As much as I miss Dallas,Coral Gables,FL(aka the“City Beautiful”)is truly an amazing place to live.Located just six miles west of downtown Miami, when you’re driving along the Gables’banyan-canopied streets past bubbling fountains and Mediterranean piazzas, chances are you’ll forget you’re in the center of Florida’s largest metropolis… and that’s just how developer George Merrick envisioned it almost a century ago.
George Merrick is the founding father of the City Beautiful. In addition to the Mediterranean Revival style that is synonymous with Coral Gables, there are a few architectural gems that remain thanks to a lesser known project of Merrick’s – The Village Project.The Village Project was designed to create over 1,000 residences based on architecture from around the world. The idea was to provide a variety of architectural styles beyond the Mediterranean that had become the gold standard in Coral Gables. div class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin: 0in 0in 10pt;”>Unfortunately the hurricane of 1926 and the depression which followed destroyed Merrick’s hopes of completing the project. Yet, today 80 homes from The Village Project remain in the Chinese Village, the Italian Village, the Dutch South African Village, the French Provincial Village, the French Country Village, the French City Village,and the Florida Pioneer/Colonial Village.
Designed by Henry Killam Murphy, who was a scholar of Oriental architecture, the Chinese Village is one of the most exotic examples of 1920s residential architecture in the United States.
The use of screen walls to face the main entrance of the house stems from the belief that evil things travel in straight lines.