Historic Styles of Delray Beach
Part 1 – Spanish Colonial Revival Style
Walking through downtown Delray Beach, you will quickly discover that among the endless sea of modest mid-century modern homes, minimal traditional, mission revival and frame vernacular architecture, there are very few examples of Spanish Colonial style homes. The ones you will encounter while walking the streets of Delray Beach, would be built mostly before 1929. A few spectacular examples can be found on “Banker’s Row” – a short section of NE 1st Avenue between 2nd and 3rd Street – one block West from Hyatt Place hotel and Pineapple Grove Art District.
Spanish Colonial Revival architecture is an expression of the Spanish exploration of the Americas. It first became popular beginning about 1915 in California and Florida as a result of the Panama Canal opening and the Spanish Colonial style buildings exhibited at the 1915 Panama-California Exposition in San Diego. The style originally spread to New Mexico, southern Arizona and Texas before arriving in South Florida.
Popularized here by Henry Flagler and Addison Mizner, this style displays low pitched, multi-plane roof lines often with red clay tiles and little or no overhang. Tile visor roofs are also common. A stucco exterior, often textured, covers an asymmetrical, wood or hollow clay tile frame. Arches are prevalent within the fenestration design including entryways, arcades, and colonnades.
While it shares a resemblance with the Mission Revival style, Spanish Colonial Revival style architecture is often more decorative and borrows design elements directly from Spain. However, its style influences can be quite varied and include Moorish, Renaissance, medieval Spanish, Byzantine and Spanish baroque.
This broad base of sources provides great flexibility in creating harmony between the exterior image, interior space, decorative elements and function — all while creating a statement that is deeply rooted not only in Spain, but also in the history of the Americas.
Image: Andersen Windows and Doors