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The Tides Hotel (Miami Beach, Florida)

by Support Team .

Saturday, October 17, 2015

In the late 1930s, Miami was covered in the second wave of art deco enthusiasm. The United States had still not fully recovered from the Great Depression and the excesses that were allowed in the twenties, were out of question: art deco was no longer screaming about luxury, it was talking about it in a low voice. Exactly in this style hotel The Tides, which opened in 1936, was built.

The place was not the only one of its kind – a lot of similar coastal hotels have been built a lot in that time. As time goes by they have become the hallmark of the city. And at the same time it became a cause for concern of the employees of the local monuments preservation committee. So when a few years ago, a development company Kor decided to hold a reconstruction in The Tides Hotel, the defenders of antiquity were immediately alarmed.

Designer Kelly Wearstler was quite satisfied by the requirements of the authorities. She had not even thought to remodel the classic original ideas of the building’s architects:

  • the well-preserved terrazzo floors in the hotel lobby
  • walls covered with relief stucco
  • doors of etched glass.


Wearstler did not go far for the ideas. The furniture was chosen so that it would complement the front desk – the only surviving specimen of the 1936. A color scheme was just peeked literally at the door of the hotel.

Kelly is a big fan of David Hicks, Tony Duquette and Dorothy Draper. These masters of eclectic were making interiors like bouquets from a variety of styles and loved to play with historical associations. Kelly used the same approach as her idols. The furniture in the hotel is motley both in the age and origin.

French armchairs of the 1930s came from Paris, something was bought in Italy, and some of the things were designed by Kelly and custom made in the U.S. For example, a huge (more than six feet tall) spiral chandelier of bronze and alabaster, which illuminates the lobby of The Tides.

The officials were happy with all these innovations. Moreover, their claim to save in The Tides ‘everything as it was’ applied only to the first floor. And when it came to the reconstruction of the rooms, Kelly was given complete freedom.

She decided that the quality is more important than quantity, and reduced the number of rooms from 115 to 45. The rooms have become more spacious, and most importantly, all of them now have at least one window with views on the Atlantic. And in addition to it there’s a telescope. So the guests of the renovated Tide may in detail study ships, sailing to the horizon or count all the  night sky.

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