Morris Lapidus’ project in Miami

By on March 16, 2016
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In the 1950s, there was not a man known better in Miami than Morris Lapidus. This Jew from Odessa was Philippe Starck of his time – he built three most luxurious and extravagant hotel spa in the resort capital of the world: Eden Roc, Americana and Fontainebleau (“Goldfinger” was shot there).

Living room. Armchair Tecno (1955), designer Osvaldo Borsani. Table Superellipse (1968), designer Bruno Mathsson. Sofa Dublin (1981), designer Marco Dzanini. Bookcase, a bowl on the table and foot like culpture UP 7 – all these are creations by Gaetano Pesce.

Lapidus was hated by critics hated adored by audience. Everyone knew who created these crazy curved pools, inlayed huge halls with colorful mosaics and chose radical design furniture for interiors. But few people know that in addition to hotels Lapidus also built houses. And over time, he himself forgot about it.

A chair Joe (1970), Poltronova, in the form of a baseball glove is in a corner of the living room. Designers Jonathan De Pas, Donato Paolo Lomazzo D’Urbino and called their work after the famous baseball player Joe DiMaggio.

In 1987, when Lapidus was 85 years old, he retired and lived in Miami. One morning he was awakened by a phone call. A man confusedly explained Lapidus, he had bought a house built by the desihner in 1958. “I have never built dwelling-houses!” yelled the architect and hung up.

Canteen. Plywood bookcase by unknown designers filled with aluminum dishes by Russel Wright. Table and chairs Gazelle (1958), designer Dan Johnson.

Candlesticks made by designer Alessandro Mendini.

However, the caller did not give up. He was a businessman who arrived in Miami with his wife and daughters and came across Lapidus’s house in the property classified section. He collected designer furniture and was familiar with the 50’s style. Having seen the house with his own eyes, he became sure – advertising was not lying. More than that – real estate agents had drawings with Lapidus’s autographs.

Breakfast room: table Sansone II, Cassina by designer Gaetano Pesce. Chairs, too, designed by Pesce, but for Bernini. Lamp Artemide, designer Michele De Lucchi.

The new owners have lovingly restored the house. Despite the broken windows and leaky roof, many things by Lapidus were still there, such as a huge swimming pool in the center of the house – the same as in the legendary hotel. Mosaic floors and 112 m living area.

The owners had the appropriate furniture – chairs by Aarnio and Mendini, sculptures by Gaetano Pesce -furniture, chosen by Lapidus.

He had an opportunity to assess how everything looked: he died in 2001, aged 98 years, and before that he had managed to come back to his revived creation.

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