Boca Raton benefited from the influence of Addison Mizner, the legendary architect who created Palm Beach and brought the Spanish-style estate to southern Florida with a vengeance.
Mr. Mizner turned his sights on this sleepy town with an agenda of building an entire vacation community from scratch.
He didn’t get far. Almost immediately after creating the 100-room Ritz Carlton Cloister Inn, he suffered financial reversals.
Today Boca remains something of a sprawl. The town and West Boca have a total of 200,000 residents, often lodged in gated communities.
“It is a sleepy town,” he said. Most people come to visit family members who have retired here. “But I grew to like it.”
A Florida Town Where Turtles, and Even Humans, Can Relax