Miami Beach, Florida | 2005
The redevelopment of the landmark Bath Club site with luxury condominiums by Peebles Atlantic Developmnet Group, provided the occasion for the historic designation and restoration of the 1927 clubhouse building. As architect for the restoration, Allan T. Shulman Architect is designing the reconstruction of the monumental Collins Avenue entrance facade, refurbishing the Governor’s Lounge, Historic Ballroom, Cafeteria, and the central open-air loggia and the concrete framed boardwalks which provided access to the cabanas on the East side of the club building.
As part of this project, the building’s dramatic gabled entrance front, with its embracing 12 foot-high masonry walls, will be revealed and reconstructed. Some significant later additions are being removed to reveal the original lines of the elegant Mediterranean Structure. In particular, the current office wing on the Ocean side of the building will be taken away to reconstruct an ocean-facing terrace reached by a grand stair. The boardwalk that once connected the public rooms to the beach will be partly rebuilt.
The Bath Club structure was designed and built in 1927 by Robert Taylor, architect to N.B.T. Roney among others and designer of the ‘Spanish Village’ on Espanola Way. It was the first of a series of exclusive private bathing clubs built along the ocean emulating the famed Everglades Club of Palm Beach. The Bath Club provided members with rustic cabanas on a serpentine boardwalk on the sand, and lavish public social and dining spaces.
The original Bath Club comprised a main formal Dining Room and salon (called the Governor’s Lounge). These were connected to the main structure by a covered walkway on their West side. The other half of the structure comprised a kitchen and informal dining room, called the ‘Buffeteria’. The formal and informal parts of the Club were bisected by a central loggia that ran from the vaulted entrance lobby on Collins Avenue east to the beach.
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