25 OCTOBER 2013
Sylvan Beach Pavilion Grand Opening: Making New Memories
Earlier this morning our design team attended Sylvan Beach Pavilion’s Grand Opening in La Porte, Texas and what an event it was. As attendees opened the double doors and entered the main ballroom they reminisced about prom, homecoming, and their favorite concerts held at the pavilion. Several couples even danced around the restored ballroom, humming classic tunes and enjoying the view. Renovating Sylvan Beach Pavilion preserved more than just the historical elements of the building; it preserved the memories of an entire community. Sylvan Beach Pavilion has been serving the La Porte community since its opening in 1893. Hurricanes destroyed the original open-air pavilion, paving the way for the current midcentury modern gem that opened its doors in 1956. Over the years, the pavilion hosted numerous community-wide gatherings and musical guests such as Manny Green, Mickey Gilley, Ray McKinley and the Houston Orchestra. Unfortunately, due to its coastal location, the building was damaged by Hurricane Carla in 1961, Hurricane Alicia in 1983, and Hurricane Ike in 2008, ultimately causing its closure. In 2011, newly elected Commissioner Jack Morman made it a priority to start restoring Sylvan Beach Pavilion. The Commissioner was aided by a local non-profit organization, Friends of Sylvan Beach Park & Pavilion, who secured three separate historic designations for the building. The design team worked tirelessly to preserve the historical elements of the building and ensure the renovated pavilion meets current coastal windstorm requirements. Several classic structural elements of the building were reconstructed such as the floor-to-ceiling window wall, circular bar, and deck among others. The transformation is substantial and the restored Sylvan Beach Pavilion will serve the community for years to come.