Coconut Grove NET

Coconut Grove - Mayfair

About Coconut Grove

Coconut Grove is the oldest continuously inhabited neighborhood in the City of Miami. The neighborhood is roughly bound by North Prospect Drive to the south, LeJeune Road to the west, South Dixie Highway (US 1) and Rickenbacker Causeway to the north, and Biscayne Bay to the east. The neighborhood's name has been sometimes spelled "Cocoanut Grove" but the definitive spelling "Coconut Grove" was established when the city was incorporated in 1919.

Several waves of immigration established Coconut Grove, the first in 1825, when the Cape Florida lighthouse went into operation and was manned by John Dubose. Dr. Horace P. Porter is credited for coming up with the name when in 1873 he rented a home from Edmond D. Beasleys widow, who homesteaded 160 acres of bayfront property. He lived there for only a year but during that time he established a post office which he named Coconut Grove. Around the same time the area saw an influx of Americans from the Northeastern US, as well as British and white Bahamian immigrants. The first hotel on the South Florida mainland was located in Coconut Grove. Called the Bay View Inn (later known as the Peacock Inn), it was built in 1882, on the site of present-day Peacock Park, by English immigrants Isabella and Charles Peacock, who had been the owner of a wholesale meat business in London. Coconut Grove's first black settlement, in the 1880s, was established by Bahamian laborers who worked at the Peacock Inn. The Barnacle Historic State Park is the oldest house in Miami-Dade County still standing in its original location. It was built in 1891 and was home to Ralph Middleton Munroe, also known as "The Commodore" for being the first commodore and founder of the Biscayne Bay Yacht Club and an American yacht designer and early resident of Coconut Grove.

What is today referred to as Coconut Grove was formed in 1925 when the city of Miami annexed two areas of about equal size, the city of Coconut Grove and most of the town of Silver Bluff. Coconut Grove approximately corresponds to the same area as the 33133 ZIP Code although the ZIP Code includes parts of Coral Way and Coral Gables and a small portion of ZIP Code 33129. The area is often referred to by locals as "The Grove."

The Grove is composed of a unique blend of luxury homes, exuberant vegetation, high rises, shopping villages and waterfront views. One unparalleled characteristic is its many interesting attractions most of which are rich in history and within walking distance of each other. The Womans Club of Coconut Grove founded in 1891 was listed in 1975 on the National Register of Historic Places. It continues to maintain monthly meetings and plays an important role in the areas charity efforts. The Coconut Grove Library was founded in 1895 by the Pine Needles Club, a literary group. Adjacent to the library is the grave of Eva Amelia Munroe; dated 1882, it is the oldest marked grave in Miami-Dade County. Across the street is Peacock Park, which is the meeting place for family picnics, baseball leagues and it has become the heart of many community events.

The historic Coconut Grove Playhouse opened in 1927 and is closed for renovation, but in its time the Playhouse was recognized as one of the finest regional theaters in the country. Charles Avenue was home to one of Miami's first settlements comprising mainly immigrant Bahamians. At the end of the avenue, at Douglas Road (SW 37 Ave) is one of the oldest cemeteries in Miami. Another site worth taking a short drive to in Coconut Grove is the Plymouth Congregational Church. This Church showcases elaborately carved doors that are more than 300 years old and on its grounds is the first public school in Miami-Dade County; originally built as a Sunday school back in 1887. The Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church at 3515 Douglas Avenue is the oldest black congregation in the area.

The Kampong at 4013 Douglas Road is a 7-acre botanical garden internationally known for its variety of flora. Vizcaya, at 3251 South Miami Avenue, is the former home of James Deering, who spent five years traveling throughout Europe with architect and interior designer Paul Chaflin selecting furniture, artwork and architectural elements. Coconut Groves shopping area is picturesque with rickshaws, restaurants, sidewalk cafes, bars and boutiques all mingling with the breathtaking backdrop of the Biscayne Bay.

Sources: City of Miami, Coconut Grove BID, Wikipedia