calls it a difficult decision, but explains that the Deauville is beyond repair, but the stewards are not so sure.
“People don’t understand that these are our historic resources, what we are, do you know how many people are upset about this, not just Miami Beach residents, people around the world that we’re obviously going to come in without any regard and demolish this building,” Commissioner Kristen Rosen Gonzalez said.
“We don’t know how many companies the owners spoke to before having someone on board, but it’s all now been triggered by the work of the company, hired by the owners who have an economic interest,” said said Mark Samuelian, another commissioner. noted.
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The Deauville is iconic for its mid-century modern design and famous for the visit of the Beatles in 1964 where they performed live at the Ed Sullivan Show. Cementing the Beatles’ invasion of the United States. All of this may need to be remembered as the city debates whether to tear it down.
“That’s one of the reasons people come here is for this unique piece that’s kind of historic, a lot of people went because of JFK, with Sammy Davis Jr. having stayed here, with the Beatles having stayed here, there’s that little draw,” said Lindsay Shoop, a resident of the area.
Nearby residents know the lore, but they’re also concerned about the state of the property since 2017, when the Deauville closed due to a fire and then suffered damage from Hurricane Irma.
“It’s dirty, it doesn’t seem safe,” said another resident.
The City of Miami sued the owners, the Meruelos, to fix it, but a structural report by the owners and a tour by city officials concluded it was too dangerous to fix.
“We think it’s too early to demolish until we can get a third-party structural report,” said Daniel Ciraldo of the Miami Design Preservation League.
Ciraldo and his colleagues point out that many other buildings deemed beyond repair have been spared, despite scathing reports. Although obtaining a permit is likely the next step, the law has changed to give more control to the Miami Beach Historic Preservation Board.
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“When the owners of the property come forward to do something on this property in the future, they will have many rights, even going so far as to demand the reproduction of the building that stands there today,” Carpenter added.