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Book a Suite at The Villa, the Former Gianni Versace MansionThursday 15 February 2018
Book a Suite at The Villa, the Former Gianni Versace Mansion ⇒ Miami Beach’s most exceptional experience awaits you at The Villa, inside the former Versace Mansion, where unparalleled service and elegant style are sure to please the most discriminating travellers. Luxuriate in one of the Villa’s ten custom guest suites featuring king-sized beds or custom double king beds, custom Italian marble oversized bathrooms with two shower heads, expansive closet space, separate living rooms or sitting areas and balconies or patios. Amenities at The Villa include Frette linens and wifi throughout the property. Guests can find respite inside the walls of the 19,000-square-foot Villa or venture steps from the property to enjoy fine dining, shopping and entertainment.
Casa Casuarina was built in 1930 by a man named Alden Freeman. Alden Freeman’s father, Joel Freeman, was Treasurer of The Standard Oil Trust (also known as Rockefeller’s Company) and left Alden a fabulous wealth when he passed away. The Hubbell & Hubbell Company was the contractor responsible for the construction of Casa Casuarina. If you look down, you will see that the ground is original key lime coral, which was part of the original house designed by noted 1920s interior designer Addison Mizner. The property had a total of 24 apartments. Freeman lived in the top-floor-front apartment on the southeast corner. The remaining 23 apartments in the building were available for rent and to house many of Freeman’s friends that visited Miami Beach.
Alden Freeman died at Casa Casuarina on December 29, 1937. The house was then sold to Jacque Amsterdam for $100k, who continued to run the house as an apartment complex that he named the Amsterdam Palace. In April 1939, Amsterdam did a small renovation of the house in which he installed an elevator shaft (where the current bell is located), replaced the lily pond in the Courtyard with terrazzo flooring and moved the kneeling Aphrodite statue to the front terrace. Rooms were rented for $600/month during the winter season and $30/month in the summer.
In 1992, while on vacation with his family in Miami Beach, Gianni Versace took a walk down Ocean Drive and was immediately attracted to the house by the “Kneeling Aphrodite” statue and fell in love with the unique Spanish architecture of the property. Obsessed with Greek and Roman mythology, Versace purchased the original house built by Freeman for $2.95 million and the lot next door, an old Art Déco hotel called Hotel Revere (for $3.7 million). Versace invested an additional $32 million in renovations, in which he added the south wing, the pool and garden and turned the 24 apartments into 10 large suites in the original house and an additional 2 new suites in the south wing. He also removed the elevator shaft in the Courtyard, replaced the fountain and reconstructed the observatory, including a new copper dome.
The renovations took almost 3 years to complete and, on July 15, 1997, only 5 years after purchasing the home, Versace was killed on the front steps of the house on his usual morning walk home from News Cafe. Some contents of when Versace lived here were auctioned in New York City in April of 2001 for a reported $28 million. What still remains here from the Versace era are the richly decorated walls, floors, ceilings and windows, as well as the pool, garden and the entire south wing. The house sat empty for about 3 years and, in September of 2000, Donatella Versace finally sold the property to Peter Loftin, a telecommunications magnate from Raleigh, N.C., for $19 million. Loftin used this house as a private residence as well as a hotel, membership club and private events venue from 2001 to the end of 2009. In December of 2009, events entrepreneur and restaurateur Barton G. Weiss leased the property and took over the Mansion, imprinting his own signature style on the storied house and reopened as The Villa by Barton G. In September 2013, Florida business connected to Jordache Enterprises bought the Mansion at auction with a winning bid of $41.5 million.
