Flori de Leon Apartments
The Flori de Leon apartments were the first cooperative on Florida’s west coast. The seven-story, Mediterranean Revival-style apartment complex was erected in 1926, just a few months after the Vinoy hotel was built. Flori de Leon was built in the shape of an H to enhance ventilation, with a large courtyard in the front and a smaller courtyard in the back. Cement benches allow residents to take in the beauty of the water fountain and intricate landscaping. Two large lounge areas, each with an adjoining roof deck, are on the top floor. Today the Flori de Leon offers condominiums to people at least fifty-five years old, but its most famous residents died many years ago.
In the early 1930s, the Flori de Leon apartments were the temporary home of New York Yankees star players Lous Gehrig and Babe Ruth. Gehrig leased Apartment 701, Ruth Apartment 702. People living in Apartment 701 have sensed the presence of a sad and lonely spirit. However, people living near Apartment 702 have been awakened in the middle of the night by the sounds of raucous laughter and loud music, even when Ruth’s penthouse is vacant. The noise is said to carry all the way to the bottom floor.