Versace Mansion, Miami
located on ocean drive in the art deco section of south beach is the former home of gianni versace. this famous italian clothing designer was murdered on the steps of this south beach house by andrew cunanan a number of years ago. this building will soon be converted into a hotel. an excellent example of old florida architecture but today only interesting to those who are interested in crime history.
This is Gianni Versace's House on South Beach, Casa Casuarina ,where Versace was killed on July 15th, 1997.Casa Casuarina was originally built in 1930 and was modeled after the Alcazar de Colon in Santo Domingo, a residence built in 1510 by the son of Christopher Columbus and reputedly the oldest existing house in the western hemisphere.Gianni Versace purchased the building, then operating as the Amsterdam Palace apartments, in 1992 for $2.9 million.The Italian designer was gunned down on the steps of his mansion, the only privately owned residence on Ocean Drive.It’s real center of night life. The street is so crowded that you can’t even walk. Many bars, discos and nightclubs can be found there. South Beach is built in special style named Coco, which is very specific for this part of Miami.
The Versace mansion is right on Ocean Drive. It is the only private home on this exclusive street, as the rest consists of hotels. It is a beautiful mansion where Versace lived and was ultimately killed - right on the front steps. There's always many people taking pictures in front of the gate, so you can't miss it.
The tourist pamphlet for the Art Deco District of Miami Beach describes Casa Casuarina as being modeled after Alcazar de Colon, the Dominican Republic house built by Christopher Columbus' family in 1510. Yeah yeah yeah - very interesting, but I know it as the house were Gianni Versace lived, and on the steps of which he was murdered by a serial killer in 1997.
I was in Miami on St. Patrick's Day, 2012 - I can tell you this was NOT the best time to go as a tourist, since Ocean Drive was PACKED. It took us almost an hour to go 5 blocks, and in the end, I left my husband in the car and walked to the house so I could see it. It was shocking to me to see how close it is - to the street, to other buildings, to restaurants. I guess I was expecting it to be set back a little more from the street.
When I got home and looked it up on the internet, I see it is now a luxury hotel, restaurant, and event space by the name of The Villa by Barton G. I got a thrill from seeing the outside, but the website shows photos of the inside and the pool area, which look gorgeous.
Just walking down the Art Deco District in Miami Beach, you come upon the gates of the Versace Mansion where Gianni Versace was gunned down in cold blood several years ago by a madman. It's wierd to see the exact gate and steps where it happened. Now they are offering tours of the Versace Mansion (also called Casa Casuarina) for a price or you can choose to stay there also.