Miracle Mile in Coral Gables
Miracle Mile is a tourist hotspot in Coral Gables. You may call it a shopping district, a business & financial hub or just as the most happening part of downtown Coral Gables. Technically, Miracle Mile is not a district or a street. It is not even a mile long. It is just over half a mile long and is a part of Coral Way. The street runs east to west and vice versa through the central business district of downtown Coral Gables. The street is mostly known for the plethora of shops and restaurants, businesses and financial institutions, arts and theaters. The place is the unofficial heart of the city and is easily accessible, both via road and by Miami Metrorail. You can get off at the Douglas Road station. You can take the Coral Gables Trolley that runs up and down the Ponce de Leon Boulevard. While Miracle Mile is perhaps the most popular tourist attraction in Coral Gables, it is also one of the most frequented shopping districts in all of South Florida.
Miracle Mile was envisioned and designed by founder of the city George Merrick. He conceptualized the commercial district or the downtown area as a convenient place where every place of business would be within two blocks and hence an easy stroll for residents and tourists alike. Miracle Mile has a history as old as the commercial district, dating all the way back to the incorporation of the city of Coral Gables in 1925. The Colonnade Building, a landmark and now a heritage site for the city, was designed by Phineas Paist, Paul Chalfin and Walter De Garmo in 1926. The Colonnade has hosted many popular tenants over the decades. It presently has a hotel and offices. The place was officially named as Miracle Mile in 1955.
Miracle Mile was conceived and developed as a shopping destination. It was promoted as a high end or luxury shopping district for many years but today there are many shops that sell affordable apparel, footwear and accessories among others. The shopping boulevard was enthusiastically promoted by George K. Zain and Rebyl Zain, his wife. George Zain is fondly known as the father of Miracle Mile. Much of what was originally designed has ceased to exist over the years. The old trolley made way for automobiles but there are free trolley tours available since 2003. There are enough parking spaces now that were not envisioned in the original place, since there weren’t many automobiles in the twenties. Lately, Miracle Mile has undergone substantial redevelopment including redesign so you would be greeted with expanded sidewalks, more greenery, street edges without curbs and a new parking structure.
You ought to explore Miracle Mile in Coral Gables if you are in the city. Even if you are in Miami or anywhere in South Florida, you should try and spend at least one evening, if not an entire day, at Miracle Mile. Beyond shopping and dining at Miracle Mile, there are theaters, gardens and villages nearby.