Venetian Pool History
PARENTS PLEASE TAKE NOTE: Children under three years of age will not be admitted into the facility. Parents must provide proof of age three to enter.

Please be aware that the Venetian Pool will cease the sale of admission tickets once the facility has reached its maximum capacity. Re-entry of any kind will be prohibited once the pool is closed for admission sales.

Construction of the Venetian Pool - Coral Gables, Florida, 1924 - PHF052 - Credit as [Photo by Fishbaugh, W. A.(William Arthur), Courtesy of the State Archives of Florida].jpg
Construction of the Venetian Pool - 1924 - [Photo by Fishbaugh, W. A.(William Arthur), Courtesy of the State Archives of Florida].

The Venetian pool was opened in 1924 as the “Venetian Casino,” which was part of the Grand Plan George Merrick had for the City of Coral Gables. His vision for his city was to embody a sense of true hometown living.

George Merrick envisioned creating a City with Mediterranean features such as grand entrances, plazas, and Mediterranean style homes. The limestone which was taken from the Venetian Pool quarry pit was used to create some of the original neighboring buildings.

With the efforts of George Merrick, artist Denman Fink, and architect Phineas Paist, the pool was transformed into a paradise that today is included in the National Register of Historic Places, the only swimming pool to have such a designation.

In its early days, the “Venetian Casino” was the destination for many celebrities, including such movie stars as Johnny Weismuller and Esther Williams. The pool was also a site for orchestrated concerts, in which the pool was emptied of its 820,000 gallons of water and the orchestra would perform on the pool bottom. Many years later in 2001, this scene was duplicated as a concert which was held on the bottom of the pool to commemorate the City of Coral Gables’ 75th Birthday.

In 1989, the pool’s first historical renovation was completed. Between 2009 and 2010 the pool underwent a second renovation. However, the pool’s original rich history can still be observed as you walk through the entry fountain room and gaze upon its historic photographs, reminding patrons of an era long gone by.

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