A quick cruise across the MacArthur Causeway from Downtown Miami lands you on 5th Street in South Beach, where Spanish architect Alberto Campo Baeza’s first commercial commission in the United States will soon be built. The Fifth Miami Beach will offer about 60,000 square feet of Class A office space, in addition to a host of amenities. News about the project was first shared in 2021, and, earlier this year, exterior imagery was released. Now, a new suite of renderings depicts the design ambitions of the project’s impressive interiors, handled by Gabellini Sheppard Associates.
Conceptual work on The Fifth Miami Beach began in the early days of the pandemic, so it comprises one take on what the ideal post-pandemic office will look like. Beyond the typical trappings of an attractive workplace, the project establishes that lifestyle is of paramount importance to tenants. It includes ample open indoor/outdoor spaces, deep terraces on all four elevations, wellness items (sauna, spa, gym, and restaurants), floorplan flexibility, and, due to its location, short walks to nearby residences, hotels, and hot spots. (A real estate listing for a nearby property, a prime example of MiMo architecture, lists the area as a “walker’s paradise.”)
The Fifth Miami Beach will be the first new construction office in the South of Fifth neighborhood in 15 years, but its finishes, details, and services are crafted with the intention to establish a calming and peaceful residential vibe.
“To make a piece in Miami Beach, for many reasons, was very important,” Campo Baeza shared in an exclusive interview with AN. This begins with the building’s facade, which clearly showcases the structure’s elemental expression of slabs enclosed with glass between its 14-foot floor-to-floor height. “Facades are always a medium of communication, like the cover of a newspaper,” the architect relayed, and here they broadcast the light, air, and views available in South Florida.
Campo Baeza said that at times society associates new architecture with peculiar or strange things. He sees his work as the opposite: “serene, silent, and maybe classical”—classical in the sense that the buildings he designs can endure through time and are “capable to receive the future.”
The building includes an interior courtyard which provides light both to office floors and the lobby below. This allows workspaces to be layered along both the outer and inner perimeters of the floor. (Campo Baeza linked this “classical” solution to the plan of his largest office project, a headquarters for Caja Granada in Spain, completed in 2001, which is organized around a cavernous “impluvium of light.”)
The project’s roof will have an outdoor deck topped with a garden structure for bougainvillea. “Sometimes architects forget the top, and the top is the most beautiful point,” Campo Baeza said. Here, an architect can “underline the beauty of the city.”
The Fifth Miami Beach’s campus also includes two existing buildings that will be renovated as part of the full project scope. While the new five-story office communicates elevated Miami elegance, these structures along Michigan Avenue help knit the development into the surrounding urban context.
After a “considerable redesign,” which included the salvaging of these buildings, the endeavor received unanimous design approval from the City of Miami Beach’s Historic Preservation Board. The buildings will be completely renovated to become a juice bar. In the two-story building, a floor is a removed to create a double-height space, and the roof of the adjacent one-story one will be removed to create a butterfly garden/outdoor dining space.
The Fifth Miami Beach is developed by New York–based Sumaida + Khurana and Bizzi & Partners. While this is the former’s first initiative in Miami, the duo previously realized Álvaro Siza Vieira’s first project in the U.S. and Tadao Ando’s first building in New York. Among other high-profile projects, Bizzi & Partners, which maintains four offices on three continents, previously developed Eighty Seven Park, designed by Renzo Piano Building Workshop, in nearby Surfside. (The building was next door to Champlain Towers South until the towers collapsed last year.) The Fifth Miami Beach is Campo Baeza’s first U.S. commercial project, but he previously completed a private residence in Garrison, New York, in 2008. Designed with Miguel Quismondo, his addition to Magazzino Italian Art, a museum and research center in nearby Cold Spring, is currently under construction.
A short video about the project animates a day in the life of the building, including a look at the restaurant space on its ground floor.
The team for The Fifth Miami Beach also includes executive architect Cube 3, landscape architect Urban Robot Associates, and Cushman & Wakefield as the leasing agent. Construction will likely commence early next year, and the developers anticipate a 16-month build.