The oceanfront of Miami Beach is characterized by world-class hotels, white sand beaches, and palm trees swaying in the warm ocean breeze. The resorts that line the Atlantic coastline are some of the most iconic vacation destinations in the world. Miami Beach is a municipality that is built on both man-made and natural barrier islands between the Atlantic Ocean and the beautiful Biscayne Bay. Today, the streets are lined with packed restaurants manned by celebrity chefs and nightclubs that capture the glamorous essence of this uniquely American city.
The alluring Art Deco District of Miami Beach’s oceanfront is one of the most recognizable communities in the country. The beautiful hotels that line the streets here were mostly built between 1923 and 1943. This district was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. Other architectural styles of note in this area are Streamline Moderne and Mediterranean.
The very first structure to be built on the Miami oceanfront in 1876 was the Biscayne House of Refuge, which was meant to provide aid to people who were shipwrecked in the area. It was destroyed in a hurricane in 1926. A coconut plantation was built along the shoreline in the 1880s. It wasn’t until the early 1900s that efforts were made to begin developing an oceanfront resort. Miami Beach was chartered as a town in 1915 and became a city in 1917. In the 1920s, large hotels and resorts began to rise as wealthy industrialists discovered the oceanfront as a sunny vacation refuge.
Although it is now the epitome of Miami nightlife, dining, and beach-going on the Miami oceanfront, South Beach was once nothing but farmland. Today, the streets and beaches are packed with tourists from around the world. The fabulous restaurants and nightclubs that line Ocean Drive pulse with a big city vibrancy that appeals to people of many cultures and lifestyles.
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