Celebrating 90 years of a Dream Realized
On April 29, Coral Gables celebrated its 90th anniversary. As the City marks that official milestone throughout the year, it will also celebrate the creative minds responsible for turning a stretch of South Florida wilderness into a beautiful city. Without George Merrick and his visionary team, there would be no Coral Gables. By the time the City was incorporated, the 38-year-old Merrick had built an oasis of majestic entrances with 600 homes, 65 miles of roadways and 80 miles of sidewalks shaded by more than 20,000 shrubs and trees.
Merrick also created major landmarks, including the Biltmore Hotel, the Venetian Pool and the historic Douglas Entrance. As with all his works, Merrick added an artistic touch to De Soto Plaza. Visible from all intersecting streets, the plaza features a large free-standing fountain with relief carvings of four faces. Merrick's artist-uncle Denman Fink designed the plaza to harmonize with its surroundings – the Biltmore Hotel is located just southwest of the plaza and the Venetian Pool is to the east. It is one of the many landmarks that make Coral Gables uniquely beautiful.
To celebrate the realization of Merrick’s dream, the City of Coral Gables is planning a year-long series of fun, entertaining and educational events. When you visit Coral Gables, start at the new Visitor Center located at the Coral Gables Museum, where you’ll find a wealth of information, including an interactive touchscreen TV featuring local attractions and historic sites. Enjoy a tour of the structures Merrick built, many of which are National Historic Landmarks; drive, bike or walk under the trees he planted and take part in one of the many events that will mark the urban adventure that is Coral Gables. To find out more about 90th anniversary events, visit