In Miami, the View from Villa Venetian

Viewers glancing at the image to the right might mistake that vista off in the distance for Giudecca Island, just a few minutes by private launch from San Marco Square in Venice.

But they’d be wrong – about everything except the name.

That’s downtown Miami in the distance, as seen from an infinity edge pool at a home known as Villa Venetian.

The residence was originally designed and built a decade ago in a mashup of the Mediterranean and modern styles. It was less than successful.

“The client came to us two or three years ago and said: ‘Here’s a house with a great view but nothing about it works for us,” says Paul Fischman, Principal, Choeff Levy Fischman Architecture + Design.

So the architects, who specialize in Tropical Modernism for South Florida, set about taking down the Mediterranean influence and embracing the views, with a minimalist bent.

“We gutted it from the kitchen to the swimming pool – we were knocking down columns and walls, eliminating beams, and grinding down the risers,” he says. “We ripped out all the glass windows and doors and did a dark bronze finish, for a warmer feel.

The net result? Transparent views through the residence that bring downtown Miami and Biscayne Bay into the house and vice versa.

“With the doors open it acts as a single living space, inside to out, and becomes an extended living room,” he says. “For the infinity edge pool on the roof, we removed a structural beam and replaced it with a vanishing edge – now you can see through the water to downtown.”

That may not be the Hotel Cipriani and its legendary Oro restaurant out there, but who cares?

Because that’s a legendary Florida sunset hovering over Biscayne Bay, just waiting to be taken in.

For more on Villa Venetia, go here.

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