Here's the house that rich boy Wayne Boich Jr. and his blushing new bride Cynthia Marin intend to build on the former site of the iconic midcentury modern Villa May - recently demolished despite much outcry among preservationists - and two other neighboring lots that both contained classic Mediterranean Revival houses. All three were demolished last week. At 17,000 square feet, the new house designed by Kobi Karp may not overwhelm the 50,000+ square foot lot, but it's still an absolutely a massive estate, and an overgrown pastiche of Villa May itself, which took up about the same area as the new house's tennis court.
Villa May was an exercise in restrained modernism, adapting the modernist ethos to a South Floridian climate. Screened in porches, cross ventilation, and a central atrium were all sustainable design strategies to living in the subtropical heat, long before 'sustainability' became the architectural buzzword it is today. The windows and skylight of Villa May diffused natural light, while the sunken conversation pit and central atrium garden kept the house low to the cool ground.
The new house takes Villa May's super minimalist rectangular look and multiplies those rectangles! Behind a high wall and circular motor court, the main house is surrounded by a moat with a two story waterfall. A wide stepping-stone bridge over the moat leads to the front door. A plethora of public rooms are scattered around the ground floor, with bedrooms above. The three story atrium leads to a roofdeck where one of two hot tubs is located. The other sits beside the large bay front pool, exterior bar, exterior dining loggia, guesthouse, and rolling lawns. To the north a gym, massage room, spa (Is that another hot tub? We can't really tell), and tennis court flank the circular entry driveway, and to the south a separate motor court gives access to garages for five cars. Squeezed in between the smaller of those two garages and a third motor court are two tiny servants rooms with the absolutely smallest windows imaginable. Not that there's much to look at. The backup generator is right smack out the window.
· Villa May coverage [Curbed Miami]
· Villa May Bites The Dust [Curbed Miami]