Botero’s ‘dresswoman’ watches over chic new addition to Bayshore Boulevard
TAMPA, Florida – Soon the old Bay Oaks apartments will be replaced by the Ritz Carlton Residences Tampa, just south of Bay to Bay on Bayshore Boulevard. It will be 27 stories tall, with luxury condos starting at $ 1.6 million.
“It’s a private residence, but it has all the amenities of the Ritz Carlton,” suggested Toni Everett, whose real estate company sells the condominiums.
The penthouse just sold for over $ 11 million.
In addition to a comprehensive list of amenities, the new property will also have some interesting works of art and history. The first piece of art has already arrived and it’s hard to miss.
The huge bronze statue weighs 3,000 pounds. It is called “Dressed Woman”, created by the famous Colombian sculptor Fernando Botero.
“I knew she was coming but I didn’t think she was that big,” Everett said with a laugh.
Dressed Woman stands 8 feet tall atop a stone pedestal and is an imposing presence along Bayshore.
“She is elegant, beautiful, beautifully dressed and tall, which is in keeping with Botero’s signature style,” said Anelys Alvarez, assistant curator and collection manager for The Related Group.
The Miami-based company has a large art collection and awards artwork to various properties. Senior Vice President Michael Hammon said more pieces may join Dressed Woman as the project progresses.
Hammon also says that an element of the story came to his attention during a phone call from a member of Centro Espanol in Tampa.
“We believe there is a fountain on this site. It is the only thing left of this hospital which was built in 1904,” he was told.
The fountain was found covered with plants. It is one of three that were at the Centro Espanol Hospital, which was held here from 1904 to 1970, treating immigrant cigar workers and their families.
Hammon says the fountain will be restored and placed with a plaque not far from the dressed woman, who begins to settle down. The Grande Dame will watch art, history and a new luxury tower bring more change to Tampa’s Bayshore.
“I think it’s a nice addition to the property and to Tampa,” added Hammon.