Miami’s iconic art deco hotel gets a luxurious new lease on life

Miami will reclaim one of its original icons – the historic Raleigh hotel – in 2025 under the umbrella of Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, whose luxury portfolio includes Carlyle in New York and Le Crillon in Paris.

And for iconoclastic architect and designer Peter Marino, who oversees this unique fusion of old and new, the project is personal.

“My mom used to do backstroke in the pool (at home), saying, ‘I’m like Esther Williams at Raleigh!'” he recalled.

With its sinuous, art deco shape set forth by a thick outline of black tiles, the eat the pool is properly legendary, and under Marino’s conservative eye it will remain virtually intact, with “The Folly”, a seashell-shaped building at one of its corners, revitalized as a funky pool bar.

At the same time, Marino is developing a number of additional features.

The original Raleigh facade is being restored by Peter Marino.

Most notably, it adds a 17-story condo tower — the first beachfront construction approved by Miami’s strict Historic Preservation Board in nearly two decades — whose 44 sprawling Rosewood Residences, also designed by Marino, will all facing the beach.

A members-only beach club, Marino says, will look like “a Brazilian lima bean.” Hiking gardens, likely to be filled with sculptures of Les Lalannes sheep, will connect it to nearby hotels in Raleigh, South Seas and the Richmond.

Taken together, they will form a three-acre site providing Marino and Rosewood with space for all the amenities required of a modern urban resort.

“With these three elements – the club, the restoration project, the condo tower – it’s an architect’s dream,” says Marino.

A 17-story condo tower peeks behind the three hotels in one rendering.

A 17-story condo tower peeks behind the three hotels in one rendering.

The hotel also looks set to become a traveler’s dream.

Rosewood has a reputation for bringing warm hospitality to markets where it can be hard to come by. (Think Beijing or Paris.) Miami is also unique in its ability to attract partiers and families in equal measure; groups with such disparate needs can be difficult to reconcile.

The company produces best-in-class kids’ clubs through its Rosewood Explorers program – general manager Sonia Cheng is a mother of four – while also creating spaces for unforgettable parties, like Bemelmans at the Carlyle.

Raleigh's famous swimming pool.

Raleigh’s famous swimming pool.

Marino says that by taking over the adjacent hotels, Rosewood will have enough space to create multiple dining venues – the Raleigh had only one restaurant – as well as a full-scale spa and three new (rectangular) swimming pools that he custom-designs. mosaic art along the bottoms.

The Martini Bar, a space almost as central to Miami culture as the main pool, will undergo a full makeover. “We want to recapture his legacy and his spirit, like what we did at the Carlyle with Bemelmans,” Cheng says. “The type of gathering place that the Carlyle is for New York, we want to give to Miami.”

The Raleigh Pool Deck.

The Raleigh Pool Deck.

Marino is already reveling in period details. “We found this hilarious sketch of a martini glass in the original tiled floors – I’m definitely going to put it back,” he laughs. “Something like that just makes you smile. It would never have occurred to me in 2022 to do this sort of thing.

He also recreates the bar’s original look by installing a series of upside-down painted mirrors, each by a different contemporary artist this time around.

And in the Tiger Room, a former event space named after the two-tone columns that surround it, custom tiger stripe murals will adorn a new nightclub-like restaurant. “Is there anything sexier than tiger stripes? Marin asks. “I dare you to think of something funnier.”

The next residential tower and beach club in Raleigh.

The next residential tower and beach club in Raleigh.

Ultra-luxe fun, however, isn’t hard to find in Miami.

The competition that awaits Rosewood already includes the exuberant Faena and the historic Four Seasons Surf Club, with its Thomas Keller restaurant and champagne bar imported from Amalfi. In 2023, Aman is set to open in the art deco Versailles Hotel building which will include a newly built residential tower designed by Kengo Kuma.

But with the exception of the upcoming Delano redesign, none of these restorations are as high-profile or high-stakes for Miami Beach as Raleigh’s.

This article is published under license from Bloomberg Media: the original article can be viewed here