Great glass: Rene Gonzalez’s crystalline tower completes in Miami Beach

GLASS, the recently completed luxury condominium by Rene Gonzalez Architect completed in Miami Beach’s affluent South of Fifth, aka SoFi, neighbourhood.
GLASS, the recently completed luxury condominium by Rene Gonzalez Architect completes in Miami Beach’s affluent South of Fifth, aka SoFi, neighbourhood
(Image credit: Michael Stavaridis / Rene Gonzalez Architect)

South of Fifth - or SoFi by its trendier moniker - is an affluent enclave on the southern tip of Miami Beach, and one of the city’s priciest neighbourhoods, with luxury residential towers bound by the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the lagoon of Biscayne Bay to the west and South Pointe Park to the south. This is prime real estate, following urban regeneration over the last decade, thanks to visionary, risk-taking developers, who helped create the exclusive urban oasis that exists today.

‘GLASS’ by Rene Gonzalez Architect marks one of the first new residential developments to be completed in the City of Miami Beach in almost five years, a first in high-rise design for the local architect, and the last tall development permitted in South of Fifth due to zoning restrictions.

The 18-storey condominium was developed by Terra, the South Florida real estate development firm that seeks to create sustainable, design orientated communities. With commercial potential for up to 45 units, Terra opted for the ‘less is more’ approach, favouring 10 full-floor luxury residences with 360 degree views of its remarkable setting.

The all-glass tower, formed of perimeter glazing slotted into bold horizontal floor planes and minimalist frameless glass balustrading to the expansive wrap-around terraces, creates a playful ambiguity between inside and out. The firms philosophy is rooted in the belief that a building is inexorably linked to the natural and cultural elements of its surroundings.

‘Light and ethereal, GLASS is a response to its site, context, and environment. The building dematerializes as it rises, with its exterior almost disappearing into the atmosphere and its compositional use of fritted, patterned glass,’ explains Gonzalez.  Internally the apartments are bright and spacious allowing the varying views to take precedence.

Residents of the sold-out tower will begin to move in later this month.

Front view of Rene Gonzalez’s crystalline tower. Building with glass banisters on the balcony's and palm trees in front of it.

GLASS is the result of a collaborative effort between Rene Gonzalez Architect and Terra, a South Florida real estate development firm

(Image credit: Michael Stavaridis / Rene Gonzalez Architect)

Night view of Rene Gonzalez’s crystalline tower. High-rise building with glass banisters and palm trees in front of it.

The all-glass tower is the first high-rise residential project for the Miami based architects and the last permitted high rise development in SoFi due to zoning restrictions

(Image credit: Michael Stavaridis / Rene Gonzalez Architect)

Front view of Rene Gonzalez’s crystalline building. High-rise building with glass banisters and palm trees in front of it.

The 18 storey condominium comprises of 10 full-floor luxury residences with 360 degree views. The all-glass tower is formed of perimeter glazed walls, slotted into striking horizontal floor planes

(Image credit: Michael Stavaridis / Rene Gonzalez Architect)

Lower level view of Rene Gonzalez’s crystalline tower. A high-rise building with glass banisters and palm trees in front of it.

The building dematerializes as it rises, with the penthouse levels setback from the primary floors. Residents of the sold-out tower will begin to move in later this month

(Image credit: Michael Stavaridis / Rene Gonzalez Architect)

Street view looking up at Rene Gonzalez’s crystalline tower. A high-rise building with glass banisters and palm trees in front of it.

Clear, fritted and patterned glass is implemented on the exterior, with integrated solar shading devices to the lower levels

(Image credit: Michael Stavaridis / Rene Gonzalez Architect)

Street view of Rene Gonzalez’s crystalline building. A high-rise building with glass banisters.

Frameless glass panels form sleek balustrading to the expansive wrap around terraces

(Image credit: Michael Stavaridis / Rene Gonzalez Architect)

Lower level view of Rene Gonzalez’s crystalline tower. A high-rise building with glass banisters and palm trees in front of it.

The building entrance is conceived as an immersive environment with luxurious stone finishes of Coquina and blue Macauba quartzite referencing the nearby beach

(Image credit: Michael Stavaridis / Rene Gonzalez Architect)

INFORMATION

For more information on Rene Gonzalez Architect visit the website (opens in new tab)

Photography: Michael Stavaridis/ courtesy Rene Gonzalez Architect