4441 Collins Avenue
Miami Beach, FL 33140
Timeless architecture is easily apparent in Miami and “Morris Lapidus: The Architecture of Joy,” by Deborah Desilets, tells the story of the man responsible for one of the most renowned hotels in the world. The Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami beach is an iconic structure that has forever characterized Miami affluence for residents and tourists alike. Morris Lapidus (1902-2001) not only designed the Fontainebleau, but his 1950’s style of kitschy structures adorns the majority of Collins Avenue. Just north of South Beach, he left a signature of his neo-Baroque style of grand modernism with classical touches to the Eden Roc, The Algiers, Nautilus, Biltmore Terrace and Di Lido hotels.
The Miami Herald Building
One Herald Plaza
Miami, FL 33132
Located on the bank of Biscayne Bay and blessed with a bird’s eye view of the string of glass edifices that make up the majestic Miami skyline, The Miami Herald building presents a unique opportunity to experience literary history up close and personal. Originally founded in 1903, The Miami Herald boasts 20 Pulitzer Prizes in its storied history. The paper has given birth to the literary careers of columnists turned into successful authors like Carl Hiassen, Dave Barry, Edna Buchanan and Leonard Pitts, Jr. It also has the unique responsibility of covering international issues that radically effect a growing Hispanic population, as well as local and national news.
800 Ocean Drive
Miami Beach, FL 33139
If you’re an eclectic reader who likes to browse international magazines or curl up with a good book amidst the beautiful people in South Beach, then this 24-hour landmark is just what the editor assigned. Bikinis, art deco and international magazines and publications from around the world can be enjoyed with your favorite libation from the full bar along with breakfast, lunch or dinner. The café is also the former haunt of murdered Italian design god Gianni Versace. Versace would visit each morning as part of his daily routine before being stalked and murdered by Andrew Cunanan on his return home in 1997.
Marjory Stoneman Douglas House
3744-3754 Stewart Ave
Miami, FL 33133
Marjory Stoneman Douglas (1890-1998) accomplished much in her 108 years. A distinguished writer and early feminist, she is best known as a first-class environmentalist. Known as the ‘Grande Dame of the Everglades,’ she published her ground-breaking book, “The Everglades: River of Grass,” in 1947. This book forever changed the world’s perception of the Florida Everglades by revealing that it was not a barren, useless swamp but a rich and vibrant river with a unique eco system of its own. Built in 1926, her home in Coconut Grove, Florida is on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.
Related: 5 Must-Read Books By Miami Authors
600 Biscayne Blvd
Miami, FL, 33132
A simple Mediterranean-style structure built in 1925 with Spanish architectural aesthetics, this creamy pastel tower is one of the most famous landmarks in Miami. It originally served as the headquarters of the Miami News, the competing paper in town to The Miami Herald. The paper left the tower in 1957, and in 1960 Cuban dictator Fidel Castro began sending waves of immigrants to the United States. The tower became the processing center for new arrivals, providing documentation and a variety of social services. Freedom Tower has since become Miami’s version of New York’s Statue of Liberty to immigrants and tourists.
Isaac Bashevis Singer House
Surfside Towers Ocean Condominium (Private Residence)
9511 Collins Ave
Surfside, FL 33154
Isaac Bashevis Singer (1902-1991) was a Nobel Prize-winning trailblazer in the Jewish and Yiddish book movement. The cultural texture and perspective in his novels and short stories were uniquely Semitic yet universally felt across all spectrums of culture and class. Though unlikely that an author’s condominium would be a literary landmark, Singer’s condominium in Surfside, Florida is significant, because the author lived and wrote there from 1977 until his death in 1991. A plaque was placed on the building after being presented to his widow, Alma, in 1991, marking it as a literary landmark.