Ghosts of Florida Past

20:20:00 MoonDoggie 4 Comments

One of my fellow twitterers, birdhousebooks tweeted about a website called 'Florida's Lost Tourist Attractions'. Some of the highlights for me include,

The Upside-Down House;

Top O' The Strip Observation Tower;

Tragedy in US History Museum;

and my personal favourite Tiki Gardens.

At one time "the complex would encompass several gift shops, the south seas themed gardens
complete with exotic birds and monkeys, and Trader Frank's Restaurant, on more than twelve acres

Sadly, like so many tiki themed places, it was eventually torn down and turned into a parking lot.

But what really intrigued me was a reference in the Never Never Lands section to a place that was never built... Interama.

"It was a great billboard. Big and colorful, with artwork depicting the wonders to come, it stood watch over the vacant land near Biscayne Bay for years. An amazing new theme park, Interama, would shortly be built on this very site -- the sign said so".
It is this introduction that fascinated me. I have tried to find an image of this billboard but have been unsuccessful. If anyone has this image or a link for me, I would be very grateful (image on left found at dwntwnr).

The Historical Museum of Southern Florida held an exhibition about this theme park that never was. More information can be found on this exhibition here.

More images of what Interama could have been can be seen on


  1. How cool is that up side down house and a tiki garden why the heck would they replace that with a parking lot. Grrr

  2. Check you out... Your on the other side of the pond, and finding out stuff about a place 12 hrs from where I used to live. Good Job! I'll be searching for your billboard as well. But now, I'm gonna check out some cool looking links. Thanks!

  3. I'm frustrated that I was born too late to have enjoyed visiting such cool tourist attractions. There also used to be TONS of quirky (Now considered kitschy) roadside attractions along our famous old Route 66, here in the U.S.! In fact, I have a few books on the subject.

    Maybe, I will do a post (or two), similar to yours, that will feature some of those lost roadside wonders...

  4. Oh, how I mourn the loss of the Tiki Gardens! I had the wonderful book by Sven Kirsten, The Book of Tiki, and it had a lot of pix and info. Then, I lent the book to a not-very-good-friend. Now, I don't even have the pix! Thanks so much for this great website link!

    In one of my books, there is a spread about a shopping center or something that was planned for my hometown, but never built. I'll have to dig that one up and scan it.