Pinewood Estates.

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Florida Guide > Florida History

Pinewood Estates.

Pinewood Estates is an early 1930s mansion built for the steel magnate Austin Buck. At that time it was known as El Retiro and was a winter home.

This Mediterranean revival style home is 12900 square feet with 20 rooms and its own stunning gardens. Until around 40 years ago, this house had had only 3 owners.

In 1970, Pinewood Estates was bought by Bok Gardens; a very natural acquisition given it' s position. Since then, they have restored the home to its original 1930s glory and the work is still on going.

To the front of the house is a Spanish frog fountain that leads you to a grotto. Once inside the house you are struck by the Cuban hand made tiles and individually crafted cypress doors.

The pantry and kitchen are not as originally built but it is recorded that in 1930 the kitchen boasted the very modern built in kitchen and work surfaces.

The dining room leads straight off the pantry and was once shielded by a screen. This screen is now housed in the loggia.

And since we have mentioned the loggia, let us go there next. This room was built to bring the outside in. It features enormous glass pocket doors which slide straight into the walls. This would have been very much a family room.

The living room must have been wonderful for entertaining and I bet there were some pretty good parties held here.

The floor is made from hickory and the ceiling is pine. From this room there is a spiral staircase that leads straight into the master bedroom.

The staircase is worth a special mention as it appears to be travertine but is in fact cleverly moulded concrete.

And so to bed.

The master bedroom has a nice balcony to enjoy the glorious views. The wardrobe was big enough to serve as a dressing room.

There is another stunning view from what is known as Lucy' s room. The Lucy in question is Lucy Buck.

The green bedroom boasts a bathroom with almost all the original fittings and the orange and blue bathrooms have louvred doors between the bedroom and bathroom for both privacy and air.

Entry to the Pinewood Estates is $10 per person and is open for self guided tours from 12 noon til 4 pm and on sundays from 1 pm to 4 pm.

You can only visit Pinewood together with Bok Gardens so my suggestion is to make a day of it. The gardens and tower in the morning and then lunch in the cafe.

After lunch allow at least a couple of hours to enjoy this historic home.

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