South Beach is world-famous for its Art Deco architecture. Built in the
1930s and early 1940s, and fallen from favor by the 1970s, the hotels and other
buildings were in danger of being demolished. Barbara Capitman recognized their
hidden charms, and led efforts to preserve and restore South Beach. Among other
things, she founded the Miami Design Preservation League, and was instrumental
in having the Art Deco district of Miami Beach listed on the National Register
of Historic Places. Without her efforts, South Beach would never have become
the glamorous resort of today.