Preservation Ceremony Celebrates The DeMarcay's Historic Past and New Beginnings

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An exclusive kick-off ceremony was held on Wednesday, November 13 for The DeMarcay, luxury residential condominiums in downtown Sarasota by GK Development. The event saw more than 100 people attend to celebrate breaking ground for the anticipated preservation project. “Over the past year, we have been diligently getting everything in place to start construction on The DeMarcay, including updating the finishes for our buyers and tending to all of the details to get this project underway,” said Greg Kveton, partner at GK Development.  

The first thing we have to do is protect and preserve the two historic facades on the building during the construction process. They are very brittle and old so as we remove the building behind the facades, we have to stabilize them with a very unique process led by our preservation architects and our engineer.” Born from the historic De Marcay Hotel and the Roth Cigar Factory, the project aims to preserve the history and “boutique pied-a-terre.” Marking the beginning of the construction process, the ceremony celebrated reinventing the former hotel and cigar factory, and repurposing selected interior materials for use inside the new 18-story condominium complex. A portion of The DeMarcay’s lobby will utilize the original tin tiles on the ceiling, while the original interior doors will be used as decorative wall installations in the common halls, among other elements that will honor the site’s locale and history. It is said that the project is specially designed to seamlessly blend with the aesthetic of Palm Ave.’s setting that’s become the discernable fabric of the downtown neighborhood for decades. 

The general contractor for the project is Voeller Construction, based in Palm Harbor, along with Sarasota architecture firm Parker Walter Group. “Sarasota has an extremely rich history here with about 100 years memorialized in these two facades,” said M. Jeffrey Baker, partner at Mesick Cohen Wilson Baker Architects. “This project of reinstating and redefining these facades into the building means so much. We are in the process of connecting those that came before us with those that will come in the future. These old buildings that we restore still have a lot to tell us.” 

Chicago-based interior design firm, Ma'am Design Collective, plans to maintain design elements that reflect the site's historic past. “The building here is a metaphor for the future of Sarasota and the past,” continued Baker. “These character-defining features, such as the doors, windows and canopies, are features of what Sarasota is. When you see buildings like this, it makes this place unique and special and we’re happy to be a part of it.” 

Located directly across the street from the project at 32 South Palm Avenue, prospective buyers can visit the showroom and sales gallery to view the variety of new visuals, including a scaled replica of the building, virtual reality tours of each residence and samples of the interior finishes. 

Construction is slated for completion by summer 2021.

Photo courtesy of The Demarcay

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