Third time’s a charm for Blue Road proposed hotel design?

Susan Askew
Susan Askew

Third time’s a charm for Blue Road proposed hotel design?:

Preservation Board will take another look at Park Avenue Hotel

Blue Road will try for a third time to get Historic Preservation Board approval for their proposed 116-room hotel near the Miami Beach Convention Center.  Jorge Savloff and Marcelo Tenenbaum purchased the Park Terrace Apartments located on the corner of Park Avenue and 19th Street in March 2018 with the intent of adding to their stable of Blue Road hotel properties, 12 of which are in Miami Beach. At both their May and July meetings, the HPB rejected architectural plans citing incompatibility with the neighborhood and not enough retention of the character of the existing buildings.

Modified drawings submitted for the September meeting are generally supported by City Planning staff though they expressed some reservations in their report to the Board indicating they would like to see still more restoration or reintroduction of some important features of the contributing building.
In order to build a 5-story addition, the plans call for the substantial demolition of the existing building which was designed by MacKay & Gibbs in the Post War Modern style of architecture and constructed in 1951. The existing structure is approximately 20 feet, 6 inches in height. The proposed building would be 48 feet, 4 inches tall.
“The existing 2-story apartment building, only minimally altered, is capable of having most, if not all of its significant architectural elements restored,” according to the staff report. “These features include an elevated pedestrian walkway, decorative scored stucco, exterior catwalks, projecting eyebrows, projecting window frames, raised stone clad planters, bean poles, projective eaves and a courtyard plan, all characteristics which are representative of the Post War Modern Garden style of architecture in Miami Beach.” 
Postcard of the Park Terrace Apartments presented in the staff report, postmarked November 2, 1957,

Responding to earlier concerns, Revuelta Architecture has relocated and internalized the elevators within the shell of the proposed building and relocated stairs to the courtyard. The stairs will be clad in a vertical trellis system to grow climbing vine plants. The staff report also indicates a greater portion of the Park Avenue façade would be retained. 
“Collectively, these modifications result in a design that achieves a greater level of compatibility with the surrounding historic district,” the report notes. “To this end, the disconnection and relocation of the elevator and stair structures has significantly reduced the perceived mass of the proposed addition.”
While indicating they are “highly supportive of the revised design of the project,” the staff recommended that “all exterior architectural features located on the Contributing portions of the building be fully restored and/or reintroduced in a manner consistent with available historical documentation, including the original screen features.”
According to The Real Deal, Blue Road paid $14.27 million for the 32-unit apartment building.

Details of the application and latest proposed plans can be found here.

Historic Preservation Board
Monday, September 9, 9:00 am
City Hall, Commission Chambers

Renderings: Revuelta Architecture International
Front view of proposed hotel facing 19th Street

Corner view, Park Avenue and 19th Street

Breezeway and drop off area on Park Avenue

Initial proposal for Park Avenue Hotel

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