⇒ Related Article: DISCOVER THE NEW AMAZING LINES FROM VERSACE HOME ⇐
Starting at $1199 per night, the One Bedroom Suites include 4 types of rooms. Enter The Villa Suite through its unique round foyer and you are transported to the quarters of the man who made the mansion famous. With its decadent custom double king-sized bed and mural-covered walls, The Villa Suite features two balconies, a bedroom sitting alcove, his and hers closets and a custom oversized double-head shower and bidet. The most coveted room in South Florida, The Villa Suite is an unparalleled experience for the most discerning traveller. The largest room in The Villa, the spacious Venus Suite features a separate sitting area and two balconies. Relax with two flat screen televisions, an in-room stereo system and DVD player or luxuriate in the custom double queen-sized bed. The Italian marble bathroom features an oversized shower with double head, double sink and bidet. With its custom double queen-sized bed and separate sitting room, The Signature Suite features a balcony overlooking Ocean Drive and the sands of Miami Beach. The Suite offers two flat screen televisions, an oversized double-head shower and double sink, a walk-in closet and a second balcony off the bedroom. Finally, with a view of the Mosaic Garden from its private terrace, The Garden Suite overlooks The Thousand Mosaic Pool. With its sitting area and king-sized bed, the Suite offers a relaxing haven in which to luxuriate.
The Exceptional Suites include 3 types of rooms and can “be yours” starting at $999 per night. Climb the poolside spiral staircase to The Medallion Suite, with its rotunda overlooking one of the most beautiful mosaics in The Villa. The Suite, with its patio overlooking the mosaic pool, features a sitting alcove, a king-sized bed and an oversized custom shower. Fit for a Material Girl, The Mosaic Suite, with its red and cream interiors, features an Italian mosaic floor, an oversized sunken jacuzzi tub and a patio overlooking The Thousand Mosaic Pool. With its king-sized bed and sitting alcove, The Mosaic Suite offers a perfect sanctuary to the pampered traveller. Last, overlooking The Thousand Mosaic Pool, The Aurora Suite is bathed in a golden light from the ample stained glass windows lining the bedroom and sitting room. The four-poster king-sized bed topped with swans assures sleep and relaxation fit for royalty.
If you intend to spend a little less, the Superior Suites include 3 types of rooms and can be rented starting at $749 per night. The Empire Suite shares a private foyer with the abovementioned The Villa Suite. With a sitting room and king-sized bed, The Empire Suite returns visitors to the Ottoman Empire with its murals of sultans and features a soothing honey and jewel-tone colour scheme. Awash in rich cream and blue colours, The Azure Suite features a king-sized bed and two full-sized beds/sitting alcoves along with a sitting area and walk-in closet. The Italian marble bathroom offers a bidet and an oversized custom shower. Step into paradise in The Aviary Suite where parrots, hummingbirds and doves decorate the walls, with its private terrace and sitting room. With a king-sized bed and two full-sized beds/sitting alcoves, The Aviary Suite epitomizes tranquillity and luxury.
Guests can also enjoy exclusive access to The Thousand Mosaic Pool and two private lounges. The pool was inspired by Gianni Versace’s “Marine Vanitas” collection and contains thousands of 24K gold tiles. The main character of the pool is Poseidon, the God of the Sea. Worship the sun or gaze at the stars from The Rooftop Lounge. Dine in The Villa’s restaurant, set in the pebble-mosaic Dining Room with a focus on refined continental cuisine or choose to breakfast or lunch en-suite or poolside. Gianni’s, the restaurant, offers a delicious blend of Italian and Mediterranean food and wine selections, served in a one-of-a-kind historic setting. The stunning atmosphere of Gianni’s at night in the former Versace Mansion rivals the best locales in the world to dine. In the history-steeped dining room or under the stars poolside, Gianni’s offers a wonderful, unique luxurious experience.
The newest season of the TV Series American Crime Story was filmed over the course of about a month at the hotel. Producer Ryan Murphy said he couldn’t believe that he received permission to shoot the series there. “I don’t think I could have made the show if I couldn’t have gotten that house”, he said. “There was no way you could build [a set] of it. Two of the rooms were made out of seashells. Donatella [Versace] took all the furniture and the art when she sold the house, but through pictures we were able to recreate them”.
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Images Source: The Villa (except where noted)