First Look Inside Renzo Piano’s Beautiful Miami Beach Residential Project

February 26, 2020   |   Architectural Digest

AD spoke to the Pritzker Prize winner about the North Beach property, and how he designed the structure to look as if it floats above the sand and waves

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For his first residential commission in the United States, Italian architect Renzo Piano wanted to defy gravity. The sleek, oval-shaped Eighty Seven Park in Miami Beach’s North Beach, seems to float above a vast, lush parkland—two acres of which is private to residents of the 68-unit building—and abuts the beach and sea.

“The building is made of 16 decks flying one above the other, floating above the beach and park. Those suspended decks catch the sound and light of the ocean. It’s a beautiful thing,” Piano tells AD. “I know fighting against gravity sounds a bit mad, but it is quite interesting because the tension between the sky and earth adds a poetic presence. It’s not arrogant, it’s not possessive, it’s not selfish. This building is something that is more open. What we are expressing is that this building belongs to nature.”

The residences range in size from 1,400 to 7,000 square feet, each with large terraces, floor-to-ceiling windows, and design details that echo North Beach’s natural landscape (think: shell, pebble, and seagrass elements), all intended to connect inhabitants to the outdoors. In terms of facilities, Eighty Seven Park features two pools with cabanas, a spa with a hammam, a juice bar and café, a wine bar, and a library.

The aforementioned two-acre private park, designed by Dutch landscape architecture firm West 8, is an added perk. Residents also have access to a 24-hour concierge, butler service, and even a staff botanist.

While Piano is perhaps best known for his cultural centers—he’s famously worked on the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, the Harvard Art Museums in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and the Centre Pompidou in Paris, among many other commissions—the world of residential architecture is a growing field for the 82-year-old Pritzker Prize winner and his firm, Renzo Piano Building Workshop. He most recently completed 585 Broome SoHo in New York, in November 2019.

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