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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Landmark Miami Real Estate Property Became Dust at Dawn

In the final week of his life, John F. Kennedy slept there. The “Rat Pack”, including Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr., Joey Bishop and Peter Lawford held court at its famous Carnival Supper Club. And during its half-century existence, hundreds of thousands of tourists strolled through the Sheraton Bal Harbour hotel's majestic and mosaic lobby.

This Sunday, it all became part of the past. The Miami Beach hotel, which opened to the public in 1956 as the Americana, came tumbling down.
The Americana was one of the first hotels opened by the Tisch family, which owns the Loews hotel empire, and was designed by famed architect Morris Lapidus as part of his trilogy of hotels on Collins Avenue. The Fontainebleau and the Eden Roc were two of his other creations. 

The Miami Beach hotel located at 9701 Collins Avenue marks yet another loss of a landmark Miami real estate property for Dade County
It took only seconds to demolish the 645-room hotel with its unique gardens and passageways. However it cleared the way for even more swanky Miami condos. The St. Regis Hotel owned by Miami's Related Group and Starwood Hotel & Resorts, which had kept the Sheraton name, will build a 350-unit condominium and a 250-unit ''ultra luxury'' hotel.

During the 1960s and '70s the Americana was host to three nationally televised AFL-CIO constitutional conventions that featured Presidents Kennedy, Johnson and Richard Nixon. And in 1963, four days before his assassination, Kennedy was a guest at the hotel.
In it’s time the Americana and then later, The Sheraton Bal Harbour hotel, were considered the most glamorous resort hotels in South Florida. However the hotel’s historic past, architectural pedigree and famous guest list was not enough to keep it from crumbling to the ground on Sunday.




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