After Six Months, Nobody’s Bought the Miami Beach Star Destroyer Site




Last year the site of the proposed house by architect Robert Bofill at 44 Star Island Drive that looks rather like a Star Destroyer from Star Wars listed for $24 million, after its owner fought the City of Miami Beach and historic preservationists to demolish the classy historic home on the property. Now, after six months it’s still on the market, the old house is still there, and, well, nothing’s budged.

I wrote about the saga of this joint extensively back in my Curbed Miami editorial days.  Is the fact it hasn’t been demolished yet a good thing for historic preservation in Miami Beach? Well, yes of course it is, because it has given the old home, built in 1935, a temporary reprieve, but the thing this is just temporary. And this situation could just be due to the obstinacy of the owner who has kept the house and land at the aforementioned price tag despite a softening market. These are the same people who think such a harsh, unforgiving glass and raw concrete palazzo as the Bofill design that would make your entire life visible to everyone on the MacArthur Causeway is actually warm and homey.

Here’s a helpful hint: if a house has actual walls with windows in them and it’s not just all window then you don’t have to close the blinds and be darkness when you want even the tiniest bit of modesty, not to mention actual privacy. Nobody can see you clipping your toenails if the window starts at waist height. Or plant trees, but they block the water view you paid so much for. The house’s former next door neighbor, movie star Rosie O’Donnell planted trees, and when she moved and they finally ripped those suckers out (hopefully but not likely transplanted) Miami Beachers got a gorgeous new historic house to look at while driving to the airport.

The purchase price comes with approved plans for the full ‘Star Destroyer’-esque enchilada, according to the listing.

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