Update: The home was sold for $15.5 million and will be preserved.
On one hand, the property at 93 Palm Avenue is an example of old Miami Beach’s architectural charm and style. On the other hand, it’s a haunting (possibly haunted?) reminder that one of the most notorious criminals in American history once called Palm Island home. So, it’s easy to understand why there’s a very heated debate over the fate of this multimillion-dollar home, which is currently awaiting a visit from the wrecking ball, according to TopTenRealEstateDeals.com.
With dollar signs in their eyes, the developers want to clear the land so they can build a mansion that will sell for as much as $48 million; however, local preservationists want the original structure to be left alone. They don’t deny that Capone was a bad man, but they believe his one-time home is a piece of Miami Beach’s history, “the good, the bad, and the ugly.” The builders point out that the home has its flaws, including flood damage and the fact that it sits three feet below sea level.
Quite the conundrum.
Whatever this home’s fate may be, we can’t quell the curiosity to take a look inside and appreciate the old Miami architecture and history of this property. At the very least, it’s fun to imagine what an HGTV crew could do to it.
Capone took advantage of the aftermath of the Great Miami Hurricane of 1926, scooping this house up for $40,000. He eventually spent more than $200,000 on amenities and safety measures so that he and his family could enjoy their retreats without worrying about attacks.
With four bedrooms and more than 6,000-sq.-ft., it served as an ideal getaway for a guy who always traveled with friends and family, as well as a sizable security detail. But the guards probably didn’t sleep much at night since they were busy keeping an eye on the water.
After Capone was released from prison in 1939, he spent the rest of his life here until he died in 1947. His wife, Mae, eventually sold the home in 1952.
If developer Todd Michael Glaser has his way, Capone’s home will be demolished so an extravagant mansion can be built in its place. It will boast eight bedrooms and bathrooms, as well as a spa and sauna, serving as a mini resort for whichever baller ends up moving in.
Homes on Palm Island range from $20 to $40 million, so the new build will certainly be one of the most sought-after homes in the area, if not all of Miami. Now, it’s just a matter of how long it will take for a decision.