Mediterranean Revival Style architecture is an eclectic design style that was first introduced in the United States around the turn of the nineteenth century, and came into prominence in the 1920s and 1930s. The style evolved from "rekindled interest in Italian Renaissance palaces" and seaside villas dating from the sixteenth century, and can be found predominantly in California and Florida due to the popular association of these coastal regions with Mediterranean resorts. This style feels familiar and luxurious to me.
The Mediterranean Revival Style defined Miami during the Boom of the 1920s. The style reflects the architectural influences of the Mediterranean coast: Italian, Byzantine, Moorish themes from southern Spain, and French. Applied Spanish baroque decoration is generously used around openings, balconies, and cornices. Parapets, twisted columns, pediments, and other classical details also are frequently used. Arches are often featured. The most common materials are stucco walls, red tile roofs, wrought iron grilles and railings, wood brackets and balconies, and oolitic limestone, ceramic tile and terra cotta for ornament. Patios, courtyards, balconies, and loggias replace the front porch. Fenestration is usually the casement type. With its elaborate detailing, Mediterranean Revival architecture works best in large buildings.
This architecture, in my opinion, is steeped with the 'look' of old money, country clubs and class, yet, I find it comfortable, casual and accessible for everyone. In particular, I love the fact that the original developers of Coral Gables in Miami, Florida, designed an entire community with this style as star; a culturally rich, walking, hometown feeling - standards of designs regulated (I love this) - a town that is only 4 miles from the airport. Of course, I adore the name and the way it rolls off your tongue...'Coral Gables'. Darling.