The Merrick family purchased a wooden cottage sitting on 160 acres in South Florida in 1899. Seven years later they added a large coral rock house on to the cottage which incorporated wrap around porches, thick walls and large windows to keep the house cool. George Merrick, who grew up in the house, developed the surrounding land in to a planned community, known as Coral Gables. The house remained in the family until 1966, when it was purchased by a foundation to protect it. It was listed on the National Register in 1973. The City of Coral Gables acquired in in 1976 and it underwent a complete restoration.
Forty years later, SPS was part of a team that executed the museum’s second restoration. An architectural conservator supervised all aspects of this project, except our work, which was exempted from review. We restored the windows and exterior doors and built carriage doors for the garage apartment. We also built unusual custom screens with bronze wire mesh to match those seen in a historic photograph.