from the Archives

The Nemo Hotel

Read Time: 2 mins

The Nemo Hotel at 100 Collins Ave was considered to be a Mediterranean Revival gem that was built in 1921 by New Yorkers Sam Magrid, and Joseph and Harry Goodkowsky. This was the first Miami Beach hotel to cater to kosher Jewish guests. Others, such as the Seabreeze Hotel at Collins and 2nd St., soon followed. The area south of 5th Street was home to the majority of Miami Beach’s Jewish community from the 1920’s through the ’30s, as they were mostly restricted from owning property north of 5th. By 1949 an anti-discrimination law regarding real estate and hotels was passed by the Florida Legislature. Ownership of the hotel changed several times during its history. At one time it was owned by the Hotel Astor Corporation headed by Herman Schatzberg. Like many of the hotels and apartment buildings on Miami Beach, Nemo Hotel hit hard times after the 1960’s. By the 1980’s it was a known crack house. South Beach’s revival and movement to save Art Deco buildings generated a renewed interest in the Nemo. Myles Chefetz bought it in the early 1990s, and operated a popular restaurant on the site, known as Nemo. They kept many of the old accents of the building including the picturesque archway, courtyard and spanish tiled floors. Today it is known as the eatery Prime Fish.


1982 Photo of Nemo Hotel credit to Pinterest

1987 Miami Herald photograph from Barbara Baer Capitman Archives
1936 wedding of Harry Goodkowsy’s daughter Myra
to Aaron Farr at the Nemo Hotel; courtesy of Howard Brayer

1950s photograph of the Nemo Hotel advertising Passover meals; courtesy of Howard Brayer
Current day photo of Prime Fish restaurant at 100 Collins Avenue

Vintage postcard of Nemo Hotel at 100 Collins Avenue

What would Miami Beach be like without Historic Art Deco, Mediterranean, and MiMo buildings?

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