Miami Beach

Star Island home faces demolition; another could be moved and preserved

Lennar CEO Stuart Miller, the owner of 22 Star Island Dr., no longer wants to demolish the 1928 home but instead rotate it and build another mansion next to it.
Lennar CEO Stuart Miller, the owner of 22 Star Island Dr., no longer wants to demolish the 1928 home but instead rotate it and build another mansion next to it. Courtesy of Arthur Marcus

The original version of this article misstated the year that the home at 44 Star Island was built.

Two more Star Island homes are on the docket for Tuesday’s design review board meeting — one facing demolition and another that could be moved and restored.

The owner of the 7,000-square-foot home at 44 Star Island Dr. wants to knock it down and erect a 24,000-square-foot mansion in its place. Local preservationists are unhappy with the request to demolish the 1935 home, which was built for John H. Levi, the marine engineer who created Star Island and a friend of Beach pioneer Carl Fisher. Levi later went on to become mayor and was featured on the cover of Time magazine. The home was designed by J.N. Bullen.

The owner, Shay Kostiner, has submitted an application to raze the mansion and build a new one. Kostiner bought the property for $7.25 million in 2010. The proposal harks to the controversy over 42 Star Island, which eventually met the wrecking ball after a long saga.

The preservationist community has already started an online petition to save the home at 44 Star Island.

Meanwhile, preservationists are pleased with another application where the owner wants to move the existing home and build another.

Last summer, Lennar CEO Stuart Miller submitted plans to the city to demolish the 7,000 square-foot home at 22 Star Island Dr. Now Miller is bringing a new application to the board to rotate the two-story, 1928 home and build a new 20,000 square-foot house on the same property.

This application is reminiscent of 27 Star Island, where the owner had a 1925 Walter DeGarmo home lifted and moved to another corner of the property to make way for a new mansion.

The design review board will meet 8:30 a.m. Tuesday at City Hall, 1700 Convention Center Dr.

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