Mediterranean Revival Architecture
The Mediterranean Revival was an eclectic design style that was first introduced in the United States about the end of the nineteenth century, and became popular during the 1920s and 1930s. The style evolved from renewed interest in the Italian Renaissance architecture of palaces and seaside villas dating from the sixteenth century, and can be found mainly in the states of California and Florida due to the popular association of these coastal regions with Mediterranean resorts.
Architects August Geiger and Addison Mizner did much to popularize this style in Florida; while Bertram Goodhue, Sumner Spaulding, and Paul Williams did likewise in California. Structures are typically multi-story and based on a rectangular floor plan, and feature massive, symmetrical primary façades. Mediterranean Revival is characterized generally by stuccoed wall surfaces, flat or low-pitched terra cotta and tile roofs, arches, scrolled or tile-capped parapet walls and articulated door surrounds. Feature detailing is occasionally executed with keystones.
Balconies and window grilles are common, and are generally made of wrought iron or wood. Ornamentation can be simple or dramatic, and may use various Mediterranean references. Classical, Spanish Renaissance, Spanish Colonial, and Beaux-Arts architecture details are often incorporated into the design, as are lush gardens.
The style was most commonly applied to hotels, apartment buildings, commercial structures, and even modest residences. Mediterranean Revival was one of several architectural styles used extensively by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe and Southern Pacific Railroad companies when designing their train stations in California.
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