One of Coral Gables’ Exotic Chinese Village Houses Has Hit the Market for $1.625 Million




A well-preserved courtyard house in Coral Gables’ historic Chinese Village, with plenty of original details and exotic charm, has just hit the market for $1.625 million. When the City of Coral Gables was being developed in the 1920s, although most of it was built in the Mediterranean Revival style, little ‘themed’ villages were also created to add some architectural variety. The most fantastical of them all is undoubtedly the Chinese Village, with only eight houses

5133 Riviera, by architect Henry Killam Murphy, who designed the entire Chinese Village, was built in 1923. It’s pretty nicely sized, with five bedrooms and three and a half baths spanning 3,952 square feet. The house is in almost mint condition, although the kitchen, and possibly one or more of the bathrooms, has been redone over the years, to mixed success.

The new kitchen blends in well with the rest of the house, but the only bathroom shown in the listing photos is a rather unimpressive mish-mosh. The tiles might be original, but at some point a 1950s-style sliding glass shower door was put in, and later on the sink the was replaced too. Otherwise, the house oozes architectural delight, with original details everywhere, including terra cotta lions guarding the bright red front gate, a gold roof, and original leaded glass windows. Through the gate is a front courtyard lined with double doors and a large balcony upstairs. The back yard, enclosed behind a high wall, also has a courtyard feel. Nestled between a detached 936 square foot studio and a large porch is a serene garden with a koi pond.

Last year, another house in the Chinese Village sold for $1.175 million after languishing on and off the market, for about $700,000 less than its original asking price. We wrote about it in April, and it sold in June. That house was about a thousand square feet smaller though. Seeing how this house performs in the market will certainly be interesting The last time it sold was in 1990, for $365,000.

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