Can you imagine staying in an un-air-conditioned place in Florida? Ugh. I’ve lived in Florida my entire life, and sometimes staying in an air-conditioned place still doesn’t give much refuge from the heat and humidity.
But there is one un-air-conditioned place I’m happy to visit here in Fort Lauderdale. It’s the Bonnet House Museum & Gardens, one of the city’s neatest gems (yes, I like using the word “neat” whenever I get the chance). It’s the former home of Hugh Taylor Birch’s daughter Helen and son-in-law, Frederic Bartlett (and then Bartlett’s second wife Evelyn).
I went to the Bonnet House this past Saturday, probably my fourth visit in two years. Truthfully, it’s just as good as the first visit. What I like so much about it is the colors. Lots of beautiful primary colors on the walls and lots of interesting art pieces collected over the years by Evelyn. The courtyard is the bread and butter of the place, where colors unite and your eye can find about 89 awesome details. I fell in love with the place so quickly that it even became the backdrop for a photo shoot our magazine did for our October 2009 issues of Gold Coast and Boca Life (see below).
Visit the Bonnet House when you can. It’s a great spot just to learn a little about Fort Lauderdale’s history (the tours are awesome and given by really informed and caring volunteers). Just visit it before it gets too hot because, well, there ain’t no air conditioning.