DESPITE its multi-cultural clumsiness and considerable array of very real big city problems, Miami remains at its mysterious heart a jewel of rare quality. A “new” city in relative terms, incorporated only in 1896, this grand vision of a moonlit Metropolis arising from the swamp has always drawn in unreasonable numbers the dreamers, rogues, knaves, and visionaries called by the dream or come to exploit it. That remains so.
IN a sense we have all washed up upon its shores, bearing the cargo of our own cultural assumptions, beliefs, ways, dreams, and contributions. So here we are. And where are we to head from here? I have little idea, and that’s all right. In fact, to me that’s what makes it all interesting. This city, my home town and the backdrop of my life thus far, refuses absolutely to be bound by “reason,” or any logic other than its own dynamic becoming.
Miami “once upon a time”: Brickell Avenue (above), Ocean Drive, early ‘20’s (below). Imagine.
THE apparent chaos that is today’s Miami is by no means for everybody. Yet for the engaged and curious, those of sufficiently stubborn disposition, hopefully some sense of humor, and an open heart, the place is alive, virtually electrified with possibility, with an unparalleled breadth and range of experience, perspectives, and connections all freely available for the plucking. Whatever might be the purpose of your stay, our simple and singular intention is to make it as comfortable and refreshing as possible. To put it simply, the Cottage and its gardens have been created, tended, and loved as a sanctuary, all for the sharing.
Two notable beacons of early Miami’s hospitality—Above, the first hotel in Dade County as of 1880— the Peacock Inn in Cocoanut Grove (the old spelling), situated on the present day site of its bayfront Peacock Park. Below: Henry Flagler’s Royal Palm Hotel, to the Miamians of the time sure evidence that their city had “arrived,” and accordingly situated prominently on the Bay, and north shore of the River. The sprawling wooden building, built of entire local forests of native pine and painted the pastel lemon color known as “Flagler Yellow,” not only set a new standard for luxury accommodation in Miami but part and parcel of Flagler’s decision to extend his railroad to the “Miami frontier.” That alone was reason enough.
This being Miami, no trace of either survives. But for the now, and we hope for a long, long time to come, the Cottage porch lights shines into the night, awaiting the hour of your glorious arrival.
FROM the multi-colored clay barrel tile capping roof and tower above to the tile floor within, no expense has been spared in renovating and enhancing the property to both honor its past and to offer its guests the modern comforts they desire.
Its furnishings and decorations are eclectic and both modern and antique, reflecting that elusive spirit of magic that has drawn so many here over the years. Original art by Paul Hampton Crockett decorates the walls.(www.growingintothemystery.net) An excellent, quirky library invites a guest to curl up with a good book and enjoy some quiet time.
The cottage is available for short or longer-term rental. Central a/c, security system, driveway parking privileges. Central, convenient, and easily accessible location. Enjoy Miami as the natives do. At least the lucky ones!