Right in the heart of Ocean Drive — smack dab in the middle of the Art Deco District — sits this building. With pastel flashes of color surrounding it, this 12-bedroom, 13-bathroom Mediterranean Revival home, in all its cream-colored glory is probably the most famous building on the strip. It’s certainly the most photographed. What is it? It’s Casa Casuarina, of course.
Casa Casurina was built in 1935 and features a gorgeous oolitic limestone entryway and stairs, and a Cuban barrel tile roof (each tile of which is rumored to have been molded on the thighs of beautiful Cuban maidens). A replica of the home in the Dominican Republic in which Christopher Columbus’ eldest son lived (La Casa del Cordon), Casa Casuarina is also where Versace took his last breath. He was gunned down on the front steps of this building by Andrew Cunanan in 1997.
Gianni Versace purchased the building in 1992 for $2.9 million and renovated it substantially. Peter Loftin, a telecommunications billionaire, purchased it in 2000 for approximately $19 million and is converting it into an “invitation only B&B” (for around $2500/night). Alternatively, the entire house is available for private events — at a cost of $10,000 a night.
I’m sad to announce that flashing my Gadling Press Pass did NOT grant me access to the interior. Sorry. But you can take a sneak peak at the home’s elegant appointments here.
Previously: Weekend In Miami: The Art Deco District