Constructed in 1926 by Coral Gables developer George Merrick and architect Leonard Schultze, this Mediterranean Revival-style hotel and golf course retains much of its historic character. With a residential neighborhood to its north and the 150-acre Biltmore Golf Course to the south, the 275-room terra cotta block and stucco hotel features a fifteen-story tower modeled after one in Seville, Spain. The hotel’s horseshoe-shaped plan envelops a 60-foot square colonnaded courtyard featuring a marble fountain surrounded by palms. It was rehabilitated in 1986 and then underwent a significant restoration from 1992 to 2002.
The 18-hole golf course is built around a canal that, in the hotel’s heyday from 1926 through the 1930s, carried guests in gondolas to Biscayne Bay. The course, designed by golf course architect Donald Ross, was originally a 36-hole complex; the adjacent Riviera Golf Course was separated from the Biltmore course in 1945. Following a period of decline, the course was restored to Ross’s design in 2007 by Brian Silva. At the same time, landscape architect Emilon Fuster refurbished the 700,000 gallon swimming pool by converting the 85-foot high diving tower into a tropical waterfall and resurfacing the pool with polished marble. The Biltmore was listed as a National Historic Landmark in 1996.