Miami mansion where designer Gianni Versace lived and died reopens as a luxury hotel
The Ocean Drive mansion where Gianni Versace lived and died is to reopen this month as luxury boutique hotel Villa by Barton G.
Situated on South Beach in Miami, the five-star property is where the Italian designer was shot dead on its front steps by serial killer Andrew Cunanan in 1997.
Reopening fully by the end of March, the 10-suite Villa by Barton G boasts 54-foot ‘thousand mosaic’ swimming pool lined in 24-carat gold, which was designed by Versace.
Boutique hotel: Villa by Barton G is to reopen at Gianni Versace’s former mansion on Ocean Drive in Miami
Design marvel: The style of Villa by Barton G is very much in keeping with the lavish tastes of its former owner
Extravagant design: Each of the rooms boasts Egyptian cotton linens, patios and balconies, and Italian marble bathrooms
The hotel promises the ‘ultimate sensory experience’, with walls of decorative pebble mosaics, lavish frescoed ceilings and meals served on Versace-designed Rosenthal china.
Rooms range in size from the Medallion Suite, the smallest at 434sq-ft, overlooking a stunning mosaic at the mansion, to the 1,428sq-ft Venus Suite, which features two private balconies with a view of Ocean Drive, and the Versace-designed swimming pool.
Guests can also stay in the designer’s former bedroom. The 1,174sq-ft Villa Suite boasts a nine-foot double king-size bed, two balconies, seven custom-made closets and an ornate oversized shower.
Each of the guest rooms features king and double-king beds with custom Egyptian cotton linens, goose down pillows and duvets, patios and balconies, and Italian marble bathrooms.
Casa Casuarina: Versace bought the mansion in 1992, spending £20m on renovations
New start: The The 23,000-square-foot mansion has 10 bedrooms, 11 bathrooms and an open-air courtyard
Boutique luxury: The property was bought for £25m by VM South Beach last year
A stay at the boutique hotel also includes access to two private lounges and the villa garden, and guests can enjoy spa services in their bedrooms, at the poolside or on the villa rooftop.
Prices for suites start at $795 (£475) per night; the Villa Suite starts from $2,200 (£1,315) per night, with all prices exclusive of breakfast.
Originally called Casa Casuarina, the gated mansion was purchased by VM South Beach for $41.5m (£25m) in September 2013. The company’s principals include the Nakash family of New York, which owns American clothes company Jordache Enterprises.
At the time, Joe Nakash, chairman of Jordache Enterprises, said he would retain all the vestiges of Versace’s time in South Beach in the 1990s.
Last month, Villa by Barton G launched its new Mediterranean restaurant Il Sole – Italian for ‘The Sun’.
Expansion: The home was remodelled by Versace after he fell in love with the property
History: Though the Versace family hasn’t owned the oceanfront mansion since 2000, auctioneers hoped the designer’s legacy would attract potential buyers
Renowned Miami chef Scott Linquist and pastry chef Luis Vasquez oversee the menu, which features dishes served on Versace-designed Rosenthal china, including fish flown in daily from Honolulu.
‘We are certain that under the innovative and expert culinary guidance of Chefs Linquist and Vasquez, and the pleasure of working with the Nakash Family, Il Sole will define itself as an exciting new entry into the arena of South Florida dining,’ Scott said.
The mansion has been officially named Casa Casuarina for more than a decade, operating first as a private club and then as a boutique hotel until it closed last year.
But locals still refer to it as ‘the Versace mansion’.
The designer bought a neglected three-story, Mediterranean-style home, originally built in 1930 by Standard Oil heir Alden Freeman, and a dilapidated hotel next door in 1992 and spent $33m (£20m) on renovations.
The 23,000-square-foot mansion has 10 bedrooms, 11 bathrooms and an open-air courtyard.
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