This month we’re exploring North Beach, powered by Lyft. What should we know about? Who should we talk to? Let us know in the comments below and check out our neighborhood guide when it drops next week!
Before North Beach was home to hippies dancing at drum circles and immigrants from all corners of Latin America, the lesser-known beach neighborhood was mostly frequented by northern tourists and gamblers.
During the prohibition era, the Jungle Inn at 69th Street and Abbott Avenue in the Atlantic Heights Subdivision served as the neighborhood speakeasy. In 1925, the newly built Deauville Hotel was a beacon of luxury. This was not just your spring break hotel. Men and women showed up in their tuxedos and cocktail gowns.
The hotel’s initial hype was short lived. A 1926 hurricane left it heavily damaged. Three decades later, the building was finally demolished and rebuilt, returning to its present-day glory. The new Deauville regained clout in 1964 when The Beatles performed their second US concert there.
In honor of the performance, Kevin Arrow created a glass tile mosaic outside of the North Beach Bandshell for the 2015 Art in Public Places program. The mosaic depicts a mandala, a Hindu symbol, that says “love” in multiple languages.
These days, North Beach hosts more reggae nights than galas, but the neighborhood’s underground magic is still palpable.
All videos courtesy of the Lynn and Louis Wolfson II Florida Moving Image Archives