What's left of Pan Am's history are the architectural and interior design elementsdon't miss the terrazzo floor map of Pan Am's flying boat routes and the meeting room's ceiling painted with the zodiac, a compass rose, and pioneers of early aviationbut the city has done a tremendous job in maintaining it. During a recent renovation, officials even went so far as to painstakingly match the original paint colors, found under layers of other paints applied over the decades.
Pan Am flew the Clipper seaplanes from the Dinner Key terminal from 1933 until 1945. The City of Miami purchased the site in 1946, and repurposed the terminal as City Hall in 1954. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. Fans of aviation, history, architecture, and art deco design should absolutely pencil in a quick visit. Make a lunch of it! There's a great, cheap little eatery next door called "Scotty's Landing" that cooks up conch fritters with an impressive view of the Bay and Dinner Key Terminal.
Caption for historic photo above: "Charles Lindbergh (in dark jacket) stands next to his Lockheed Sirius. He and wife/co-pilot, Anne Morrow Lindbergh, had just completed a 5-month transatlantic survey flight for Juan Trippe. Behind, construction on the permanent Dinner Key Terminal is underway. December 16, 1933.
If you're quite serious about Pan Am or have a little more time to spare, the nearby "First Flight Out" store within the Coconut Grove shopping center houses a mini-museum of Pan Am's more modern jet era. Exhibits include ephemera like original onboard menus, amenity kits, crew items, and commemorative gifts to lucky passengers. There's even portions of a real galley and business class cabin taken from a Pan Am 747. While there's no sitting down allowed, the shop does sell various Pan Am-branded items.
[All photos: Cynthia Drescher (taken on an iPhone, so excuse quality)]