The Country Club Prado Entrance was originally built in 1927 as part of George Merrick’s grand “planned community”, one of the first to be designed and built in the United States. Begun in 1922 on 3,000 acres of citrus groves and pine tree growth left to George from his father, he began carving out the City Beautiful Movement. He laid out the city of Coral Gables’ footprint by designing wide tree-lined boulevards, fountains, coral rock entrance archways, golf courses, etc., all with great detail and with devotion to the aesthetic.
The beautiful Country Club Prado entrance is one of the more magnificent entrance ways and one that is used extensively as a background for photographers. We are here revisiting this historic entrance-way today, one year after its $860,000 renovation and re-dedication in January 2010. At the time all the entrance columns were restored as well as the archways, balustrades, pool and two fountains.
Today, it is a peaceful reminder of a by-gone era. Under the shade of the 100 year old giant oak trees, its a place of beauty to pause and reflect. As you enter the City Beautiful from the hustle and bustle of surrounding metropolitan Miami, come through the entrance at the Northwest corner of Coral Gables where Tamiami Trail and Red Road meet. You’ll come across the fountains and reflection pool surrounded by the columned gazebos and trellises full of blooming bougainvillea.
Stop and take a deep breath. You will know that you have arrived at a wonderful place created many years ago and fonded on beauty and love. That is the Lifestyle of Coral Gables.