Even in a city known throughout America for the beauty and stability of its buildings, the Karp Building, now the Hotel St. Michel, was a high achievement, both in artistic design and substantial construction. It is three stories in height, of heavy concrete and hollow tile construction throughout. At the time it had modern requirements, this included a sprinkler system, and a brass manual controlled elevator, which still resides in the Hotel St. Michel today.
Originally on the first floor resided stores, 12 in all. Eventually over time, they were purchased by Stuart N. Bornstein and combined to create the famous Restaurant St. Michel and Stuart's Bar/Lounge. All floors were of cement inlaid with decorative tile. On the upper floors sat 34 offices, all well lit with large casement windows. Eventually though the offices were turned into hotel rooms, which made up the historic Sevilla Hotel. The entire building was purchased by Stuart N. Bornstein and Alan Potamkin. Thus the Hotel St. Michel was born. Over the years, the entire building was restored to its former glory and quickly become a world-renowned hotel and a historical landmark.
During hurricane Wilma, the beautiful ivy and original facade were ripped off the building. The management quickly took action and embarked on a $1.5 million dollar face lift.
The Hotel St. Michel has withstood changes in time, people, weather and more. It is a testament to the great architecture, care and loving that has gone into the building.